Episode 15. The story continues
Friday springs onto an unsuspecting metropolis of Oakland. Allergy sufferers commiserate. Sun-worshippers dream of April breezes on tawny sands.
But, what are these strange throngs gathering noontime at the Oakland Convention Center at 1001 Broadway? They await, a stone’s throw from gussied-up Victorians and crammed Vietnamese and Chinese storefronts their minds are on the weekend ahead. Yet, they don’t seek pleasures in the sun. They are ready to cross a threshold into another dimension into WonderCon!
Three days. A lot can happen in three days, with 200-plus comic artists and celebrity guests and their 8,500-plus followers. It has happened before, 14 times to be precise, this surreal collision of pop culture, sneak movie previews and graphic arts.
Inside the convention center, an ABC casting producer has left the primary colors of Los Angeles. Producer X seeks his next subject: a single person, age 22 to 32, willing to be part of an experiment in romance someone willing to live in the bizarre world of reality TV!
Across town in Berkeley, writer Michael Chabon comes back down to Earth. Still, the Pulitzer gold medal is his, all his but he must not miss WonderCon! His mystery author wife, very pregnant, beams and plots another murder.
Back in Oakland, she prepares to don her alter ego. After more than 30 years, it calls to her, and Julie Newmar cannot resist becoming Catwoman!
Who, who is the comic-mad mastermind behind all this?
Joe Field must keep up appearances. The mild-mannered owner of Flying Colors, the Concord comics book store, is one of the minds behind WonderCon. But has his brainchild grown out of control? “It’s just an amazing phenomenon for me. The core of our show is comic books, but there’s so much that swirls around the outer edges of comics,” he says. “People come just to people-watch.”
Or do they? Continued all this weekend
Vera H-C Chan is the Times event editor. She can be reached at 925-977-8428 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
What: WonderCon 2001
Where: Oakland Convention Center, 1001 Broadway, Oakland
When: Noon-7 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday
How much: General admission $12-$15; ages 6-12 $6-$7.50; three-day passes $17.50-$35.
Call: 925-825-5410, www.wondercon.com for a schedule of events.