Comics and cosplay: New York Comic Con 2013
By Julia Day
Thousands of people, many of which were dressed in elaborate costumes, could be seen heading to the Jacob Javits Center in New York City this past weekend. The reason? New York’s annual event, Comic Con. Comic Con is a large pop culture event where TV shows, movies, video games, comics and many more are showcased for fans.
Hundreds of booths are set up, selling merchandise such as T-shirts, posters and toys. Famous actors come to sign autographs, take pictures, and meet the fans. Cosplayers walk around dressed as iconic characters such as Ironman or Darth Vader. For any fan of pop culture, it is truly a nerd’s paradise.
The weekend long event started on Thursday and lasted until Sunday afternoon, featuring many panels and events for fans to attend.
This year Comic Con hosted big name entertainment guests such as William Shatner (Star Trek), Chloe Grace Moretz (Kick-Ass), David Duchovney and Gillian Anderson (X-Files), Felicia Day (The Guild), John Barrowman (Torchwood), Kevin Smith (Comic Book Men), Patrick Stewart (Star Trek), Seth Green (Robot Chicken), Anthony Daniels (Star Wars), Sylvester Stallone (Rocky), the cast of the animated series Archer, the entire cast of AMC’s The Walking Dead, and many more.
Many of the celebrities offered their autographs and pictures to be taken, and some could even be seen walking around the main floor.
One of the most exclusive events at Comic Con is the ability to get into a panel. A panel is when the entire cast of a show sits down at a table and answer questions from the audience and press.
I myself wanted to go to The Walking Dead panel, but by the time I went to line up there were already hundreds of people. Upon asking a security guard whether or not he thought I would make it in, he told me that people had been lining up since 9 o’clock that morning (the panel was to be hosted at 6:30 at night), and that there was no chance. Panels were hosted for shows such as The Walking Dead, Archer, Legend of Korra, Mob City, and others.
The main floor consisted of hundreds of different booths selling merchandise. Hosted in the Jacob Javits Center, the main floor is huge, and although I was able to walk around the majority of it, I still felt as though I missed many things.
A few hundred booths were set up for all different types of companies such as Nintendo, Dark Horse, The Nerd Machine, Cyanide and Happiness There were comic book artists drawing sketches for fans and offering them for sale.
Authors from famous sci-fi novels were signing books for fans. T-shirts of all different designs were being sold left and right. Nintendo had entire stations set up with the Wii U and 3DS, enabling guests to play demos of their new games.
But perhaps the most fun and interactive part of Comic Con is that of the “cosplays,” short for costume play, which is when guests of Comic Con to dress up as their favorite pop cultural icon.
Impressively, many of the costumes sported by participants were homemade, featuring elaborate body armor suits to ornate dresses.
Walking around the main floor, I passed by people dressed as superheroes like Ironman, Thor, and Captain America. I saw Transformers dressed as Bumblebee and Optimus Prime.
One girl painted her entire body blue and dyed her hair orange to appear as Mystique from X-Men. Videogame characters like Mario, Luigi, Sonic, Zelda, and Link were also in abundance.
I even encountered a man dressed as a “Sharknado,” based off of the Sy-Fy original movie, who wore a suit made of cotton balls and little sharks glued on. The amount of creativity and originality was astounding.
I couldn’t help myself from running up to my favorite characters such as Bobba Fett from Star Wars, and Link from the Legend of Zelda, and asking them to take a picture with me.
On a personal note, I have to say that I had an awesome time at New York Comic Con. I had only bought a ticket for Saturday, but even in that one day I had a boat-load of fun, and I definitely want to return for next year. I myself did not cosplay, but seeing the others dressed up was such a fun and unique experience. I was able to meet and get pictures with some of my favorite celebrities, such as Zachary Levi from the television show Chuck. I met the voice talent Anthony Daniels, who was the iconic voice of C3P0 in the Star Wars series, and even received an autograph from him. I was nearly twenty feet away from celebrities such as William Shatner (Kirk from Star Trek), Kristin Bauer von Straten (Pam from True Blood), and Richard Carradine (from the 80’s movie Revenge of the Nerds).