Denver Comic Con is a three day weekend of geektastic glory. In this, its fifth year, the popculture comic convention had a record-breaking 115k attendees, a slight increase over last year’s 114,500. The minimal growth is actually a relief to coordinators who can’t imagine handling any more gargantuan gains like they saw in the first four years.
Proceeds from DCC go toward the Pop Culture Classroom, a Colorado-based charitable organization that gives educators “fresh, innovative materials and training” to use pop culture as inspiration in the classroom.
This year’s Denver Comic Con ran into a number of challenges, first being a slate of guest cancellations. While it’s common for guests in the entertainment business to cancel a con appearance due to last minute conflicts— like this year’s 3 Gotham actors who were called back early for filming— this year’s coordinators ran into a virtual revolving door of announced guests who suddenly bowed out. Like the pros they are, staff scrambled behind the scenes to acquire equitable replacements and largely succeeded.
The second hiccup was a backwards floor plan due to another event in the Colorado Convention Center at the same time. For the first time everything was moved to the back of the building, which made for some confusion and forced attendees to walk a long distance to the entrance. Why the convention center doesn’t give full access to the con and allow them to keep the same annual weekend in June is beyond me, but it would make things infinitely easier for all involved. Considering the money and exposure DCC gives the convention center, not to mention the large boost to our overall economy, you’d think it’s a reasonable concession for executives to make.
To some, the added bag check and stricter cosplay weapon restrictions might be considered a gaffe, but considering the mass shooting that was staved off at this year’s Phoenix Comic Con I’d say it was a minor inconvenience for the betterment of the guests. Staff also provided earlier admittance to allow for the slower lines, along with fair warning and guidelines beforehand to attendees on the DCC website and social media platforms.
Slight snafu’s aside, I deem the con a great success as DCC’s exceptional staff & volunteers met each challenge head on. In truth, no con is ever without challenges. And yes, things can always be improved upon. Just remember Denver Comic Con is a virtual toddler compared to its predecessors and yet it’s now the third largest con of its kind in North America, with only New York and San Diego outnumbering it. Strangely though, DCC is still seemingly off a lot of people’s radar…including the heavy weights of Hollywood.
Still DCC managed to get Nathan Fillion, Felicia Day, a reunion of Buffy’s villains, Orange is the New Black’s Kate Mulgrew, Weird Al Yancovic, Dr. Who’s Catherine Tate, Stranger Things Gaten Matarazzo , Caleb McLaughlin and Millie Bobby Brown, Heroes’ Greg Grunberg, John Cusack (though he did no panels), The Walking Dead’s Khary Payton, a reunion of the animated Justice League actors and much more. Not to mention the slew of comic book and animation creators, publishers and authors, including famed Outlander writer Diana Gabaldon.
So I say here, Denver Comic Con packs a superhero punch with exuberant attendees, colossal cosplay, 160,000 square feet of shopping your favorite artists, comics, authors and nerdcentric products, varied programming, star guests and photo-op and autograph opportunities, all within a stunning, friendly state that entices visitors to explore from downtown to mountain peak.
Next year’s con will take place June 15-17, 2018 and you’re invited to the Mile Hi City to experience fandom at its finest.
For more pictures, check out our TalkNerdyWithUs Instagram. And click here to read a recap of main event panels on Day 1 with Khary Payton, Weird Al Yankovic, Gaten Matarazzo & Caleb McLoughlin and Day 2 panels with Nathan Fillion, Kate Mulgrew, Millie Bobby Brown and Felicia Day.
Also watch for upcoming, exclusive interviews with Greg Grunberg and Maria Canals Barerra. Greg discusses upcoming projects, his son’s epilepsy, and weed and whiskey, while Maria Canals Barerra talks about portraying Hawkgirl and the possibility of a Wizards of Waverly Place reunion show.