Long Beach Comic Con 2016

This has been the third year I’ve covered Long Beach Comic Con, and it just keeps getting better each time. Much like it’s sister convention, the Long Beach Comic Expo, this event celebrates the comic book artists and writers and shows a lot of love for the cosplayers. A Comic Book Convention of Yesteryear, LBCC sticks to the comic con roots and shows it through the panels and it’s show floor.

I have to give a brief disclaimer before I continue. I was only able to attend 75% of the first day of this two day convention. This means that I may have missed out on some amazing events or experiences that you feel were worth talking about. If I did, please let me know in the comments below. I don’t want to leave out any of the awesome that happened at the LBCC.

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The Long Beach Comic Con could be considered a medium sized convention that’s big enough to house some fun activities for the kids, and a whole section on OUTER SPACE! The Columbia Memorial Space Center had a great presence on the show floor this year, where they had Virtual Reality demonstrations, space suits on display, and a whole interactive area to keep your brain plugged into science.

For a second year, the LBCC hosted the Girl Scouts, as they got to take over part of the Panel floor. The Girl Scouts were en masse earning badges in various creative fields, from writing to art to cosplay creation. They attended panels, like the cosplay one I was at that morning, and had the opportunity to speak with creators and professionals all about the comic book industry.

The show floor this year was all about Artist Alley, which may need to be renamed. It took up the entire center of the convention floor, which made it impossible to miss. This was a great layout for the creators, because attendees who were browsing the vendors and the comic book retailers would have easy access to the writers, artists, and actors that they love. Though, if there is one complaint about the show floor this year, it would have to be the Celebrity Signing Area. Sure it let fans get up close and personal with the celebrities, but it also meant being up close and personal with everyone else.

If you’re hitting the convention solo, I think panels are the way to go. Still trying to muster up the courage to create cosplay and actually wear it, I attended a panel all about cosplay for all sizes, which was both entertaining and informative. The thing I learned, which applies to most things in life, is that it’s all about confidence.

When you have a chance, I would recommend a panel from the big 2 (DC & Marvel), because hearing about the industry from the perspective of those creators are just fascinating. The one I attended had Nick Spencer lamenting his experience with the internet and Hydra Cap. Brandon Easton shared his frustration with fandom when the fans didn’t come out to support Agent Carter until after it’s cancellation. Craig Kyle spoke longingly of how he wanted to please everyone, but told of the pains of creating and keeping a shared universe on TV, film and Netflix. And Andy Park gave his tales of visually creating the costumes of the MCU, but not being able to give Hawkeye his favorite West Coast Avengers mask. These are stories that are amazing to hear from the mouths of the people in the industry and a great reason to go to a panel like this.

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My last panel of my short day was with Batman himself, Kevin Conroy and his sidekick Robin, Loren Lester. The attendance was amazing as we heard stories behind the scenes and had a chance to celebrate all things Batman: The Animated Series.

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There were so many more amazing events that I know I missed out on, like the Con Man panel with Nathan Fillion to the Firefly reunion with Summer Glau, Jewel Staite, Adam Baldwin and Sean Maher. There was apparently a “special guest” on that bill as well, and I’m going to assume it was Nathan Fillion.

I can’t help but feel I short changed this year’s Long Beach Comic Con. I had a good excuse though. In the end, I highly recommend this convention for anyone who really appreciates the creator side of comic books and cosplay, because you will get your fill and thensome, at this amazing convention.

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LINKS: Long Beach Comic Con

Francis Fernandez
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