Written by Mattie

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Now, I have to admit that there is one guest above all other guests that I am excited for when it comes to Salt Lake Comic Con. This guest, I have had a crush on since 2005 and am completely excited for getting an autograph from him, which I was lucky to get. This awesome guest is none other than Captain America himself, Chris Evans.

Unfortunately, when the tickets went live for it…I tried to get the photo op, which just happened to sell out within four minutes and I didn’t get one even though I tried my hardest to. Yet, thankfully I was able to get an autograph. Still get to meet him. Maybe ask for a hug.

Anyways, I first fell for Chris Evans and his adorable smirk when he appeared in Fantastic 4 where he played Johnny Storm back in 2005. Even though the movie was very cheesy, he was amazing. Then again, my favorite part was him discovering he had fire abilities at the retreat. He reprised this role in Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer.

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He was also in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World where he played the skater/ movie star Lucas Lee. “The first click you hear is gonna be me hanging up. The second is me pulling the trigger” is probably my favorite quote of Lucas Lee’s. Okay, it's the deep voice he does it in, because that's not that deep of a quote. Lucas Lee is the ultimate skater bad ass that bursts into a million little coins because he bailed off the rail. He made me laugh and swoon at the same time. “The only thing separating me from her is the two minutes it’s gonna take to kick your ass.” I love that movie. So awesome.

On top of that, he was in my favorite movie, The Losers where he played Jensen. Jensen is the quick thinking techy geek, who like his comrades was blackmailed, betrayed and presumed dead. However, he’s hilarious throughout the movie and even though he’s a tech…he still kicks butt. One of his quotes was, “That’s right bitches, I got a crossbow!” It’s truly my favorite movie. Every time I hear Journey’s Don’t Stop Believing, I think of his rendition of it and I dance to it like how he did in the movie. “So…you, uh ladies liking the angle of the dangle?”

I also have to admit that I loved him in Snowpiercer. It was a post-apocalyptic movie where Earth had frozen over and the only people left alive on the planet are stuck on a train that travels around the world. This train though, see those at the back of it live a terrible life where at first they were starved and now live at the mercy at those at the front of the train. However, that’s when Curtis (Chris Evans) leads a group to the front of the train to try to bring equality for all. It was a tough movie, but in the end…I liked it. It was definitely one that made you think.

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However, Chris Evans is best known for being Captain America in the Marvel movies. From Captain America: The First Avenger to The Avengers, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Avengers: Age of Ultron to finally next year when Captain America: Civil War comes out, he is known as a simple kid from Brooklyn that was made into a superhero and scolds Tony Stark every now and then. I have to admit, I didn’t like the Captain America character until Chris Evans took over the role. He has beyond excelled at this role, and I will be sad to see Captain America go when the time comes.

So in all…this may have been a complete fan girl blog about this amazing actor. In all of his movies, he has made me laugh and cry. I even have to admit that I have watched What’s Your Number? with him and Anna Faris and I enjoyed it. To be fair it was hysterical and cute at the same time.

So, to have the chance to be able to meet this amazing actor is definitely going to be a memory I will hold near and dear forever. I hope I can get a picture, or that they would be at least selling a picture with him at the table. That’s all I can dream about. I really can’t wait. Salt Lake Comic Con is going to be amazing. 

 
 

Written by Mattie

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Salt Lake Comic Con has so many great and wonderful guests attending the convention this year. As some of you know, Shae and I are fans of Once Upon a Time and watch it religiously, I usually have to catch it the next day on demand, but we never miss it. As it turns out, at this year’s SLCC, there are several guests from OUAT who will be in attendance.

For starters, Kristin Bauer will be there. She plays Maleficent, the dragon shape shifting enchantress who ends up befriending the heroes in order to find her daughter that was stolen from her at the fault of the heroes. Who knows what’s going to happen this next season when Emma is running around as the Dark One. Kristin has also played Pam De Beaufort in True Blood has so many other roles in other TV shows. She’s one fiery guest who will be at SLCC. 

