What can you expect of a JEWISH COMIC CON?
So many things! To be honest, while preparing the show, we've been scratching our heads: how can we do? So many themes. So many characters. So many different types of comics. And, most of all, the creators. We'll be paying homage to the founders of the comic book industry as most of them were Jews. The new generations will be represented too! And, of course, there's always room for non-Jewish creators who have worked on anything Jewish related in their lives.
Through different panels, we'll try to browse as many topics as possible. With incredible guests too. Prepare yourself to be surprised!
Here's the programming from the 2016 edition just to give you an idea:
8:00 AM - MORNING SERVICE -- What do you do when you organize a comic book convention in a synagogue ? You start the day with the Sha’haris morning service led by Rabbi Reinstein. Open to everyone, whether you have a pass or not.
9:00 AM – 10:00 AM - HEROES & FAITH -- An interfaith roundtable of comics industry-related pros who are people of faith and/or work on projects involving religion discuss how beliefs shape their work and careers. A landmark panel. Moderated by Jordan B. Gorfinkel (Batman, Birds Of Prey, 3 O'Clock Club) with guests Darren Vincenzo. Rabbi Cary Friedman (and more to be announced).
10:00 AM – 11:00 AM - EISNER, KIRBY, SIEGEL, ETC.: THE JEWISH ROOTS OF COMICS -- It’s a fact that many of the founders of the comic book industry were Jewish. Why did comics bloom from the Jewish community? Why did Jewish creators mostly hide their heritage in the early years? Let’s travel back to the fascinating Golden Age of comics! Moderated by Arie Kaplan/Danny Fingeroth with Julian Voloj (Joe Shuster graphic novel) and more.
11:00 AM – 12:00 AM - SPOTLIGHT ON MORT GERBERG -- Join legendary New Yorker cartoonist Mort Gerberg as he talks about his career and how cartooning has evolved incredibly in the past 40 years. Moderated by Danny Fingeroth.
12:00 AM – 1:00 PM - BREAKING INTO COMICS THE CHUTZPAH WAY ! -- It’s the question so many fans are asking all the time. How do you break into the industry? What challenges will you face? And once you get your foot in the door… how do you stay in? Four creators talk about their experience in comics and will give their tips. Moderated by Arie Kaplan (comic book writer and author of From Krakow to Krypton) with guests: Danny Fingeroth (former Marvel editor and writer, author of Disguised as Clark Kent: Jews, Comics and the Creation of the Superhero), Dean Haspiel (The Red Hook) and Fabrice Sapolsky (Intertwined, Spider-Man Noir).
1:30 PM – 2:30 PM - THE MEZUZAH ON THE BATCAVE DOOR: JEWISH ELEMENTS OF BATMAN -- We know Bob Kane and Bill Finger were Jewish. We know Batwoman has been reinvented, a decade ago, as a Jewish LGBTQ character. But what about Batman and the others? Let’s explore the Jewishness of the Dark Knight universe through history and characters. Moderated by Arie Kaplan/Danny Fingeroth with guests Jordan Gorfinkel and Sholly Fisch (both respectively former Batman editor and All New Batman: The Brave & the Bold writer at DC Comics).
2:30 PM – 3:30 PM - INDIE VOICES: PAST, PRESENT & FUTURE -- Jewish creators and/or Jewish themes have always been around in independent comics and publications. While Jewish Comic Con honors the founders of the industry, we also want to keep the mic open for the current generation of creators. Between comics journalism, activism and reality-based fiction, our guests deliver fascinating and edgy content you’ll be thrilled to discover! Moderated by Arie Kaplan/Danny Fingeroth with Ariel Schrag (TBC), Dean Haspiel and Josh Neufeld.
4:00 PM – 4:30 PM - AFTERNOON SERVICE (MIN’HA) -- Yes! We’re still in a synagogue. So the conference room will shift back to temple mode for a 30- minute quick service with Rabbi Reinstein!
4:30 PM – 5:30 PM - JEWISH HEROES & VILLAINS -- While the industry was shaped largely by Jewish creators, positively depicted Jewish heroes are very hard to find. Sure, there are some Jewish characters in comics. There are monsters like The Thing (in Fantastic Four), neuroticslike Kitty Pryde (in X-Men), sociopaths like Marvel’s Moon Knight, conflicted souls like DC’s Ragman and world class villains like Magneto (X-Men, again). Let’s try to figure why we got to this situation. We’ll also ask the question: Do you need to be Jewish to create or write a Jewish character? Moderated by Arie Kaplan/Danny Fingeroth with special guest Greg Pak (Magneto, Hulk, Batman/Superman…) and Fabrice Sapolsky (Intertwined).
5:30 PM – 6:30 PM - CARTOONISTS AGAINST THE HOLOCAUST -- The noted comics historian Craig Yoe and Jewish historian Rafael Medoff recently co-authored a book called Cartoonists Against the Holocaust. It brings together 150 political cartoons about the plight of Europe's Jews, which appeared in U.S. newspapers in the 1930s and 1940s--some of them by Jewish cartoonists such as Arthur Szyk, Herbert Block, and Carl Rose. For this panel, Craig and Rafel will discuss the book, show images of some of the cartoons, and do a Q & A
6:30 PM - NEXT YEAR IN… No, it’s not Jerusalem. But who knows? J Jewish Comic Con will wrap up its first edition and will surely see you again next year, same Jew-ish Time, same Jew-ish Channel!
Note : A light breakfast will be offered to those who wake up early to join us at the first two panels! L’haim!