Wizard World Comic Con has once again come and gone from the St. Louis area. As you can imagine, it is impossible for 8daysageek to cover every celebrity panel or event, but here’s a recap of what we did manage to attend while not photographing cosplayers, browsing the aisles of awesome merchandise, or chatting with the various artists and marveling at their work.
Friday afternoon, we arrived at the con and after a brief trip through the show floor, where I immediately spotted this fella hanging out atop one of the vendor’s booths. We did a couple laps of the floor and decided to head to the show stage for Morgan Strebler: Master of Illusion. Morgan is an illusionist who performs geek-themed magic tricks. I am going to be completely honest here…Morgan did not impress. Maybe it was first-show jitters, but Morgan’s feats of psychokinesis (bending spoons and the like) were nothing to leave the con floor for. Nor were his “amazing” predictions. His act culminated in a prediction trick where a volunteer was called on stage to receive Morgan’s prediction via email attachment on her smartphone. He then amassed two groups of volunteers meant to portray the Marvel and DC universes. Those groups proceeded to battle it out in a downright boring game of rock, paper, scissors. When only one team was left, it was time for Mr. Strebler to reveal his amazing prediction. Which is where this event got even worse. The volunteer who received the email, was unable to even open the attachment sent by the master illusionist. Knowing it was time to throw in the towel, Mr. Strebler responded by asking the volunteer to let him know if the attachment ever came through and then bid the audience an immediate good night before exiting the stage quicker than The Flash.
We decided to hit the floor again and browsed for a while at a booth called Metal Souls. These guys make statues out of scrap metal. You want a really awesome Dalek made out of real nuts and bolts? Why wouldn’t you? We then decided to hit a panel and attended the screening of Comic Geeks, a web series created by Brian Spath and filmed right here in St. Louis. This event was far more entertaining than the first. We were treated to a screening of the first episode of the series, followed by a Q&A with the creator and stars. The series follows “a group of comic obsessed friends who try to balance adult life with their four-colored passion.”
It was a pretty entertaining show and I would recommend everyone check out their Facebook page here and show your support or you can follow them on Twitter @ThoseComicGeeks. The Q&A session was interesting and informative. Especially when series creator Brian Spath explained his inspiration for the show coming from the less-than-realistic portrayal of comic geeks on shows such as The Big Bang Theory. This opinion elicited resounding applause from one particular member of the audience…who just happened to be attending the convention with yours truly that evening. This–along with a follow up question regarding the dissatisfaction with shows such as BBT–got a nice amount of laughs from those in attendance.
Saturday we attended a Q&A with creator of The Night of the Living Dead, George Romero. Probably the most historically significant guest of the convention, Romero explained the creation of the zombie genre-which he is mainly responsible for. He also shared his opinion of remakes (he’s not a fan) as well as briefly touching on the topic of “fast” zombies versus “slow” zombies (we all agree slow zombies are best, right?). It was great to see someone responsible for creating an entire genre sharing his opinions and stories with his fans. Not to mention, still creating after over 50 years in the business.
Next, we attended the panel entitled, Refuge in the Mall: A Mallrats Reunion with Jason Mewes and Michael Rooker. This was the panel I was most looking forward to at the convention. And it did not disappoint. Jason floated around the stage the entire panel, never sitting down for more than a minute. While Rooker was his usual funny and obstinate self. At one point Rooker and Mewes pretended the panel host was a zombie, while Mewes provided the sound effects and Michael Rooker engaged him in mock combat on stage. This was one of the most enjoyable panels I have attended at the multiple Wizard Worlds that I have had the pleasure of covering for 8daysageek. These two former co-stars entertained with stories of their current and past projects as well as discussing the upcoming Mallrats 2. If you ever have a chance to see either of these guys live…don’t pass it up.
Next, we dropped in on the Marvel Agent Carter panel starring Haley Atwell and her co-star Lyndsy Fonseca. I was actually an avid viewer of this new Marvel television series and was happy to listen these two beautiful ladies discuss the show and where it could be headed. Will the series delve into the deeper issues of the Era it takes place in? Such as racial and sexual inequality? If Ms. Atwell has anything to say about it, they will. Check out the series when it returns to television next season if you have not already done so. The last event of the day was the annual costume contest. If you’d like to see photos of all the awesome cosplay, check out the 8daysageek article here.
Sunday didn’t provide much in the way of celebrity panels to attend, but we did jump in to see Giancarlo Esposito (who I am a huge fan of). Giancarlo is most known for his role as Gus on Breaking Bad. However, my interest stems from his roles on both Revolution and Once Upon a Time. Mr. Esposito strikes me as a consummate professional. He takes his work very serious and this has led him to the success he has enjoyed. Please don’t take that to mean Giancarlo was not a very entertaining and amusing man during his panel. Because he was. However, I most enjoyed his explanation of how he takes on roles and gets into character, which is where my opinion of his professionalism comes in.
We also dropped by the Weta Workshop where an amazing display of Lord Of the Rings memorabilia, props, and artwork awaited us. Not to mention Azog himself towering over our heads! The rest of our time on Sunday was spent grabbing photos of anyone in costume left, and purchasing some fantastic artwork and collectibles before heading home. Overall, it was a very enjoyable convention this year. The turnout could have been better, but the convention was being held on Memorial Day weekend. I can’t blame those geeks out there who chose to spend time with friends and family on a holiday instead of attending the convention. Wizard World has already announced the date for next year’s convention. So start planning your cosplay now. Wizard World Comic Con St. Louis will return April 1-3 2016 and 8daysageek will see you there!