Monday, May 27, 2013

Phoenix Comic Con Review By @thenerdygirlie

Phoenix Comic Con Review
By: The Nerdy Girlie

Having San Diego Comic Con as my very first con experience has really spoiled me.   That being said, I am really enjoying the experience of attending the smaller cons.  I love meeting and interacting with like-minded nerds, and it doesn’t matter what con I am at, I have an amazing time.

Phoenix was almost a five hour commute for me, so this would be the very first time I would stay in a hotel prior to a con.  I had visions of celebrities in every room dancing in my dreams.  When I finally decided to book the hotel room, the two closest to the convention center were sold out.  I was lucky enough to get a room at the Sheraton only a block away.  The hotel was beautiful and the beds were perfection after that LONG drive.

In the morning, while we were checking out, my celebrity dreams were answered.   John Barrowman and Sam Witwer were there in the hotel lobby!  I was able to get a picture with Sam and one of the two of them meeting.  My day was made then -- time to go home {just kidding!}.

The walk over to the con was on the warm side.  Phoenix is certainly known for its HOT weather and the end of May is no exception.  I knew it was going to be scorching so I planned my cosplay accordingly.  By ten in the morning it was already in the upper 80s.

Check in for the con was quick and easy.  I was checking in for a professional badge and had it in less than five minutes.  Others with their barcodes had lines about six or seven deep. 

There were only two things I really wanted to accomplish on Saturday and that was a Doctor Who panel and get my professional photo op with Sam Witwer {even though it happened that very morning}.  I stopped off to purchase the photo op pass and it was also quick at easy.  We were told to return five minutes prior to the start time {big mistake on their part, I will get to more of that later}.

The floor in the early morning hours was a treat.  I was so glad that we started with that {because later it was a nightmare}.  There were TONS of awesome artists and vendors.  I bought an amazing Weeping Angel art piece from Big Chris Art {@bigchrisart} and a Star Wars hair bow from Cake Shop Couture {@CakeShopCouture}.  With the 30th anniversary of Return of the Jedi there was an amazing Star Wars section at the con with tons of photo ops.  Storm Troopers, the bar scene in A New Hope,  and even the Greedo and Han Solo scene were re-created for fans.  Many bounty hunters and even Darth Vader himself were in attendance.  The autograph area was not busy at all, and it was fun to walk through and see the stars, if even from a distance.  There were so many GREAT cosplayers roaming the floor.  Geek Pride Day was in full force!

After the floor, I wanted to check out the room for the Doctor Who panel.  The convention center is much like the painting Relativity by M.C. Escher.  The entire time I was there I was disoriented.  It didn't help that the security staff kept closing off doors and escalators.  This caused some MAJOR congestion in the hallways of the convention center.  It began to look a lot like San Diego Comic Con in that respect.  The bag checks at every entrance didn't help matters.  The bag checks were inconsistent and they barely even checked your bag anyway.

Most of the panels at Phoenix Comic Con were fan run.  The panel rooms were really nice with comfortable chairs and even digital displays outside the room telling you what was happening and when it started.  The panel I attended was Doctor Who:  50 Years and How We Got Here.  As a newer Doctor Who fan, I loved the history lesson.  The panelists were incredibly knowledgeable. The moderator kept everyone’s spirits high and was super funny! 

Lunch at the con was not as bad as I thought it was going to be.  As a rule, I do not eat in the convention center {overpriced, not so great food} so I walked just a bit down the street to a sit down restaurant.  The line for the restaurant was quick and I was seated in less than ten minutes.  The food was ok, not great, but the price was perfect.   I even saw Will Wheaton walk by while I was eating.

After lunch is when the con really ramped up.  It was so crazy busy that you could hardly move.  It was really getting the San Diego Comic Con vibe.  Walking the floor in the morning was easy and fun, now it was way too crowded to even move.  I ended up heading to the third floor and finding a couch to sit on until my Sam Witwer photo op at 4:25 pm. 

The ticket for the photo op said return five minutes before to get in line.  Boy was that wrong!  Many people had gotten there an hour early.  I arrived thirty minutes early and the line was LONG by then.  The man running the line was a bit cranky and it really felt like we were cattle being herded through the line.  Over all it was very organized and the line went super-fast.  You didn't get any time to really talk to the talent, but you came away with an eight by ten photograph.  It is a really nice take away and they developed them incredibly fast.  The ticket said up to two hours, but I had my print in fifteen minutes. 

This was such a great precursor to San Diego Comic Con.  It reminded me that I really need to pace myself at these cons and always keep my eyes open!

Photo's property of Megan Gotch

1 comment:

  1. I am just now getting a chance to read this! I was at this convention too, although I didn't take advantage of a celeb photo op. Depending on who is there this year though, I really want to do it this year. My first con was also San Diego, however, we haven't lived there in YEARS so I haven't been to that one since I was in high school... I would love to hit it up again though at some point.. Maybe next year!

    I'm glad you still had a good time (and omg, you are definitely right about the heat and the convention center layout). When it comes to food this year, look up Lucky Strike, Thai'd Up, Breakfast Club and Arrogant Butcher. All of those are walking distance and taste awesome and of course, more affordable than what the convention center has!

    Anyways though, GREAT REVIEW! :) Hooray for comic conventions!