Convention Review: Dragon*Con Overview

This year, my wife and I were lucky enough to be able to go to the massive sci-fi/fantasy convention known as Dragon*Con. For those of you unfamiliar with the convention, they cover EVERYTHING: comics, movies, tv, books, tabletop RPG’s, LARPing, miniature games, puppets, etc. Pretty much, if you can think of it in the sci-fi/fantasy genre, then there was someone (or something) there representing it at this international convention in Atlanta, GA.

This was not only the first Dragon*Con we’ve been to, but also our first convention ever. We were a little overwhelmed in the beginning, but soon fell into the spirit of fandom and thoroughly enjoyed our stay (not without some much appreciated help from some great new friends we made while there). There was a lot to cover, and we saw as much as we could, but there was no way for us to do everything. So, with that as a disclaimer, here’s a list of some of the upcoming coverage I’ll be discussing:

Gaming

I didn’t have a chance to take part in any of the games going on at the con, but I did get to go to a panel with Brian Green , ckknight, Bill Bridges, Elonka Dunnin, Mike Capps and Jason Bulmahn. They spoke about each of their jobs, and how writing relates and is involved in them. Afterwards, Jason Bulmahn was nice enough to sit down and answer a few questions with me.

 

Literature

So many great authors were at the Con this year, including Laurell K Hamilton, Faith Hunter, Kevin J. Anderson, Jonathan Maberry and Brent Weeks, to name a few. Kelly was able to sit in on a panel about Hunting Monsters for Fun and Profit, and I got an interview with Brent Weeks (NY Times Bestselling author of The Night Angel Trilogy and The Black Prism)

 

Web Series

Amy Okuda, Robin Thorsen and Wil Wheaton had a panel together about their involvement with The Guild. I honestly don’t think I’ve ever laughed so hard before.

 

Puppets

One of the most unexpected things to find at a Sci-Fi/Fantasy convention was puppets, but I’m so very glad they were there. During the convention, the hotels aired Dragon*Con TV in the rooms and at the hotel bars. Think of Con themed Adult Swim bumps and spoof commercials combined with live coverage of the larger panels. While watching DCTV on Thursday, we happened upon a short show titled “Bob and Carl: Sci-Fi Janitors.” It was pretty funny, but we didn’t think too much on it, thinking it was just another random thing they were showing before the panels got started the next day. Later, while waiting in one of the MILLIONS OF LINES we stood in (seriously, there are lines for everything, from panels to the bathrooms), we noticed that we were standing directly in front of the Bob and Carl booth. These guys were absolutely awesome. This was where we found out that they were hosting an 18 and up Puppet Slam on Sunday night. By this time, we were hooked. The show was definitely worth the hour and a half line we stood in, and we are looking forward to next year to see what new hijinks Bob and Carl will be getting into. With the growing popularity of Puppets and tabletop RPGs, there’s no telling what will come out of it.

 

Zombies

The imminent threat of the “Zompacolypse” is on everyone’s mind these days, and even though some people attempt to say that “Zombies are dead,” they are horribly mistaken. (Seriously people, Zombies are Undead) Zombie culture has been rapidly growing in popularity over the last few years, and the fact that there were over 1000 zombies at the Zombie Prom this year (not counting the un-infected participants) proves it. We got a chance to sit in with several special fx and makeup artist that talked about ways to make your zombie costumes come to “unlife” without spending big bucks. I’ll also be discussing a panel we sat in on called “Zombie 401,” where zombie experts (Jonathan Maberry, members of Zombie Squad, and Drew Nielson, to name a few) answered all questions zombie related. Remember to be prepared, the Zombie Apocalypse is closer than we think.

 

Costuming/Cosplay

One of my favorite parts of the convention was seeing the amazing costumes people made of their favorite characters. There was everything from Marvel and DC characters, to TV and movie characters, to completely original characters. Some were funny, some were scary, and some were awe-inspiring. We took a BOAT LOAD of pictures, and I will put them up when we sort through and see what is NSFW and what’s not.

I’ll post more as I sort through all of my notes and recordings and photos (as well as recover from the LOOOONG weekend). It was great fun, and I’ll definitely be back next year. If you have the option of going next year, I highly recommend it. Just remember, as with all of the cons, wash your hands constantly! As some of my friends will readily share, Con Crud is no fun at all.

[tags]convention, dragoncon, review, comics, movies, tv, gaming, books[/tags]

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