Edmonton Expo a Magical Place

Billy Boyd Edmonton Expo GigCity

Billy Boyd, who played Pippin in The Lord of the Rings, plays with his band Beecake at the Edmonton Expo

For one weekend, the streets of Edmonton were barren of nerds.

Did they get beamed up into some Star Trekian rapture? No. Did they all move to Vulcan and start coffee shops and grow ops? No (not all).

Did they decide en masse to go underground into a series of catacomb based lairs where video games, costume design and the knowledge of the comic book pantheon were the only things that mattered? No. But you could say that.

They were at the Edmonton Comic and Entertainment Expo

This is a magical place. A place of wonder and desire. Of contrast and complexity. Of confusion and charisma.

Where else can can 10 Sailor Moons stand in a circle and tell each other how beautiful they are while their boyfriends stand within arm’s length yelling “Who is this?!” into their phones, but at the Expo? Where else can a middle-aged woman cover her mouth with $500 of garish nail work and say “Oh my god” as a middle aged man walks by wearing only Teddy Bear underwear, but at the Expo?

Where else is R2D2 a stud but … OK, bad example.

It is quite beautiful actually. Hundreds of fans and families (there were at least three full Invincibles’ families there) get together to celebrate nerdocity. They buy merchandise, autographs, posters and the chance to hug a celebrity, all in the Mecca of Edmonton geek-core opulence. As the numbers grow so does the culture. It is obvious that we are all nerds now, the same way we are all Christians at Christmas. With that said, the nerd-geek crossover has now glazed into one specific entity. Sure, the argument could be made that geeks are those that fawn and nerds are those that overthink, but the grey area in between has grown so much that it has swallowed up both meanings. Not unlike the way Armus sucked the life out of Tasha Yar, but in a good way.

To properly describe the Expo would be like cutting vegetables with a screwdriver, as it is better experienced than explained, but here is an example: As this story is being written, three very buxom Harley Quinns are messily devouring hamburgers at the next table – and one of them is male.

This is a place where people can be themselves or someone else and that is entirely fine. In fact, it is expected.