Stan Lee’s Comikaze took over the Los Angeles Convention Center last weekend, filling it with super heroes, celebrities, geek apparel and gear, and even zombies. It had a wide range of entertainment for all geeks, from a Magic tournament to a full on zombie apocalypse obstacle course. Even with the mass array of entertainment and celebrities, Comikaze was unfortunately lacking one key feature, attendees.
Comikaze was held in the main convention hall of the LA Convention Center, and it seemed to struggle to fill the space, but it wasn’t anything to complain about. There was plenty of walking room, traffic was very light, and my personal bubble was only breached a few times. It was kind of a nice turn from what I’m used to seeing at the chaos that is Comic Con.
Since this convention is still relatively new, this past year it did not have all the of crazily epic awesomeness of Comic Con, like free stuff, and all of the biggest names in the entertainment industry, but it still had all the loyal cosplayers. No matter what convention, you can always count on your hardcore cosplayers to show up. There were a wide variety of costumes like Captain America, Batman, and The Rocketeer. The most entertaining I saw all weekend were the different versions of Deadpool running around. Some wore the usual tactical gear, but some went all out with straight jackets and one even with a German bar maid outfit.
All the panels were held on a huge stage on the main floor, with gigantic screens for the latecomers or vertically challenged. All the panels were easy to see and hear from almost anywhere in the convention center, which was really nice, so if you couldn’t make your way to the front, you could still know what was going on.
The celebrities ranged from small to big stars. Among the top names were… *deep breath*… Stan Lee, Elvira, Kevin Smith, Norman Reedus, Sean Patrick Flannery, Felicia Day, Lou Ferrigno Morgan Fairchild, Thomas Jane, and Mark Hamil. They even had a couple reunions, Batman being one of them with Adam West, Burt Ward, and Julie Newmar. Also, if you watched ‘All That’ as a kid, and let’s be honest, you didn’t watch good television when you were a kid unless you watched ‘All That’ along with the other classics, you could’ve caught their reunion as well.
As far as entertainment booths go, Comikaze could use a little boost. The Activision Fun Center had a couple of screens set up with demos, but unfortunately they didn’t have a Deadpool demo set up, which is one thing that I’ve been looking into. There were also a few computer gaming stations set up, but not enough to allow for a quick gaming experience without waiting in line for an extended period of time; you know how us gamers get sucked in and don’t want to leave and give someone else a turn.
One attraction set itself apart from the rest however, the Zombie Apocalypse obstacle course. It was a series of inflatable slides and walls, along with rope walls and swings that spanned 75,000 sq. ft. No, that wasn’t a typo, 75,000 sq. ft. It was like the good old days of being of playing on an awesome playground… just with the added awesomeness of being chased by zombies. It was an excellent addition to the whole convention. The best part is that the Comikaze Gods in charge kept the cost low. It was only $30 to run the course. If you wanted to be a zombie, you could sign up in advance for $75 – $150.
Comikaze is still a baby when it comes to geek conventions. It was created only two years ago, and with the help of Stan Lee, it was rebuilt… stronger, faster. However, it still kept its core ideas, to host an excellent inexpensive convention. Comikaze is a great weekend getaway for a geek on a budget in the LA area. I don’t see people traveling from a distance or from galaxies far far away to attend the next convention, but who knows. With the major boost Comikaze has seen from its first year, next year could be another huge jump for the convention. All us geeks can only hope that’s the case.
More information on Stan Lee’s Comikaze can be found on their website at comikazeexpo.com