When you go to a convention, there is a chance that you might get sick afterwords. I went to MAGFest, and I fell victim to it this time around. This phenomenon goes by many names such as con plague, con flu, PAX Pox, etc… and I did a comic about it a long time ago.
Upping your immune system and taking allergy meds can only get you so far. I missed work because I was bumping shoulders with a small city basically in winter during terribly cold conditions.
Also my roomies got a chest cold right before, so my flu-like symptoms make sense. Headache, slight fever, chest congestion, etc. I felt like I was going to faint at the airport as I wore 2 coats and I missed a day of work. FUN!
Like usual, full disclaimer:I worked as a volunteer at Louisianime, I’m good friends with 1/2 of the owners of said convention, and since I was given a badge, hotel room, and gas money, I can not fairly review this convention.
Now that that is out of the way, let’s discuss Louisianime 2017!
… … … It was fun and a lot of the stuff went off rather smoothly? Like I said, I worked there and I can’t tell you even if it was fun, as I was working.
They raffled off a Nintendo Switch, The table top gaming room had Pathfinder, Cards Against Humanity, and several board and card games that my roommate provided for the convention. The Library Bards were our musical guest, and the crowd really seemed to like them, so go check them out.
Below is the cosplay contest:
Here are some of the pictures that I took of the convention
Last weekend was IKKiCON, in Austin, Tx. Full disclosure, IKKiCON has always had a special place in my heart due to the fact that a friend and I helped with the very first one. Because of this, my emotions are cloudy, and any attempt at a review would only lead me to the Dark Side.
They made great use of an old Ushi Con hotel that I haven’t been in since 2004! There was that quasi ‘I’ve been here right? Right?!’ moment.
There was apparently some scandal at the Cosplay Contest involving a guest sponsor, Hioshi Jackson being outed as some sort of fraud by e-celebrity YouTuber ProJared.
I mention the first two facts so there is full disclosure and transparency. Ethics in Anime convention blogging is very important to me. The surrounding area behind the hotel was beautiful, and gave room for some amazing photo shoots.
I already showed off my Free Photo Shoot in a previous post, but below is one of my favorite images from a shoot that I did.
To sum up my feelings, the convention was a lot of fun, despite a few problems. If the convention hadn’t taken part in winter, I would recommend going to it if you get the chance.
Oni-con happened over last Halloween weekend, and it was quite enjoyable.
I’ve been going to said convention on and off since 2004, and I even remember helping one of the convention heads post fliers for the convention at our local community college when I was in an Anime Club with her.
I mention this, partially for full disclosure, but also so I could mention that this is a convention that’s hard for me to review. I used to go to a lot of panels, concerts, and cosplay shows going all the way back to Oni-con 1, which was much closer and my first convention. So if I missed a lot of the big things there, what did I attend? Panels with either Chris or Greg Ayres in them, sort of by accident?
In order to make sure that I got great seats for my friends Family Feud game show, I attended the ‘It Gets Better Anime Con Edition,’ and that featured Greg Ayres as well as one of his friends whose name sadly escapes me. That had to be one of the best panels to be in, as even as an adult, we often are made to feel self conscious about loving the dorky things we do such as Cosplay, My Little Pony, or Whatever. Also, many people in such fandoms deal with depression, or are in the LBGT community, and people can be quite negative towards them. This was an amazing panel, that I sadly forgot to take any pictures or video from.
While waiting for yet another panel on Saturday, The Pose Off, I caught Chris Ayres and Chris Bevins panel Chris and Chris say “Do it again” which was a Q&A panel about being directors in the field of dubbing anime. Apparently there are a ton of directors in this field named Chris, so whenever there is an overlap, they tend to do this panel. Huh. It was pretty entertaining.
The last Ayres brother related thing I did was Greg’s rave on Saturday night, and that is pretty hit or miss with a lot of people. It’s always awesome to see guests who want to go above and beyond like this, but I’m not that huge of a fan of his performances.
Outside of the realm of The Brothers Ayres, I walked into a Steven Universe Ask panel right before Greg’s, and quickly decided to walk right back out after some of the fans stumbled on some questions.
I apparently can’t stomach these types of panels, in their defense, so they get a pass as I admit my bias against it.
My friend’s Family Feud panel started late, had major technical difficulties that were mostly not their fault, and largely due to the help of myself providing a white board w/ markers and providing SFX, the show went on. Despite all of that, the guests all seemed to have fun.
Most of my friends who were in charge of Family Feud were also involved with The Cosplay Formal on Saturday night. The music was mostly classical, with some appropriate Japanese music and a few more modern songs.
Speaking of the more modern day music, when the music changed to Frozen’s Let it go, instead of everyone sighing at the inclusion of such an over used song, all eyes turned to a beautiful Elsa cosplayer and her dancing partner as they blushingly danced the night away, as everyone sang along with the music.!
Anime Matsuri was pretty enjoyable, but I’m on the fence if I want to go again. I helped out at the Louisianime artist alley table this year, and while that was enjoyable enough, the convention has just grown too large for my personal taste. Then again, I had similar feelings when I worked in the same dealer’s room space at Comicpalooza.
This is a really weird complaint to have, and the only fix is to go down the path of self destruction for the convention, so I think I will just have to look at other conventions to volunteer to go to.
Despite the lack of cheap food in both the surrounding area (food trucks aren’t cheap), and inside the George R. Brown, I did enjoy myself well enough. The sad thing is that this seems like a photographer’s convenention, as they had a giant exhibition room set up just for photographers and cosplayers to take some excellent pictures, so I dislike disliking it. Also, right outside of The George R. Brown Convention Center is Discovery Green, a beautiful park that allowed for some amazing photoshoots.
Perhaps with the appropriate networking beforehand, and not working an artist alley booth, I can grow to enjoy large conventions in The George R. Brown, but honestly, I didn’t like the smaller first year Anime Matsuri at this venue too much, nor Oni-Con when they used it.
Maybe I just like going to hotels more? Anime Matsuri 2016 is going to be even larger, and use up the entire George R. Brown, which they are currently doing construction on as they expand it. Awesome.