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    Entries in conventions (1)

    Monday
    Mar292010

    Wizard World Toronto 2010... really?

    I was excited to be attending Wizard World Toronto this weekend, and although it was an improvement over Paradise Comics last outing, it's a far cry from being a worthwhile comic convention experience.

    One of the most upsetting parts of the convention was the price of admission. If you were going for one day and were paying at the door, a ticket would set you back $34. That's the same price as a greatest hits video game. That's the price of two movie tickets, popcorn and a drink. That's the price of over 16 X-large Tim Horton's coffees. That's expensive. Even buying online, and with the coupon code, TORONTO, a ticket still cost $24.

    What did $24 get you? Not much. The Convention still carries the monicker of Toronto Comic Con, but I call it Wizard World Toronto for a reason: Comics took up a seemingly small portion of this trade show. There seemed to be a lot of mid to lower tier TV celebrities, lots of former pro-wrestlers, and a whole section devoted to reality TV stars. And if course, each of these celebrities were happy to autograph a photograph of them... for a price. This was not what I was looking for in a comic convention. Interesting that Fan Expo, which promotes being Pop Culture event that covers scifi, horror and comics has more comic content than the Toronto Comic Con did.

    Also missing from this convention was publisher presence. Chicago, San Diego, and to a lesser degree Fan Expo, have done a good job of bringing in the big comic publishers, and having them there adds a LOT to the experience. Wizard World Toronto didn't even have much of a Wizard booth (where was the wheel of shame?) and there were no publishers of note.

    Artist Alley was 'ok' if you had never been to a Toronto Convention in the past 3 or 4 years, and at one point Gail Simone didn't have a line, so you could have probably had a lengthy conversation with her if you wanted. But most of the artists were the Toronto Artist Alley mainstays, so nothing much new. Phil Jimenez had a table, and from previous experience, he's one of those nice guys you should take the opportunity to meet.

    The convention does show some promise: An increase in size from the Paradise Toronto Comic Con means hopefully they'll get bigger, and Wizard does have some pull in the industry to maybe get those publishers to show up. But this convention was NOT worth $24+. Not even close. Considering it took less than 2.5 hours to experience the entire thing, the price should have been closer to $16 for a day pass, and maybe $24 for a whole weekend (but you wouldn't need a whole weekend).

    I look forward to Fan Expo later this year, but I think I will pass on future Wizard World Torontos until the price is more reasonable for the size.

    L8r
    Paul