The second half of my double convention weekend was spent at Wizard World: Chicago Comic Con. This 4-day event is the giant of the Midwest. It's big enough to fill the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center. It's rich enough to get Tom Felton as a guest, even when the Harry Potter convention is in the same city. It's popular enough to make multiple, huge mistakes without having its future threatened. That's a real-life superpower if I've ever seen one.
Sorry if that sounds scathing; it's just how this year went.
Wizard World expanded in 2012. With its new size came a confusing floor layout. Autograph lines cut right down the middle of the vendors' territory. Some unfortunate vendors, then, got pushed into a peninsula that many con attendees never discovered. The Artists' Alley was easy to find, but its shape was skinny and sprawling, often clashing with vendor traffic. Fan tables weren't in the convention proper at all; they were in the lobby. I had the misfortune of manning a fan table for a shift. In 4 hours, I talked to 5 people. Sigh.
Most personally, I had a poor experience with the press department. Over three hours, three different people told me three different times to pick up my wristband. When I politely raised the issue, I was scolded by Jerry Milani for not following the directions in the e-mail I received. Thing is, the e-mail had me filed under the wrong publication completely; how could I trust that info to be accurate? I know the staff was very busy. I don't even expect every staff member to be able to help. However, those behind the Registration desk should be able to accurately assist with Registration. Am I wrong?
I am wrong. I'm wrong because Wizard World: Chicago Comic Con will still be a roaring success, no matter what. Even without major publishers like DC and Marvel, thousands will flock. I will still go for cosplay and photography opportunities. The combination of art, vendors, costumes, and guests is hard to resist. I officially prefer C2E2, though, and my LeakyCon experience just a day prior kicked Wizard World's ass.
I had a nice time shopping, people-watching, and supporting my artist friends. I bought some Battlestar Galactica Viper Pilot tank tops that are WAY rad. I just miss the Wizard World Chicago Comic Con I used to look forward to.
To the cosplayers- awesome job. Despite uncarpeted aisles, you brought it big time. Your armor, spandex, masks, and swords were worn with skill and love. Cosplayers, you're a bunch of hotties. Enjoy these photos. As usual, if you see yourself, comment below or on the Geek Girl Chicago Facebook Page.