This year’s Tekko was fun, and at the same time it was frustrating. Now that the con has grown to OVER 9000 (actually about 9,700) attendees, the con has gotten a bit too big for its britches… literally. I’ll explain as I go along.
On Friday I went to a bunch of panels, like I planned, and everything went according to script. There were two panels hosted by a girl named Laura who talked about cats in Japan, and cats in anime. (Very different subjects; the cats in Japan panel was very educational, while the cats in anime panel was recommendations for the viewer.) Both panels were excellent and informative.
I also went to a panel called “Once Upon a Madoka” which explained some things about Madoka that I had never known, like the secret rune language found in the series. My final panel of Friday was one called the “Lucky Cat Awards,” which ran like an Oscars of various funny categories.
We went to a Family Feud panel that was hilarious. The host, whose name I don’t know, was at a Greggo-tier. He was fantastic. He kept everyone laughing even as the game turned into the biggest blowout in Family Feud history. (My Family Feud for Hetalia almost ended up like that, but tripling the points helped the other team come back.) Whatever you do, please bring back this particular Family Feud for Tekkos to come!
This is where things went awry. I had gotten autographs in the Premium Lounge (I had a Premium badge) from Vic Mignogna and Bryce Papenbrook, but when I went to do the same for Monica Rial, I showed up 20 minutes early and was turned away at the door. What the heck? The Premium badge costs twice as much because of the fact that you expect to get autographs for certain. Instead, I was left sulking away.
So that meant that I would have to wait with the commoners for Monica Rial’s autograph. I got in line, only to find out that I was in the wrong line; this one was for J-fashion models. Then we found out that there was a “line to get in line.” This line started forming 100 minutes before the real line was to open. Fortunately, unlike last year, the line moved in an orderly fashion and no one jumped the line. That meant that I got her autograph after all! I also got Luci Christian’s autograph.
If anyone who is on staff of a con is reading this, hear me out. You need two autograph lines: one for the current guest, and one for the next guest. You can’t just have the one line and expect everyone is going to show up exactly on time for the next one. No, people will line up as early as 2 hours early for a guest they really want to see. So be prepared and set up a second line that alleviates this problem. (I’m seriously thinking about trying to join Tekko staff next year in order to help with this.)
My sister and I took part of a Sailor Scouts Baseball Team photoshoot; the photoshoot was fun, but it only took 24 hours afterward for the group to drop into con drama and dissolve. Unfortunately, I didn’t meet anyone at this con to become friends, and I missed out on meeting a lot of friends I knew. Part of that was the autograph problem; when you devote a con to autographs, you miss out on getting to hang out. Part of it is also that I’m way too shy.
In short, Tekko was still a great con, but it’s reached the same point that Colossalcon did several years back. It’s now too big for its own good. Maybe having more space will fix its problems; maybe it won’t. (And can we please stop it with the “Jesus wearing a crown of thorns” cosplays? Those aren’t funny. Would you be laughing if someone wore a “JFK with a bullet in his head” costume?) I’ll be back for next Tekko and hopefully many to come, but some of its problems need to be fixed.
Overall rating (out of four stars): ***