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On top of that, Emma Caulfield will also be in attendance at SLCC. Way back in the first season of Once Upon a Time, she played the Blind Witch, the one who tempted Hansel and Gretel into her clutches. However, Emma Caulfield is better well known as the vengeance demon, Anya, lover of Xander Harris in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She was the demon afraid of bunnies.


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Then, we also have Christopher Gorham who played the Wizard of OZ/Walsh the flying monkey in Once Upon a Time. He had Emma fall in love with him after her memories were taken away. Thankfully, Hook came to save the day and Walsh turned into a flying monkey that was working for the Wicked Witch. However he’s also been in USA’s Covert Affairs where he played Auggie Anderson. I really haven't had the chance to watch that show yet, but my mother loves it.

These are the Once Upon a Time guests that are attending Salt Lake Comic Con. Can’t wait to see everyone there.

 
 

Written by Mattie

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Over the last few weeks, Salt Lake Comic Con has added many awesome guests to their lineup. One of those guests just happens to be one of my favorite Doctor Who companions. Yes, Arthur Darvill will be in attendance at Salt Lake City Comic Con.

Now, Arthur is best known for playing Rory Williams on Doctor Who. There he stole the heart of millions as the centurion, a gladiator who protected Amy for many, many years as she resided in Pandora’s Box. I have to say, that he was the main reason why I continued watching Doctor Who after David Tennant regenerated. He was funny and cute and pretty much a wonderful character.

Arthur has also been in BBC’s critically acclaimed drama, Broadchurch which also starred David Tennant. There he starred as the Reverend Paul Coates. I never saw Broadchurch, but John has said he did a wonderful job.

However, Arthur Darvill will also be appearing in the CW’s Legends of Tomorrow as Rip Hunter. He will be starring alongside Arrow’s Caity Lotz (White Canary) and Brandon Routh (Ray Palmer a.k.a. ATOM) and The Flash’s Victor Garber (Firestorm), Wentworth Miller (Captain Cold) and Dominic Purcell (Heat Wave). I’m actually bouncing out of my seat in anticipation for this TV show. 

I am super excited to meet Arthur Darvill at Salt Lake Comic Con and even more excited for Legends of Tomorrow to come to my TV screen. I can’t wait. 

 
 

Written by Mattie

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Not only does Salt Lake Comic Con have Robbie Amell, John Barrowman and Alex Kingston added to their list of people appearing from the awesome geek shows of the CW, they also have two more that are just spectacular.

That’s right, the super sexy vampire from The Vampire Diaries, Ian Somerhalder will also be making his appearance at SLCC 2015. He plays Damon Salvatore, brother to Stefan Salvatore whom are two vampires that have lived hundreds of years and now find themselves in a love triangle with the beautiful Bonnie Bennett. I really haven’t watched much of this show, but I have caught a few episodes here and there. I love it’s spinoff show, The Originals so much though. He was also Boone Carlyle in the TV show, Lost and he was Adam Knight in CW’s Smallville

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On top of that, SLCC has the queen of the geeks, Felicia Day attending this year. How is she attached to the CW you ask? Well, she played Charlie Bradbury, the techy, girl-loving friend/essentially little sister of Sam and Dean Winchester in CW’s hit show, Supernatural. Sadly though, due to Sam taking things too far in this last season, Charlie was brutally murdered by the ancestors of Dr. Frankenstein, which honestly made me cry for days.

Plus, Felicia Day starred in the short web-series, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog alongside Neil Patrick Harris and Nathan Fillion as Penny, the love interest. Well, that ended horribly for her character, pun intended. She also stars in her own web-series, The Guild as Cyd aka Codex, an antisocial gamer who one-day meets her guildies and they all become super close, even though they’re all strange in their own ways.

Salt Lake Comic Con has so many more guests going to attend this year’s event. Stay tuned, I have more blogs on the way. 

 
 

Written by Mattie

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Now, Salt Lake Comic Con prides themselves on the guests that they get to come to the convention, and let me tell you…I am impressed. They get big named guests from all genres. Two of these guests are from the popular and awesome BBC show, Doctor Who, and they just happen to cross over into the amazing CW show, Arrow.

