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Comic books and cosplay invade Anaheim - Coast Report Online : Distractions

Comic books and cosplay invade Anaheim

Graphic novels weren’t the only thing on display this year.

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Posted: Tuesday, May 3, 2011 4:00 pm

Hall A of the Anaheim Convention Center was packed full of artists, celebrities and fans of all ages last weekend for the second annual Anaheim Comic-Con.

While the main focus of the event is on comic book artists, nearly half of the convention hall was dedicated to rows of celebrities offering to sign pictures of themselves for a small fee.

The atmosphere was a little chaotic for those attendees who didn’t go in with a plan.

“I’ve never been to a con this size that is so busy at 10:30 in the morning,” Renee Ahlms, who was waiting in line for her official S.H.I.E.L.D. badge, said. “It’s cool to have so much interest in comics, but the crowds are a little annoying.”

Several fan clubs were present at the event, such as Gamers United, Rebel Legion, and the So-Cal Ghostbusters.

One of the clubs in particular, called R2 Builders Club, creates fully operational and to-scale droids from the “Star Wars” movies.

“I always loved R2-D2 as a kid,” Victor Franco said. “It took me a month to fully commit to the club and start building.”

Franco operates a replica R2-D2 unit that took him two years to build.

Franco said that he mostly uses his R2 unit for charity events and visiting kids in hospitals such as Children’s Hospital in Orange County. 

“Everyone loves R2-D2. It’s just a little tough sometimes watching kids pull it apart,” Franco said.

Star Car Central had on display replicas of famous cars and was taking donations in exchange for the opportunity to have pictures taken with vehicles such as the Delorean from “Back to the Future” and Kitt from “Knight Rider.”

Herbie, the car from the movie “The Love Bug,” was on display and featured a variety of moving parts such as an automated hood and automatic opening and closing doors.

Brian Uiga, the maker of the replica Herbie, said that Disney offered him all the spare parts from the movie, but he had to bring his bug to the premiere of 2005’s “Herbie Fully Loaded.”

With the help of his father, he rushed making the car in a stressful 14 days.

“It’s a really great group of guys,” Uiga said. “We’re all into really weird cars.”

Attendees had the opportunity to meet their favorite artists and discover new ones this year

“The comic-con is awesome this year,” illustrator Angus Oblong said. “All the ugly people crawled out from under their beds to come out and have fun.”

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