Comicpalooza is the largest annual, multi-genre, comic book, science fiction, anime, gaming, and pop culture convention in Houston, Texas. The event is organized by Startling Events, LLC. The event hosts the annual Comicpalooza Fandom Awards.
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The first Comicpalooza was held July 19, 2008. The event took place in the lobby of the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema located in Houston, and corresponded with the release of the film The Dark Knight. The event included a handful of tables with local comic book artists.
In 2009, Comicpalooza expanded to a two-day event which took place at West Oaks Mall. Question and answer sessions and a charity live art auction were added to the event. Guests included: David Mack, Terry Moore, Steve Scott, Tom Hodges, Mat Johnson, Andy Kuhn, and Dirk Strangely.
In 2010, Comicpalooza expanded to a three-day event, taking place at the George R. Brown Convention Center attracting over 3,000 attendees the previous year. The event no longer focused exclusively on comics, but expanded to include science fiction, fantasy, horror, steam punk and other genres. During this year, the convention was held on the 2nd floor of the George R. Brown, in the smallest middle section of the convention center. In addition to Q&A sessions and the live art auction, Comicpalooza hosted celebrity guests, a three-day film festival, costume contest, live DJ room, cockpit simulators from MechCorps Entertainment LLC of the BattleTech Centers, and a $5,000 Magic: The Gathering tournament in addition to opening gaming and numerous panels by fan groups. The event also included a performance by the Intergalactic Nemesis Live-Action Graphic Novel and touring music act Dead P.A. Guests included: Bruce Campbell, Ray Park, Nicholas Brendon, Peter Mayhew, Jason Dohring, Francis Capra, Dichen Lachman, Phil Foglio, David Malki, R. K. Milholland, Brian Denham, Larry Elmore, Rob Liefeld, David Mack, Jim Mahfood, Humberto Ramos, Dirk Strangely, Ben Templesmith, Ethan Van Sciver, Bernie Wrightson, and others.
Comicpalooza 2011 was held May 27â"29, and featured a Zombie theme and an Anime component for the first time. With the previous years turnout, the convention expanded to two bigger halls on the 3rd floor. That year presented new features, including Houston Roller Derby, Local Wrestling, the International Quidditch Association, and local fan groups of the presented genres. Guests included Edward James Olmos, Meaghan Rath, Sam Trammell, Jeff Hughes, Arthur Suydm, Alejandro Garza, Jon Hughes, and much more. Fan groups included the Houston Area Ghost Busters, the Star Garrison of the 501st Legion, and the Texas Lego users group, which displayed a variety of unique variety of never before seen Lego items. Attendance was roughly 10,000.
Comicpalooza 2012 was held in May 25â"27, 2012 and featured a dedicated Children's Room, called the Comic Club Room, for the first time with special guest Tiki Macaw. The convention encompassed a greater portion of the George. R. Brown by occupying the three greater halls on the bottom floor. As the convention grew, it included entertainers such as Arc Attack, and Professor Elemental. The convention included events to engage direct interaction with the attendees, including Laser tag, Live Art Auctions, and Jedi Training Seminars. It's guests include Kevin Sorbo, Ernie Hudson, Joe Kubert, Christopher Judge, Richard Hatch, Rachel Luttrell, Christopher Yost, Gerry Kissell, George Takei, and several others. Attendance was 11,000
Comicpalooza 2013 was held in May 24â"26, 2013 and featured the hugely popular Galacticon on the floor from Battlestar Galactica, Houston Zombie Walk, with more gaming, anime, and cosplay. Also, for the first time in Houston with special guest Patrick Stewart, Avery Brooks, Michelle Rodriguez, Danny Trejo, Armin Shimerman, Rene Auberjonois, David Yost, Walter Jones, Edward James Olmas, Kate Vernon, Joseph Gatt, Kris Holden-Reid, Zoie Palmer, George PÃ©rez and many, many more. It featured double the amount of comic book writers, creators, artist, fan groups, and illustrators. The convention used a greater portion of the George. R. Brown by occupying again the three greater halls on the bottom floor. Entertainers such as Arc Attack, and Professor Elemental performed. The convention included events to engage direct interaction with the attendees, including laser tag, live art auctions, jedi training, roller derby, wrestling, card game tournaments, and quidditch matches. Attendance was 20,700.