“Hello Sweetie.” That’s right; Alex Kingston a.k.a. River Song in Doctor Who and also Dinah Lance in Arrow will be at SLCC. We are first introduced to River Song in Doctor Who, in Silence in the Library and Forest of the Dead, two of my favorite episodes actually. But our introduction to her is short lived since well... she dies. River is spunky, awesome, and turns out to be a Time Lord! She is a well-loved character played by a spectacular actress.

We also get to see her in Arrow as the kind-of estranged mother of Laurel and Sara Lance. The first time I saw her in Arrow I squeed, “RIVER!!!” If I am recalling correctly, Shae argued with me on it, but I won in the end. Even though Dinah left Laurel and Quentin after Sara “died” the first time…she is still an awesome character in the show. Alex will be at SLCC Friday and Saturday. 

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I love Alex Kingston, yet I love John Barrowman more and he will be there as well. I was first introduced to John and his awesome acting skills when he appeared with the ninth Doctor in Doctor Who. There, he played the Time Agent/con man that was befriended by the Doctor and Rose Tyler. After a Dalek killed him, he was brought back to live via Rose Tyler and Time Lord magic and became immortal. Since then Jack has died many times but always comes back. He is definitely one of the most awesome things to have come out of Doctor Who.

Imagine my surprise while watching Arrow and he showed up as the main villain. That’s right, John plays the Dark Archer a.k.a. Malcolm Merlyn. Malcolm is so devious and evil, he even got Ollie killed once. Yet he’s one of my favorite characters. Hell, after this last season of Arrow he became the new Ra’s Al Ghul. He’s so devious and so evil…I mean…Crap! Everyone who watches this show and didn’t love John before he took this part hates the character Malcolm Merlyn. I’ve tried to hate him, but there’s no possible way I can!

I have to say though; I’ve met John Barrowman before at Dragon Con in Atlanta, like four years ago.  Still to this day, meeting him is one of my favorite memories. He’s personable and is also so animated. Also, he had a pet dog named Mattie when he was younger. I got to hear the story since our names were the same and rare. I totally hope his husband Scott comes along too. Shae and I have to get a picture with him. He will only be there Saturday though.

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But, to go along with the whole Arrow tangent…well, sort of…Robbie Amell, Stephen Amell’s cousin will also be joining these two at SLCC. He’s attached to Arrow though CW’s show, The Flash where he plays Ronnie Raymond who collided with Dr. Martin Stein the day the particle accelerator blew up to create Firestorm, a superhero meta-human. They are totally into crossovers, so I’m pretty sure one of these days Firestorm will be seen in Arrow.

He also starred in the movie, The Duff.  I totally wanted to see that movie, but sadly it got out of theaters too quick and I haven’t had the funds to buy it. So until it gets onto Netflix...I will have to wait. It looks funny though. He was also in CW’s short-lived series, The Tomorrow People and he was in an episode of Modern Family where he played Haley’s super short-term boyfriend, Chase before she realized that she loves Andy. Robbie will be there Friday and Saturday.

So all in all, there are three amazing actors/guests to meet already! I’m excited! 

 
 

Written by Mattie

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So, in the last week, Shae and I have decided to attend our neighboring state Utah’s, Salt Lake Comic Con. It will be a blast to attend an out of state convention, especially since we haven’t been to one since we have been a part of Girls of Geek12. So it makes to return to our old con ways and see conventions all around the country.

Now, Salt Lake Comic Con is a convention that started in 2013 with record-breaking numbers. In 2013 they were the third largest comic con in the United States and they had sold out all VIP tickets. This convention has a lot of appeal, hence why we are drawn towards it.

Salt Lake Comic Con is also connected to Salt Lake Comic Con FanX which happened this past January. Both of these cons are put on by Dan Farr Productions. Dan Farr Productions aim to organize awesome events and partners with kick butt celebrities bringing you the best brands in the pop culture business. What more could a geek want?!

On top of the many celebrity stars that you can see at Salt Lake Comic Con, they have hours of panel programming, Artist Alley, Author Avenue, cosplay and cosplay activities and games, other special events and even a Superhero Run 5k where you dress up in cosplay and run! All proceeds for the Superhero Run 5k will go to the renovations for the new Specialty Hospital of Utah.There’s much to see and do, and Shae and I are excited to partake in this event. Hopefully we will see you all there as well. 

