The Rise of Comic Con: From Humble Beginnings to Conventions Worldwide

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It all started in 1964 in New York City where approximately 100 comic book fans gathered in a meeting hall. This gathering, known as “Comicon ‘64”, was the brainchild of four young men; Bernie Bubnis, Ron Fradkin, Art Tripp, and Ethan Roberts who all shared a love for comic books. After failed attempts by others to host a convention, the four boys tapped into their resources of comic professionals like Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Stan Lee, Julius Schwartz, Bill Harris, Flo Steinberg, Curt Swan, Mike Sekowsky, Don Heck, Gil Kane, and Joe Giella.

During the late 60s, local reoccurring comic conventions started to pop up in several states and provided comic book fans with the opportunity to meet and chat with comic book creators. In the 1970’s there was a surge of Comicons and by 1976, there were 20 official Comicons across the United States.

When talking about the history of Comicons, you can’t leave out the San Diego Comic Con, which first took place in 1970 and was named the “Golden State Comic Book Convention.” It is now the “undisputed king of the comic con world.” What began as a one day event with hundreds attendees has grown to a four day event with over 100,000 attendees!  

Comic conventions now take place in nearly every city in the United States and even worldwide! They feature special appearances by famous authors, directors, celebrities, actors, writers, and artists. From humble beginnings, Comicon has evolved into a spectacle of movies, TV, videogames, art, fashion, toys, and merchandise. It’s where the future of pop culture comes to life!