D.C. welcomed its first Awesome Con April 20-21 at the Washington Convention Center. The weekend-long celebration of pop culture attracted people of all ages, dressed head-to-toe in costumes. The convention featured collections of comic books, toys, games, art, discussion panels, contests and a range of activities.
Comic book and pop culture fans flocked to Awesome Con on Saturday and Sunday. Many dressed in the colorful garbs of their favorite characters. This practice of dressing up as specific fictional characters, called cosplay (short for "costume play"), is most commonly seen at conventions such as Awesome Con.
Katie Fleming poses as the "Injustice" version of Catwoman, Rachel Kensler dresses up as Harley Quinn and the Travis McCoy poses as the Joker. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
"Adventure Time," a Cartoon Network show with a large college-age following, was one of the most popular cosplays at the convention.
On the left is Finn, the main character. The cosplayer to the right is Fionna, the "genderbent" version of Finn. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Awesome Con was extremely popular with families. Many adult fans brought their kids along for their first con. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Cosplayers dressed as Altair from "Assassin's Creed," Hawkeye from "The Avengers" and steampunk Green Arrow from the DC Comics pose together. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP).
A convention attendee cosplays as Vriska Serket from "Homestuck" in Trickster mode. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Con attendees could browse and buy merchandise from the Exhibit Hall, which featured exhibitors ranging from comic book stores, comic artists and merchandise artists. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Visitors browse the comic books sold in the hall, many of which were offered for as low as $1 each. Awesome Con also offered exclusive "Adventure Time" comic books. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Comic book stores such as Fandata, Third Eye Comics and Victory Comics offered both established comic books such as "Green Lantern," "Thor" or "Fantastic Four," as well as fan-made or web comics. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
A convention-goer dressed as Finn from "Adventure Time" peruses the discounted comic book bins. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
The deadly duo of Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy pose amidst bustle of the exhibit hall. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Brian Carpenter and his fellow artists sketch drawings on commission from convention attendees. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Toni Smith makes hand-made custom quilts in the vein of video games and comic books. Her company, Quiltoni, has been operating for nearly four years.
"That's why I do the conventions--the open face of 'Oh my god!'" Smith says. "I like interacting."
Adam Vort and Ashley Macklefresh dress up as Deadpool, an immortal mercenary from Marvel Comics. Deadpool was one of the most popular characters to cosplay as at the convention. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
"Chef"-pool poses with two other Deadpools and another cosplayers. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Media guests such as Ernie Hudson from the 1984 cult hit "Ghostbusters" were popular draws at Awesome Con. Other guests included Phil LaMarr, who voiced popular characters in "Futurama," "Justice League" and "Samurai Jack" and Billy West from "Futurama" and "Ren & Stimpy."
Guests wait in line for autographs and pictures with their geek icons. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP).
Nicholas Brendan, who played Xander Harris ins Joss Whedon's cult TV show "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" was one of the popular media guests. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP).
At the Q&A with Nicholas Brendan, Brendan answered questions about his time on "Buffy The Vampire Slayer" and his current stint on "Criminal Minds." He also revealed that Joss Whedon had originally written the part of Captain Malcolm Reynolds on "Firefly" for him, and that he had auditioned for a part in Whedon's new show S.H.I.E.L.D. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP).
Theodus Crane, who played "Big Tiny" in AMC's "The Walking Dead," was one of the media guests at the convention. He spoke about his gruesome death scene in the television show.
"I have a legitimate fear of being chased, so I actually freaked out a little bit while they were filming it," Crane says. "But it made it more realistic, made it better for the scene. The whole thing was a lot of fun, I got to see the process." (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Harry from The Next Issue podcast cosplays as Ezio from the historical action-adventure video game "Assassin's Creed." (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Jason E. Axtel (left), a comic book artist who goes by the professional moniker of Axtellustration, was one of the artists in the Exhibit Hall selling his original work, which ranged from adult horror to children's books. His friend on the right cosplayed as Amy Pond from "Doctor Who."(Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
An attendee cosplays as John Egbert from "Homestuck," a popular web comic. Saturday's Awesome Con was the location of "Homestuck" fan meet-up, arranged by D.C. Stuck, one of D.C.'s "Homestuck" fan clubs. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
The Eleventh Doctor (center) and two Time Lords from the BBC sci-fi show "Doctor Who" pose regally for the cameras. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP).
Jeff Read and Ben Kaufmann went to Awesome Con as Spider Man and Superman, two of the most well-known superheroes. Because of their notoriety, the two found themselves approached by children for autographs for most of the convention. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP).
"It's great, they're really cute. They're so fun and so into it," Read says.
"It's what I was looking forward to actually," Kaufmann says. "The joy they have from it was really great."
The Schiffler family dressed as the team from the 1984 cult film "Ghostbusters." (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
A cosplayer strikes a sinister as Slender Man,a fictional character that originated from an Internet meme. The cosplayer lived up to its character's creepy nature, not saying a word for the entire convention and often standing in corners behind convention attendees. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Two cosplayers pose as Miss Marvel, the new Captain Marvel, and Black Widow from "Age of Ultron." (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Two friends dress up as Amy Pond from the "Doctor Who" episode "Day of the Moon." (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)
Tye, Nicole and Christina cosplay as Poison Ivy, Harley Quinn and Catwoman. They made Harley Quinn's infamous giant hammer out of paper mache. (Hoai-Tran Bui/WTOP)