Its name may suggest that you have to love comic books to get something out of it, but NY Comic Con, the cousin to the pop phenomenon that is San Diego Comic Con, is all about a love of popular culture. From video games to the latest HBO hit show, one of the keys to enjoying NY Comic Con is to dress up.
I'm not one for cosplay, or costume play, but it's one of the wildest things about going to an event like this. Custom-made Batman outfits are among the most popular, along with characters from the Mario Bros. video game franchise. This may not be everyone's cup of tea, but this niche and sometimes underground love of all things sci-fi, horror, tech and comics is only getting bigger and influencing everything from Summer tent pole movies to high fashion. Have you hear of the genre known as steampunk? I didn't either until this week.
Here are a few things I've learned from attending my first NY Comic Con:
1) Get there early. If you didn't know, the tickets to this three-day geek fest sold out in the days leading up to this week. Lines for the myriad panels can be yards long, so that panel you wanted to attend on the latest Japanese anime sensation might be full if you don't line up an hour or two before hand. Yes, this is not only a place to geek out and buy comic books, but to learn about what goes into creating pop culture.
2) It doesn't matter how cold it is. People will dress up in any manner of scantily clad heroe costum. Cosplay as they call it is alive in well here at NY Comic Con, even if temperatures are dipping into late fall digits. Some popular costumes that people are donning come from the HBO series "The Game of Thrones," "Star Wars," Nintendo video games, "Tron," Marvel Comics (The Avengers).
3) Nerd culture is influential. Sitting in on a panel about steampunk, I learned that high fashion and literature have taken cues from this blend of Victorian age elegance with neo vintage style. Still confused? So am I, but Prada can't be wrong, can they?For an example of steampunk culture, take a look at a clip from an early 90's TV show called "Legend".
Do you know someone enjoying Comic Con this weekend? Did you attend? Share your thoughts and photos in this blog post.