Comicpalooza 2014 was held on May 23â"26, 2014 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston and was featured for the first time as a four-day event on Memorial Day weekend. This year exceeded all others for artists, exhibitors, dealers, guests, programs, events & attendees on the floor on the convention center. TV & film guests included the legendary creator of Marvel Comics Stan Lee, the cast of ABC's TV series Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Clark Gregg, Brett Dalton, Elizabeth Henstridge, J. August Richards, Ming-Na Wen. Four Doctor Who actors Peter Davison, Paul McGann, Sylvestor McCoy, & Colin Baker were also there. Cast members of Buffy the Vampire Slayer included James Marsters, Nicholas Brendon, James Leary, Clare Kramer, George Hertzberg. Other TV & film guests were John Barrowman, Lou Ferrigno, Tricia Helfer, Nichelle Nichols, Erin Gray, Ksenia Solo, Cary Elwes, Billy Dee Williams, Glenn Morshower, Rose McGowan. Power Rangers actors Austin St. John, David Yost, Walter Jones, Karan Ashley, Johnny Yong Bosch were also present.
Notable comic artist included Jim Steranko, Neal Adams, Don Rosa, David Petersen, James O'Barr, Aaron Lopresti, Greg Capullo, Mike Mignola, Sam de la Rosa, Roy Thomas, Michael Golden, Nicholas Pitarra and many, many more. Also Bryan Johnson, Michael Zapcic, & Ming Chen from the AMC TV series "Comic Book Men" appeared also at the con.
This year also included scientist and engineers from the NASA to speak on the advancements of space technology and the influence of science fiction. Attendance was 32,632.
Comicpalooza 2015 was held on May 22â"25, 2015 at the George R. Brown Convention Center in downtown Houston and was again featured as a four-day event on Memorial Day weekend. The convention continues to increase in participating members year after year for artists, exhibitors, dealers, guests, programs, events & attendees on the floor on the convention center. TV & film guests included for the second year legendary creator of Marvel Comics Stan Lee, several actors from the Marvel Cinematic and TV universe including for the first time Jeremy Renner, Hawkeye of the Avengers, Cobie Smulders, agent Maria Hill of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Hayley Atwell from ABC's TV series Agent Carter, Chloe Bennet from ABC's TV series Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., and Rosario Dawson, from the Netflix series Daredevil. From the DC Universe there was major representation as well. 5 cast memebers from the FOX TV series GOTHAM were there, Camren Bicondova, Donal Logue, Cameron Monaghan, Sean Pertwee, Cory Michael Smith. Other TV & film guests were present Jason Isaacs, David Anders, Laurie Holden, George Takei, Henry Winkler, Marina Sirtis, Linda Blair, Summer Glau, John Schneider, Peter Mayhew, Richard Harmon, Rick Howland, Sting, Jeremy Shada, Akira Takarada, Jackie Earle Haley. From the classic horror film "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" Barry Bostwick, Nell Campbell, and Patricia Quinn, were also present.
Notable comic artist included Kevin Eastman, Sam de la Rosa, Basil Gogos, Peter David, Matt Hawkins, J.M. DeMatteis, and many, many more. Also Bryan Johnson, Michael Zapcic, & Ming Chen from the AMC TV series "Comic Book Men" appeared from the second year at the con.
Again, this year also included scientist, astronauts, and engineers from the NASA to speak on the advancements of space technology and the influence of science fiction, including astronaut Stan Love.
Comicpalooza with anime
Comicpalooza has featured Anime for the first time in the convention and was held May 27â"29 at George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston. Guests included: Leraldo Anzaldua, Maggie Flecknoe, Tiffany Grant, Josh Grelle, Taylor Hannah, Samantha Inoue-Harte, Brittney Karbowski, Mark Laskowski, Monica Rial, Claire Hamilton, Richard Steven Horvitz, and Veronica Taylor.
- Comicpalooza Official Website
- Comicpalooza Official Blog
- Article from Comic Book Resources