So I have been to Comic-Con the last 5 years in a row, hanging with my friends at Comic-Con (our Contourage as we call it) is one of the things that convinced me to move to California. The last two years I have been to Wonder-Con as well. Nothing can top Comic-Con, but in some ways, I really enjoy Wonder-Con more. Here is why.
- First of all, the crowds aren’t out of control. Let’s face it, Comic-Con is just too crowded and you can tire yourself out just by trying to get through the sales floor. Additionally it is absurd having to wait in a line for 5 hours just get a seat in Hall H or Ballroom 20. At Wonder-Con you easily get into any panel you want without spending half the day in line.
- The atmosphere is a lot more relaxing as well. Comic-Con is four days of constantly being on the go (when you’re not waiting in line.) It’s a nonstop whirl of people, hype, costumes, panels, celebrities and venders that can leave you feeling a bit overwhelmed by the end. Wonder-Con you just relax and enjoy. You can take your time on the sales floor, hang out with people and just soak up the nerdiness.
- There is also a lot more focus on comics, writers and artists. Comic-Con has little to do with comics anymore (which is fine) but at times it feels more like one big advertisement whereas Wonder-Con is really more about developing and promoting the creative side of things. They even have the connect event each night where writers and artist could meet each other.
- The venders were better as well. Except for the huge displays put on by the big names, Comic-Con kind of feels like a flea market as times. Large, obnoxious shirt venders, cramped booths filled with random action figures and some things that probably shouldn’t exist at all. The venders at Wonder-Con were less junky and more unique, with a wider range of original, unique items. It was also a lot of local venders. Comic-Con could stand to clean up the sales floor a bit. Sadly, these other venders will never get into Comic-Con. The wait list is too long and nobody in their right mind is giving up their spots.
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love Comic-Con and wouldn’t miss it for the world. I love the panels, the celebrities, the culture, the people, the costumes and everything else associated with Comic-Con. Jews go to Jerusalem, Muslims go to Mecca, and nerds go to Comic-Con. This is really more of a critique or comparison of the two. Think of Wonder-Con as a magic time machine that takes you back to what Comic-Con was 15 years ago. Fun times.