Jake’s Take On-Kansas City Comic Con 2015 Wrap Up

Kansas City Comic Con

Kansas City Comic Con’s inaugural convention was very successful and proved that there is room for two Kansas City comic book conventions! (Logo designed by Bryan Fyffe & property of Kansas City Comic Con)

By: Jacob Elyachar, jakes-take.com

“Can Kansas City have two comic cons?”

After spending three days attending the Kansas City Comic Con at Bartle Hall, the answer to this question is “Yes!”

Yes, Planet Comicon set the bar extremely high as Kansas City’s largest pop culture and comic book convention…. but over the years, it has emphasized pop culture over the latter.   For Kansas City Comic Con’s inaugural year, I think fans enjoyed having the opportunity to meet and interact with comic luminaries such as celebrated comic book artist Neal Adams and the Marvel Super Heroes: Secret Wars creative team-Jim Shooter, Mike Zeck & John Beatty.

Comic book legend Neal Adams in Kansas City

Neal Adams’ work in the comic book industry has earned him multiple generations of fans. (Photo property of Jacob Elyachar)

As a longtime comic book fan, it was an honor to watch Neal Adams work his magic as he gave his personal touch to The New 52-stylized Harley Quinn. I also enjoyed talking with him about three of his most iconic Batman covers. I will also remember the material that the Marvel Super Heroes: Secret Wars creators discussed at their Saturday panel. It was intriguing to learn the origin story behind the industry changing event and I will never forget Jim Shooter’s thoughts on the comic book industry’s lack of intriguing storytelling: “”All they want to do is derivate stuff, please CREATE SOMETHING ORIGINAL!”

In addition to meeting these iconic creators, Kansas City Comic Con did an impeccable job of bringing superb exhibitors that have showcased their passion for the comic book and pop culture industry. Comic con stalwart Rick Stasi, the Costume Wrangler, 8-Bit Art’s Gary and Jo Kamm from the 3D Photobooth were among several creators that showcased their talents through different forms of media.

For Kansas City Comic Con’s inaugural weekend, they were able to deliver multiple media guests that had strong ties to the pop culture world. Over the weekend, actress Pam Grier should have been crowned the “Belle of Kansas City Comic Con,” as the convention celebrated the veteran actress with a special screening of Jackie Brown at the Alamo Drafthouse and at her Saturday panel.

Another special treat for Kansas City Comic Con attendees was the special appearance of voice actor Bret Iwan. Hardcore Disney fans definitely recognized his name for being the voice of one of the most iconic fictional characters of all-time: Mickey Mouse! On Saturday, fans were treated to an intimate panel where he talked about multiple topics from what Disney theme park attractions he voiced to what role Mickey could play on Once Upon A Time. (Here’s a hint: it involves putting Storybrooke back together)

Both actors Austin St. John and Sean Astin did not disappoint at their panels.

Austin St. John Kansas City Comic Con

While I respected Jason on “Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers,” I really admire Austin St. John’s career in public service. (Photo property of Jacob Elyachar)

Many Jake’s Take readers might remember Austin St. John as Jason, the original Red Ranger from the first two seasons of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. At his panel, attendees learned how he left Hollywood and became a real life superhero through his service as an EMT, firefighter and how he work with the Department of Defense. While I enjoyed hearing about his favorite memories from Power Rangers and how he got involved with both Zeo and Turbo: A Power Rangers Movie, I wished that fans asked him more about his work in public service. Other than that small issue, Austin St. John’s panel was probably the best panel of the convention!

Jacob & Sean Astin

I was very honored to meet and get to know actor Sean Astin! I really hope that he returns to Kansas City real soon! (Photo property of Froggy’s Photos)

Sean Astin closed out the first Kansas City Comic Con experience by sharing some advice for the future generation of voice actors. In addition, he also reflected on some of his favorite memories during the filming processes for both the Lord of the Rings Trilogy and Bigger Than The Sky films. He also delivered superb off-color Disney jokes (which included brief impersonations of Mickey Mouse and Winnie the Pooh) and revealed that he would be competing in the October 10 IRONMAN World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.

Want to learn more about the Kansas City Comic Con? Head to their website!

Visit my Facebook page to see some of the photos I took throughout the past three days.

 

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Copyright 2019 Jacob Elyachar