C2E2 has really come into its own as Chicago’s premier comic and pop culture convention. It is the best cross section of every fandom you can think of coming together to celebrate one another. There was just so much to do and see this past weekend. The popularity has grown and it really showed because several of the panels that I had planned on attending and reporting on for you guys were filled to capacity almost an hour or so before it was even set to begin. Saturday alone was so crowded and packed with fans that there was barely any room to move on the convention floor. I attribute that to the amount of inclusion of all manors of geek and nerd culture no matter what your tastes are. Everything from Doctor Who to Power Rangers to My Hero Academia was represented in glorious fashion.
Another thing that needs to be mentioned is the level of artistry and imagination in the cosplayers as well. While there was your typical comic book and popular fiction characters, there were some pretty imaginative twists on already existing characters and some really cool and mind-blowing original creations as well. It was amazing to do laps around the floor just to see all the people’s costumes and the next level awesomeness they put into something that clearly meant a lot to them.
I also want to take the time to speak as a newly minted father and what it means to go to a con as a family man. While it’s fun to run around the floor seeing all the sights and chasing after the collectibles you so clearly desire, attending a con with your family takes on a whole new and fresh perspective. As a fan, part of belonging to that fandom is giving into your inner child and reliving those days through bouts of nostalgia and memories. However, being able to attend a con with your wife who is your nerd equal with your child in tow adds a magical sheen to the whole experience. My wife is one of the nerdiest people I know and seeing her school a lot of so-called fanboys with actual knowledge warms the deepest recesses of my heart. Seeing my daughter squee and point and laugh and get excited over all the big and colorful characters was such a joyous and pure experience for me. I’ve never been one for cheesy moments but being able to be at con with my wife and daughter and watch her take her first steps into the larger nerd world I hope to leave behind for her really got me excited for all future family cosplay and nerd possibilities.
C2E2 2019 was a perfect experience from top to bottom. Despite Saturday being busier than I would have liked to deal with and missing a few panels due to overcrowding, it was an experience I will remember for as long as I’m alive. The cosplay was in top form, the panels I was able to see were informative, relaxing, and fun. The showroom floor with its vendors and booths and of course artist alley was a packed house of creativity, engaged artists, and grateful fans. I know a lot of readers are from all over the country but I cannot recommend this convention enough for every one of you. While I’m sure there are plenty of cons local to you guys which are easier to get to, do me a favor and make a pilgrimage to Chicago. C2E2 will set the bar so high that you might not be able to recreate that experience again. Move over San Diego Comic Con…. C2E2 is here to take your crown.