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Comic-Book Junkies Descend on San Diego

DEBBIE ELLIOTT, host:

For comic book lovers the year ends and begins with Comic-Con. Every summer thousands descend on the San Diego Convention Center. Many are fans seeking out the next superhero or looking for that niche comic that you can't get in a store. And the place is teeming with people who create comics. Batton Lash is there. He writes a comic called Supernatural Law. Mr. Lash, thanks for talking with us.

Mr. BATTON LASH (Comic Book Writer): Hi. Yeah, I'm right in the center of the comic universe here.

ELLIOTT: What trends are you seeing this year in the comic world?

Mr. LASH: The trends just seem to be fantasy, science fiction, autobiography, and just general hi-jinks.

ELLIOTT: Now how long have been coming to Comic-Con?

Mr. LASH: I've been coming to Comic-Con since 1989.

ELLIOTT: Looking back at that first one and now its 2006, is it the same or is it different?

Mr. LASH: It has definitely grown. But I remember the first impression I got, I thought is was fun, energetic, I loved seeing the people in the costumes. It just seemed vibrant.

ELLIOTT: People are in costumes?

Mr. LASH: Oh yes. That's a big part of it. It's a small phenomenon called cos-play, where people will dress up as their favorite fantasy or comic book character and just walk around the convention for the weekend.

ELLIOTT: What are you wearing?

Mr. LASH: I am wearing my best please buy my comic book jacket.

ELLIOTT: Please buy my comic book jacket?

Mr. LASH: Yes because I'm - I'm stuck at my booth all weekend.

ELLIOTT: Tell me about your comic book.

Mr. LASH: My comic book is about two lawyers that represent the supernatural and the supernaturally afflicted. So who's scarier than Frankenstein? His attorneys.

ELLIOTT: So are there all kinds of court room antics?

Mr. LASH: Courtroom antics, legal intrigue. You know, a vampire doesn't like to be cross examined on the witness stand. The werewolf cases are held at night court so the judge can see exactly what the defendant is.

ELLIOTT: Give me am example of a supernatural legal case.

Mr. LASH: Well, the two attorneys, Alanna Wolff and Jeff Byrd, represent a witch who is sued for hexual harassment. She puts a love spell on someone. That person really doesn't want to fall in love with the schnook, so she takes the witch to court. So that gets kind of messy. Then there's another client, Mr. Negativity, a guy whose attitude is so bad he's literally a negative person and repels people. And the proverbial 800-pound gorilla that stands trial. And they have clients like that.

ELLIOTT: Batton Lash writes the comic book Supernatural Law. We reached him at Comic-Con, a yearly gathering of comic book junkies. Thanks for speaking with us.

Mr. LASH: Thank you Debbie. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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