Friday, October 2, 2015

Salt Lake Comic Con 2015 Highlights

It’s been a few months since I last posted here. Much of what’s kept me away has been busy with lots of different things going on during the summer. As a result, nearly every time I actually had time to write, I either lacked the energy to do so, or I experienced writer’s block. And every time I actually had the energy and knew exactly what I wanted to write, I just didn’t have the time.

But there’s nothing like three days of attending a comic book convention to get me energized to write about my favorite geek-related topics.

Every time I attend Comic Con in Salt Lake (be it the Salt Lake Comic Con title event or FanX), it’s a very different experience for me. From one convention to the next, I might attend different types of panels or go to spotlights for celebrities from different genres. I might purchase different types of souvenirs. I may or may not cos-play (and when I do, how elaborate my costume is may vary). I may spend time geeking out with different friends. This year at Comic Con was no exception to the rule.

Contributing Writers of Mormon Geeks, Adam (me), T.J. and Joe
 at Salt Lake Comic Con this year.
Rather than doing a travelogue of sorts, and going through each day in order (as I did in my report on FanX earlier this year), I’m just going to touch on the highlights of some of the things I enjoy most about going to Comic Con.

The first was the panels. I found the panels to be kind of hit or miss for me this year. The one I enjoyed the most was titled, “The Flash: Run, Barry, Run!” This panel discussed the first season of The Flash TV series, and some thoughts on what the future may hold for the show. And though I have not yet posted my review of the first season, I will say that I thoroughly enjoyed it, and am really excited for the direction the series seems to be heading.

"The Flash: Run, Barry, Run!" Panel, which was the panel I enjoyed the most this year
One of panelists was a friend of mine, Quinn Rollins, who as a next-door neighbor growing up, was one of the first people to introduce me to superheroes. He has also declared himself to be the biggest geek he knows. Though I would definitely have attended the panel even without him there, having someone I knew personally on the panel made it even more enjoyable to attend. I hadn’t been following the trailers and previews that came out for the second season during the summer, but just hearing about what might be coming makes me excited for next week’s season premiere.

The "Disabilities in Pop Culture" Panel
All of the panelists had some personal connection to disabilities
Among the other panels that I enjoyed were “Disabilities in Pop Culture” (which featured Jake Dietz, a.k.a. “The Geeky Mormon”, as one of the panelists) and “The Doctor and Violence” (a Doctor Who panel that looked at what kind of man the Doctor is, as well as some of his internal motivations).

"The Doctor and Violence" Panel
I enjoyed finally being able to attend a Doctor Who panel and understand what the panelists were talking about
Some of the misses included two of the panel discussions on the Marvel cinematic universe (the friends I went with, because they wanted to attend, actually left both panels early out of boredom), and “The Science of Time Travel.” The latter was a topic that I find very interesting, but I found the presentation to be rather dry, and rather than explore the theoretical science behind time travel that is portrayed in pop culture, spent most of the time discussing how real life occurrences are like time travel.

The Robby Amell Spotlight Panel
The only celebrity spotlight panel I went to this year featured Robby Amell. I had wanted to go to several others, but had conflicts with attending them. Amell mostly talked about his role as Ronny Raymond/Firestorm in The Flash, as well as other things related to the Arrowverse, including how he was originally invited to audition for the title role of Arrow, but saw the role as a much better fit for his cousin, Stephen Amell, who ultimately got the role. He also let us know that Firestorm would continue to be a recurring character is the early episodes of the second season of The Flash, but was unwilling to give any spoilers as to what role (if any) he would be playing in the upcoming Legends of Tomorrow.

My big souvenir from Salt Lake Comic Con 2015
A photo with Robby Amell
Unrelated to the panel, I also paid for a photo op with Robby Amell, which is my “big” souvenir for this year’s Comic Con. Initially, I was planning on only getting a limited amount of art this time, as I really don’t have space to display very much of it, and instead bought some t-shirts that show off my geeky nature. But as I have become much more of a Whovian in the past year or so, I wanted to get some Doctor Who art, and also ended up getting a number of other prints as well.

I added to my collection of geeky t-shirts
I decided I needed more to stuff to show off my new status as a Whovian
I added to my collection of fan art this year
I only cos-played one day this year, and I decided to go with a costume I’ve wanted to try out for several years. On Friday, I went in costume as Superboy (as he appeared in the comic books from about 2004 to 2012, as well as the Young Justice cartoon series). The costume was rather simple, requiring only blue jeans, black shoes, black t-shirt with a red Superman symbol and using temporary black hair dye. Though technically not officially part of the costume, I elaborated by adding a Superman symbol belt buckle. Though only those familiar with the character and those who knew that my hair was not normally black were likely to realize I was actually in costume, it worked out well for me. And I got to be in full costume without getting stopped for pictures every few minutes (like I did when I cosplayed as Thor at FanX earlier this year).

Me in my simple, yet full costume as Superboy
And as usual, the part I enjoyed the most about the convention was getting to spend time there with friends. Some of my friends really got into it, cosplaying as different characters every day, while for others, it was their first time attending, and were just in awe of all there was to see at the convention.

Me with several of my friends that I geeked out with at Comic Con
Like Joe, attending Comic Con is a nice diversion from every day responsibilities, where I can just enjoy my interests, as well as spending time with others that share them. Though I felt exhausted by the end of the final day of Comic Con, I had a great experience all three days, and left looking forward to the next one.

Actually, I think we were probably worn out well before the end of the last day!
The dates for next year’s FanX were just recently announced as well. And as it turns out, the first day of it will be on my birthday. So I owe a big thank you to the creators of Salt Lake Comic Con and FanX for the birthday present!

I also took a lot of pictures, and as I didn't have room to fit all of them earlier in my post, I'll end with a montage of the rest of my pictures from this year's Salt Lake Comic Con.

I had some friends ask me to watch for some of the local artists they knew
This is Chris Bringhurst at his booth in the Artist's Alley
Local artist Kenwood Huh in his booth in the Artist's Alley
Local artist Matt Page was away when I stopped by his booth
One of the vendors sales Minecraft-eque toys
David and Spencer were a couple of my friends that cos-played as different characters each day
On the first day, they went as the "Gameboy" and Mario
On the second day, they went as the 11th and 9th Doctors
On the last day, they went as Carl and Russel from Disney's "Up"
A selfie of me as Superboy
James (Joe's brother-in-law) cos-playing as a sorcerer
David, me and Spencer on the first day
Me and Ken, who was attending Comic Con for the first time
Quinn Rollins (middle) as a panelist for
"The Flash: Run, Barry Run!" panel
Spencer, me and David on the second day
One of the Mormon Geeks meets "The Geeky Mormon":
Me with fellow blogger Jake Dietz
Paul (who decided on a simpler costume this year) and me
The selfie I ended up with of Joe after I asked him to take a picture of me and Paul
Spencer, me and David on the final day
Me in the TARDIS
I don't think any other picture better expresses the joy I experienced at Salt Lake Comic Con

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