April 01, 2013 | 9:04 a.m.
WonderCon attendees wielding camera phones flocked around Dawn Bright, a video game concept artist from the Inland Empire area who donned a head-turning Queen Amidala costume of her own creation. Her lavishly embellished gown, black feathered headdress and trademark white-and-red painted face stopped “Star Wars” fans in their tracks as they ambled through the lobby of the Anaheim Convention Center on Friday. “I made the entire dress from scratch,” Bright said, proudly pointing out the spiraled embroidery on her cloak before posing for more photos. “I just finished this costume last night at midnight, and I’ll actually be participating in the masquerade tomorrow.” A few feet away, more WonderCon-goers (some of whom wore costumes of their own) snapped pictures of Bright’s husband, Daniel, and their 3-year-old daughter, Victoria, dressed as the heroes from Disney’s “Wreck-it-Ralph,” with little Victoria’s stroller decked out […]
March 29, 2013 | 1:36 p.m.
Sci-fi, fantasy and comics fans and professionals are descending on WonderCon this weekend in Anaheim. Let the masquerade begin. This year’s conference, the second year for WonderCon in Anaheim, is shaping up to be a big event. The crowd is expected to be as large as last year’s, which just fell short of 40,000. Attendees are invited to send pictures of themselves and their cosplay friends for inclusion in our gallery, above. Just upload them above or tag them with the hashtag #HeroComplex on Instagram or Twitter today and throughout the weekend. After all, the costumes and imagination of WonderCon fans are among conference highlights. GALLERY: WonderCon highlights: Your guide to the con Other highlights: panels on big-budget Hollywood films “Pacific Rim,” from Guillermo del Toro, and “The Conjuring,” directed by James Wan. And author Cassandra Clare and director Harald Zwart […]
Sept. 16, 2012 | 8:00 a.m.
Frodo Baggins, Batman, Power Girl and Street Fighter’s Chun Li were in attendance at Stan Lee’s Comikaze — or at least their look-alikes were. In classic comic convention tradition, many attendees of this weekend’s expo at the Los Angeles Convention Center arrived in costume. Spotted Saturday were the Doctor and his TARDIS, “Jurassic Park’s” Dr. Alan Grant and a T-Rex driving around in Power Wheels Jeeps, X-Man Rogue, “Adventure Time’s” Finn and Jake, several Stormtropers and a slew of other characters from anime, film, video games, television and comics. Click through the gallery above for a quick look at some of Comikaze’s creative cosplay. – Noelene Clark RECENT AND RELATED Comikaze: Stan Lee unveils mobile game Verticus Comikaze: Elvira, Quidditch, zombies and more Comic-Con alternative Tr!ckster — a brand new bag Cosplay photos: Anime Expo 2012, a look back Holly Conrad puts costumes in the […]
July 13, 2012 | 7:22 a.m.
David Arnold, clad in medieval armor, ran a leather-gloved hand across the dents in his steel helmet outside the San Diego Convention Center on Thursday. While thousands of attendees sweltered in long lines to see the big-studio presentations in Hall H and Ballroom 20 at Comic-Con — the annual gathering of pop-culture creators and enthusiasts — Arnold and others found their entertainment on the fringes of the event, no badge required. Arnold, whose “game name” is Sir Rhys Crispin, is a knight in the Adrian Empire, a national nonprofit dedicated to the study and re-creation of Western European culture from the High Middle Ages to the early Renaissance. On Thursday afternoon, Arnold, 48, prepared to demonstrate his sword-fighting for a small crowd on the convention center’s Bayside Terrace. “Our daily lives are just kind of ho-hum,” Arnold said. “And in […]
July 09, 2012 | 6:27 a.m.
Even with Comic-Con, Botcon, Power Morphicon, Wizard World and Stan Lee’s Comikaze Expo all in play, there may not be a convention that matches the costuming originality and gusto of the Anime Expo. There were three masquerade showcases this year, but most of the cosplay warriors pictured above were decked out for the love of their creations. Jay West was on hand to watch the fans flaunt an impressive array of characters derived from comics/manga, movies, TV, pop music and video games (plus original creations) in and around the Los Angeles Convention Center. Anime Expo has already announced that the 2013 edition is scheduled for July 4-7. – Jevon Phillips RECENT AND RELATED: ‘Planetes’: Misfits cleaning up space junk Expo 2012: ‘Martian Successor Nadesico’ is funny ‘Ghost in the Shell’: TV variations on cyberpunk ‘Fullmetal Alchemist’ delivers spectacular finish ‘Trigun […]
April 12, 2012 | 4:56 p.m.
