Yesterday we brought you part 1 of our WonderCon Anaheim coverage. Today, Gwen takes us into the heart of the event and what makes it tick.
As my husband and I walked towards the convention center Friday morning, we had our traditional, first-hour-of-con conversation: How long is the badge pick-up line going to be?
If you look at the picture below, you will see many, MANY people at tables waving white signs. These are all the attendee registration desks that have nobody waiting for their ticket.
In MiceChat terms, we would call the Attendee Registration a “walk-on.”
The picture below? That’s the Professional Registration line (the industry insiders). They had to wait about 45 minutes to check in. Ouch!
There was a WonderCon representative there with a walkie-talkie freaking out about the length of the line. Problems like this can easily happen and are understandable, but it’s optimal for it not to happen at all, to any guest. They need a better plan for utilizing resources so the staff with no line can help with registrations on the busy lines.
Although the programming left something to be desired (not enough official, company presentations), the floor was fantastic. Brands and companies exhibiting included Archaia, Aspen, Bongo, Boom! Studios, Capcom, ComiXology, Dark Horse, DC, IDW, Kotobukiya, Namco Bandai, Nintendo, Skybound, Top Cow, Wacom and Warner Archive. There was a large amount of Small Press and Artist Alley booths as well. And the amount of autograph booths seemed not too small and not too big. Just right.
EXHIBITORS AND VENDORS
IDW Publishing was selling multiple collections of original and new Rocketeer comics including a BEAUTIFUL, hardcover artist’s edition scanned in color from the original black and white art. By scanning in color, the book can mimic what it is like to look at the original art with the blue penciling and corrections. The pages are the same size as the original art boards. www.IDWPublishing.com
Capcom was previewing the yet to be released “DuckTales: Remastered” video game. “Ducktales” was originally a Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) release that was later ported to the Gameboy. www.Capcom.com
One of MANY toy vendors was featuring Steampunk themed Disney Vinylmation.
Matt’s Calvacade of Comics had numerous vintage Disney Comics for sale. www.ILoveSpidey.com
Fat Rabbit Farm, capitalizing on the Avengers hype, produced some Marvel themed reusable stickers and small prints as well as some other geek-centric designs. (Full Disclosure: My husband writes children’s books for Fat Rabbit Farm.) www.FatRabbitFarm.com
This was, BY FAR, the most unique exhibitor on the floor. Sire’s Crown has been previously known for their handcrafted, eco-friendly, wood eyewear. At WonderCon, they debuted their signature frames with vintage comic book art wraps. In this picture, if you look closely, you can see Daredevil, Silver Surfer and Spider-Man.
I bought a pair of custom 1930’s Batman wrapped cat eye style (Adamina) eyeglasses. I found them to be knowledgeable, caring and professional with the utmost customer service mindset. In fact, I just now, in the middle of writing this article, received a phone call from their optician to talk to me about the status of my custom frames and lenses. Yes, they have an optician on staff. In fact, he is one of the co-owners. And if your prescription changes, they will be happy to sell you new lenses that fit your frames for as long as you own them.
This was one of the hot items of the convention. I checked in with them throughout the convention and they told me that every night, after the floor closed, they would head back to their workshop to create more product for the next day. They just couldn’t keep them in stock. These guys clearly know what they’re doing and seem to have found their demographic. www.SiresEyewear.com
Down in the autograph and Artist’s Alley areas, there were several Disney related booths.
MiceChat favorite, Margaret Kerry, the original live action model for Tinkerbell, was signing at a vendor’s booth.
Raphael Sbarge, Jiminy Cricket/Archie Hopper on “Once Upon a Time,” was also signing.
Amy Mebberson, cartoonist, had an Artist’s Alley table. Amy is a prolific Disney artist, working with Boom! Studios when they had the Disney licenses. She also created the iconic Merida art that the WonderGround Gallery featured in the window when they opened at Disneyland’s Downtown Disney. www.AmyMebberson.com
James Silvani, artist, had an Artist’s Alley table right next door to Amy. James is also a prolific Boom! Studios artist with numerous credits on their Disney licensed comics. James is a Darkwing Duck fanatic. www.SilvaniArt.com
While hanging around James and Amy’s booths, I also ran into Aaron Sparrow and Jesse Snider. Aaron and Jesse worked on the Muppets comics at Boom! Studios and shared with me how much they’d love to bring the Muppets to comics again. Jesse also worked on the Toy Story comics while Aaron was the Lead Editor for the Disney licenses at Boom! Studios. www.www.jesseblaze.com www.twitter.com/Aaron_Sparrow
WonderCon had some phenomenal cosplayers this year. Here are my favorite Disney-related costumes.
Due to the lack of official programming, there were no big announcements made for the Disney universe. However, I did manage to get a sneak peek at some art for an upcoming Disney comics relaunch that’s being pitched and discussed as we sit here. How does an Oswald, the Lucky Rabbit, comic sound? Your favorite princesses in brand new adventures? New Darkwing Duck? Does a Talespin or Stitch comic sound good? Or maybe a comic book version of the old Goofy “How To” film series? I can’t say anything else. But if this project is greenlit, Disney comic fans should be VERY happy. I know that I was smiling from ear to ear.
So, my geeky friends. What did you see that has YOU the most excited? Are you mentioned or is your picture in the article? Identify yourself and let us praise your artistry! Until next time…