By Nolan P. Smith
Photographs by Nolan P. Smith and Jason T. Smith
(Victor Valley)– Over the Halloween weekend, thousands of resident from across Southern California and even across other states came together to celebrate all faucets of pop culture as Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo made an impact at the Los Angeles Convention Center.
The convention was not your typical convention- with names like pop culture icons Stan Lee and Elvira connected to it; attendees knew they were getting more than a comic book convention. Sponsored by Hot Topic and Stan Lee’s POW Entertainment among others, the show had something for everyone in the family- from the kids to mom and dad. For the kids, there was plenty to see and do, including Trick or Treating at the event on Halloween, and a photo opportunity with the Internet sensation, Grumpy Cat.
For adults, not only was the mistress of darkness, Elvira, in attendance to meet and greet fans, but model/actress Dita Von Teese was also in attendance to sign autographs and meet fans. The widely popular collectibles for children and kids alike, the Funko POP Vinyl figures, were also a part of Comikaze, as the Hot Topic booth had exclusives on sale to commemorate the event- one of the figures sporting the likeness of the comic book legend himself, Stan Lee. A Stan Lee Museum was also on display, which showcased Lee’s contributions to the world of pop culture. The museum included comic pages written by Lee, props from movies directly influenced by Lee’s works, as well as historical moments, like the award bestowed on Lee by the President of the United States.
Cosplay is always a huge factor when it comes to conventions, and this convention was no different. Cosplayers represented all areas of popular culture- from movies like Predator, Despicable Me and Star Wars to anime like Sword Art Online, Attack on Titan among others. Some even combined their favorite characters into a mash-up costume, like the Darth Maul/Hellboy combination, which looked amazing. The best part of cosplay is seeing that there is no certain age group one must fall into to dress up, as people young and old all dressed up and showed that its never to old to dress up, especially on a Halloween weekend. For 10 year-old Victorville resident Bianca Smith, who cosplayed on Saturday and Sunday as Wednesday Addams and Rey from the new Star Wars movie, The Force Awakens, it was a great experience.
“It was a fun and awesome experience,” said Smith. “I felt so in character there, being around all the other cosplayers. I cant wait to do it again next year.”
For more information on the Comikaze Expo, including upcoming news on the 2016 show, visit Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo online at www. comikazeexpo.com.