Mike in a Minute: New York Comic Con

In divided times, dragons help.

Welcome to Mike in a Minute: I give my take on something that happens in the news. Original! The catch is, it won’t take you longer than a minute to read. I keep the maximum word count (not including this explainer) at 300 – the number an average adult reads per minute, according to Forbes according to Staples. Today’s topic: what I learned at Comic Con.

I attended my second-ever New York Comic Con this weekend, my first since 2012. The world’s a little different in 2017.

With only 300 words to play with, I don’t have time to unpack all the sociopolitical upheaval America’s experienced the last 5 years. But you can certainly see how today our country is more divided than ever, the current political landscape fracturing friends, colleagues, and even families along societal fault lines (doesn’t help that our country’s leaders keep doing their very best to fan those flames).

Which made my attendance of this year’s Comic Con particularly eye-opening. I’ve explained how sports and entertainment have never been the politics-free utopia everyone seems to claim only when that confluence makes them uncomfortable. But that doesn’t mean we still shouldn’t have spaces where we can turn our minds off to the rigors of daily life, temporarily suspend our disbelief, and just enjoy some damn cosplay.

NYCC reminded me a lot of attending WWE events and why I love them. In these funhouse versions of society, inclusion is paramount, acceptance tantamount, and judgement nonexistent. Diversity isn’t a directive; it’s the natural state. I saw black, Latina, white, and even male versions of Wonder Woman. That’s cool! Parents, kids, couples, friends, single people: the Javits Center reminded me societal peace – and escapism – are still very much possible if we’re up for it.

Until then, at least we have SpongeBob.

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