So, this weekend was the annual Armageddon Expo
, held in Jeff's Shed (Melbourne Exhibition Centre). A two day event celebrating all things geek.
Only able to get to the first day of it, I had to be sure to cram as much stuff in as possible.
Doors opened at 9am...I was there about 7:30am. And STILL about 50 people back.
There was a reason for this earliness.
See, two comic artists I really dig were going to be there: Georges Jeanty, artist on "Buffy: Season 8" and Darick Robertson, artist of "The Boys" and "Transmetropolitan" amongst other projects.
They were kicking off signings and sketches at 10am, and dammit if I wasn't going to be first in bloody line! I know how long Con-sketches take, between regular signings and chatting with fans.
Jim_doki rocked up about 8:30am, resplendent in full Superman costume, with foam-muscles and all. Hopefully he'll upload some pics...dickhead here got halfway into town before remembering he'd not picked up his camera.
9am, doors opened and I headed straight to the King's Comics stand, where Darick and Georges were going to be setting up. I'd studied the floor-plan and knew EXACTLY where I needed to be. You'd have thought there was an all-you-can-eat buffet at the end of my trajectory, that was the speed I was moving through the crowd! But fuck 'em all! I was first in line, bitches!
Damn....now another hour's wait. Still, gave me opportunity to scope out the cosplayers. And MAN there were a lot of them! Women and spandex. "FUCK, I wish I'd brought my camera!" I kept telling myself.
Eventually, 10am rolled around and Darick and Georges arrived, sketchbooks and markers in hand. Daniel Way was also there, but I'm honestly not a fan. Walked right on past him.
Both Georges and Darick were really awesome, more than happy to sign some books I'd brought in and have a quick chat about nothing in particular. Put my orders in with the two artists, paid and went for a wander, to pick up my bits and pieces later.
Found Jim in a just begun intro game of D&D, so I sat down and joined in. It'd been a long while since I'd played, but the mechanics of it fell into place and our party was soon dick-deeo in goblins. We had no idea what we were doing, but our DM was pretty patient and we all walked away with a free D&D figure. (I scored a Skeletal Reaper...NFI what I'm going to do with it now though!)
Some more wandering around and we found ourselves in line for Lloyd Kaufman signings. Lloyd, if you're unaware, is an owner, director and producer of and for Troma Entertainment, the studio behind such B-grade classics as "Toxic Avenger", "Surf Nazis Must Die" and "Cannibal: The Musical".
The guy was awesome, ready to chat with his fans and seemed to really love being there, handing out stickers and signing stuff with great gusto.
After that, we wandered around for a bit and had a sit down at the Animation Q&A, which was awesome. There were SUPPOSED to be two speaker, but only one actually appeared on stage. the mighty John DiMaggio, voice of "Futurama"s Bender and "Gears of War"'s Marcus Fenix, to name but two.
The guy was an absolute riot! Talking about the profession, anecdotes about the various stuff he'd worked on, all while dropping in an out of characters...just awesome. He seemed to really love being there and the crowd lapped it up.
After, I left to go pick up my stuff from the comics boys. And what a haul it was!
From Georges, I ended up getting 2 of his sketch-books, with Giles and Xander head-sketches on the cover, a signed Xander/Buffy poster-print and a primo Xander head-sketch:
Man, was I stoked with them.
Then, I get to Darick and had to pick my jaw up off of the ground. First, he'd signed my "Boys" TPB with a little head-sketch of Butcher, which I loved:
But then he whipped out an A3 hero-sketch of "The Boys"' Butcher. And my lord, was it was a sight to behold:
I just jibbered how awesome it was, thanked the guys profusely and wandered away prizes in hand.
The rest of the arvo was more low key. Lunch at Crown, then a proper wander around the Expo.
There was a DeLorean DMC, done up "Back to the Future" style...which was totally rad. It was a mish-mash of all it from all 3 films...but it worked. The guy had that much paraphernalia, original props and memorabilia, it was clearly a passion, and the fans lapped it up, jumping in the driver's seat and getting their pics taken (all the while me cursing again that I'd neglected to bring a camera).
Oh, and through the day, more cosplayers had arrived and I was struggling to keep my eyes in my head. Some of these people had gone ALL OUT. There was a PERFECT Jack Sparrow and Elizabeth Swan duo wandering around...a whole mess of DC Comics guys and gals wandering around, a full-on Alien costume, a full-on Predator costume, the Star Wars 501st brigade had a bunch of Stormtroopers, Vader, Boba Fett wandering around collecting for Cancer Council Australia.
I also got a game of Magic: The Gathering in for the first time in years, spanking this know-it-all into -17 life with some lucky green cards.
So, all in all...a totally fun day out in town.
I had to bail half-way through the cosplay parade to get to the soccer, but Victory spanked Sydney FC 3-0, so that was the icing on the cake.
Same time next year!!
Addendum - Just because I forgot MY camera, doesn't mean a whole mess of other people didn't!
The Armageddon Expo Facebook page has a whole pile of pics. http://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=16887828174