With the 2014 Con Season is slowly coming to a close but before it ends Stan Lee and friends had one last hurrah at the LA Convention Center this Halloween weekend. Boasting a plethora of vendors, panels, celebrities, and artists the event celebrated its 4th year in style. Although the expo got off to a slow start due to the rain, apparently Californians think they’ll melt or something, things did pick up by the second day.
I went all 3 days as opposed to just 1 last year so I ended up with a full weekend on my hands. While I enjoyed the event as a whole there were some problems I had that I feel could be reworked to make the con a much stronger event in the future. I would have enjoyed it more if panels started earlier on Friday afternoon. I showed up right before doors on Friday and was able to roam the floors the minute they opened. So with the convention center still filling out I was able to traverse the exhibit floor in just under an hour, leaving me waiting for panels to start. Furthermore, I feel like a lot of the panels featuring bigger names were much too short. Several of them were only slated for half an hour when really they deserved at least an hour if not more time.
I also feel like the exhibit floor didn’t expand as much as it could have between last year and now. There weren’t as many new vendors as I would have liked and I feel like the organizers underutilized their space somewhat. As I mentioned before, aside from these few gripes I do think the con did a lot of things I enjoyed.The panels that they did have were rather diverse ranging from cast reunions of your favorite television shows( Spider-Man: The Animated Series, Batman ’66, Mad TV) to introductory panels for those trying to take a more DIY approach to expressing their nerdiness or even panels showcasing the latest in geek fashion. The eclectic selection helped ensure that the entire spectrum of nerds in attendance could find a panel that best suits their interests as no two nerds are the same.
One of the biggest additions that was rather well received was the addition of the free after party Saturday night. The event, co-hosted by the con and Club Cosplay, invited older attendees to rock out with djs and live music at Club Nokia. Club Cosplay events are always a blast so to have them host one the night a popular con is in town is a guaranteed success. The house was packed the entire night and the music was bumping. Not to mention both bands killed it. Booze prices were a bit much but given it was the Club Nokia that was expected. Hopefully this event happens again next year because it is definitely a game changer.
The con has done a lot of growing since it’s first incarnation and as long as those involved keep up the momentum it’s only going to get better. If you didn’t go this year you definitely missed out, so hopefully the wait for next year’s Comikaze won’t be horrible. Until then I’ll see you around!