It must be one of the best-attended Comic Cons for a first-time event: More than 25,000 fans of print and film superheroes and celebrities attended this weekend’s Wizard World Des Moines comic book and pop culture convention at the Iowa Events Center in downtown Des Moines, Iowa. And the show’s management believes the attendance assures Wizard World will return to Des Moines next summer, establishing the next major annual Midwest comic book fan convention.
Fans from Iowa and neighboring states toured the halls and giant celebrity autograph and photo op room, many in cosplay garb. The highlights include a premiere slate of comic book creators in Artists Alley and celebrity appearances that gave everyone something to be excited about.
Star Trek fans barely had to wait in line to meet sci-fi icon William Shatner, who also spoke to a crowded house of fans Saturday afternoon. If you like superheroes, you could meet the two most popular Green Arrow creators of all time: artist Neal Adams and writer/artist Mike Grell, Superman actors Brandon Routh (Superman Returns) and Dean Cain (The Adventures of Lois and Clark) (Routh also appears as The Atom on CW’s The Flash), DC Bombshells creator Ant Lucia, Rogue creator and long-time Marvel artist Michael Golden (above), and Mike Zeck, artist for Marvel Comics classics like the Marvel Superheroes Secret Wars series:
The Walking Dead fans met series star Michael Cudlitz, and received an exclusive variant Issue #1 from the comic book series, drawn by Iowa artist Phil Hester. And horror fans got to cross off their list one of the modern Big 3 of horror icons, Nightmare on Elm Street’s Freddy Krueger himself Robert Englund. Fans of the cult film Boondock Saints met up with star Sean Patrick Flannery.
Your humble Editor (the Grail Knight from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade) and guest Judy Bunce (Norse goddess Freya) attending her first Comic Con posed for well over 100 photos with attendees in the main hall at the show. A great time was had by all. We met Shatner, Lou Ferrigno, and Doctor Who and Arrow’s Alex Kingston (she liked the chainmail created for me by Michael O’Leary at Amanda Lynn Chainmaille Creations in Kansas City).
The best cosplay performers award must go to these two kids portraying the 11th Doctor and a Weeping Angel from Doctor Who:
Steve Ball and Erin Peeler created excellent masks for these Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles characters Rocksteady and Bebop:
Mackenzie Ruppe and Emma Hester made for a great Quicksilver from X-Men: Days of Future Past and Merida from Disney’s Brave:
Dates for Wizard World Des Moines 2016 are expected to be released in the next few days. Come back tomorrow for more photos from Wizard World Des Moines 2015, including some great art from the show.