The first thought that came to mind when I first heard that my hometown of Stockton was going to have a comic book convention was, “What the f*ck?!” I’ve gone to San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC) seven times and a couple of WonderCons, so I really didn’t know what to make of the idea of a convention similar to those happening in Stockton. I suppose you can call me a con-snob.
Neither SDCC or WonderCon were on my agenda this year due to lack of funds (and WonderCon inconveniently moved to Anaheim this year). I wasn’t sure whether I should go to Stockton-Con or not – their site didn’t even have a list of vendors, it only had a list of special guests that were going to speak, such as Morrie Turner, creator of Wee Pals. But then I found out Jenny Parks of Doctor Mew was going to be there and that solidified my decision to go.
Much to everyone’s surprise, Stockton-Con turned out to be a ginormous success! Tons of nerds, 4,000 to be exact, from all over the central valley packed themselves into the University of the Pacific’s Spanos Center to check out the array of action figures, comics, and other nerdtastic items up for grabs. It surpassed the expectations of Mike Millerick, the creator of Stockton-Con, who was hoping for at least 500 people to show up; at one point there was a line from Spanos Centre all the way to Pershing Avenue. For those not familiar with Stockton, that’s a really freaking long line. Luckily, I was able to walk right in since I bought my ticket beforehand.
It was quite hard to shuffle through to check out the merchant booths since we were all squashed together like stinky cattle – it smelled just like SDCC! The 501st Legion was even there, along with some Ghostbusters.
Amongst the overly crowded space, I did manage to find a Movie Masters Catwoman action figure from The Dark Knight Rises. She is ridiculously hard to find in stores, and online she goes for over $40. I got her for half that price! There were tons of vintage Star Wars toys, Disney Vinylmation figures, boxes of vintage comics, bins full of Happy Meal toys from the 90s… SO MANY THINGS! There was also a booth selling 8-bit pins and magnets made out of perler beads. I picked up a Professor Layton pin for my sister.
There were a lot of awesome artist there as well. I recognized the art of Mark Dos Santos from SDCC last year. I ended up getting a Batgirl/Robin/Alfred print from him. I was anxious to get to the Doctor Mew booth since I got a commission piece from Jenny Parks. I’ll write about that in a separate blog. So stay tuned!
Though there were some hiccups (lack of program/schedule, map, list of vendors), Stockton’s first comic book convention was pretty fun. ☺