Earlier this week news broke from the Amazing Arizona Comic Con website that the comic book convention that had been doing shows in AZ for ten years was calling it quits. The reasons were given in a statement that cited several reasons to make the decision to forgo their 2017 convention in Phoenix (along with Houston) and to keep growing the marquee shows in Las Vegas and Hawaii.
Let me be honest, I don’t disagree with the decision.
Arizona is jam packed with conventions, each one vying for your hard earned dollar but not offering anything of substance. The Arizona con scene has become watered down in just the past three years, with more and more cons poppping up, some with good intentions, some for a money grab. What was once a healthy market for pop culture has started to eat away at itself from the inside. What made Amazing Arizona unique was that it still offered a comic book convention experience. There wasn’t another con like it in town. For many comic book enthusiasts, it will be missed. The saving grace is that Vegas is only a few short hours from here.
For the ones saying “good riddance because such and such con is way better”, you’re comparing oranges and apples. Amazing Arizona specialized in the people who pen to paper, the people who gave your favorite character life. They didn’t rely on big name celebrities or wild parties to bring people in, they attracted the fans who still had love for comics and that is something that will truly be missed by yours truly.
The con will always hold a special place in my memories. It was the first con I attended that wasn’t San Diego Comic Con. I met Kyle Higgins my first year and got his autrograph and talked about his appearance on a Kevin Smith podcast. That was wild to me, I could actually talk to someone without a mile long line behind me or someone tell me to move along. It was the first convention that gave me a media pass and offered me experiences I’ve never had elsewhere. I got to meet a lot of amazing creators: Rob Liefeld, Todd McFarlane, Charles Soule, Mat Nastos, the list goes on. It provided an environment where you could meet your favorite creator without much work. It created a lot of awesome memories and
I’m going to miss Amazing Arizona Comic Con.