Emerald City Comicon 2011. What Comicon Means to Me (and Millions of Others Like Me).

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Emerald City Comicon 2011 opened with a blast. No really, there was an actual trumpet blast from the center aisle of the main conference room, and the fans rushed in. I was there to cover the con for GeekDad with my 14 year-old son.

Darth Vader and the Lost Command #1Darth Vader and the Lost Command #1

Image: Dark Horse Comics

Although I was given the final word from my press contacts that Wil Wheaton was not giving on site interviews, we still had a go from Microsoft’s press agency that Major Nelson would step up and be counted. (Stay tuned to GeekDad for my interview with Larry Hryb aka “Major Nelson” of Xbox Live). So, what do you do when you are surrounded by countless voxels of shiny comic booths beckoning to you in a finite space? Well, start walking and talking. There were the major comic book publishers, Dark Horse, Boom Studios, DC Comics, etc.

I was quickly overpowered by the seductive, dark colors of the new series (released January 26th) by Dark Horse Comics, Star Wars: Darth Vader and the Lost Command! As we continued to wander among the T-shirts and exhibitors still setting up their booths, we ran across a small publisher by the name of Cognition that really impressed me run by Aaron Cronan (writer) and Matthew Hopkins (artist). Please allow me to introduce all of you to “Sid” (full name: Sid Lowell: Neurex M-2b), a robot who has consciousness, real thoughts and emotions underneath his cold, hard steel frame. He’s a robot and a musician who composes original electronic music. His dad, Emit makes him complex brews of coffee every morning, and he sneaks in stray cats and pigeons to his room. *Awwwww. Sigh* Uhm, there’s one small problem—he decides to destroy humanity.

The first release of the comic is in June. You’ll have to stay tuned for more information. For sample music from the story, just click the play button below and enjoy the sounds of Robot Uprise.

But, to get back to the main point, what does Comicon mean to you when you’re a geek? Wil Wheaton said it well when he told the audience at his panel that it’s a place where we can be with other people like us, with the same interests.

Cosplayer as "Data"Cosplayer as "Data"

Photo: Michael Venables

Where we feel comfortable that we all have shared mild (okay, severe) fetishes with comics, shiny, electronic gadgets, Star Trek, planets, Star Wars and Tolkien. A place, where a fan’s voice screams out of the darkness, giving glorious voice to our shared Star Trek obsession, “I love you William Tiberius Shatner!” Now, really. How many people in this country know what Nixon’s middle name stands for? What does that tell you about devotion so the Star Trek canon? And no, I won’t tell you, but it starts with “M”. Like my mother says—”Look it up!” “It’s the vision of the future that Gene Roddenberry provides that gives us hope . . . ” as Jonathan Frakes said in his panel with Brent Spiner. Nobody can argue with that sentiment in today’s troubled world. And, to the naysayers outside our geek band of brothers (and sisters), Frakes and Spiner said of our oscillating energy in the panel room, “Who could dismiss this? Who could possible deny this?” Hmmm, what is this? This is a movement. This is a community.

Cosplayer as "Darth Maul"Cosplayer as "Darth Maul"

Photo: Michael Venables

It’s a feeling of support, of, dare I say it, a oneness with each other’s inner geekness, that “you-love-the-fact-they-obsess about-technology-Star Trek-Star Wars-comics-videogames-and that’s awesome” feeling that you can’t describe, or define in 0s and 1s. It’s what I felt inside, when my son and I bumped into a sortie of Imperial Assault Troopers, and took their picture. Gingerly moving aside a large blaster, I asked a trooper if I could post their picture on GeekDad. A voice erupted from the Imperial helmet, “I love GeekDad! Sure you can post the picture!” That instant is what Comicon means to me. It’s a movement. It’s a community. I turned to my teenage son and saw his happy expression.

Cosplayers as Imperial Stormtroopers Cosplayers as Imperial Stormtroopers

Photo: John Luke Venables

Now, to the next generation pass on this thing will. And my inner Yoda was thinking “For my ally is the Force. And a powerful ally it is. Life creates it, makes it grow. Its energy surrounds us… and binds us. Luminous beings are we . . .” We had us some geek force at Comicon, and the world saw the energy! So I say to the world, “Got Geek?”

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