Sunday, June 10, 2012

Review: Wizard World Philadelphia

Well hello ladies and gents!  Last weekend flew on by and of course who wants the weekend to end?  But when Wizard World Philadelphia happens to be in town it’s down right depressing to see the weekend end.  That’s how much fun the show is.

By AllyCat Alisha
Oh no... Harley Quinn and
her Henchman got me! 
Where is that bat when you need him?

I have a soft spot for WW Philly.  When I first started attending comic conventions as a fan and not a cosplayer or a blogger this was my favorite show.  At the time I had really only been to NYCC, which is an amazing show but large, crowded, and overwhelming.  WW Philly has a more personal feel.  It’s a “quieter” show.  The crowds are there but it’s not over crowded.  The fans, cosplayers, guests, exhibitors, and creators are friendly.  People have the chance to really talk about their art form or learn about coloring right on the convention floor.  It has a different feel to it then NYCC.  Both great shows, but very different.  I think it’s fair to say WW does a better job appealing to the fans and being inviting then NY does.

Last year, I attended WW Philly as a cosplayer for the very first time and my cosplaying experience was not the best.  I was very weary of cosplaying at the show this year.  I was also contemplating not going to the show at all.  I heard Kristy Swanson was appearing and that won my attendance.  Last year, one vendor in particular truly destroyed my experience at the show by acting menacing and sneering at my store bought costume.  This was my first experience with cosplay hating and I was already a bit insecure in the costume as it was.  The costume had some fit issues.  To my pleasant surprise, this vendor was not at the show this year as the artist they work with was not in attendance.

Attending as a cosplayer this year was completely different.  I know more people and maybe I had an idea of what to expect and not expect.  I was much more informed this year as well.  But lets talk about cosplay later and the show now.

Our buddy Raven Gregory was enjoying the show
Thursday.  This was the only chance I got to see him
The show was much bigger this year and the room was laid out much differently.  This was odd at first, but in retrospect I think it suited the show much better.  The show was four days this year.  I attended Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.   Thursday was spent mostly shopping around.  Unfortunately because Thursday is considered a preview night many vendors were not set up or in the process of setting up.  Also, quite a few artists were not there yet and none of the celebrity guests (that is to be expected though).

I can’t not comment on the Wizard staffing.  Everyone was amazing.  From registration (I am pretty sure I registered with the same lady last year) to volunteers to bathroom attendants to security.  Everyone was polite, happy, friendly, and knowledgeable.  I got a kick out of a bathroom attendant who was so excited to be working during the comic convention.  She was snapping photos of cosplayers in the bathroom, excitedly asking us to pose before leaving.  I am pretty sure I saw a few security guards in staged pictures putting villain’s in handcuffs and the like.  There was no question that the staff was enjoying their time working at this show.  That alone makes it a great show.  I have been to other shows with staff members having a poor attitude and it took over the tone of the event.

I have been heavily into toys (both current and vintage) recently and was delighted at the large amount of toy exhibitors on the floor.  I also ran into Tinkerbee Toys & Treasures, whom I met at the NJ Toy Fair back in February and will also be at the LI Toy Fair next month.  I picked up a 1983 Cheer Bear and a plush Posey MLP from the 80’s.  I had this exact Cheer Bear when I was a child and it had been well loved and ruined in the wash repeatedly.  I was more then ecstatic to see not only the exact same 80’s plush bear but a very clean bear.  Posey needs to have her mane and tail worked on, but they do not seem to be beyond repair.

I really enjoyed the photo opportunities, both with iShoot and Superhero Photography.  Adam Jay is a blast to chat with, pose with, and goof around with.  The seven new Avengers colognes were not a favorite of mine.  To be fair I did not test them out, but I do not wear perfume or cologne.  I am a firm believer in pheromones and my sensitive skin doesn’t care for it either.  I am an infrequent user.  Really though, I just feel strange about Avengers cologne.  When I start seeing something like a movie making cologne it screams market saturation to me and that is never good.  If you over saturate people get bored seeing your product, logo, face everywhere and they lose interest.  Hardcore fans will not lose interest but (as much as it hurts to say this) it’s the general public marketers want to keep interested and that will not happen if they saturate the market.

Speaking of Avengers...
Check out Ms. Alexia Grey
Speaking of the Avengers, Norton’s Operation Shield was a fun simple adventure in PC protection.  Upon entering the operation one becomes an agent and goes through a series of games with a simple test at the end to receive prizes (Avengers Rubik Cube and poster).  If you are able to answer the final question in time you win a t-shirt.  I can not tell you what that final question was because the time was up before I finished reading the question.  I guess I am a slow reader.  That is okay.  I didn’t need a t-shirt and I gave my cube and poster to my friends young nephew.  If Norton’s Operation Shield happens to be a convention near you take a trip through, it’s cute and fun.

