Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo: Day One

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And, the largest comic expo in Western Canada is officially underway. Like that, the crowds swarmed the local Stampede grounds in costumes and nerdy tee-shirts.  Once again, the biggest geeks of the city unite to talk about everything pop culture.  I couldn’t be more excited.

Right off the bat, I was impressed with this year’s expansion. The show itself has grown by at least 30% by moving Artist Alley into its own showroom, giving more space for merchants and vendors.  Great choice, and it is amazing to see the growth of the tiny little convention in one showroom expand to take over the fairgrounds.  The best part is, there is still plenty of room to grow.

With a four-hour opening on Thursday, I did not even have enough time to see all that was offered.  I spent most my afternoon up in the new Artist Alley having a look at some amazing creators works, seeing who was around and making mental notes of where my favourite artists were located.

I did manage to get in a couple of the first panels.  The first one I caught involved Image creators speaking on publishing their creator-owned projects.  Each guest was more impressive than the last with Meredith Finch (Rose), Kurtis Wiebe and Owen Gieni (Rat Queens), Megan Hutchison (Rockstar), and Nat Jones (’68) all sharing their stories.  I was surprised to find out Wiebe is actually a local Calgarian- which makes me feel worse for not reading his work yet.

The second panel I caught was the celebrated Ty Templeton and his Comic Book Bootcamp class.  Honestly, this whole panel shook me up.  The man understands writing in such a pure way that listening to him speak on it was like a free master class.  With enough humour and crowd involvement, I could sit and listen to Templeton all day. It doesn’t hurt that he has worked on all the things I love including Batman: The Animated Series, The Simpsons, and the big two publishing companies.

After those two panels, I was running out of time.  I soaked up a bit more of the show, and I saw the big prize.  The most significant guest of the show- besides maybe Jeff Goldblum.  The holy grail of nerdom and pop culture.  The pivotal piece to one of my favourite movies and one of my favourite books.  The m—– f—— Back to the Future DeLorean.  A friggin’ time machine!  Let me tell you; it is so much more pretty in person.

It was a good first day.  Doors open again today at noon; you can follow me on the Twitter for some up-to-the-minute commentary.  Otherwise, I will be back to share either tonight or in the morning.

Oh, also, I did, I did, squeeze in a showing of Avengers: Infinity War late last night.  So, look forward to that review in the coming hours.

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