This past weekend we had the pleasure of attending Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo, which bills itself as the “first and largest pop culture convention in Los Angeles.” Not sure how they came up with those statistics, but whether or not they are the first or largest, we really enjoyed it. Since it’s hosted by Stan Lee, you’d think it’d be a comic-first convention, but it was definitely a pop culture smorgasbord with comics, video games, cosplay, anime, tv and film.
Cosplay and comic conventions go hand in hand. Every year, the cosplay community gets bigger, broader and crazier. Stan Lee’s Comikaze was no exception. People from all around the world traveled to L.A. to share their love for the art of cosplay. Expressing oneself through costume is no easy task. Weeks, if not months, of work were required to create some of the most awesome costumes you’ll ever see in person. But most people from all walks of life don’t cosplay to create best costume in the room, they cosplay because they’re able to express themselves and feel empowered in a community that holds no judgment. The Shortboxed team was able to snap some photos of these awesome cosplayers. Check it out after the jump and let us know which one is your favorite in the comments or on twitter.
Next week is Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo, and the Shortboxed crew will be there covering the entire con! We’ll be doing interviews, attending panels, talking to artists and exhibitors, photographing cosplayers and doing daily giveaways, so be sure to follow us on Twitter and Instagram both at @shortboxed. We’ll also be updating the blog with daily recaps of the con. While the show may be hosted by Stan Lee and called “Comikaze,” it’s not just a comic book convention – it’s billed as a pop culture convention, which includes comics, video games, sci-fi, fantasy, horror, tv, film and everything in between. The problem with big pop culture conventions is that it can be difficult for comic book enthusiasts and creators to sift through all the noise to find content for themselves – so we did it for you.
The Alternative Press Expo, otherwise known simply as APE, is a convention in San Francisco, CA that focuses on alternative and small press comics. What does this mean exactly? Outside of the major publishers like Marvel, DC, Image, Dark Horse and others, there are an infinite number of independent creators and publishers that release their own comics. APE is the show for those creators, giving them a platform to interact with and showcase their work to fans without being buried by major publishers at more traditional, mainstream comic book conventions.
This past weekend we had the pleasure of attending Long Beach Comic Con for the first time. It’s an annual show in its third year, and draws around 20,000 attendees over two days. The focus of the show is definitely on comics and creators, and less about pop culture in general, which is what I was hoping for.
The vibe at LBCC was very friendly and welcoming, and it drew a diverse mix of comic book fans and geeks. What I liked most about the size of the show is that it felt substantial in the scope of the expo hall and programming, but it never felt crowded and overwhelming, unlike San Diego Comic Con, which draws over 120,000 attendees.
In the rest of this recap I’ll be covering:
- Expo Hall
- Artist Alley
- Final Thoughts