Morgan Spurlock’s new documentary “Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope” has plenty of familiar speakers — Joss Whedon, Stan Lee, Olivia Wilde and Kevin Smith are among the commentators on fanboy culture — but the most memorable voice might be the droll, self-deprecating Holly Conrad. The amateur costume designer is one of the Comic-Con pilgrims followed by Spurlock’s cameras. Hero Complex caught up with her too. Hero Complex: What was your first thought when you heard about the documentary — did you have anxieties about the tone or motivation? Holly Conrad: I didn’t really at all. Even when Morgan first called me and told me I was in, I knew this was a movie made for all of us, and with Joss Whedon behind it how could it not be awesome? Plus at the time I was still finishing the […]
March 26, 2012 | 8:08 a.m.
Jay West, a frequent contributor to Hero Complex who writes about fan culture, collectibles and alternative reality games, braved the rain last weekend to visit WonderCon in Anaheim. He brought his camera along and, of course, what member of the cosplay tribe can resist a photo op? Above, West’s collection of costume memories from the convention. RECENT AND RELATED Johnny Depp and Tim Burton, back in black WonderCon: Felicia Day’s Geek & Sundry arrives WonderCon: Watch for free Hero magazine ‘Amazing Spider-Man’ comes to WonderCon New comics: ‘Dragon Tattoo,’ Anthony Bourdain Andrew Garfield: Fame terrifies me ‘John Carter’: Creating Woola, lizard-dog of Mars Johnny Depp in ‘Lone Ranger’ first look Batman Live arena show starts U.S. tour on Sept 5
March 28, 2011 | 10:15 a.m.
REVIEW In Japanese, otaku simply means “you,” but in America, it’s used to describe a fan of Japanese pop culture: anime, manga, video games, J-pop and/or cosplay. American otaku range from casual enthusiasts to hard-core fanatics; the latter are the subject of the eight-part reality series/documentary “America’s Greatest Otaku,” which premiered on Hulu on Feb. 24. Stu Levy, the founder of TokyoPop, a major publisher of manga in the U.S., serves as host, assisted by six college students who are self-proclaimed otaku. Over eight weeks, they visit 20 U.S. cities, observing various aspects of Japanese fandom and interviewing candidates for the title of America’s Greatest Otaku. It’s an uneven series, veering from interesting to just plain silly and superficial. In one of the better sequences, the apprentice reporters visit the Texas headquarters of Funimation, the largest U.S. distributor of anime. After […]
Nov. 19, 2010 | 4:26 p.m.
What’s the word from the muggle nation? Thousands of fans flocked to theaters Thursday night to catch midnight showings of “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part I”, which made a lightning mark at the box office with $24 million. Wizard wannabes and Death Eater doppelgangers endured long lines, crowded cinemas and red-eye fatigue (some theaters hosted second screenings at 3 a.m.) and they weren’t afraid to sound off about it. To see the fandemonium from across the country, click here. – Nardine Saad RECENT AND RELATED Tom Felton’s tattoo prank VIDEO: ‘Potter’ stars arrive at London premiere Tom Felton: The final films will not disappoint Rupert Grint: I’m happy to be unemployed Radcliffe on his tearful final day on “Potter” set Forget Hogwarts, stars love fugitive life Which star needed fat-suit after weight loss? EXCLUSIVE: Tom Felton gives tour of […]
Nov. 19, 2010 | 6:42 a.m.
It’s a Hero Complex world, and a world of complex heroes. Here’s a story we just had to share with you from My Modern Met… A few years ago, French photographer Sacha Goldberger found his 91-year-old Hungarian grandmother Frederika feeling lonely and depressed. To cheer her up, he suggested that they shoot a series of outrageous photographs in unusual costumes, poses, and locations. Grandma reluctantly agreed, but once they got rolling, she couldn’t stop smiling. Frederika was born in Budapest 20 years before World War II. During the war, at the peril of her own life, she courageously saved the lives of ten people. When asked how, Goldberger told us “she hid the Jewish people she knew, moving them around to different places everyday.” As a survivor of Nazism and Communism, she then immigrated away from Hungary to France, forced […]