Report on: Con G 2013

Guelph is a bit of a distance from Toronto; it has residences and attractions, but for the GTA convention community the annual highlight of the town is the one winter weekend when Con-G comes alive. This year’s Con-G spanned Febuary 22nd to 24th at the Delta Hotel & Conference Centre (a new venue for the convention which outgrew the local Holiday Inn). It’s a smaller convention, but far more colourful than anything in Guelph has any right to be.

   

For comparison, read TdotComic’s report on last year’s Con-G.

All photos in his article and additional photos are available for viewing and tagging on TdotComic’s Facebook gallery for the event.

The default populace of any convention is filled with Cosplayers of all brands. Like many conventions, Con-G is an open concept convention where costumes from anything are abundant, not just anime or sci-fi. There were videogame characters all over, and oddly very few (if any) Soul Eater characters though there were doubles of the Adventure Time cast. But the coolest outfits representing had to be Nanalan and Pippi Longstocking. “Celebrity Cosplayers” like “Beetlecat” and “Kaijugal” showed up, but they didn’t bring attendees to the convention like special guest Rob Paulsen.

Rob Paulsen is a professional voice actor whose vocalizations are familiar to many people who remember “Pinky and the Brain” (Pinky) and “Danny Phantom” (the title character), but the coolest characters he’s contributed his voice to are clearly Raphael in the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series and Donatello in the current Ninja Turtles series. He was apparently absent from the 2003 Turtles show but that’s okay since I didn’t watch it anyway. At the convention he signed autographs (for a fee) and conversed with fans. He was as glad to meet his fans as they were to meet him and it will be interesting to see where he pops up in the future. Apparently he’s involved in an upcoming adaptation of Bravoman.

The rest of the new venue was filled with Daleks and Dances. The hotel’s lobby was converted into a den of Dr. Who. There was a much better dealer’s room than last year’s and the artist’s alley was now able to flourish on its own rather than forcing artists to compete for attention with the main stage, which was again used for performances by the 404s and cosplay Chess and, like before, DJ Janos’s wonderful dance.

“The 404s were much better this year than last year. Especially during their 18+ performances.”
-Michael Ryan, TdotComics.ca.

While it didn’t have last year’s wondrous inflatable backpack, the lustrous Janos returned with a live demonstration of what makes a real DJ a real DJ and why somebody using just iTunes won’t cut it. There was a good assortment of familiar songs with their dance potential maximized with proper mixing. It’s not coplay guests which bring people out; it’s the chance to wear the cosplays (or just clothing) and dance in a crowd that makes people wait for Con-G. For those not into dancing or just needing to sit down, there was the Hentai panel and the Godzilla City Smash room.

While there was a lot to do at Con-G, there were a lot of moments when the schedule was a bit weak, without properly balanced panels – although panels depend just as much on volunteers as on the staff. “Name That Tune” was a huge highlight for all media junkies. The gaming room was oriented much more towards table-top gaming with only one television set up for quick games of (of course) Smash Bros.

This was Con-G’s first time being a three day convention and I’m not sure they were ready for it, but I’m certain they’ll be ready for it next year. Sadly, next year will be Con-G’s last year as the organizers have all grown up and dispersed away from Guelph, but they have it in them for one more convention. While it will be sad to see it go, there are other small conventions popping up all the time, and in two years hopefully one might grow to have the blend of sensation and intimacy Con-G has.

For more GTA events like this, check the the TdotComics calendar which is in the process of being filled with tons of fascinating events in 2013.

-Michael Ryan, March 5th 2013

I am totally going to do an article on Ninja Turtles soon.

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