MOHEGAN — Mohegan Sun’s Earth Expo Center became pop culture ground-zero on Saturday as wizards, superheroes, celebrities and artists all converged for the Terrificon comic convention.
Visitors roamed aisles jammed with booths selling millions of comics, action figures, clothing and art work near long lines filled with fans holding stacks of graphic novels set to be signed by some of the industry’s most respected creators, including Jerry Ordway, Frank Cho and Keith Giffen.
Enfield resident Carl Rypysc was in line as Jim Starlin, the artist and writer for the several acclaimed comic runs, including the Infinity Gauntlet – later adapted into Marvel’s “Avengers: Infinity War” film – arrived to begin signing.
“I was in Boston last week for their comic con, and I’ll usually go to others during the year in New Jersey and Massachusetts,” he said. “They’ve done a good job this year making this space easier to get around in – it was really packed last year. This is a chance to see some of the big names and sit in on some panels.”
A few feet away from artists’ row, lines snaked out from the celebrity area where cultural icons like Henry Winkler and Lou Ferrigno posed with fans and signed autographs. Laura Broadnax, of Bridgeport, craned her neck as the line crept up to Winkler’s table.
“I grew up with the Fonz,” she said. “I just want a chance to tell him I’m a fan.”
Off near a rear section, a giant Batmobile replica was parked near the famous Flintstones car, its floorboards removed for maximum foot-powered propulsion. Darth Vader loomed over a gaggle of youngsters who stared wide-eyed before inching their way up for a quick photo.
Out in the lobby, entering attendees were urged to help break a Guinness World Book record by signing a “birthday” card for Superman next to ballrooms where panelists discussed comic history conducted question-and-answer sessions.
The cavernous center was filled with cosplayers, many who spent hours or days cobbling together with outfits for the day. Superheroes and villains were well represented, with plenty of Captain Americas, Batmen and Deadpools strolling past Jedis, Star Fleet officers and cowled vigilantes.
Dana Powers and his four children – all decked out in costumes from the “Firefly” television show – struck poses near the Sith Lord.
“We left Guilford, N.H. at 4 a.m. to get here today,” Powers said. “This is an event that just seems to keep growing every year.”
New London resident Jonathan Pratzs arrived in full satyr garb, complete with cast resin hoofs, neck garland and chest fur.
“It’s a mix-and-match costume, some homemade and some store-bought that took me about nine hours to put together,” he said. “I’ve been to other events like this, but this is the biggest local one. The plan is just to browse around like we did Friday and enjoy the nerd culture.”
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