Another year, another round of Stan Lee’s Comikaze. This year had a ton of informational panels, a main stage packed full of talent and reunions, exclusive Fox screenings, and an abundance of cosplay, including a contest to crown the best of the best. While the panels and screenings were cool, it was the Hot Topic main stage and all the cosplayers that made the weekend top notch.
Before I get to the surprise hits (for me) I have to say that the crowd was genuinely bummed that Adam West caught the flu and couldn’t make it out for not only his panel but the Batman reunion. Luckily Catwoman and Robin were on hand and nice enough to fill the dead space. That was just one reunion on hand this year; along with Batman there were reunions for Land of the Lost, Battlestar Galactica, and the hilarious Mad TV. Now, I was never a huge fan of that show but when it came to the panel — you can’t beat having Ms. Swan on tap to do the impression that is likely one of the best of that series. Plus, I would’ve guessed someone from Family Guy would be too huge to have done the show but hey — when Stan Lee calls, you come a running, right?
While the reunions were cool and interesting looks back at things we’ve loved, the best panels for me were surprisingly Howie Mandel, who was there on a mission to bring Bobby’s World back, and DMC of Run DMC who has a comic series out. It seemed like 99% of the crowd was surprised to learn two things from these panels. The first being that Mandel was the voice of Gremlins’s Gizmo and some of the Muppet Babies, and that the rap legend was such a huge nerd. He wasn’t someone who hopped on the bandwagon because of the abundance of Marvel movies. Nope, this guy has been invested comics since he was a wee lad.
Although the panels were where you could find the celebrities and whatnot, the real stars were the attendees who pulled out all the stops for some very impressive cosplay. The best of the best who signed up early were in Saturday’s big cosplay contest. While I think the man behind Uncle Fester should’ve taken the whole thing, all the participants did an excellent job — especially the Geisha Pikachu. Walking around, though, it was hard to ignore the vast amounts of Guardians of the Galaxy’s Star Lord, Harley Quinns and, for some reason, Jack Frosts from Rise of the Guardians. If you know why that character is all the rage, please let me know… I was confused the entire weekend, but to each his own. The best walking around though was the family fronted by the gangster Harley Quinn and Joker with their sons as Deadpool and Rainbow Dash. I’m a sucker for cosplayers who take it a step further and get really creative with it.
Other than the panels and cosplayers there was a ton to see on the showroom floor. I really love seeing all the creativity and buying up anything that has a demented bunny on it. Shout out to Sketch for the serial killer rabbit.
This year’s Comikaze was okay in comparison to the last — maybe this is because I am too young to appreciate the reunions that went on. I’m a ‘90s kid so for them to get the cast of All That and then Salute Your Shorts, that’s what I’ve come to expect and want. So can I just suggest that we try and get some Saved by the Bell or at least California Dreams going on — just take whatever Jimmy Fallon’s doing and run with it.