Recently I (as well as many of my fellow Mormon Geek contributors), had the opportunity to attend Salt Lake City Comic Con. Comic Con Fan X was my first comic con, it was amazing. I attended three days of awesome. I was there with one of my best friends, the panels were incredible, the lines were very manageable and everything on the convention floor was new and fascinating. Granted, I am a huge TNG geek, and FanX was a TNG geek’s fantasy come true (but for lacking LaVar Burton (but it’s okay since La Forge was not really a bridge officer #butterflyinthesky)). I had personal interaction with all the TNG crew except Patrick Stewart, but I saw him in person and that, fellow geeks, was enough for me. I left FanX a very content geek.
Salt Lake Comic Con 2014 did not deliver in the same way and I fear I may have only myself to blame. While I attended all three days of FanX, I could only justify taking one day away from work and family to attend. I chose Saturday… The Grail Knight of Indiana Jones would undoubtedly say, “he chose, poorly . . .,” and how I paid for my poor choice. Fortunately, my face did not melt off.
My biggest gripe was the sheer volume of people. Part of me was thrilled to see such a strong and vibrant geek community; another part of me wanted a third of the people to have stayed home. I eventually put all of my cosplay paraphernalia in my backpack because walking around in the crushing crowds was a feat of its own. I needed to make some small gift purchases for my wife (who let me go be a geek for the day), and my kids. Walking the convention floor was an exercise in extreme patience building. You could not just meander from booth to booth, rather, you had to wait for the crowd to slowly carry you there, and hope no one was standing where you needed to be or you would be forced to slow the crawl of the masses further.
I found some excellent gifts, the prices were decent, and the sentiment was appropriate. Batman earrings, bacon socks, a Darth Vader bust and two tins of mints shaped like original Nintendo controllers later, I had achieved my mission.
I attended a great panel on the history of Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion. While there were some technical difficulties, the information was fantastic (I will share more on this in October). I was able to spend some time with some close friends and celebrate something fun that brings us together. I got to see entire FAMILIES enjoying the conference, and even cosplaying. I still love it when someone asks for a picture with me when dressed as Dr. Horrible. This time when I left however, I did not leave a content geek, I left disappointed and hoping I will eventually recapture the glory and splendor of my first Comic Con.
In the meantime, thank you Comic Con for still giving me a place where I know all things geeky will be held up and celebrated.