Comic-Con 2008 was good stuff.

That’s really all that need be said, honestly. I understand that as a comic book professional it is my solemn duty to sort of sulk about my blog coughing up big, self-pitying paragraphs about overcrowding, bad odors, utter physical exhaustion, and a vague, indefinable sense of ennui, but come on… I just saw a Mystery Science Theater 3000 reunion moderated by Patton Oswalt. (“Mike and Joel on the same stage… DOGS AND CATS LIVING TOGETHER…” sayeth the gofflin.) A little perspective here, folks.

Nerds need Comic-Con. “Nerdiness” as a concept needs to be celebrated so hard it shuts down a major American city for four days every year. Harder, if at all possible.

(Professional nerdiness, in particular, could use a bigger dose of “community.” It can be a pretty solitary thing. Doctors and salesmen and Freemasons and convicted sex offenders don’t really have a “community” problem, but we do.)

But anyway, all week I’ve been hearing rumors about the Con moving once the contract with San Diego is up in 2012. It’s just gotten too big for the city to properly host (not enough space, too few hotels, too much congestion, etc.), or so say the rumorbeasts. That might be true, but I’m not quite convinced… The engine behind all this insane expansion is the big Hollywood machine that rattled and churned and got itself twisted around in the direction of “geek culture” a few years ago. Which is great; more attention for the comic world is a good thing. But I can’t help but wonder when the great Hollywood behemoth is going to realize you don’t need to hurl a million dollars into Hall H to sell Watchmen to nerds. Nerds, as it turns out, can occasionally be found on the internet.

A BOLD PREDICTION: The SDCC Hollywood money-train will soon drift to a slow crawl. Comic properties will continue to sell, but the marketing people will wise up a bit. Oh, you’ll still see cool presentations and the occasional Owlship at the Con every year, but the Keanus and Jolies will dry up, and with them all the casual fans who swell the yearly body count past 125,000. Things will drift back to a more sustainable size and no one (sweet jeezus here’s hoping) will have to go to Vegas. So don’t fret none, San Diego… You’ll be hating our guts and collecting all our money for many, many years to come.

(This one businessman-looking guy on the sidewalk actually shouted at me to “get my ass out the way” on Friday. He waved his arm all angry-like and everything. We reacted the only way you can react: hysterical laughter.)

ANOTHER PREDICTION, LESS BOLD BUT MORE “TRUE”: My first prediction is completely off base and doomed to fail the test of time.

And now some thank yous! Thanks so much, sincerely, to everyone who made it to the con this year… The signing bits are always my favorite part of the whole Con experience, and that’s absolutely true despite having the distinct ring of a pathetic cliche. ESPECIAL thank-yous to Eddie for lugging that rock all the way down from Portland (Happy Birthday yesterday, Eddie!), to Courtney for the absolutely stunning birthday card, to Kat for the wicked brushy pen, to Miss Angela and Nick for letting me know just what Serenity’s meant to them, and to Sarah, Mikey, and Angela for showing up roughly 18 years in a row to make my table look busy during lulls (and, y’know, for just generally being fun to talk to). Oh, and thanks to the two fans from Japan (I want to say “Rei” and “Hiroshi,” but I could be wrong… apologies!) who stopped by to say hello. I didn’t even know you could get my books in Japan, but here I have two independent reports that my stuff can be found in some very specialized comic shops in Tokyo. This information is unbelievably cool to me.

And, of course, thanks to the gofflin for (re)sculpting Homer the Goblin, the world’s finest “table candy.” As one fan was heard to remark, “I wish I had a wife who would sculpt things for me.”

Amen to that, brother. AMEN TO THAT.

SPECIAL NOTE: Apparently Matt Berry was at the convention this year. Sadly, I did not see him, although I can make him play guitar for me whenever I want: