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Small Press Expo 2009: Underneath the Comic Book Underground

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The San Diego Comic-Con may get all the press (and Twilighteens), but one of the comic book industry’s most important events takes place right here in the DC area.

Saturday, September 26th and Sunday, September 27th, 2009 will mark the 15th Annual Small Press Expo at the Bethesda North Marriott Convention Center. Though the “Big Two” – Marvel and DC Comics – won’t be in attendance, dozens of smaller publishers will be on hand to showcase their recent and upcoming releases.

Many current industry heavyweights, like Brian Michael Bendis and David Mack, got their foot in the door at SPX and, this year, there will no shortage of writers, artists, and production houses in attendance. Exhibitors currently lined up for SPX 2009 include Oni Press (Bryan Lee O’Malley’s Scott Pilgrim series, Greg Rucka’s Whiteout), Top Shelf Productions (Alan Moore’s Lost Girls and League of Extraordinary Gentlemen: 1910), Fantagraphics Books (Charles Burns’ Black Hole, Peter Bagge’s Hate), Adhouse Books (PulpHope: The Art of Paul Pope), and Slave Labor Graphics (Evan Dorkin’s Milk & Cheese), to name but a few.

SPX is an excellent opportunity to check out the talent behind the latest indie graphic novels, underground comix, and webcomics before its best and brightest move onto the spandex and capes set. For an idea of what the small press is looking like these days, check out the nominees for this year’s Ignatz Awards, which extol “outstanding achievement in comics and cartooning” and are presented annually at SPX.

Small Press Expo (SPX) 2009
Saturday, September 26th – Sunday, September 27th

Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center
5701 Marinelli Road
Bethesda, Maryland 20852 USA

Times:

Saturday: 11:00 am – 7:00 pm

Sunday: noon – 6:00 pm

Admission:

One day memberships: $10.00

Weekend memberships: $15.00


Of course, for those who prefer for their comics to start “X” and end with “Men,” there’s always the Baltimore Comic-Con, which will be held on October 10th and 11th at the Baltimore Convention Center.