Monday, March 11, 2013

Oz Comic Con Perth 2013: Day 2 Highlights! Cosplay! Artists! Panels!

We have recovered from a weekend of walking, waiting and jostling to bombard you with many more photos and musings from our second long day at Oz Comic Con Perth. Our expectations of a leisurely Sunday quickly disintegrated as even MORE keen and costumed fans piled into the fancy Exhibition Centre, quickly transforming it into a heaving circus of gaudy lycra and cardboard where even the most cautious attendee could be suddenly crushed between a Master Chief and a sidling Catbus.

Yes. There was a Catbus. And it was life-affirming. I have no idea how many people were sweating inside that thing but I hope they got along!

Find out more about - and see many more pictures of - the cosplay, our favourite artists, Klingons, Macgyver, Momoa and much more... after the jump!

But first the cosplay because you guys keep hounding us! (And we love it!)

Much of the visual flair on the convention floor is courtesy of the efforts of the fans - there’s no doubt that it’s the range of creative cosplay that most often stops people in their tracks, whether its to drop jaws, furrow foreheads, or raise eyebrows. Sunday was no exception and we got more time to stop and chat to people about the origins of their costumes and the type of day they were expecting.

Who could not love this happy couple of Daenerys and Khal Drogo? Now this would be a wedding photo... (I just hope the honeymoon's gentler):

You can't see it in this photo but Drogo here was so badass that he'd been in an accident recently and his arm was in a cast. He was hoping to get the mighty Jason Momoa to sign it. Daenarys was also excited when I told her that Momoa had been spotted on Facebook carrying another Daenarys cosplayer. I didn't run into them again but I hope that both these guys got their wish!

And nothing gets your Sunday morning pumping like a home-made Wolverine...

Yes, those claws are not only crazy realistic and awesome, but they are homemade. Plus you rarely see cosplay Wolverine with real muscles. Kudos, sir. The bar was set high this year!

And did you know that Perth is getting its own Zombie Walk in 2013? These two considerate gentleman rose from the dead to spread the word.

I don't know if they survived the con though. I did see a kid dressed as sheriff Rick Grimes ready to take them down.

Everybody loves Deadpool, right?

Especially French Maid Deadpool who I'm going to hire prior to my next rental inspection.

And if you regularly read the site you will have heard me continually (and valiantly) defend plucky Zack Snyder's Sucker Punch to the death! So imagine my delight when I met this Baby Doll...

As I said last time, Adventure Time cosplay was everywhere, but none so great or complete as this particular group... (Okay, Jake and Finn are missing but they turned up later). Extra points for the penguin though, right?

But forget Finn and Jake. Forget Batman and Robin. Pop culture's best new duo is clearly Bane and a Hotdog...

"The real 'bane' here is my insatiable desire for delicious hotdogs!"

Also making a considerable impact was Moxxi from Borderlands who took out Saturday's Cosplay Parade...

I have infinite time for Lady Avengers. Thor ducked out but they picked up an extra Loki. Where was the male Black Widow?

And seriously, all bow before Professor Chaos...

It's already way crowded in here so we're going to have more cosplay photos in our mammoth Comic Con facebook gallery (it's going to GROW. We took lots of them). And be sure to look out for Jacinta’s post that will cover the Cosplay Parade and the subsequent competition. There'll be plenty of stage shots there.

Okay, now less matter, more art....

There was a healthy mix of comic artists at the con, with a strong emphasis on Australians. Gestalt Comics were strongly represented, plus we saw Tristan Jones who has worked on the recent incarnations of both Ghostbusters and Ninja Turtles. We even had the briefest of chats with DC’s Nicola Scott who was working conscientiously away on a Wonder Woman. There’s a couple of artists that I really want to highlight though...

I’m a big fan of illustrator Doug Holgate's work so it was a pleasure to finally meet him...

Doug is a laid back funny guy who is very easy to approach. It was also fascinating to watch him work on some quite meticulous commissions. He tackles a wide range of subject matter too, from the badass to the whimsical. We could not resist this stunning Jon Snow print, from a series of illustrations based on Game of Thrones (the BOOK not the show!)

You would be certified nuts not to check out Doug's work at his site The House of Skullduggery.

And, of course, there’s the always affable Stewart McKenny of DC Superfriends and Clone Wars fame.

