by Michael P Coleman
(I have waited since 1978 to be able to write a headline like that! Fans of Superman: The Movie will understand!)
Hundreds waited in line to get into the second day of Wizard World’s Comic Con. They didn’t leave disappointed.
Costumes are always a major part of any Comic Con, and this year’s event has been no exception. Fans of all ages sport their best pop culture and science fiction-inspired costumes. Spidermen and Captain Americas seemed to be the order of the day among men, and I was delighted to see one Supergirl in the crowd, a nod to the new CW show.
I’ll confess to having never watched Game Of Thrones, but I know enough about the show to have recognized quite a few fans from that camp. And even some of the dozens of vendors got into the act, with one presenting a dead-on Captain Spock from Star Trek.
Paul Williams, 24, donned my favorite costume of the day. The Sac State student showed up in style at his first Comic Con…and I always knew Darth Vader from Star Wars was black!
“He’s my favorite character of all time,” Williams enthused. Showing off his impressive helmet, he added “I’ve always wanted to buy one of these, and I finally did it. Now I’m cosplaying him all the time!”
Both of the Comic Con panels I attended yesterday were pleasant surprises.
William Shatner (Star Trek, TJ Hooker) delivered a truncated version of his popular one-man show, and he was, simply, hysterical. Cracking good-natured, family friendly jokes about Sacramento (he’s not a fan of our Hyatt), stomach flu (you have to hear it from his mouth to believe it), and his impressive, varied career (he tried to sing??), Shatner, 85, was sprightly and sharp, deftly handing unscreened questions from the audience — and politely deflecting a woman in the front row who wanted a kiss! I’ll be at Shatner’s show the next time he comes to the area.
My second panel was with Dean Cain (Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman; Supergirl). Appearing about three seconds older than he did when Lois & Clark wrapped its fourth season in 1997, Cain and I…what can I say? We clicked. We bonded. We joked about how asian blood (he’s one-quarter Japanese) can also help you stay young looking! (I loved it when he told me “I know black don’t crack!”)
Cain was everything you want one of your Supermen to be, warmly sharing stories of working on that series, and talking about projects ranging from his 90120 debut to the current Supergirl. My favorite moments during Cain’s presentation included his acknowledgement of several costumes in the room, and the time and care he took dispensing advice to a young fan who dreams of becoming an actor. The father in him — he’s a single dad of a 16 year old son — came through in those moments.
Cain is a superb, underrated actor who did the impossible in the 1990s: he succeeded Christopher Reeve as Superman, and I got to tell him that. One day, I’ll land that interview with him!
I’m looking forward to Comic Con Sacramento’s final day, with panels on Diversity in Pop Culture and a conversation with Sesame Street’s Caroll Spinney. See you there!
For a complete schedule of Comic Con’s events, go to www.wizardworld.com/wizcon.html
While you’re at Comic Con, visit with vendors 133art.com, Robert L Prather, Jr., and Kathy O’Rourke.
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