Patty Jenkins just became the highest grossing female director in Hollywood history for “Wonder Woman.” And you can jump on the bandwagon.
Comic books have dutifully informed all areas of US pop-culture since they hit the fan in the 1930s. More recently, they have been making their way into the MICE world as the demand for highly experiential events continues to evolve and push against the boundaries of what we thought was possible (you can read more about the “transformational trend” in our July/August issue of Prevue magazine).
Here are a few ideas for injecting your event with comic book flair.
Graphic invitations and Insignia
Even in the digital age invitations are often the first impression attendees have of an event and what’s to come. Why not begin with a bang and develop an invitation that mimics a comic book cover? Include an event slogan and insignia that lets attendees know they are entering a world beyond their dreams. You can even include hidden messages as part of a bigger comic book story that the group must solve throughout the event.
Red Carpet illustrations
After you find that perfect, Gotham-worthy industrial venue for your event (or who knows, maybe you’ll recreate the Daily Planet), envision the arrival experience. Can you block out those windows with comic book portrayals (or alter egos) of speakers and performers? Or how about a black carpet (Bat Cave) event where butlers pass out power rings, magic bracelets, horn stubs and red, white and blue invincible shield pins. Attendees can decide if they are a hero or villain. You can even create your own Bat-Signal that displays the company logo. The more hints you provide to the world that awaits inside the more engaging the experience will be for attendees.
Create themed villains and heroes cocktails and add a bit of dry ice for an otherworldly effect. Secretly breaks attendees up into teams through customized cocktail stir sticks and send them on a mission. Or simply shake it up through kryptonite-inspired drinks, a Dark Knight martini or Captain America shot. Serve them up in test tubes to rev up the super-human effect.
Life-size superhero cutouts will still make for hot selfie spots throughout your event. You can also expound on the 2D effects with speech balloons on event space mirrors to remind your attendees that they are part of the action. Other 2D options could include chandeliers, mock buildings or photo booth rooms (how about a re-creation of Superman’s phone booth?) and whimsical table props.
Occasional disruptive showdowns between heroes and villains will undoubtedly add excitement to your comic book event. You could also hire a few characters to interact with attendees, give keynote addresses or sit among them as fellow attendees until the “perfect moment” arrives when they can reveal their true natures. Plan an event where homage is paid to a single character or story. A recent event held by one fortune 500 company painted tiny dots on all food and beverage servers to enhance the comic book vibe.
For more fun Meetings Mojo tips, check out “Devil Wears Prada Career Advice for Planners.”