Temperatures are in the 70’s, flowers are blooming and superheroes are walking around downtown St. Louis……IT’S WIZARD WORLD 2019!
The annual pop culture convention that is Wizard World rolled into Saint Louis this weekend and the people of the city came out by the thousands. Wizard world features special guests from television and movies in addition to artists, video games and anything you are searching for in pop culture.
Comic-con visitors were greeted by Wizard Worlds Master of Ceremonies, Kato Kaelin who fired up the crowd before releasing them onto the show floor. A quick scan around the floor had vendors Wild Bill’s Ol’ Fashion Soda Company with delicious flavors of soda offering a bottomless cup you can purchase. Thrones fans can get a sword and padawans’ can pick up a light saber for Jedi training. There are t-shirts, POP figures, comic books, artists that will draw you as a caricature or you can have Phil Ortiz “Simpsonize” you! Some of the more unique items I saw were a vendor that made custom frames perfect for that photo op you purchased with Aquaman, another vendor that had sheet music from TV and movies that had the stars images printed on the music and Twisted Wires makes statues of superheroes out of colored electrical wire….Super Cool!
Smack dab in the middle of your buying frenzy is the autograph area that features the original Hulk, Lou Ferrigno, Holly Marie Combs and her co-stars Brian Krauss & Drew Fuller from the TV series “Charmed”, American Pie party goers Thomas Ian Nicholas & the “Sherminator” Chris Owens and SNL comedian Chris Kataan. Fans immediately began to line up for an autograph and selfies with movie stars Ernie Hudson (Ghostbusters, the Crow) and original Goonie Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings trilogy, Rudy) with the crowd screaming “Goonies never die!”
Wizard World programming was so diverse that you could get help on sculpting, learn animation, get caught up with the latest fan theories on Dr. Who with the members of St. Louis CIA (Celestial Intervention agency) and listen to your favorite stars tell stories from their careers. I made the Charmed panel with Holly Marie Combs playing “den mother” to Brian Krauss and Drew Fuller as they bantered back and forth with their fans. Sean Astin was fired up on his 3rd trip to St. Louis in 4 years and he still hasn’t been up in the Arch! Astin answered question about his long and epic career from questing a ring of power to making a single play for Notre Dame and playing the “good guy parent” in Stranger Things season 2 and a similar role in his new Netflix series “No Good Nick”.
Sunday is family day and kids get their cos-play on and are able to play the latest video games in the Wizard World gaming area, meet and have a picture with Detective Pikachu, train a dragon or win a prize in the kids costume contest! Sunday was also “Aquaman Day” with Jason Momoa making his first trip to Saint Louis! Jason was delayed until Sunday due to a filming conflict but Momoa greeted the thousand in attendance and put in a full day of autographs and photo ops for all his fans. People showed a wide range of emotions after meeting the star of Game of Thrones, Justice League and Frontier from jubilation to tears of joy and a few ladies actually collapsed outside the booth!
Every star was happy to be in St. Louis and enjoyed meeting their fans. I was fortunate to be able to talk to Sean Astin, Ernie Hudson and Chris Owens (Hear the interviews below) and talked to Jason Momoa in his booth as he autographed my 6’ Aquaman poster. Jason told me “I have never seen this! WoW!” I asked him about Frontier and his character Declan Sharpe. He said Frontier is over but he was happy how the series wrapped up and asked me if I liked the way it ended? I said I loved it but I also love the show and will miss his character. Momoa told me Declan was destined to end up alone and he was pleased with the end of the series. Jason Momoa continued to sign autographs well after the show floor closed down and Wizard World 2019 was a “Wrap!”
Every fan I spoke with loved the comic con and is waiting to see who will be in St. Louis for Wizard World 2020! With Game of Thrones ending and Marvel moving on to the next phase of films has a large amount of sci-fi and action film stars available to join Wizard World for the 2020 comic-con in St. Louis!