Well, it’s been a week past, and we should probably talk about Comikaze 2013.
We attended the show for the third year in a row at the LA Convention Center, and while it’s become bigger every year, it’s still not without growing pains. The process of getting tickets, picking up passes, and getting into the con floor has improved by leaps and bounds, but communication for press, professionals, vendors, and regular guests is still spotty at times.
The floor itself is a collector’s paradise, with vendors of all types lining the rows. From your standard comic and toy shops, to high-quality crafted goods and clothing, to local fan groups and internet celebrities.
As was the case last year, the main action was up on the main stage, located dead center in the back of the convention floor. While it’s apparent why the folks in charge want this huge stage visible from as far as possible, it’s more of a distraction than a showpiece at times. There’s no seating available for the sometimes hour long presentations and panels, and outside a certain radius directly in front of the stage, one cannot understand a word coming out of the speakers. Recommendations are to find out when your favorite presentations are and stake out a place in front.
Other panels are more accessible, being in the convention center’s somewhat small but adequate private rooms upstairs from the floor. As usual, we skipped most panels, with the exception of the “COSPLAY 101” panel hosted by our own Mac and our second attendance of the “ALL SHAPES & SIZES WELCOME” panel we saw at San Diego Comic Con.
Back on the floor, one could see set-ups displays from Legacy Studios featuring Marvel Studios Iron Man, Avengers and Thor, a Stan Lee Museum and The Spooky World of Elvira.
On the other side, the Video Game Museum sponsored by Intellivision had not only a full arcade set up, but replicas of living room set ups through the decades, complete with TVs, couches and coffee tables. A trippy walk down memory lane.
Comikaze also had it’s share of exclusive merchandise this year- including a Mattel Masters of the Universe figure of Stan Lee! Called Standor, he’s the master of creativity and comes with removable helmet, armor, and sunglasses. Wow.
Finally, in attendance were the cast of SyFy Channel’s “Fangasm!”, who are (presumably) contractually obligated to appear at Comikaze as a part of the show. Of course, it’s fun to be an invited guest of the show, and get photos with your favorite cosplayers!
There’s a lot to see and do at Comikaze. Three days may seem like a bit much for such a small convention, however. Similar shows such as Long Beach Comic Con and Big Wow ComicFest seem to do well with just two days, but with as big as this con is getting, three days may be the standard for Comikaze. We’ll see if it can keep up the momentum.
Thanks to everyone we saw and spoke with at Comikaze. We’ll have more to say about it in an upcoming podcast, so stay tuned!