Cup o' Kryptonite in Des Moines is filled to the brim with comic books and graphic novels. (Juice File Photo)
Comic Book I-Con events, comic shops
Published on October 15th, 2013 | by Joe Lawler
“The Avengers,” “Iron Man,” “The Dark Knight” — these films have made billions at the box office, but for years the characters had more grassroots fan bases through their adventures in comic books. Comic fandom is still going strong today, with conventions like the San Diego and New York Comic Cons seeing turnouts of more than 100,000 fans each year.
Des Moines’ comic fandom exists on a much smaller scale, but enough fans are here to support several comic book shops. Multiple Des Moines professionals make their living writing and drawing comics, and there’s a growing community of cosplayers (people who dress up in awesome, elaborate or sometimes just silly costumes).
You’ll see some of them on display this weekend at the annual Comic Book I-Con. Here’s a look at Des Moines’ comic book scene.
Comic Book I-Con
When: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday
Where: Forte Convention Center (next to Buzzard Billy’s), 615 Third St.
Cost: $8, free for children 10 and younger with a paid adult.
Comic Book I-Con Guests
Scott Lobdell: Writer on “Superman,” “Superboy,” “Teen Titans,” “Uncanny X-Men” and others
Phil Hester: Iowan, artist or writer of books like “Invincible Universe,” “Green Arrow,” “Wonder Woman” and “T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents”
Jason Pearson: Artist on “Body Bags,” “Astonishing X-Men,” “Deadpool,” “Amazing Spider-Man”
Zach Howard: Artist on “Godzilla,” “G.I. Joe,” “Star Trek,” “Star Wars”
Jolyon Yates: Artist on “Lego Ninjago”
Aaron Gillespie: Artist/writer on “Bionic Man,” “Hell Yeah,” “Negative Burn”
Also appearing: Trevor Talbott & Scott Meier, Thom Hotka, Jonathan Sims, Everett Paul Burris, Scott A. Snyder (not the DC Comics writer), Austin Allen Hamblin, Duane Murray, Terry Pavlet, Ant Lucia, 3B Entertainment, Dave Wheeler, Trish “Trixie” Hunter, Tiffany Gilbert, Will Grant, John Ira Thomas, Carter Allen, D. Ryan Allen, Jason Wright, Scott Stewart
Schedule (Saturday, Oct. 19)
11 a.m.: Q&A with Scott Lobdell
11:15 a.m.: Cosplay parade for TV/movie/video game characters
11:30 a.m.: Cosplay parade for anime/manga characters
11:45 a.m.: Cosplay parade for DC/Marvel characters
Noon: “Total complete awesome cosplay mashup!!”
Noon: Panel on creating and publishing your own comic, webcomics, idea creation and more with Thom Hotka, Matty Martin and others
1 p.m.: Annual trivia contest
1:30 p.m.: HeroClix Clicks for Kids tournament ($20)
3 p.m.: HeroClix Prob for the Cause event ($20)
5:30 p.m.: The Comedy Gauntlet: An I-Con Universe Spanning Event. After party with stand-up comedy by “Superman” writer Scott Lobdell, Greg Althoff, Preston Tompkins, Dan Umthun and others.
What it is: Third annual Iowa G.I. Joe convention with G.I. Joe comic book artist and Iowan Ron Wagner and experts and toy designers
When: 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Nov. 16
Where: Central Library, 1000 Grand Ave.
Drink & Draw
What it is: A monthly art event/gathering for comic book artists and fans
When: 8 p.m. the second Thursday of each month
Where: GoodSons, 2815 Beaver Ave.
Not even sure where to buy comics? Here are five local comic shops that will have the latest issues of “Superior Spider-Man” and “Saga.”
Cup O’ Kryptonite, 2608 Beaver Ave. The shop plans to open a satellite location and coffee shop inside The Des Moines Social Club, 900 Mulberry St., when the building opens in 2014. cupokryptonite.com
Jay’s CD & Hobby, 3315 S.E. 14th St. and inside Valley West Mall, 1551 Valley West Drive, West Des Moines. jayscdandhobby.com
Mayhem Collectibles, 7500 University Ave., Clive and 2532 Lincoln Way, Ames. mayhemcomics.com
Old Curmudgeon Comics, 4720 Mortensen Road, Ames. oldcurmudgeoncomics.com
Rodman Comics, 318 S. Ankeny Blvd, Ankeny. rodmancomics.com
- Costumed Iowans: Jennifer Caes, 27
- Costumed Iowans: Dan Umthun, 31
- The comic book artist: Tyler Walpole, 37