After a long awaited year I finally was able to attend the Hall of Fame Comic Con in Canton, Ohio. When the venue was announced a year ago, I immediately followed the Con on Facebook only to be tortured on a weekly basis by announcements and posts. Imagine being told to wait a year to open a present and someone sending you a Snapchat of said present weekly.
Low and behold the magical day arrived. My friends and I drove to the Civic Center, home of the Canton Charge, to see people flooding in. The convention runners didn’t anticipate the number people, booking a mid-size room instead of the basketball court where the Charge play. Big mistake. It was crowded. You had about a six-inch bubble from person to person.
Quick Sidebar: Cosplaying Harley Quinn is extremely unoriginal. You’d think people would get this by now. Yes, the movie was a semi-success and the character a major success, but still. If I was playing a drinking game (one shot per Harley), paramedics would need to cart me out of the Civic Center. I challenge all the girls out there (or guys, I don’t judge) to break the cycle and up their game.
Because the room was crowded, it was hard to appreciate the venues. The program touted Artist Alley but finding them among the mass of people was no easy feat. Notable names were George Perez, Howard Chaykin and James Patrick. George was a champ, dishing out drawings to fans (see below) and free autographs. The line was a long one so I snapped a picture and dove into the dollar comics bin.
The biggest name was Jim Steranko co-creator of Nick Fury, Agents of SHIELD and artist to the classics like Superman, Captain America, The Hulk and the X-Men. I tried to take a photo of the man at work and some assistant literally photobombed it. She glared at me - no photos. Is there some protocol to photos I should know about? Comment and tell me please, I don’t know. I respected her wishes and went on my marry way.
The cosplay was decent but nothing grabbed my eye. One guy had a great Steve Rogers Captain America Civil War costume. He had every detail nailed including Chris Evans jawline. He could’ve been his stunt double. Everyone flocked to him so I couldn’t get a pic in passing. Remember, the room is jam packed so you couldn’t wander. You went with the flow and if you wanted to go somewhere you deliberately made an effort to get there.
I don’t mean to rag on the HOF Comic Convention. I actually loved every second of it. It was a great experience and I was sad to leave. It was probably for the best since I was at risk of buying more comics. I got enough issues at home waiting to be read. I grabbed some Dr. Strange in honor of the movie and I snatched up some dollar Battlestar Galactica. I just recently discovered the show and I can’t wait to read the comic version.
The HOF Comics Convention made great strides. It was small but has a lot of potential. The creators saw the Comic Book Boom and thought that now is the time to capitalize on it and spread the joy. In their letter of thanks they mention “see you next year,” a promise I hope they keep. Given the hundreds of people that came, the HOF Comic Convention will hopefully expand. I have hopes of bigger names, bigger crowds and hopefully a bigger convention hall. Also, free swag is always an added plus.
Excelsior My Friends!