March 29, 2024

USA: WonderCon 2024: Star Trek, Spider-Man, Star Wars Fans And More Assemble In Anaheim, CA. :) Comics Convention Started Today The 29th Until Easter Sunday.

Adventurez with David published March 29, 2024: WonderCon 2024 Walkthrough Tour Day 1 | Sneak Peek, Livestream, Cosplay, Vendors.

WonderCon is the sister show to Comic-Con, embracing all the main aspects of SDCC, including comics, movies, TV, animation, the Masquerade, and more. The event has grown in all aspects over the years: more attendees, more exhibitors, more programming, and more fun. In its current Anaheim-based incarnation, WonderCon continues to be a must-attend event on the comic book convention schedule. 

Real Family Adventures and Memories published March 29, 2024: What is New at WonderCon 2024. Join us as we walk the main floor LIVE and unfiltered. 
FOX 11 Los Angeles published March 29, 2024: WonderCon 2024 kicks off in Anaheim. FOX 11's KoCo McAboy takes us to Anaheim ahead of the highly-anticipated event.

The Orange County Register
written by Diya Chacko
Friday March 29, 2024

With a large, lively gathering of Star Trek redshirts posing for a group photo, WonderCon kicked off at the Anaheim Convention Center on Friday, March 29. Now in its 36th year, the comics convention runs through Easter Sunday and brings together costumed fans, artists, authors and celebrity guests sharing their love and enthusiasm for pop culture.

The redshirts – who are renowned for often dying in “Star Trek” episodes – were among the throngs of Spider-Men, Batmen, pirates from the anime “One Piece” and Disney princesses who posed in front of the “Ocean Fountain” just outside the entrance to the convention center.

While waiting for more Spider-Men to show up for a prearranged group photo, Alec Zarate from Whittier, dressed as Spidey’s Venom symbiote, struck the superhero’s classic crouch position on the top of a garbage can by the fountain. A mask of the alien symbiote’s face sprang from the neck of Zarate’s black outfit on a wire, as a nod to Venom’s bond with Peter Parker.

“Venom’s really rowdy, but he’s friendly,” Zarate joked.

Zarate said he hopes to see a Saturday panel with Michael Cusack and Zach Hadel, co-creators of the animated series “Smiling Friends” from Adult Swim. This year, WonderCon’s panels will spotlight comic books writers and artists like Gail Simone and Dustin Nguyen, as well as the cast and crew of TV shows and movies such as “The Spiderwick Chronicles” with Christian Slater and “Boy Kills World,” with Famke Janssen.

Low-key con

Run by the same organizers as San Diego Comic-Con, the largest comics and pop culture convention in the world, WonderCon is known for being a friendly, more chill experience for attendees. There’s no nerves-shredding lottery system for badges, nor are the lines for panels and merchandise anywhere near as exhaustingly long as those at SDCC. At the time this article was written, badges were still available for sale on-site.

Inside the convention center on the exhibition floor, Barbara Robles and her family were playing pinball on a “Jaws”-themed pinball machine. Robles, her husband and stepdaughter were respectively dressed as Dark Phoenix, “Beast” and “Rogue” from “X-Men.” Her son Ezra, 9, was dressed as Sebastian from the children’s book, “The Impossible Quest.”

“He wanted to do his own thing this year,” Robles said with a laugh. “We all like to dress up, and usually we vote on the group costume we want to do. Last year, we dressed as Scooby-Doo characters, and we even had the Mystery Machine van.”

Regular WonderCon-goers, Robles said they traveled down from Lompoc to attend WonderCon, although they will head back home for Easter. “Even though we’re not here long, it’s a great family event for us.”

Droids from Star Wars roamed the exhibition hall, stopping every few feet for photos and videos with fans. Five-year-old Alison Yao from Pasadena struck a pose with R2D2.

“I’m a huge Star Wars fan,” said her father, Tony Yao. “So she recognizes R2 now.”

Yao hopes WonderCon sees good crowds this year, even with the rainy forecast for Saturday and Sunday. “I’m worried that the weather will put a damper on it a little bit. But it’s a fun weekend, so I hope folks still come out.”

A toy designer, Yao was attending WonderCon as both a fan and a creator of action figures. He works with some of the companies presenting merchandise on the floor, including Toynami.

Rather than the industry giants at SDCC, WonderCon’s floor tends to run to independent artists and small press. A couple of the bigger names this year are IDW comics, which will host a few of its artists for signings, and FiGPiN, which will have exclusive Star Wars Rebels, My Hero Academia and Scooby-Doo collectibles only available to con-goers.

Face time

Fans who needed masks for their cosplay could visit the “Mad Masks” booth run by Rachel and David Quintana of Mission Viejo. Rachel Quintana said they began making masks from their home 12 years ago.

“My husband was dressed as the Joker and I was doing Harley Quinn, but the mask that came with my costume didn’t fit properly,” she said. “So I made my own, and a couple extra, and sold them on eBay, and they were just snapped up.”

The couple have been selling their handmade leather masks at WonderCon for the last four years, and will also have a presence at San Diego Comic Con this July.

“I love WonderCon and Comic Con because I love seeing my customers in person, and just the buzz of the whole atmosphere,” Quintana said. “I look forward to it every year.”

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