How was my Colossalcon? Great, thanks for asking! And this one wasn’t spent as much waiting in lines as it was spent splashing around in the waterpark. That’s right, instead of waiting for any autographs or for a room for next year, I instead spent a lot of time in the waterpark, which was very enjoyable. I love to waterpark, especially at the Kalahari, which has a giant indoor waterpark which is very warm and thus doesn’t make you freeze your butt off. So I spent a ton of time waterparking, which meant less time at actual panels.
But that doesn’t mean the con was bad! No, the con had an awesome Dealer’s Room, a brilliant Artists’ Alley, a surprisingly robust Craft Fair, and the always amazing Flea Market. Those four things alone made the con great. Then you mix in the fun I had doing my two panels as well as a few good panels that I went to, and the con turns out to be fantastic, as it always is.
Let’s take a look at the panels I went to:
Unpopular Anime/Manga Appreciation: A mixed bag of sorts. What I liked about the panel is that it gave everyone the opportunity to come up to the front and share which shows they thought deserved recognition. However, it had a lot of problems. For one, the panelists seemed to do pretty much nothing except occasionally read word-for-word off their phones the descriptions of shows that they would google. Then when it came to choosing people to come up front, they only chose from one side of the room, and left my side of the room hanging out to dry. And finally, the entire panel devolved into chaos. It was a good concept, but very poor execution.
Anime ‘n Chill: Sit Back and Relax: A good panel describing series that are calmer and less about action. The panelist came out and said, “this panel may bore you but that’s the point.” And it didn’t bore me. It made a whole lot of sense.
Nintendo History 101: Too much chaos. There were people in the room who just started randomly clapping really loudly, and the panelists were being talked over by people in the audience. We left this one early.
The Re:Zero Panel: I give myself a 9/10 for my performance at this panel (I never give myself a 10/10). I had enough material to fill the hour, I entertained and engaged the audience, people laughed at the jokes, people clapped for me at the end, and the highlight had to have been the fierce competition at the Re:Zero bracket. This was about as fun as doing a panel could possibly be.
Iron Cosplay: A friend of mine ran this panel, and it was very good. The only trouble was that the costumes were being made in the front where no one could see them except if you were in that front row. This problem was resolved in the “other” such panel that came on Saturday.
Budget Cosplay Method: This was a good concept, but the panelist didn’t want to do any PowerPoint, so it ended up just being a dialogue between the panelist and attendees. It didn’t really have enough structure.
See You Space Cowboy – A Bebop Retrospective: A good panel on Cowboy Bebop, but one attendee ruined it for me. The panelists bring up the touchy subject of a terrorist attack in an episode of the show, and the audience member in front of us starts talking about a joke about Gundams flying into the World Trade Center and how that’s okay because his anthropology professor says so. Sorry, pal, 9/11 jokes will never be funny. 3,000 people died and many more were injured and had loved ones lost. I don’t care if you’re an anthropology major. There is nothing funny about 9/11.
20 Minute Cosplay Creation Challenge: After walking out of the previous panel thanks to the 9/11 joke, we went to a much better panel where four teams worked together with a giant bunch of costume supplies to make a costume in 20 minutes. This panel was so much fun, and it resolved the problem of the other panel by having the 4 teams in different parts of the room so that all the audience could see. In addition, anyone in the room could participate. This was probably the best panel of the weekend.
Hetalia: Ask a Nation: Typical Ask a Nation goofiness here. Since people weren’t talking into the microphones, you couldn’t hear a thing from the back of the room. Ask a Nation panels need to die. If you want to do a Hetalia panel, either do something else (like game shows) or do a serious history panel.
A Mystic Adventure: A Cardcaptor Sakura Panel: My second panel, in which I give myself a 7/10. I didn’t have enough material to fill the hour, and that’s on me. Fortunately, I did make a couple friends after the panel, and I think that’s well worth the embarrassment.
So, what did I buy? Well, it’s a long list, so look out:
- Tenchi Universe
- Tenchi in Tokyo
- Kill la Kill volume 4
- Sailor Moon Crystal volume 1
- Hetalia: The Beautiful World
- Hetalia: The World Twinkle
- K:ON: Season 2
- Princess Mononoke
- Fairy Tail Season 1
- Sister Princess
- One Piece season 2 volume 1 (random Flea Market purchase)
- Baka and Test season 1
- Samurai Champloo
- Wolf Children
- Leafa figure
- Haruhi Suzumiya figure
- Ryoko Asakura figure
- Homura Akemi figure
- Kurapika figure
- Kurapika button
- Homura & Kyubey art
- Bowser, Koopa Troopa & Mushroom plastic art
- 2 Re:Zero bags, plus a Re:Zero shirt and pillow
- The Electric Tale of Pikachu manga
- Suzuka manga
- The Disappearance of Haruhi Suzumiya art book & manga
- Cardcaptor Sakura CD
- Mio Akiyama CD
- Sailor Moon poster
- Tsumugi from K-On figure
- Haruhi Suzumiya keychain
And a partridge in a pear tree.
Overall, another awesome Colossalcon, and the only two problems with Colossalcon are such: it’s so packed compared to how it was five years ago, when it was cozy and more magical, and it’s been so good for so long that it’s hard to rank it high. In any case, Colossalcon is still the king of the Midwest/Northeast. Good luck trying to knock it off its perch. This con is perfect.