Bonus – SITACon and EXPCon 2008 Report

Here’s the last of our con reports for the year, this time for both SITACon 2008 and EXPCon 2008.

We were hoping to have at least part of Show 75 out by now, but this probably marks our three year anniversary of podcasting instead. Kind of fitting, really. Pictures forthcoming.

Now that we’re out of “filler” to post, next time will be Show 75 FO’ SHO’. Recorded live with our special guest Ryan Gavigan, Daryl will be reviewing the original Bubblegum Crisis OAVs, Gerald will be reviewing Riding Bean, and Clarissa will be reviewing Yakitate! Japan.

10 Replies to “Bonus – SITACon and EXPCon 2008 Report”

  1. Hello! This is EXPCon staffer Ray (not to be confused with Rayne, and Ray is actually short for Raymond. Sorry for all the confusion.) We wanted to thank you for your criticisms and will take them all to heart. At the end of the day, it became clear who was truly dependable and what decisions could have been made for the better of the convention. Daryl’s comments only fortify our thoughts.

    We sincerely apologize for the tech problems at the convention. I was struck hard by this as well since I ended up running main events almost single-handedly the entire weekend due to our tech person having to drop out due to family issues.

    I am glad to hear my good friend with the DBZ scouter was able to help you while I was in and out of the convention for stupid reasons.

    It is embarrassing for me to say that the panels and events were handled poorly on my part and that next year it will certainly not be repeated. With Daryl’s suggestion to print out appended schedules of the panels and events, it probably saved us a lot of headaches.

    In the end we mostly did break even and we will be returning to the same location for next year and we hope that all of you can attend and help us grow in the years to come.

    Thanks again for the report! It truly helps to know what you thought and how we could improve ourselves.

  2. Clarissa and Gerald’s remark about finding open rooms at SUNY-IT with Internet access made me nostalgic for those years in the early ’90s after graduation, when I was still hanging around my own campus, pretending I was still a student, and doing much the same thing (“Hey…Telnet.”). I think I owed so much in student loans that I figured it must have paid for more than four years.

    Weirdly enough, I was also a guest at a campus event near Utica earlier this year, giving a lecture on manga at Hamilton College, named for that fellow on the ten-dollar bill. It was also my first time in upstate New York as opposed to NYC, and while I knew in the abstract it’s a big state and has still got a whole lot of rural areas in it, this really brought it home.

    I kind of have an affection for college cons–it’s the spirit of Daicon III. Appropriately enough, I first met Toshio Okada and Hiroyuki Yamaga at college cons (Otakon ’95 and FanimeCon ’97) respectively. I ran the anime room for two years at Rice University’s Owlcon, putting most of the effort into elaborately fraudulent program books with introductions by Al Gore (this might have actually been funny in 1993).

    I was delighted that the “green room” at Hamilton was the student union lounge, and that, except for everyone having cell phones and laptops, nothing had changed–it could have been Pomona twenty years ago, the only the difference being that instead of playing Freaky Styley, they were playing Stadium Arcadium.

    Anyway, the talk went well. The most interesting audience question was from a professor who was concerned that none of his students wanted to study classic Japanese art any more–it was all about the main-gah and the annie-may. Thinking quickly, I explained that this was all Takashi Murakami’s fault.

    As for Amercian comics fans’ perceptions of manga, it’s true that there are a lot who don’t get or like manga–but there are a lot who do, and always have. Remember that American comics and U.S. manga publication goes back a long way together–they’ve shared many adaptation, editorial, and lettering staff, and by now manga has influenced at least two generations of Western creators. Clarissa is right that talent in an crossover remains essential; that’s why when Dark Horse got a Japanese artist to do a Hellboy figurine, they asked Katsuya Terada.


  3. Er… for those who don’t know AWO’s crew personally, who is Gerald’s roommate? Maybe just a link to a photo of her simple winning cosplay should be enough.

  4. I’ve seen those terrible AmeComi figures lurking at Newbury Comics. Hideous creatures, they are.

    I guess I was “that guy” at Daryl and Toole’s panel at Otakon. Whoops :X

    But I’m more or less the “that guy” of the internet, so I guess that’s only expected.

  5. Ugh. I’ve seen those horrific AmeComi…things…now. There were some at Suncoast. They were just…I really have to wonder why they even exist.

  6. Greetings aWo crew.

    aniRAGE here. Found you guys looking up EXP Con info (since, you know, it’s website is down). How shocked were we when we noticed we were mentioned! Must say, it was pretty awesome. Well, up until we got over the initial shock and listened to some of the chosen adjectives.

    We’ve taken your criticisms into consideration. And as the guy who was running the “aniRAGE After Dark” panel, I have to agree with a lot of the things you had to say. I wish I could explain away what happened at the panel, but truthfully, I’d be lying if I said that it was anything other than a boat load of fail.

    aniRAGE After Dark began at Metrocon, where we were unable to do our normal panel, Whose Line is it aniRAGE?, since Metrocon has it’s own Whose Line panel. To that end, we came up with a skit panel, as well as a random idea we threw together: aniRAGE After Dark. At the panel, we threw together a bunch of interesting videos we found online (things like Half Life: Full Life Consequences, and such) as well as some of our own panels. Our PR dude, Kerby, wanted us to have a lot of panels at EXP Con, so we decided to bring back AAD, despite not having really the time we would have liked to come up with not just one, but two panels worth of material. Sucks to be us for not enough pre-planning.

    Before arriving at the con, we were informed that the internets would be open to us. As a fellow con attendee, you knew this to not be true. Double that with the computers in the lobby always having 14 year olds clinging to them and our plan of “looking up stuff on youtube during the panel” went out the window. So we decided to dig up some of our old videos, and low and behold most of them sucked!

    Having been a group for over a year, we can tell you first hand that most first-tries tend to fail horrible (or at least, seem that way compared to our latest attempts). Feel free to look us up on youtube…many of our latest attempts make the stuff we played at EXP Con seem…well, as you said, they just weren’t funny.

    It also doesn’t help that most of my crew ditched me to go to the rave *mumble grumbles*.

    It wouldn’t be the first time we failboated at a con. We tried an MST panel at Anime Express last year. Yeah, we try not to think about that one.

    The aniRAGE After Dark at Metrocon was something special and, as we now know, had something that we just couldn’t reproduce. So we’ve shelved that idea (must to the pleasure of cons across the country).

    Despite many of the problems at EXP Con, I think it was a fun con in the end. There may have been an excessive amount of things planned, but throughout the entire weekend I don’t think there was a single time when I felt like there was nothing to do. We spent most of Friday preparing for opening ceremonies (and doing 1 whose line panel), and Saturday we had another Whose Line panel (which I believe was one of the largest attended panels outside of maybe Anime Night Live, which we also performed in).

    Man, it sucks that you were only able to catch one of our panels…the one that crashed and burned. I’m beginning to think that instead of us not being funny, maybe you just have the worst timing ever. Well…maybe not. But I wish you could have come and seen some of our other performances. And ANL was really funny (and Meredith was really great…not to mention HOOOOOOOOT).

    We hope you get a chance to check us out sometime. We’ll keep an eye out for you guys on con schedules, and we hope you’ll do the same. If you ever get a chance, check out our Whose Line panels (either live at the con, which is preferable, or via the internets on youtube). I’m sure they won’t disappoint. And hey, if you guys are even doing a show and are desperate for guests, we’d love to whore ourselves out for ya.

    Keep on keeping on,

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