Convention Confessional Vol 3

Posted: Wednesday, March 7, 2007
By: Steve Saville

Cover of Convention Confessional Vol 3 Creator(s): Rob Reilly
Publishers: Skatoon Productions
From: USA
Price: US$ 4.50

This comic [the last in the series] is not fair. It does not play by the rules. Those rules being creators create and critics criticise. Those are the rules, but apparently no one has told Rob Reilly this because in this the last instalment of his ‘stories from the comic convention horror show’ he has upped the bitterness and released a withering attack on the comic community generally, and specifically.

Because of this I remain sceptical about just how widely read this comic will be. I still question its mass appeal. But what it does do is provide an outlet for the level of frustration that every small press producer feels, has felt and in all likelihood will continue to feel. For that reason and that reason alone, if you are a small press creator then you need this comic. This comic is the rallying cry for dissent. It is important; it says things that need to be said. If you are serious about your art then you need to read the entire story arc but most importantly this latest volume.

The art work is still of the highest ‘cartoony’ quality and very easy on the eye, the production is still very professional and the humour is still present [the paper towel bandit who features on the opening pages is truly an international creature] What is new and what makes for an uncomfortable read is the intensity of emotion present, primarily the bitterness bordering on anger.

Reilly has a go at just about everyone connected with the comic industry. In particular Diamond Distributors receive a real bashing, convention organisers get a fair roasting to, so do those who attend conventions. Reviewers, well ouch. Reilly attacks those reviewers who bludge free copies then don’t review them or provide inane trite reviews that belittle the whole comic process. And yes Rob I apologise for the lateness of this review. There has been a change in the reviewing guard here and as I also work in a real job, try to create my own stuff and help raise my family, life can get fairly busy. Still the attack on reviewers generally is warranted. Even small press producers are attacked for producing so much derivative rubbish, and yes that hurt too, but then again the truth does tend to.

To put all of this in perspective Rob is also pretty damn hard on himself, labelling himself as a social retard, amongst other things. The most vociferous comments are made in the prose epilogue [or evilogue] and reads like the final comments from a frustrated artist, I hope this is not the case.

All of us who have spent embarrassingly long periods of time prostituting our works at conventions, all of us who have constantly aimed high with our endeavours and fallen short need to read this comic, we need to then think about why we draw, reflect, refocus and then get back to it. The fight back starts here.

In a Word: Table–turning.

If you have a comment or question about Small Press then feel free to contact me