 
 

Written by Julia

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The night before Denver Comic Con I sat on my hotel bed excitedly going through the list of panels happening over the weekend. I soon came across a panel about women in comics. I thought it had an interesting premise because it was about the history of women in comics as well as the women currently writing. The description seemed a little discombobulated, but I kept reading it and was relatively intrigued. Then I got to the bottom of the page. All of the names listed were male names. I thought maybe I was mistaken and though they were traditionally used as male names, maybe in this case they were representing women who would be on the panel. Nope. After further investigation I was sure that the Women in Comics panel consisted solely of men. “Well, think I’ll pass on that one” I said to my dad and then continued to read about science panels and Muppet panels and family panels.

Having a completely male panel about women in comics was a big mistake. No amount of explanations or apologies can change that. And the aftermath of this event could have been handled better as well, but that’s not what I want to talk about today. There have been several articles and discussions about this topic already and this is important! But I also strongly believe that it is important to talk about good steps that are being made and positive things that are happening. Having acknowledged that structuring the panel in this way was unacceptable, I want to address a big worry I have. I worry that the Women in Comics panel will overshadow all the great work that the Pop Culture Classroom did at Denver Comic Con 2015. On the day of the infamous panel, my Twitter was filled with people tweeting about the mistake and how disappointed they were. Again, this is an important discussion, but I wish I would have seen it side by side with a discussion about the great kid’s area that Pop Culture Classroom set up in the center of the Con floor and the fun, interesting NASA panels that were full of science and nerdiness. I wish I would have seen more tweets about the smiling children that were enjoying a convention bursting with activities directed specifically at them.

Denver Comic Con is a non-profit convention whose proceeds are used by Pop Culture Classroom to fund curriculum that is written using comics, graphic novels, and other pop culture materials. And this is so cool!! I am an incredibly antsy person and school has always been frustrating for me because sitting through class can be draining and exhausting. I’ve always found, however, that when I can connect what I’m learning to something else I’m interested in, class becomes fun and exciting! This isn’t a new concept at all, but Pop Culture Classroom has taken this idea a step further than most education professionals dare to go. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, comic books can be amazing learning tools if in the right hands. Pop Culture Classroom understands this fact and is using a medium that is often frowned upon to create fantastic opportunities for students to learn and have fun in the process! There is a stigma surrounding comics that they are less intellectually challenging than books, but this does not need to be the case! As with all media, there is a depth and a range to comic content. Yes, there are some comics that are just plain silly and some that just seem to be violent for violence sake. But so many comics, a plethora of comics in fact, are educational, thought-provoking, and engaging! Pop Culture Classroom knows this and is working incredibly hard to bring the fun of comics to children in a genuine educational format.

Pop Culture Classroom and Denver Comic Con’s commitment to education and to getting kids excited about comics was apparent all throughout the con. With the programming and activities offered all three days, children were left without a moment of dullness. Not only did kids benefit from this, but the whole con had a really awesome, optimistic feel to it. I’ve never seen so many happy families at a con and it was an absolute joy. The show floor was buzzing with life and enthusiasm and this atmosphere permeated into every room I entered at the Colorado Convention Center. There were phenomenal family cosplays and a significant lack of tears as children didn’t have time or reason to be bored and upset. But the happy feeling of the family focused con was not the only benefit. You can bet I was excited to go to a panel about real robots in space and the practicality of our sci-fi favorites like R2-D2 and C-3PO. And I was right in the mix of all ages of fans ogling a table full of incredible Lego artwork. Denver Comic Con had the perfect balance of directing activities at the younger generation while still making it an unforgettable experience for every age.

So long story short, yes Denver Comic Con made a glaring mistake, but it is my sincerest hope that this does not overshadow all of the good that Denver Comic Con and Pop Culture Classroom are doing. Denver Comic Con has only been around for four years and I am astounded by how far it has grown in this short time. I hope that the Women in Comics panel will be a learning experience for Denver Comic Con and that they will be given the opportunity and support to keep moving in a direction of education and acceptance. Denver Comic Con and Pop Culture Classroom have so much potential to change children’s lives and make their days a little better. I know it sounds cheesy, but it’s so true. I know that I, as a child, would have been thrilled to experience Pop Culture Classroom's curriculum and it could easily be a turning point in a student’s life, helping them realize how fun learning can be. Here’s to many more years of family friendly conventions and an atmosphere of awe at Denver Comic Con.

