Monday, March 21, 2011

5 Things That Ruled About C2E2

 I've returned from a weekend spent involved in plenty of geeky pursuits, but the big one was my trip to C2E2 on Saturday. For those unfamiliar with the convention, the Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo is a massive show featuring comic books, sci-fi and fantasy celebrities, webcomics and games.

  1. The Costumes. Any Comic or Anime Convention is going to have their share of fans wandering around in costume, of varying quality and from any number of original sources. This year had the usual suspects of dozens of stormtroopers, attention-starved “hot girls” in skimpy outfits and of course, even Sailor Dude. There were Wolverines and Rorshachs, and a few people who should not wear tights or spandex in any color, but there were so many clever and creative costumes, feats of craftsmanship and technical ability, just the other attendees were worth watching.

    When I said "Sailor Dude", you wish I'd meant some guy in a sailor suit, right? Yeah, me too.

  2. The Exhibit Hall. The hall itself is the centerpiece of any successful big show, and this year's attractions did not disappoint. Marvel and DC Comics of course, had huge, incredibly slick booths with lines to stand in to pick up swag, talk with creators and see previews of what's coming next. (I especially liked the S.H.I.E.L.D. Agent recruiting line, where I think they were giving away a car.) There were tattoo artists, vendors selling everything from the popular to the obscure in pop/geek culture, and plenty of different people and companies contributing to the show.

  3. The Gaming Rooms. There were gaming facilities in both the “plugged” and “unplugged” varieties, available to any gamer who wanted to take a break from the other show areas. Video Gamers could get a quick fix with Free To Play game consoles running solo play, multiplayer and tournament play on a wide variety of titles. I saw a LOT of Marvel Vs. Capcom 2 play, previews of the new Thor game and the usual Call of Duty/Modern Warfare gaming. The Tabletop Game Room had Magic:The Gathering Tournaments, Dungeons and Dragons sessions available to players at levels of skill from “What's All This Then?” to “Been There, Done That, Killed the Dragon.”

    One of the highlights of the show, if you get a chance to see her give a Q&A, don't miss it.

  4. The Panels. There were panels and seminars given on comic creation, costuming, writing, Science Fiction Fandom and even Why Zombies Are Hilarious. My personal favorites were the celebrity Q&A panels in the IGN Theater. In my hours camped at my pretty decent seat for those panels, I watched Laurie Holden (Andrea) and Jon Bernthal (Shane) from AMC's The Walking Dead talk about character development, loss, and why Jon reflexively wants to bash in the skulls of people cosplaying as zombies. Later, Sam Trammell (Sam Merlotte), Brit Morgan (Debbie Pelt) and Kristen Bauer (Pam) from True Blood talked about their families' response to the show, the incredible fan reception and Sam always having to run around the cold woods in the nude. My favorite panel, though, was Tahmoh Penikett and Eliza Dushku, moderated by Chris Hardwick of Web Soup. Both of these actors have done a lot of work in sci-fi, really knew how to connect with the fans, were likeable, composed, and the whole Q & A session was hilarious, with a lot of talk about Dollhouse, Buffy and Battlestar Galactica. (I especially liked the running gag of Eliza discussing trying not to throw her “P-Word” around... she meant “producer”, and initially seemed ignorant of what everyone else present thought she meant.)

    Q: "What would you do in a real-life Zombie Apocalypse?" A: "Call up my buddy's wife, see what she's doing." THAT REALLY HAPPENED.

  5. Hi-Chew. This Japanese candy had a booth and many people in unusual costumes passing out samples. I'm a fan of snack foods from Japan anyway, from Pocky to wasabi peas, but somehow I'd managed to miss this one. Wow. Imagine something between a Starburst and a piece of Bubbleicious gum, with more intense flavor than either. Great texture, I managed to try Mango, Grape and Strawberry samples, and they sold packs for a buck, profits headed to disaster relief in Japan. By the time I decided to actually purchase some, unfortunately I learned that He Who Hesitates is Lost, as they completely Sold Out.

    OMG Bliss. I'm getting fatter just thinking about these.

Another longish article, I will probably revisit my trip a few times this week, and for sure, come on back tomorrow to get the counterpoint to this one in “5 things that sucked about C2E2.” Overall, I really liked the show and had a great time, but... nothing and no one is perfect.
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Justin said...

I've always WANTED to go to a Comic Con or E3, or something of the sort, but never know of them until after it happens. I guess I'm not looking hard enough, ha. I'll find a way to get to one of these eventually. Sounds like a fun weekend.

Meghan Moran said...

Those Hi-chews sound delicious. Glad you had a good time.

D3 Blogger said...

Sailor dude o_O im out of words!

The Angry Lurker said...

Would love to attend one of these, there might be a chance to attend something like this in London with some of the lads.

Jay.CA said...

sounds like you had a great time!

PenDRaGoN said...

someday Ill be there.

rinns said...

I wish I could go to one of these. Damn Australia being terrible and whatnot.

G said...

sounds amazing!

Christophe said...

I'd like to go to something like this one day just for the dressup. Me likey dressup! But certainly not as Sailor Moon. That was horrifying.

Painting Tips and Tricks said...

Great site! I like the pictures in it!...Daniel

Noock said...

Sounds pretty cool expo. I would had buy that hi-chew too :p too bad they were already sold, but at least all went for good cause

Patti D. said...

Awesome, hope you really had a great time, that dude with the costume looks like a real creep!

Biff Tanner said...

That hi-chew stuff is additive.

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