Report On: GTA Comic Con

The Burlington Toy Show couldn’t keep their summer events in Burlington as there were no more venues with the capacity to host them. So over a year ago they began to plan the “GTA Comic Con” at Toronto’s Airport Sheraton for some excitement between Good Friday and Easter Sunday (April 19, 2014).

Since the event has it’s roots in a toy show, there was a bit of a concern that the GTA Comic Con would end up being a large toy show with an artists alley, but while there wwere many toy vendors, it had more then enough attractions and friendly people to entertain people with no interest in action figures (but who doesn’t like action figures?). There were also plenty of vendors of old and new comics, odds and ends, and a few random vinyl albums.

A year ago when the event was freshly announced, Rob Liefeld was promoted as the big guest. While many people have reasons to dislike him, there’s no denying that he’s made a huge impact on the american Comics industry in the 90s, so he would have been a spectacle to see. However months ago he was removed from the guests list and other promotional materials due to a scheduling conflict, so this particular instance isn’t a good reason to begrudge him. There is a reasonable chance the organizers will try to arrange his presence another year.

However the convention was not without a few notable guests, E. Roger Mitchell (right) might not be a household name but many of the shows and movies he’s had roles on are, and he made any interacting with him fun and memorable. At Fan Expo or any larger convention, it’s easy to imagine him with a considerable line-up to meet him, but at this first year convention he just sat back and enjoyed conversation.

While Liefeld couldn’t make it to the 2014 show, Rob Guillory was there. And Guillory’s comic “CHEW” has received much critical praise that Liefeld doesn’t get. All the other artists present were showing off their material, marketing, doing commissions, and meeting people. The Concrete Martian comic looks like it could have a lot of potential to be a Canadian hit.

Plenty of coslayers showed up, with a particularly high number of X-Men characters of all ages and sizes getting excited about the upcoming X-Men Film. After lunch, the cosplay contest began, with Dr. StEvil’s usual hosting livened up with the aid of his brother Austin, his assistant Number 2 and The Ultimate Warrior. A stage really would have helped immensely considering the number of participating, but otherwise everybody involved had a good time and got their chance to enjoy the spotlight for a few moments, which is how cosplay events should be.

For more pictures of cosplayers and other things from the convention,check out TdotComic’s facebook gallery for the event.

   

While it would have added a lot to the convention to see Rob Liefeld in person and get an issue of X-Whatever signed, The GTA Comic Con was still a solid event and an impressive first-time show. There’s a bit of room for the event to grow, and a few more gimmicks and attractions, but for a single day show they had enough to entertain from start to finish. The attendees didn’t miss out on Rob, Rob was the one missing out.

-Michael Ryan, April 28, 2014

There really needs to be easier transportation to the Airport hotel area.

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Cosplay Picnic and Food Drive with the X-Men