2015 Wizard World Comic Con Philadelphia Recap


I am very proud to say that I have been to every Wizard World Comic Con Philadelphia that has been held in this fair city since the show’s inception. For 15 years, I have been going to what has become one of the first heralds of spring in the City of Brotherly Love, and I have enjoyed it each and every year.

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Yes, Wizard World Philly has changed a great deal over the years, some for the better and some for the worse. What was once a massive comic book show that featured every major publisher in comics, including Marvel and DC, is now more of a pop culture con that is a haven for autograph seekers, cosplayers and those just looking to “geek out” for an afternoon.

So while none of the big comic publishers show up for Wizard World anymore, now we get to see Doctor Who‘s David Tennant and Billie Piper in one of their only convention appearances together. We get noted film director and proud Philadelphian M. Night Shyamalan, who took part in a rare Comic Con panel, and the funny and beautiful Hayley Atwell the day after her show Marvel’s Agent Carter was renewed for a second season (much to the joy of the crowd who attended her panel on Saturday). And last but not least, we got to watch as screen legend Burt Reynolds experienced his first Comic Con in none other than Philadelphia.

In addition, there were the usual gang of genre stars including Lou Ferrigno, Jason David Frank, Nathan Fillion, Stephen Amell and Katie Cassidy from Arrow and an assortment of wrestlers, comic book creators and more. Honestly, if you walked out of Comic Con without finding at least something you enjoyed, I don’t know what’s wrong with you.

Then there is the cosplay. I remember when cosplay made up a very small part of the reason people went to Wizard World. Back then, you would see someone in a costume only so often, and none who actually made a career out of it. Now, cosplayers are everywhere. I couldn’t go two feet without bumping into a Black Widow or Superman or Poison Ivy. And not simple costumes either, but elaborate cosplays that light up and show just how talented these folks are.

One of the big highlights for me of any Wizard World Comic Con Philadelphia show is Artist Alley and the sheer diversity of books and voices you can find there, and once again I was not disappointed. I spoke to so many people who are working their tails off to create something and share it with the world, it makes you think that maybe you could be doing more yourself. These are creators who don’t do this for the money or the attention or because they might become famous. These are people who simply want to create art and share it with others. Creativity in its purest form.

I also finally had a chance to have Peter David sign my well-read copy of Imzadi. I was able to get a sketch from none other than Spider-Man 2099 artist Will Sliney. I watched as comic book legend Neal Adams sketched for fans, and I got to thank Tom DeFalco personally for all the years of joy his stories have given me. And I was told more than once that no, I can’t tell you what happens after Secret Wars.

Despite what you may think, comics still make up a good chunk of the dealers area, and I was able to score some great stuff. Old issues of Marvel Two-in-One and Marvel Team-Up, classic issues of John Byrne’s run on Fantastic Four as well as early issues of Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man, all for $2 a pop! Are you kidding me?

No, Wizard World Comic Con Philadelphia isn’t what it used to be, but in many ways it’s so much better. It appeals to a more diverse group of fans than ever and brings them in touch with genre icons that would otherwise be out of reach. It allows fans of all types to connect, talk and celebrate the joy of being a geek without judgement or hassle. Wizard World Philly is just a weekend of pure, unadulterated fun.

Next year’s dates have already been announced and I’m already looking forward to it. So I’m going to begin my countdown … NOW!

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