Wizard World Philadelphia isn’t until June 19-21, but Josh Bryan is already preparing for the show — the last show, he believes, Wizard will hold in Philadelphia.
“We are a group of fans that are staging a funeral for what is known as Wizard World Philadelphia,” he said over email. “The majority of us have been going for most of the years the con has been open. It has gotten to the point where convention coordinators who once asked us for feedback and what we would enjoy at WWP have been let go and new ones just don’t care. It is like the captain going down with the ship. Now with the new acquisition of Big Apple Con and it being in New York, we are to believe they wouldn’t want to use the time or the resources to stage two cons merely two hours apart.”
While Wizard canceled its Dallas show and postponed the one in Los Angeles, it moved ahead with this year’s show in Philadelphia. It was also announced a few weeks ago that Wizard CEO Gareb Shamus bought the Big Apple Con, but there’s been no indication that they plan to cancel any future Philadelphia shows.
Bryan says he and his fellow funeral attendees are also unhappy with the direction the con has been going in.
“WWP has gone in a direction when had never thought possible, where the media/wrestling/comedy guests have began to outnumber the comic guests,” he said. “We would all love to have continued to go to WWP but with the way the management is running it, there is no reason to dish out our hard-earned money. Even if they announce a WWP 2010, without a major overhaul, the majority of us will not be attending.”
Bryan said the group of fans organizing the funeral plan to wear black armbands the whole weekend and will hand out stickers that say “RIP Wizard World Philly 2002 – 2009 Where Brotherly love, got the shove.” (Bryan talks about making them on a video currently up on YouTube). On Sunday, they’ll stage a mock funeral, complete with a tombstone and eulogies. They plan to film it and post it on YouTube.