This years Wizard World Comic Con seemed to have hit a quite big number of snags leading into it. With what already seemed like a smaller list of celebrities than previous years (or possibly just a smaller list of must see / rare guests) it didn’t help when a good chunk of the bigger guests cancelled either before the convention began or shortly after. However this didn’t seem to stop the general amount of cos players, savvy shoppers, and collectors from attending.
On the celebrity realm this year I only did end up doing one meet and greet with Barry Bostwick from cult film “The Rocky Horror Picture Show”. He was one of the cheaper guests it seemed and even he was $40 for a autograph (picture not included). However he was incredibly nice and did seem to care enough about whoever was there to meet him that he would have a chat with you during your time at his table.
Prices for guests is one of the aspects that turns me off about meeting people through Wizard World though. The price of some guests can be crazy (I believe Michael Rooker was $70 per picture AND $70 for a autograph). These prices make it hard for most to meet anyone, then throw the lines in as well and meeting someone can be a all day experience. Some guests as well don’t even have photos at their table and your only way to get a photo with them is to buy their professional photo op. It boils down to with how big this show is, meeting a bigger guest just might not be as personal as one would hope with your meeting just because a rush through the line.
My only other big gripes this year are that vendors are put in two different halls and I noticed some sellers had the same booths selling the same things in both halls. This seemed somewhat pointless as this is room that someone new would be able to use to showcase their stuff or sell it. Also artists alley is always cool but this year I noticed that there was quite an absence of comic creators selling their stuff instead seeing many people selling their paintings and drawings which is cool, but after awhile can be hard to pinpoint the difference between some of them.
Wizard World did host a few after show concerts this year, one being “An Evening With Gene Simmons”. This was a rare intimate show with Gene Simmons of KISS and a backing band. The show was held the beautiful and small “Park West” venue in Chicago. His show consisted of Gene talking between songs with his hysterical banter, doing the KISS hits, a few covers, some music from his solo album, and some deeper KISS cuts. Simmons himself sounded amazing and his backing band was flawless as well. What was so special about this show is that there was no barrier or security between the crowd and the stage which lead Gene to call people up during songs to sing and during the final song “Rock And Roll All Night” he invited as many as could fit on stage to sing along. This was truly a night of music one will never forget.
Wizard World Tickets Provided Courtesy of Wizard World / Gene Simmons Ticket purchased on my own.