Last weekend, Estevan and I had the opportunity to attend MegaCon 2012, Orlando’s biggest and best anime/comic/pop culture/sci-fi convention. Here’s our story of the weekend.
After coming home from work, I walked into my bedroom to immediately begin stroking my armpits with deodorant and spraying my body in fragrance. Hopefully convention stench won’t get me under this — not while I’m a walking allergy. I hollowed all of the contents of my stomach into the nearest toilet and grabbed a backpack for MegaCon.
The main thing one would want to do prior to a con is poop. Hygiene isn’t a priority to 70% of con attendees, so that absolutely will affect every other con-goer in some way. Bathrooms are usually fully occupied and smelly from the get-go, but I highly recommend going into them regardless. You can get some great photo-ops at urinals. Last year I snapped a great shot of a Stormtrooper peeing next to Naruto and Hunter S. Thompson. These priceless images can only be found at conventions.
Conventions do wonders for some of the kids who come here. This is their sole day out of the year to shine and feel at home. The weird is accepted and the obnoxious is normal. I’m not a fan of either, even during convention circumstances. I try not to cross paths with these kids, but it’s hard not running into them. For the entire three-day weekend, hyperactivity runs amuck, slapping each other with tails and sweating through plastic masks and helmets, parading around proudly in homemade costumes or Halloween garments.
I’ll give credit where credit is due, however, as I do enjoy a lot of the costumes I see. I find the folks who take the most time out of their day to put into their cosplays are the more caring and humble folks, while the sloppy looking Harley Quinns and the slippery sweaty Chun-Lis are the most obnoxious “LOOK AT ME, I’M HALF-NAKED,” counterparts.
The hour it took to wait in line for tickets was a harbinger of things to come in the weekend. In a clear view left of the ticket line, a kid danced in a lime green Morphsuit in front of his home-brought stereo, dick dangling with every strut and step he gave to his boogie. The line itself was filled with eager geeks, waiting to get their hands on an expensive plush toy or take a whiff on an old yellow-paged comic book dated from the 1960’s. I belong to that second category, as I solely go to conventions to purchase heavily discounted comic books and ridiculously poorly made toys or heavily detailed action figures.
For every turn of my head, my eyes somehow perfectly matched a pair of tits popping out of a costume. This wasn’t limited to just women. Cons aren’t only for the weird and obnoxious, but also for the low self-esteemed and chest-blessed. This kind of thing is a mega booster of the esteem, as every con-goer in sight can be seen staring at a pair of pale jugs in the distance or taking photos of said racks for later. Some women think good cosplays are a matter of good cleavage and push-up bras. Often, men who attend these cons agree. A flat chested Poison Ivy doesn’t quite complete the look as the heavy bosomed Wonder Woman, unfortunately. A handful of well-made costumes this entire weekend were worn by girls who didn’t show off their asses or boobs, but didn’t get as much attention as they deserved. Shame, really.
Fridays are usually not as busy as the other days. Saturday is the day most people attend, and that’s mostly to just hash out money and pose for their best-costumed photos. Sundays are the best day to get any discount you’d like from most booths in the dealer’s room. Honestly though, Friday was a success. Nothing pissed me off or annoyed me that much and I had some great conversations with storeowners and attendees. Also grabbed these goodies:
Estevan's first day at MegaCon.
Following the rule that Saturdays are the busiest days in con existence, I made double sure I smelled strong enough to hide the atmosphere’s odor, though this didn’t seem to work due to the fact the parking lot was completely packed and I decided to walk the entire length of the parking lot to the convention center’s south concourse. The shuttle that dropped off attendees at the front of MegaCon was congested and the wait was unbearable in the humid Florida weather, so walking seemed like a sure shot. Big mistake on my part – it wasn’t the smartest move to start the eventful day.
First, I walked up two stories worth of stairs. No problem, I thought, they’re just stairs. But I soon learned it wasn’t me who would have any issue at all with climbing staircases or walking for more then ten minutes. It was the convention celebrators I’d have to deal with. The walk was roughly two miles, featuring candid appearances by the annoying weeaboos and Wapanese kids, arguing the entire length about the new Final Fantasy title being too boring or relaying false information on upcoming anime releases and comic books.
The sweat of everyone else was a serious issue. I don’t believe I’d have had a problem with the walk to the convention had the packs of kids not talked while passing or trailing behind me. Their information was wrong and that was tremendously bothersome. Wanting to butt into a conversation to tell someone they’re wrong is a common impulse I have, though this isn’t something I’d like to spark up pre-convention. So I didn’t. I sat with it. I let it slide that these kids are excited for the new Ghost Rider movie and honestly believe it’s going to be a great film. I ignored the crowds applauding the worst cosplays I’ve ever seen.
After arriving on the scene and through the convention doors, I had an issue with a group of furries. I get freaked out when I realize that some of these convention kids dress as personified animals with human-like hair, t-shirts, and full-bodied furry suits. Animals with human expressions are terrifying, most of the time. My first step onto MegaCon grounds gave me my first photo opportunity with a pack of furry dogs. I took it. Immediately after posing with the group, I noticed that one of the lone wolfs had made a sweat imprint into my back, directly through the inside shirt he was wearing, his own furry suit, and my t-shirt. I took it glance at the other dog and noticed the woman wearing her suit had her hair poking out from under her helmet, which was completely drenched in sweat. I remember someone asking one of the dogs if they were hot, with the response being something like “No way, we’re used to it!” I’m not, though. My sweat shouldn’t be mixed with anyone else’s unless we’re having sex.
Gross, I know, but Saturday wasn’t that bad of a day either. I bought several comics thanks to the kind and wonderful people at Tales of Wonder. Also got a chance to see some very impressive items in the Artist Alley. More notably, I was impressed with Mike from Cow Shell, Ant Lucia, Luiz Diaz (this dude is astonishing), and Joel Carroll.
Most fanatics attending MegaCon ignore the fact there are panels and guest appearances to see. Several folks spend their time out in the convention’s lobbies and dealer’s room, which is great, but it feels like almost a waste of money since day tickets can be used to see such celebrities and panels. Stan Lee and Tom Felto were in attendance, which is a huge deal. There were still a lot of things to see outside of the dealer’s room and in the lobbies, though, even if legendary comic godfather was in the building.
I saw amazing cosplays the entire weekend.
Estevan's stunning Saiyaman.
Both Estevan and I saw some pretty bad ones as well. Not to mention the terribly cliché and poorly executed.
A lazy man's guide to becoming Wolverine.
Leaving MegaCon Saturday left me more overwhelmed and tired than on Friday. I grabbed some awesome comic books, though.
I didn’t go to the convention Sunday because my car needed a new alternator. Estevan couldn’t afford another day.
Written by Kevin Cortez
Illustrations by Estevan Sanchez