Halloween Comics Fest is an annual worldwide event when free horror comic books are given out to fans of all ages at participating stores. This was also Red Dot Diva's first time attending the celebration.
One of the few comics bookstores existing in Red Dot Island, GnB Comics has been operating at Rochor Centre for several years. Unfortunately, the blocks of old but colourful apartments and shops were marked for demolition, and as that time drew nearer, fans and members of GnB were getting twitchy wondering if the shop will carry on at another site or close its shutters for good.
Then, in late September, a surprise announcement was made on GnB Comics' mobile app. The comic book store has found a new home at Kitchener Complex, which is just a hop and a skip away from Lavender MRT Station! Woohoo!
Red Dot Diva, Agent W, Melvin and Andre visited the shop soon after the announcement. GnB had decided to open its doors even when the shop was not yet ready, so that people could still buy that week's shipment of new comics.
There were no lighting nor fixtures, and hardly any shelves yet. The contractors were fixing up the wiring while Red Dot Diva was there. Most of the store's comics and belongings were still in cardboard boxes, stacked on the concrete floor.
Even at its bare-bones state, Red Dot Diva and her friends thought there was a positive feel to the entire place. For one thing, the mall's airconditioner makes lining up for events so much cooler compared to the unrelenting humidity at Rochor Centre. There was a small choice of food places downstairs for one to grab a quick bite, and most of all, the toilets were much cleaner too!
Fastfoward to 5 weeks later and voila! When Red Dot Diva arrived at the store for Halloween Comics Fest yesterday, she thought the shop looked FABULOUS! From the outside, Red Dot Diva could see that the store is now brightly lit and jauntily decorated with Halloween buntings and spider mobiles, with shelves filled up neatly with comics, collectibles, toys and more comics! AHHHHH!!! Strangely enough, the big GnB shop sign has not yet been installed at the main entrance.
The heavy downpour in the morning did not deter hardcore fans from flocking down to the store. The event was to begin at 12 PM, and by 11:30 AM, there was already about 50 people forming a line to get in.
Each person was allowed to select 10 of the free Halloween Comics Fest comic books, and a choice of a Grumpy Cat or Marvel's The Champions pin. Red Dot Diva chose the Grumpy Cat, of course.
Oh, and thanks to Marvel/ Disney, folks could also nab a couple of posters promoting "Captain America: Civil War" Digital HD/ Blu-ray/ DVD release, while stocks last!
In addition to the free comics available, the store was holding a graphic novels sale at USD$1 to SGD$1. A good range of toys and collectibles were also displayed for sale around the shop.
Beyond the rows of book shelves, Indonesian artists Pipin Tobing and Noval Hernawan have set up a small booth to promote their artwork and their new comic anthology called "Tales From the Land Of Equator's Emerald". Another Indonesian artist Ardian Syaf, well known for his DC comics projects ("Blackest Night:Batman", "Green Lantern Corps", "Superman/Batman"), is also involved with the anthology. If you're not already familiar with their work, it is worth taking some time to check out their portfolio.
|Has this Pikachu been caught yet?|
Then, as she headed further toward the back, lo and behold, there was a Japanese pavilion, decorated with a tatami mat, an umbrella and maple leaves just next to a wall of posters! Such a great idea! Finally, a place for staff and fans to take a hang out and take a break, and cosplayers can use the colourful backdrop for photos.
A few moments later, Red Dot Diva heard some excited noises coming from the front of the store. Marvel's VP C.B. Cebulski had arrived for a surprise visit!
C.B. was in town to attend the Science Centre's launch of the Marvel Avengers S.T.A.T.I.O.N interactive exhibition, and it was so nice to see him again. Warm hugs all around! He only stayed for awhile, but had enough time to take selfies with those who requested for it. As usual, C.B.'s schedule is always packed!
Red Dot Diva did not spot many cosplayers during the time when she was at GnB. The most impressive and eye-catching cosplay she saw was the Earth X version of Captain America/ Steve Rogers by Chris Marsh, General Manager of WWE Asia Pacific (see photo above). Those who came to the shop in cosplay had a chance to win a special prize from Pacific Licensing and Nickelodeon!
Red Dot Diva spent a few more minutes taking a couple of fun biceps photos to mark the occasion (like the one above with Jason of Come, See Toys) but then, she also had to get her butt moving. There was another art-y event called the Illustration Arts Fest held at the LaSalle College of the Arts, where many more of her friends have set up booths. More on that in another blog post!
This is Red Dot Diva's Halloween Comics Fest stash.
Were you there at GnB Comics for the celebration? Aren't you falling in love with the new shop location and look?