Hey there Hall H Show listeners and fellow pop culture and comic book fans!
And if you are a fan of the show…thank you so much for being a supporter! I know we aren’t the biggest or even the best pop culture / comic book podcast, but just as long as I can have interesting and authentic conversations with incredible independent creators that deserve more spotlight – that is really all that matters to me.
The irony of having a mainstream website name (Hall H at San Diego Comic-Con is well known after all) while having a mission to showcase indie creators isn’t lost on me. In fact, it’s part of what make me…me.
When the Los Angeles Lakers, Celtics and Bulls were big in the late 80’s and early 90’s, was I a fan? No – Detroit Pistons Bad Boys all the way!
When a lot of my friends were into Star Wars, did I join in on the fun and pretend I was a Jedi? No – I was more fascinated by the prime directive and vulcans!
When I was in elementary, junior high school or high school bullies reared their ugly heads like King Ghidorah, did I hide and cower in fear? No – I stood my ground!
I even think bacon is overrated and pineapple belongs on a pizza – oh the travesty!
So it’s little wonder that I would suggest that the focus of HallH.com and our podcast, The Hall H Show would be about everything else but Hall H (and mainstream pop culture news and celebrities). I think there are tons of other sites and news outlets that already do a good job of that. Who’s going to look out for the celebrities in Artist Alley and Small Press? We approach our coverage with this in mind and I’ve loved being able to podcast with some amazing indie pop culture creators.
What else am I passionate about?
Obviously, not bacon. But seriously, even though I can’t draw well, I’ve always been drawn to the visual arts.
I was Photography Editor of my high school newspaper and I’m a graphic design professional. In fact, it was Saul Bass’ beginning and end title credits for West Side Story that helped nudge me in the direction of becoming a designer. I’ve had great opportunities as an agency owner, lead designer, project manager and design manager. I loved building my own team and managing multiple creative teams across the United States.
Being of Filipino heritage, I love to eat! Sinigang (a Filipino sour soup) will always be my favorite dish. I think a good deal of the YouTube videos that I’ve watched have been food related. While I’ve enjoyed the actual cooking, I also loved the interviews too. I see a lot of similarities between a chef and a designer so I was instantly drawn to such luminaries like Anthony Bourdain, Marco Pierre White, David Chang, Thomas Keller, Ming Tsai, Eric Ripert, Roy Choi and Jacque Pépin. In fact Pépin’s book, The Apprentice is one of my favorite memoirs. Can you imaging jumping into the French cooking brigade system at the age of 13?
After a long day of work, I love sharing some steamed white rice, grilled galbi (beef short rib), and Korean side dishes like kkakdugi (cubed kimchi radish) with some close friends. Oh, and some beer too! Geonbae!
Lastly, can’t forget about karaoke. After a long, long, long, long, long day of work, some attempts at “trying” to sing Muse, Radiohead, Linkin Park and Audioslave songs are good for my soul.
Any favorite memories from SDCC?
Wow…so many. My first San Diego Comic-con was in 1995 – I still have the SDCC Wildstorm poster from that year! Generally speaking, it’s been a great experience going to SDCC as an attendee, content creator/podcaster, exhibitor and panelist.
Meeting other content creators like Nerd Fu, Leonard Sultana, Alyssa Franks, Hot Nerd Girl, Andy Behbakht, Nerdophiles, Tim Ludy, Brandon Troy, Mighty Jerd, Jasmine (Superheroes XYZ), Jim (Con Guy) and so many others at Tony B. Kim‘s Game of Blogger events (2015-2018) was so much fun!
Attending Susy Botello‘s (International Mobile Film Festival founder) in 2016 was an eye opening experience. We’ve become good friends, guests on each other’s podcasts and I’m also honored to be one of the brand ambassadors for the festival.
Seeing the growth of Black Heroes Matter each year is a beautiful thing. I remember first meeting Black Heroes Matter founder, Uraeus when he attended an offsite artist meet and greet that the Hall H Show was sponsoring at SDCC 2016 (thanks to artists Bobby Rubio, Keithan Jones, Patrick Ballesteros, Eric Ninaltowski, Geoff Pascual and Ethan Castillo for attending).
I also love seeing some of the Comic Con Fit family randomly – like when I was crossing the street toward the convention center and met Kevin Walwyn for the first time!
You can read more about how awesome SDCC 2016 was for me here.
Working a booth in 2018 was a blast! Pixar story artist Bobby Rubio had a nice corner spot since the early 2000’s and he asked if me and Alex would work it part time while he was in town visiting family. It was great to see so many friends come by and visit. I also got to meet actor Rick Worthy who was walking around checking out booths and he ended up buying a couple of Bobby’s prints. Oh…as an added bonus, since the booth was just a stone’s throw away from the DC booth, we were in a prime spot to watch the cast of Aquaman walk by.
SDCC 2019 was the first time I got to be a panelist for my friend Neal Hallford‘s annual “Heroes At The Mic” panel. This was so much fun and I got to share this experience with two friends, Kenny Rotter (I was a guest on his podcast, Dumbells and Dragons) and Kaitlyn Fae (she was a guest on the Hall H Show).
Of course, who could forget all those epic SDCC interviews?
- 2014 – Don Thompson
- 2017 – Comic Con Fit, Karma Savage, Black Heroes Matter, David Pepose and Stephan Franck
- 2018 – Rob Salkowitz, Arlen Schumer, David Schrader, Ming Chen, Leonard Sultana and Alyssa Franks
- 2019 – Karla Nappi, Tim Ludy, Michael Dooley and Leo Partible
What other shows do you like to attend?
Seeing as how I spend a ton of time in Artist Alley at SDCC, I love going to conventions like DesignerCon and Lightbox Expo. These conventions are creator centric and they both feel like artist alley on steroids!
I also like more intimate events like San Diego Comic Fest, which interestingly enough was started by one of the co-founders of San Diego Comic-Con, Mike Towry. I was honored to be a panel moderator in 2018 for a panel showcasing the Accidental Aliens!
My good friend, Keithan Jones (creator of the comic book, The Power Knights and owner of publisher, KID Comics) created his own event, Black Comix Day. Since its inception in 2018, it has grown every year and it’s amazing to see the talent that comes together and the support and camaraderie the creators have for each other. While some of my fondest memories have been from moderating the “Empowered: How Indie Comic Creators Build Universes and Communities” panel, it was great being invited to the after dinner celebration and just hanging out with the creators.
The success of Black Comix Day as well as a chance encounter with Scott Lost, a Filipino comic book creator and Kirin Amiling Macapuguy, an educator, community organizer and advocate for Igorot culture, at San Diego Comic-Con 2019, planted the seed of creating a small convention showcasing Filipino American pop culture creators. Stay tuned for Fil-Am CreatorCon coming soon!