We dove headfirst into FanX 2017 this weekend, the cousin of Salt Lake Comic-Con, to bring you all the gloriously nerdy highlights. Even if you haven’t memorized the trivia behind Harry Potter, you’re still bound to appreciate the commitment.
Best Skype Encounter:
The Master of Marvel himself, Stan Lee, video chatted with hundreds of fans about his career, his inspiration and his process. Lee was originally scheduled to have the panel in person for his last FanX appearance, but had to cancel due to illness. He told the crowd that talking to them was “the best medicine.” (Awww, Stan.)
Best Compliment About Utah:
During a panel with “Weird Al” Yankovic, a fan asked what he liked about Utah. The musician replied with a simple (but not untrue) statement—“The shape… it’s very rectangular.”
Best Story About Prince:
This comes from another gem of a story from Weird Al—He was slated to sit in the same row as Prince at the American Music Awards and, before the event began, he received a telegram (yes, we’re serious) with very specific instructions that he should not “establish eye contact” with the pop star. Needless to say, Al still snuck a couple looks.
Best Way to Meet New People:
There were all kinds of cosplay meetups—planned gatherings of people with costumes from a certain movie, show or game. They created an opportunity for new photogenic friendships, lightsaber fights and spontaneous dance battles. These included meetups for Pokemon, Doctor Who, The Walking Dead and Disney. The Star Wars gatherings were dedicated to the late Carrie Fisher. There were also several Geek Speed Dating events and panel discussions about diversity, including one for the LGBTIA+ community.
Best Alternative Form of Transportation:
Part longboard, part broomstick, totally radical. Ron Southworth builds complex props every year for Comic Con, and this creation, called the GryffinDart is Harry Potter approved. Ron (yes, that’s his real name) built the board by hand, using his own designs, and it took roughly a month to complete.
Best Way to Shock Your Mom:
In the middle of the convention floor was a fenced-off area reserved for a pop-up tattoo shop. Many made appointments hours in advance to get inked in the middle of a crowd of people. Separate booths offered glitter and henna tattoos for those with an understandable fear of commitment.
Best Person that We’re Pretty Sure is an Actual Robot:
Is this an expert cosplay or just a Transformer looking to have a good time among the humans? We’re still not sure, but a 10-foot-tall Bumblebee turned heads throughout the convention.
-by Megan Skuster and Amy Whiting