One of my goals of starting this blog was to create an excuse and motivation to get out and try fun new things. Now each week I share those adventures with you! Last weekend I experienced my first ever Comic Con!
Above artwork by Denver Fortner
You may be wondering how I could have gone 27 years without ever going to Comic Con. I had nothing against Comic Con and I was always curious but as someone who never read comics as a kid and still doesn’t read comics as an adult I felt it probably didn’t have anything of interest to offer me. I was wrong…
A few weeks ago I finally let my husband convince me that the ticket price would be worth the experience. I was still skeptical that $60 for two people to go look at comic books was worth the investment. When we got there, printed tickets in hand, a few minutes before opening, I was shocked and a little irritated to have to stand in a line that appeared to be a mile long just to get official badges! As more people poured into the convention center and the line doubled on it’s self, creating the longest queue I’ve ever seen in my life I realized we actually had a pretty decent spot in line. Once the line started moving it moved quickly and consistently. I have to admit, admission to the event was organized and efficient, especially considering the incredible volume of people! Eventually we reached the head of the line and quickly got our passes. We were in!
I had heard of cosplay but was sorely unprepared for what I was to experience. This was Portland weirdness at its best! I was expecting Halloween type costumes, ordered pre-made from Amazon. What I was treated to was a wide array of elaborate costumes that must have taken months to create. People everywhere had transformed themselves into their favorite characters or their own original characters and many were quite serious about staying in character.
If you came without costume, as many did (including my husband and I) there were plenty of booths where you could through together a quick outfit.
As we entered I immediately started to realize my assumption that it would just be a room full of comic books was way off the mark. The minute we passed through the doors I was looking out upon a field of unique and varied styles of amazing artwork. Once you got passed the mesmerizing art there were costume supplies, toys, games, tattoo being applied, classic video and arcade games being played, comic books of course, and hell we even saw a couple cars we had to stop and drool over for a bit.
When I tried to imagine celebrities that might be at the Rose City Comic Con I didn’t expect the big names that were actually there. I had obviously underestimated Comic Con all around! I have never met a celebrity before… We were walking around the celeb signing area just looking at the actors and actresses signing autographs for long lines of fans. I looked to my right and saw Lawrence Gilliard jr (he played Bob on The Walking Dead) leaning on his table, not a single person in line! Suddenly he pointed at my husband and my husband pointed back as if they were old friends that had just unexpectedly ran into each other. We walked through his line area right up to him where he shook our hands and gave me a hug! I am not ashamed to admit I totally fangirled my heart out! We stood there chatting with him for a while until he had to leave for photo ops. He gave me a hug goodbye and we went our separate ways. We tried to get in line for a photo with him but his photo tickets were sold out 😦 I was really disappointed but still very grateful for the experience I got. As we continued walking around I was distracted trying to wrap my head around the fact that I just had a casual conversation and hugged an amazing actor from one of my favorite shows. I couldn’t quite believe it had happened to me, my first celebrity! I went a little crazy over the celebrities… I even got excited about seeing R2D2!
We happened upon a table of older actors out in the main booth area and introduced ourselves to Don Pedro Colley (Sheriff Little from The Dukes of Hazard)! Now, you need to know that my husband Denver was named after an actor from the Dukes of Hazard and has a tattoo of the General Lee on his arm. We are both fans of the show but he obviously a bigger fan than I. We got a signed autograph from Mr. Colley and had a wonderful conversation. We then immediately bragged to Denver’s Dad who was very jealous of our good fortune! 🙂
We were able to go to a couple panels which we thought might cost extra but turned out to be free after admission! As Huge fans of the shows Grimm and Mavel’s Agents of Shield I was stoked to experience my first live interviews with some of the main actors of these shows! In the Grimm Panel, Silas Weir Mitchell (Monroe) and Reggie Lee (Sgt. Wu) answered audience questions and discussed their feelings of Portland, OR. We found the panel room a little late, so we got seats in the back and couldn’t get a good picture but in person we could see the stage clearly.
The Marvel’s Agents of Shield panel was in the same room immediately following the Grimm interview so once the room cleared out a bit we found seats close to the front. Elizabeth Henstridge (Jemma Simmons) and Brett Dalton (Grant Ward) Were absolutely hilarious! I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time! Unfortunately some of the people asking questions didn’t understand that the actors wouldn’t be able to give away the secrets of the shows upcoming season which wasted valuable question time but Henstridge and Dalton made the best out of each question.
At one point during the questioning a little girl dressed as Thor was lifted to the microphone by her dad to ask her question. With dedication and confidence the girl asked which superhero they would like to have on the show. She also explained that she was dressed as Thor because he is her favorite! She was then invited on stage for a picture and the answer to her question. It was the sweetest thing, that I’m sure she will remember for the rest of her life!
We stayed ALL DAY! By the afternoon our feet hurt, we were physically and emotionally exhausted and were completely satisfied by our experience! We went home with plenty of mementos to show for our first Comic Con! Though even if we came home empty handed, the memories we made there will live with me forever!