Wizard World Madison Starts Today, More Local Coverage, Panel Schedule

Wizard World Madison logo

Following from Tuesday’s post, here’s more information on how the local media are covering the show.

Wednesday’s paper has the Capital Times tabloid-format insert. The CapTimes used to be a separate publication, but now it’s a political/entertainment-focused addition. The back page looked like this:

Wizard World Madison ad

As you’ll notice, there are no women here. Although since the most-promoted female guests are the wrestling-associated Bella Twins, maybe that’s a good thing. There was also a full-page William Shatner interview in this section.

Elsewhere in the paper, everyone got a copy of the Wizard World Madison program guide, which does NOT include the panel schedule. Of those, the most interesting to me are the ones actually talking about comics history, without being an obvious promotional attempt. Here are three with local connections that stood out.

Today, Friday, at 4 PM — “Everything & the Kitchen Sink: Wisconsin’s Underground Comix Scene”
Underground comix, the offshoot of the implementation of the Comics Code Authority in 1954, marked itself as rebellious, as the “X” denotes mature content not allowed by the code. This panel explores Wisconsin as a major epicenter of underground comix and women’s discourse in the 1960s-1970s, with particular focus on the creative outgrowth that spawned the talents of Kitchen, Mitchell, Robbins, and Crumb. [Note: I would have liked to know who’s on the panel, and I think the “Comix with an X means adult” is a myth.]

Saturday at 3 PM — “The Incredible Story of Wisconsin and Comics”
From the Undergrounds to the mainstream, Wisconsin and comics have an intimately interwoven history. Here to talk about that history are people who made it, including George Hagenauer (Kenosha Festival of Cartooning), Milton Griepp (ICv2.com), Maggie Thompson (Comic Buyers Guide), Paul Buhle (Studs Terkel’s Working), and Michael Schumacher (Will Eisner: A Dreamer’s Life in Comics). Danny Fingeroth (The Rough Guide to Graphic Novels) moderates. [Fingeroth also helped put the programming schedule together, I’m told.]

Saturday at 5 PM — “1940: World War II and Comics: The Joker, Robin, the Flash, Captain America, Captain Marvel, and the Spirit!”
75 years ago, in 1940, as the Nazi conquest of Europe continued and the Battle of Britain raged, the United States watched from the sidelines while instituting the first peacetime draft. At the same time, the world of comics was experiencing an incredible sustained period of invention, as The Joker, Robin, Green Lantern, the Flash, Hawkman, the Spirit, Catwoman, and Captains America and Marvel all debuted! Showing and discussing historical and cultural factors that made that year so important is a panel including Michael Schumacher (Will Eisner: A Dreamer’s Life in Comics), Paul Buhle (Studs Terkel’s Working), Maggie Thompson (Comic Buyers Guide), George Hagenauer (Men’s Adventure Magazines), and Danny Fingeroth (Disguised as Clark Kent: Jews, Comics and the Creation of the Superhero). [Fans of Agent Carter — and if you aren’t, you should be — check it out!]

The local morning TV show reported yesterday that three-day passes are sold out, although single-day tickets are still available, and they’re expecting “tens of thousands” of people over the weekend. Lou Ferrigno was on-air today, although I missed seeing it. (It aired at 6:10 AM or something like that.)

The weather for the weekend will have highs in the low 30s, with a slight chance of snow/freezing drizzle Saturday night into Sunday, so I hope attendees bundle up. And that the show has a coat check.

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