 
 

Written by John Edward Betancourt

Photograph by Ken Termin

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I've been to a lot of conventions in my time. So many in fact that they have in essence become routine to a certain degree. That doesn't mean they aren't enjoyable, because I always have a good time, but you kind of get used to going to so many since we are blessed with a ton of conventions in Colorado.  

But out of all of the many conventions I attend, there actually is one that manages to turn me into a young kid on Christmas Eve once again. It keeps me up at night quite frankly, because I can't wait for it arrive. Denver Comic Con is truly an experience unlike any other and this year I think I finally figured out why this convention is so supremely different over any other convention out there. 

You see, this year something special caught me eye, something I think we have all missed every time we step through the doors of the Colorado Convention Center. It's easy to miss because we all have our own agenda for things to accomplish that weekend, but I think it is super important to point it out. During my travels I observed some incredible moments. I watched child after child grin with incredible excitement over seeing cartoon characters come to life. I watched a couple in their late fifties walking around the convention, hand in hand in their Starfleet uniforms. I watched mothers and fathers teaching their sons and daughters about the stories and characters that influenced mom and dad. 

If anything, it was the Starfleet couple that really hit the message home, that Denver Comic Con has accomplished what every convention strives for...to be an all inclusive destination for every single person out there. The phrase "something for everyone" gets thrown around a lot, but DCC has truly pulled it off. This is what makes this convention so special. That fact that despite the many genres out there, the different types of fandoms, they are all united as one under the roof of the Colorado Convention Center and that's no small feat. 

At the same time however, we are making a difference in people's lives by celebrating our geekiness with the wonder that is Pop Culture Classroom. I've seen the program up close and personal, seen how kids are engaged in that learning style and it truly is something special.  When you combine all of these things into one, you get the amazing convention we all experienced a short time ago.  It's why this convention continues to grow in such incredible fashion year after year and it won't end there. Because everyone loves to feel wanted, to feel included and as though they are doing something to better the world...and that's exactly what Denver Comic Con gives all of us.

We make a difference by attending, and that's amazing. We see people that share the love of our fandoms and are introduced into other ones all at the same time, and that's incredible. We are growing the imagination of children by introducing them to worlds they have never known and that's magnificent. But most importantly...we are in a place free of judgment, where can truly be ourselves and celebrate the stories that have inspired us. There's really no other convention that manages to pull all of this off, and it makes Denver Comic Con special on a level I have never known and I'll be there every year because of this. Until next year.

 
 
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Every year I go to Denver Comic Con, I am always able to find something that I cannot live without.  This year was no different for me as I still have a maybe a foot or two open on my walls that need to be rearranged, so these pieces will help me in doing that.  Now, I always have my go to artists that show up to the con, and this year was no different, but to my surprise, they had something new that I have not seen before.  

So, jumping right in, I always have to stop by Ben Templesmith’s booth.  I have loved his artwork since the first time I saw it, but sadly, I already have all of the zombie greatness that he has put out in prints.  The trip was not wasted since there was something that caught my eye as soon as I walked up.  He had a new Joker that I do not have in my collection. If you know me at all, you know that I have an obsession with the Joker, and if I find something from one of my top artists, well, I just have to have it.  Digging a little bit deeper, I must admit that I love Leatherface from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and there was a piece that filled that void.  Last, it took me a little bit of time to decide on what to get since everything else had just enough darkness, but I had to go with the Raven.  Always being a Poe fan and knowing that many people would get the reference, this is a piece that will be built around for years to come.

