Kicking Off the Season with WonderCon 2019

Once again, we began another year’s convention season with WonderCon 2019.

As the smaller sibling to San Diego Comic-Con, WonderCon always has something of a lighter schedule, but this serves to make the experience quite a bit more relaxed.  Without the constant pressure of having to line up for the next huge panel, the con-goer can focus more on enjoying the offerings that are available.

Disney’s Freeform channel — formerly ABC Family, prior to its 2016 rebranding toward young adult programming — returned to showcase the returning show “Marvel’s Cloak & Dagger.”  This series revolves around the adventures/relationship of two teens with synergistic superpowers, and is part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.  Moderated by head of Marvel Television Jeph Loeb, the panel featured stars Olivia (Dagger) Holt, Aubrey (Cloak)  Joseph, and Emma (Mayhem) Lahana, with showrunner Joe Pokaski, and premiered the first episode of the second season.

Cloak and Dagger panel

“Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD” made its appearance as well, with members of the cast and creative team premiering the first episode of the upcoming sixth season, scheduled to air May 10.

Finally, Marvel Animation showed the world premier of “Marvel Rising: Heart of Iron,” which introduces Riri “Ironheart” Williams (Sofia Wylie) to the Secret Warriors — a diverse team of teenage superheros led by Captain Marvel (Kim Raver) and Quake (Chloe Bennet.)

Marvel Rising: Heart of Iron panel with voice actors Sofia (Ironheart) Wylie, Milana (Squirrel Girl) Vayntrub, Kathreen (Ms. Marvel) Khavari, and Kamil (Patriot) McFadden, along with Cort Lane (SVP, Animation and Family Entertainment) and Marsha Griffin (VP, Animation Current Series and Development)

Three more specials are in the works for the Marvel Rising series:  “Battle of the Bands, focusing on Ghost-Spider and her band; “Operation Shuri,” starring Black Panther’s younger sister Shuri; and “Playing With Fire,” focusing on the characters Inferno and America Chavez.  Marvel Rising can be watched on the Marvel HQ YouTube channel.

For people looking to get into the animation business professionally, “Mark McDonnell:  How to Draw in the Different Studio Styles” was a fun panel, in which the character designer/CalArts instructor demonstrated the different styles distinctive to some of the big animation studios.

Mark McDonnell, character designer

For example, Cartoon Network’s generally more angular, hypershaped characters..

Cartoon Network’s Eduardo, from “Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends.”

…versus Disney-Pixar’s more balanced, softer designs.

Jasmine character sketches

Out on the floor, there was the usual incredible artwork and wares for sale.

Hero Within:
Wall-E Replica Project
The Art of Charles Thurston:
Laika’s “Missing Link”:
Hand Over the Hero:

For the First Time in Forever, I finally managed to be at the right time and place to catch the Disney Cosplay meetup.  There were a LOT of Disney cosplayers.

Disney cosplay

Afterward, they broke up into themed groups.

WonderCon 2019 Masquerade winners
Princess cosplay
Tangled cosplay
Disneyland attraction cosplay
Disney cosplay

Alas, even at WonderCon, the magic runs out eventually, and all good princesses have to retire until the next con.

Cinderella cosplay

WonderCon 2020 will be held on April 10-12 at the Anaheim Convention Center.  Information on attending WonderCon can be found at

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Jeanine resides in Southern California, pursuing the sort of lifestyle that makes her the envy of every 11-year-old she meets. She has been to every Disney theme park in the world and while she finds Tokyo DisneySea the Fairest Of Them All, Disneyland is her Home Park... and there is no place like home.

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