Over the last year I’ve had an increasing amount of people asking for tips on cons. In addition, I’ve had an even larger amount ask me for tips on which cons to attend and what to look for in a con. Although I live in Southern California (AKA Con Capital of the World) and can’t make trips to every con, I do follow as many as possible. Admittedly, it is my addiction. So, I’ve decided to start sharing my analysis of cons here in a monthly column that reflects all the info I can get my hands on.
With February being a historically slow con month, some might find it an odd time to start this column. That being said, I have an opposite view. The world we live in has nearly a non-stop con schedule and I don’t see any weak months. If we look at specific regions, there are slow times, but if we widen our view to the entire United States, each new year has become one very long con season. So, here are my top five cons of February, 2012:
5. Creation’s Salute to Supernatural: Nashville, TN (February 3rd-5th)
Although I’m not a huge Supernatural fan, I am a huge Creation fan. There are detractors out there that dislike the cornering of the market (and the prices associated with it) that Creation has on franchises like Star Trek, Stargate, etc. As for me, I love the quality shows that they produce. In a world where mile-long lines to see celebrity panels often result in little more than frustration and disappointment, Creation promises a seat for each attendee. As a result, shows organized by Creation allow attendees to enjoy every minute without the frustration of rushing from line to line. So, if it’s a Creation show, count me in. For more information visit http://www.creationent.com/cal/supernatural_tn.htm.
4. Gallifrey One’s Network 23: Burbank, CA (February 17th-19th)
For the 23rd year in a row, the North American Doctor Who celebration is the world’s largest convention of its kind. This fan-run show does its best to maintain its family roots, while still growing into the Big Budget Show so many brand-new Dr. Who fans long for. The show is filled with panels and signings from start to finish and also provides a great vendor’s room. If you consider yourself even the slightest bit “Whovian”, make sure to plan to attend this epic show that brings fans from all over the world together to celebrate their love of their favorite Doctor. For more information visit http://www.gallifreyone.com/.
3. Hollywood Show: Burbank, CA (February 10th -12th)
Yes, another big show in Burbank, CA (it’s not just the beaches that make real estate so expensive out here!). The Hollywood Show has become one of the very largest autograph shows in the world and this February’s show takes their tribute to Geekdom to a whole new level of awesome. As is consistent with past shows, each time out the Hollywood Show tries to provide themes for their guests…and a big one for February is Star Wars. With Billy Dee Williams, Jeremy Bulloch, Daniel Logan, and several more, the Hollywood Show is trying to make this one of the biggest “Wars” signings of 2012 (outside of Celebration VI, of course). In addition to the Star Wars presence, there’ll be major stars from other nerd-favorites like Green Hornet, The Munsters, The Greatest American Hero, Twilight Zone and Starsky & Hutch. If you love autographs the way I do, this is a must stop. For more information visit http://hollywoodshow.com/.
2. MegaCon 2012: Orlando, FL (February 17th -19th)
Coming in a close second place for February 2012 is one of the South’s biggest shows of the year. Although much is made of DragonCon (and rightfully so!), too often MegaCon is forgotten on the national scene. Held at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando (the same place as Star Wars Celebration V and VI), this is a continually growing show that has a rich history of fun and excitement. As usual, this year features some of our favorite characters: Tron, Chewbacca, Boba Fett, Tuvok, and Data are just a few of the media guests announced. In addition, MegaCon provides a strong comic influence with a guest list that includes Stan Lee, Greg Capullo, George Perez, and so many more. MegaCon 2012 gives guests many more reasons to come to Orlando than just the Disney Kingdom. For more information visit http://www.megaconvention.com/.
The Con-Fluence Pick of the Month:
1. Image Expo: Oakland, CA (February 26th -28th):
One of the more exciting shows to enter the con scene this year comes early, as Image takes over Oakland this February for their first con. Although there are a number of exciting things about this con, it is hard to find any that are bigger than the guest list. Robert Kirkman, Erik Larsen, Rob Liefeld, Todd McFarlane, Marc Silvestri, Jim Valentino, BK Vaughan, Fiona Staples, Blair Butler, Ed Brubaker, Joe Casey, John Layman, and Jonathan Hickman make for one of the most impressive creator lists this side of San Diego Comic-Con. With a strong guest list and the backing of a company with a rich success in the comic industry, this show has the recipe for major success. For more information visit http://www.imagecomicexpo.com/news/.
So, I hope this list gives you an idea of the best on the con-scene this February. Make sure to check back frequently for more info on the best of everything CON, and make sure to follow me on Twitter for updates on this and more: @The_Con_Fluence