Keeping my eyes open when wandering the floor, I found a new artist that I will need to follow named Frankie Serna. What drew me to his booth, besides the lines was a fantastic Venom piece that was calling out to me.  This is another one of my collections that I will continue to grow and this one seemed to embody the madness of the beast with just enough brightness to keep it from giving me night terrors.  I also picked up a Batman print, just because who does not like Batman?  Always a staple in anyone’s growing collection.   
Continuing to walk through Artist Valley, I stumbled upon Blake Henriksen’s booth.  Last year I purchased a great mug shot of the Joker from this talented artist, but this year he had something more that caught my eye.  With an Arkham Proposal featuring Harley Quinn looking happy and the Joker looking very unimpressed, I was sold. Also finding another Venom for my collection that would scare the kids, I also discovered a fantastic Thanos in space with one half of his head as we know it from the Guardians movie, while the other side is eating galaxies.  Talk about something that I don’t have in my collection yet, but might need to build.
After last year, I know that there is always a booth that I will need to stop by and that is the booth of Leila del Duca.  The very talented artist of Shutter, she was paired up with the writer of The Pantheon Project, Erik Taylor.  I would be a fool not to pick up this comic and Leila had a special going on as well with her own sketch covers for Shutter number seven.  When getting my sketch back in the morning, I was amazed how awesome it tuned out.  After showing it to a couple friends, they were all shocked to find it out it was not a printed cover, but a sketch. 
Now, I always try to save the best for last and I pretty much did this when visiting my favorite local artist, Robert Elrod.  Although I talked with him throughout the show, I did not make my final purchases until time became a factor.  Since I already own so much of his art, I am forced to look at his other print mediums, and one that he brought this year was canvas printings.  This is something that I have not dealt with before, but they came out amazing, so I had to get a couple.  The Breach and Cowl were my two favorites that he brought in, and then I needed to splurge a little bit and get the original painting of Exalted.  I never can say enough about this man and his work.  I am always coming up with ideas of what to have him draw next since there is no limit to what he can do, at least not that I have seen.
With so many other great artists in attendance this year, it is much too difficult to call them all out.  So this is just a small sampling of what is about to grace my walls and maybe even overflow into my work cubicle.  I hope that you were able to find your treasures this year, since there was so much to choose from at Denver Comic Con this year. It only matters what you like and what speaks to you when you are trying to find pieces of art to put in your collection. Even if it is not someone else’s cup of tea, never let it persuade you purchasing and hanging something that you love.  I know I sure as heck don’t!
 
 

Photograph by Ken Termin

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Sadly, Monday was the last day of the convention. At the end of it I was exhausted and was starting to come down sick with something. A week later, I’m still sick but better rested yet I’m missing the excitement of Denver Comic Con.

Last Monday morning, we walked about the convention floor before it opened and it was bittersweet. We were all sad that this day had come, and yet happy that we could finally go become a burrito in our own beds. Everyone was exhausted. Yet it was still a fun day though. That morning we had decided to forgo the costumes since it would just be easier to pack up and load into the car without dealing with the pain of costumes. Plus, it’s easier for us to walk around the convention floor.

The first thing we did Monday though was go and meetDavid Morrissey. Of course when we got there at 10am, he wasn’t there yet and I don’t blame him. So we waited at the front of the line and made line friends with the volunteers. Funny story, we all shared a friend in common. It was awesome to meet them and I still haven’t friended them on FaceBook! I’M SORRY!!!!

The rest of the day, Shae and I finally got to actually look though all the vendors and all of the artists. We had only seen a few of the tables and it was good to finally glance at them all. There was so much merchandise and so much talent in that room, it was amazing. Next year I’m spending more of my time in Artist Valley with Scotty and Smurf. They know so many people; it would be great to collect more new friends.

Last but not least, we got to attend a wedding between the Green Lantern Batman and Daenerys Targaryen, the queen of the dragons. It was sweet as everyone in their wedding party was dressed up in costumes. The best man was the Red Hood. In all, it was a beautiful ceremony filled with Storm Troopers. At this wedding, anything that could happen did, I mean George Lucas was the man that married them.

Overall, Denver Comic Com came as quickly as it went. It was a fantastic time where I collected more new friends one of them being the fabulous sculptor, T.K. Miller and his wife Rebekah. I had such a blast the entire weekend and am sad that it’s over for this year. I can’t wait to see you all next year at Denver Comic Con 2016.