There were loads of celebrities at the show.  Some of which I did not expect and all of the ones I encountered or saw were nothing short of completely sweet.  My friends and I met Dean Cain, Melissa Joan Hart and Kristy Swanson.  Each of us had our own pick, mine was Kristy.  I grew up watching her over and over again in Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  I loved that cheeky movie so much that I refused to watch Geller on TV for years.  I was a bit disappointed with Melissa’s line.  She didn’t have one!  She was so sweet when we met her.  Brian knows her as a voice actress but I remember her as Clarissa.  I also watched Sabrina, but I was more into Clarissa.

A bunch of my cosplaying friends
with Princess Horror!
I also met Princess Horror!  I am pretty sure I have seen her before, but she was very outgoing and excited to jump in pictures and have fun at the show.  Her show does not broadcast here in NY unfortunately.

At this show I finally attended my first panel.  Friends and acquaintances of mine were running a panel on cosplay and premiering a fan film staring some of my close friends.  I enjoyed what the panelists had to say, my favorite being Shemika Berry, who talked about cosplayers being the children who never grew up.  She is right and that really spoke volumes to me.

Alice!
So as for my cosplays, Thursday I debuted American McGee’s Alice with my clockwork bunny bomb in tow.  I did not have my vorpal cleaver, but that is okay.  I have it now and it’s glow in the dark.  I am going to try painting designs on it.  I am hoping the blade glows around the designs.  I really enjoyed cosplaying as Alice.  Especially since she is a dark version and not over sexed (or sexed at all). 

Friday, I was X-23.  I had planned on switching into Alice mid day, but decided it would be cumbersome to bring the costume with me.  The two costumes share a wig, contacts, and boots so it’s a fairly easy switch.  This was a convention debut for X-23 and I think it was very well received.  One cosplayer was very excited and was hoping I was wearing it again Saturday as she was Mystique on Saturday.  The only thing I find funny about X-23 is that she blends in with the crowd and doesn’t stand out much.  I am not too crazy about many of the photos of X-23, but it just goes to show I need to replace the pants with skinny jeans or a matte fabric.

Saturday, I debuted the improved Supergirl.  New wig, borrowed belt, contacts, and my homemade boots!  Surprisingly the boots held up!  The wig worked quite well.  I need to figure out a better way to secure it or how to put make up in my hair so that my dark hair does not show at the sides.  Supergirl was well received and oddly I was one of only two Supergirls (that I saw anyway).

I had a lot of fun cosplaying at this show.  Most people say friends are their favorite aspect of cosplays and conventions.  For me usually it’s the kids and I don’t mean the young cosplayers.  I mean the little kids that think I am Supergirl.  Gets me every time.  But right after that is definitely my friends.  This show (for the days I attended) was short on children, but I was able to meet a lot of fellow cosplayers.  Some of them being online friends and contacts I have had for quite sometime now.  I finally got to meet my friend Ann in person, I missed her at NYCC and I-Con.  This happened with lots of people.  There are many faces I know but names I did not know until now.

Overall, this show has been and still is my favorite.  I had a bad year last year, but this year completely made up for it. 

Do I have critiques?  They could still use more signage outside the convention center.  The biggest critique (and I hope this doesn’t give anyone ideas) more monitoring of the entrances and exits.  There were definitely con goers on the convention floor without a wrist band.  They were walking in from a side door and asking where to register.  Other then that, keep up what you’re doing Wizard!

Pictures!
** I did not take pictures at this convention.   These photos are pulled from friends and public sites.  I have watermarked the pictures associated with a website or public figure. **


X-Men (women) Unite!

Ann as Black Widow and myself

Ann as Artemis and myself

Me as Alice and Vicki as Wonder Girl






Marvel!

The ladies

Flying blind...

We are an interesting bunch, that is for sure.

With George Perez at his booth.  He is such a fan boy.




Marvel Shoot with Stan Lee

DC Shoot with George Perez

Look at my pretty friends in their original retro Gotham Sirens cosplays!


DC and Marvel... it works

Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn

The Red Skull and Union Jack (?)
(Gregg why do you have to cosplay characters I don't know!)

Mystique!

Huge Raven HUGS!

My Clockwork Bunny Bomb!

Supergirl and Batgirl!
Comic Mama as Shriek

Marvel!

Marvel represent!
Elektra, Rogue, and X-23
Recognize the Elektra costume?
It's mine.  I wore it at NYCC 2011

Better watch out my friends are certified psychos...
Poison Ivy, Harley Henchman, and Harley Quinn

Rouge stealing my power... a favorite.
Our little Philly family at the train station!

I hope everyone knows these two!

Lady Skelator

The Wonder Twins!

One of my favorites!  Supergirl vs Red Sonja!  Yes that is April Hunter!  She was a delight!

2 comments:

  1. Excellent article my dear! I'm glad you had fun and you rocked all of your costumes! Bronycon next! woo hoo! <3

    ReplyDelete
  2. hug raven hugs pic that guy wants to feel her butt lol

    ReplyDelete

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