Memories of the Chicago Comic Con/Wizard World

With the Comic Con starting today I have decided to give a list of my ten favorite moments of going to the con. I’ve been attending Comic Con since my grade school days and I always had fun.  Hopefully, my memories will inspire you to share some of your favorite memories with us.

10. Going to my first con with my best friend Jose.  He was the big comic nerd and introduced me to the world of comic con.  Our fathers would take turns every year taking us and they always found something to keep them occupied, mainly finding old comics that they read when they were younger and then freaking out about how expensive they were now.  Although we have lost touch, I always hope that one year I will bump into my old friend at the comic con.

9.  Seeing the entire Image team minus Jim Lee, make their first appearance.  I can’t remember if this was 92 or 93, but I remember getting my first issue of Spawn and waiting in line for what felt like hours just to get an autograph.  The cool thing I also remember is Whilce Portacio drawing a big “I” in the middle of the “X” on the X-Factor issue I had him autograph.

8.  Finding the last 3 books in the “Kraven’s Last Hunt” series.  I was/am a huge Spider-Man fan and one year my mission was to just get these books and nothing else.  When I found them, reasonably priced, I jumped on them and couldn’t wait to get home to read them. 

7.  Michael Turner. I met Michael one year and he was cool as hell. Every year he was there I got him to sign my books and would talk to him about his artwork and the future of “Fathom”.  In 2007, in crutches and all, Micheal Turner was there and again was gracious for the continuing support.  Sadly the following year, Michael lost his battle with bone cancer the day before the comic con and it felt like I lost a friend.

6. Family Time.  My wife always wanted to know what it was about comic con that would make me go every year, so one year I took her along.  At first she didn’t like the long lines, but after a while and seeing how excited I was about meeting certain artist and celebrities, she got it.  She had fun and bought herself a few items: A She-Ra action figure and a few T-shirts.  Funny thing about her first experience, Phantom Menace just came out and she was excited about Ray Park being there, nothing else.  While we were walking in the skywalk to the convention center who do we run into?  Ray Park.

5.  Taking my nephews.  One year I took my nephew with me.  He had his money and a list of things he wanted and was super excited to be there.  I gave him one piece of advice: shop around for prices, do not buy from the first place you see, look around for a better price.  Two years later I again took my nephew, this time with his little brother, who had the same wide-eye excitement as he brother previously had.  While looking at toys I heard my nephew tell his brother, “Let’s look around to see if someone else is selling this, they might have it for cheaper.” Hearing this, a tear came down my cheek.

4.  Hanging out with my friends and geeking out.  Comic con is the one event that my friends and I always try to attend together.  As we’re getting older it’s hard to just find time to relax and hang out, but every year we attend together for at least one day.  It’s always fun going with my friends, because we help each other look for certain books or just catch up on what’s going on with us.  Also, it gives us the chance to just be our dorky selves and geek out.

3.  Finding great comics.  Every year that I go to comic con I stumble upon new comics that I never heard of or comics that I may have missed.  The last year that I went I bought the first issue of Chew and I’ve been hooked ever since.  I highly recommend this book to anyone.

2.  Running into old friends.  Although I still haven’t ran into my friend Jose at the con, I have ran into friends from grammar school to college at the con.  It’s always cool to catch up with them and just be surprised at who I run into every year.

1. Just being around comics.  Comic books have always been a great escape for me when I was younger and although I don’t buy as many as I used to I still pick up a few every now and then.  Going to the Comic Con always takes me back to going to my first one and just the enjoyment of escaping the real world for a few hours.  I think we all need that escape every now and then.  I also can’t wait until I introduce my little girl to this new world.  While she did attend a show with me last year I don’t think she remembers much, except for meeting Brobee from Yo Gabba Gabba.  Who knows, maybe she’ll start collecting comics too and will want to attend every comic convention that comes to Chicago.

Thanks for reading.

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