By Jason Harris
By Jason Harris
ConnectiCon has all of the rush, excitement and craziness of any of the major conventions, but it also provides a few much-needed lulls.
ConnectiCon 2012 boasted some fun and impressive guests, most notably Doug Walker, the Nostalgia Critic and Carlos Ferro (voice actor for Assassin’s Creed, Gears of War). The panel rooms were reasonable in size and there were enough genres represented to keep anyone entertained. Some of the most popular panels at this year’s convention were the ones centered around My Little Pony (I kid you not), a panel about famous bromances and the Steampunk Sex panel.
Now, walking around in full steampunk get-up with a popular steampunk group, The Vagabonds, means you’re going to be asked once or 10 times if you’re part of the Steampunk Sex panel. We were not part of it, and in fact, The Vagabonds had a panel scheduled at the same time. The Vagabonds’ crowd was a bit smaller for that particular panel, but I, as their ‘roadie’ and not a member of the actual group, could gauge things from the floor. The audience members were all incredibly entertaining people who kept the vibe in the room fun. Who says panels can’t be like a rock concert?
The dealer room was a bit slim and I did hear several complaints about that throughout the weekend. I’d intended to buy a wig at the convention, actually, but there weren’t any of the usual wig tables. There was an impressive market for Japanese foods, candy, and drinks, however, and those booths seemed especially crowded.
Carlos Ferro’s panel on Friday night was lively and enthusiastic, both on the part of the attendees and on the part of Carlos himself. He told us a few things he wasn’t supposed to (he’ll be a voice in the new Batman game and hinted at being a famous villain for it) and made a lot of jokes about his man crush on Michael Fassbender. He also mentioned that he prefers ConnectiCon to San Diego Comic Con. Carlos DJed the rave on Saturday night.
The Nostalgia Critic was so popular at the event that his presentation on Saturday caused outrageous lines of eager fans and headaches for the staff. The line had to be cut off at some point and a second presentation scheduled for the following day, which pushed the closing ceremonies back. The Nostalgia Critic was chipper and funny in person and when I mentioned to him that my brothers and I had gotten headaches and stomach-aches from watching his videos, he just smiled and said, “Always good to know I caused physical pain!” I saw male and female cosplayers of the Nostalgia Critic roaming the halls. How’s that for surreal!
Speaking of cosplaying, there was a ridiculously convincing Mr. T at ConnectiCon. If you told me that it was the real Mr. T just trolling all of us, I would believe you. Other standouts included a Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, a woman dressed entirely as a piece of art, a cosplay group as most of the cast of Game of Thrones, Gumby and loads of great Doctor Who characters.
The rave on Friday and Saturday night drew a lot of attention and went on well into the early hours of the morning. Cafeteria space for the event was plentiful (better than other conventions I’ve attended) and for the most part, I didn’t see any rudeness or bad behavior on the part of the staff, despite mumblings and mutterings I heard from other con-goers.
All in all, I suggest ConnectiCon for anyone thinking of attending a convention in the northeastern states. Make sure to book your room well in advance, though (at least 6 months prior), as rooms sell out very quickly. Bring your imagination, a sense of humor and plenty of water bottles,and I can almost assure you that you’ll have a great time.
About the author:
Kendra L. Saunders is the author of magic realism novel, Inanimate Objects, host of the quirky literary podcast, 13 1/2 Minutes, marketing coordinator for Spencer Hill Press, Jazz-Age/all things England enthusiast and sometimes-roadie for her friends, The Vagabonds. For more information about her, as well as helpful writing tips, visit www.kendralsaunders.com. The Vagabonds can be found at www.the-vagabonds.net. Nick Presuto can be found at http://pyrophotography.tumblr.com/.
Next week, there will be a review of The Dark Knight Rises on Friday. There will also be articles about Readercon 23 and ConnectiCon and pictures from Necon 32.
The following week, there will be interview articles with Directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris, the married couple who brought audiences Little Miss Sunshine and their new movie Ruby Sparks. There will also be an interview article with Paul Dano and Zoe Kazan, the stars of Ruby Sparks. There will also be a review of the movie.
ConnectiCon runs from Friday, July 13 through Sunday, July 15 at the Connecticut Convention Center, located at 100 Columbus Blvd. in Hartford.
Convention guests include Amanda Winn Lee, Jim Cummings, and Margaret Killjoy. For a complete list and guest bios, click here.
The convention brings people the RKO Army, out of Rhode Island, which will perform scenes from the Joss Whedon Universe and “Repo.” There are also events such as ComicStripTease and Cosplay Chess. For a complete list, click here.
According to its website, “ConnectiCon is New England’s ONLY massively, multi-genre pop culture convention, the convention’s focus is on all things pop culture and does every genre of pop culture in as big a way as possible.”
For more information about the convention, click here.