Stewart’s table was ridiculously well attended throughout the con, always swarming with people. If you’re a fan of Stewart on Facebook (and you probably should be) then you will know how incredibly welcome he makes everybody feel, remembering names and knowing something about everybody. It’s a testament to his people skills that he was constantly mobbed and it made even photographing him for this post tremendously difficult. We ended up hovering around at Sunday’s end where people will still lining up to show their love, and after a quick couple of snaps he was immediately mobbed again and we didn’t get a chance to say goodbye. So thank you, Stewart, awesome to see you again, and we hope that the next leg of your tour goes equally well! 

And although we didn’t really chat with him, we were blown away by the work of visiting US artist Jason Palmer. Although I wasn’t previously aware of Jason as an artist, I did realise that I have actually seen a fair bit of his work - he was responsible, for example, for the artwork on the Indiana Jones Blu-ray set, and posters for prior Star Wars celebrations. His work is very reminiscent of famous poster artist Drew Struzan (in fact, to be honest, I had assumed that the Indiana Jones Blu-ray art was in fact Struzan) and I’d be very curious to learn what the relationship is there as Lucasfilm has obviously employed them both at various times. 

Keeping with our Game of Thrones theme, Jacinta could not go past Jason's incredible rendition of Khal Drogo, which she later also had signed by Momoa himself!

So let's talk about those celebrity guests!

For a more detailed (and no doubt informed) look at the panels, look out for Vanessa’s forthcoming posts, but here’s some broad strokes about what I personally dug into. And I should say that one of Oz Comic Con's greatest assets is the beautiful (and huge) Riverside Theatre which is absolutely brilliant for these type of panels. There's ample room for everyone and the sound and vision is great. It's well worth engaging with as many of these as you can. 

The biggest surprise for me was the joint performance by J.G. Hertzler and Robert O'Reilly who were in full Klingon makeup and costume, reprising their roles of Martok and Gowron.

I’m not overly familiar with Star Trek (as a recent Book Was Better podcast proved) and found the two of them hilarious, particularly when they repeatedly harassed the timid questioners in the audience, at one point even running across the vast theatre to physically challenge someone. They insulted each other, sang a song from Les Miserables but made the lyrics about farts, and finished up with a rousing story that involved them miming sex with chickens. Needless to say, it brought down the house. If you missed this, you missed out.

And the other pleasant surprise for me was Richard Dean Anderson, a man who’s work I personally have not really engaged with since Macgyver. After an hour listening to him, I'm even ready to watch Stargate.

Let’s address the obvious first - sure, Richard is definitely progressing forward through the timestream and he’s not in the same shape that you may remember - but you’d be foolish to be dismissive of him. He was an extremely warm, entertaining, and refreshingly self-deprecating man who won over the (massive) crowd immediately. He joked about (and repeatedly apologised for) his weight and hair (“Neglect”), shared amusing tales, and graciously answered progressively weird or obscure questions. The highlight for me was when an attendee requested a DNA sample so that her aunt could clone him, to which a momentarily perplexed Richard Dean Anderson paused before plucking out a single strand of hair which he proceeded to give to her. “Let me know what you come up with in a year,” he asked as she happily retreated with her treasure. After some more though he added, “Probably some kind of monkey.”

We're all going to get old, but we're not all going to be interesting. Richard Dean Anderson has had a crazy life and I have a ton of newfound respect for him.

And finally, Jason Momoa...

Momoa is not just towering and intimidating, but also funny, sharp and energises the room. I especially love his response when questioned about his Baywatch years. After pretending to end the panel there Jason joked that he was an alcoholic and didn't remember any of it. "That's how you move on". He also apparently made Emilia Clarke believe for a year that he was going to return to the series as a dragon.

Jason is a cool guy and I'm kind of disappointed that it looks like we're not going to see him as Drax in Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy.

And that was Day 2! But we still have plenty more things to talk about so keep an eye on our site! And let us know what your experience was like! 



    Dear god, that was my introduction into non-book fantasy and sci-fi.

  2. My new band is called Sidling Catbus.

  3. I saw the zombies slip into the Bridal Fair next door, but I htink they got moved on quickly - comedy gold there!

  4. Such a great event! I think Perth Convention Centre was a perfect venue and I think this Con was better organised than the one I went to in Melbourne last year. It was definitely worthwhile getting VIP Tickets also. I felt bad for the people who were lining up for hours to get in. Colin Ferguson was a major highlight of the event for me. He's awesome!