Comic-Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope Review

Author: Morgan Spurlock Photography: Alba Tull

The US enjoy their conventions. We do too, but we’ve yet to experience anything on a scale of what is the San Diego Comic-Con.

Morgan Spurlock has put together a fan’s tribute to the event featuring footage from the 2010 event. It’s surprisingly word-lite though. There are several forewords from familiar faces in the industry and an introduction (albeit a short one) from Spurlock. Beyond this it’s literally a page-by-page photo shoot of attending talent, wide angle shots of the event itself and up close encounters with some of the best dressed fans.

Some of the costumes here (generally home-made these days) are very impressive. Alba Tull’s photography perfectly complements the detail the fans have put in. Also throughout the book you’ll come across various attending celebrities that year – like Kenneth Branagh, Kevin Smith, Guillermo Del Toro, Paul Dini (who looks like Bruce Campbell’s much larger cousin), Todd McFarlane, Eli Roth, Frank Miller, Stan Lee… you get the idea. Each has a quote next to their pictures as well – again aimed at the event itself.

If there’s anything missing it’s probably the inclusion of a blueprint or map of the site itself. The sheer scope of this convention can, if fully illustrated, get across the truly monstrous size of the event. The good news is that Spurlock has said this is his next documentary. So stay tuned for that.

This is, for us here, an essential look into what perhaps we’re missing on UK shores. We have various conventions throughout the UK, many of which take place outside of the capital in places like Milton Keynes. The big smoke itself has a various assortment of what can be seen as plays to expose the world of film and comics to the fans. Kerpow!, the London Film and Comic Con are established examples, and more recently we’ve seen Empire Magazine tried to cash in on their successful, but intimate Movie-Con event by creating probably the closest thing to Comic Con that we’ve had so far in Big Screen. But we’re still light years behind the States. Finding a big enough venue that’s workable and can safely bring the exposure they want to the masses along with all the attending talent is still something that needs to be worked on. Big Screen was a prime example of how to oversell an underwhelming event that had many teething issues. The next couple of years should see the UK expand further – but they’ll need a little bit of imagination and strong support from talent and the studios for it to work.

And yes there’s obviously a shot of someone in that gold bikini outfit!

Steven Hurst

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