ConBravo 2015 in Hamilton, ON from July 24-26 at http://conbravo.com/
The annual convention for all things geeky and nerdy was back! From cosplay to video gaming to the Internet, all things for geeks and nerds and all fandoms in between could be found at the annual event. Over 4000 people made up of hardcore geeks, casual fans, families and more came to both the Convention Centre and nearby hotel for a bevy of events like panels, photo shoots, a big dealer’s room with artist alley, a giant free Arcade gaming area and many guest hosted events to name a few things.
The 404s ( http://conbravo.com/guest/404s/ and http://conbravo.com/guest-announcements-fandom-musicals-the-404s/ ) were back for 3 big events: a Late Night show, Improv All-Stars with special guests ProJared, Black Nerd Andre, Dex the Swede and Michael “Skitch” Schiciano all of various Internet fandom fame, and a Workshop to teach people about the basics of improv comedy. Overall over 120 people came to the first show, 250 plus packed the All-Stars show, and it was capped by over 40 people wanting to participate in the workshop with about a dozen more watching their friends do so.
The Friday new format got good reviews from the fans who got to witness a Late Night Talk show format where their Top 10 list suggestions became the Top 10 list itself, their suggestions for commercials came to life and they got to hear some neat musical bits and special guests from Mad Max (Mad Mike and Susan the Mollusk Barter Item, HI!) to YouTube Sensations on the beach antics. There was even a Cooking Mama segment with Arms Expert that showed how to bake strawberry donuts and an apple pie in unique fashion. That was followed by another Big Geek Quiz of the Year with 3 new teams and won by Team Discovery Channel (Disco for short) on topics like video games, comic book movies and more.
It was quite an active All-Star show. In Slideshow alone there was the first ever rotation of a slide where my leg was involved. The action was all over the place like with Action Replay involving dead lifting actors to release a sword from a stone on a basketball court since Michael Jordan was a hot topic. Superheroes came together to help Well Off Man solve a hair spray shortage problem with narcolepsy and a human hair spray bottle. Fans brought Dating Game Video props to give cheesy liners. Pan Left/Right got into syrup drinking contests leading to some awkward marriage admissions. Survivor got crazy on a road trip with a family being thrown around. Sports Commentators got to call extreme fishing archery, coming to a Pan Am Games near you. Twerking though might need work...least from my end.
Other less physical moments occurred for some amazing speeches. Some of the speeches for Funeral hit upon the tears both of sadness and joy. There were some clever Scenes from a Hat at the end like Bad Transformers Spinoffs that had no Megan Fox but added Pokémon and GI Joe. And a huge first was that for Foreign Film dub was it was done with actual talked foreign talk in Swedish AND a translation was done correct-May the Force be With You!
The Workshop was excellent with the turnout learning some of our warm-up games to getting to act in scenes like a normal show. The brave and enthusiastic participants got lessons in teamwork, supporting scene growth and coming out of one’s shell which helps in real life too. They got to try some scenes as well with the cast in a mini-show format and there were some amazing moments in scenes like Emotional Roller Coaster and Alphabet!
There were a bunch of other events on the weekend. The Saturday Morning Cartoon panel was a blast with Derek the Bard and the Black Nerd Andre. Everything from the old ages got talked from the opening themes to the PSA era that even got the President of the USA involved. There were even some tangents to Soul Train, the Littlest Hobo and My Secret Identity that worked for the talks of TV shows. It was also intriguing to see how views changed from the Canadian viewings and American viewings of similar or the same cartoons. And keep the hope as shows like the Raccoons and My Little Pony might keep the morning cartoon trend still going even if it’s drastically changed over the years.
The Most Frustrating Game Show added some technical antics to the on stage crazy quiz questions that even got into Win, Lose or Draw moments. The Charity Event this year involved a lot of cream pies for a good cause. One of the biggest events though was this year’s D-20 Live Tabletop RPG event hosted by DM Big Mike who had a guest cast playing Firefly involving Dr. Holocaust, Andrew Gregoire, Roo, Nash and a few special surprises. Next year it will be Attack on Titan which should continue the fun RPG moments as fans are growing and even making their own clothes with the D-20 love!
There was a lot to find too from the Dealers Room and Artist Alley so here is what I got.
The Bounty List
-From the dealers’ marketplace there were a few items I was able to find or ask for.
*A KuroNeko Cat from Trigun t-shirt and Gengar Baseball Cap from Chop Shop Goods at http://www.chopshopgoods.com
*An Akira of Rival Schools figure and an Etna Nendoroid of Disgaea from Navito World. They’re at http://www.navitoworld.com/
*And a random find of a Hinata figure from Naruto: The Last Movie
-From the Artist Alley there was lots of neat stuff to be had!
*A Hobbits/Beatles mash-up Keychain from Snooze Labs at http://www.snooze-labs.com
*Postcards of Harley Quinn/Poison Ivy and Korra/Asami from Lolisoup at http://lolisoupbby.tumblr.com
*A Nui of Kill La Kill and Pokémon Mudkip sticker from ashly p at http://pappomut.tumblr.com
*A pair of artworks of Shiro & Jibirl of No Game, No Life and the cast of My Neighbor Totoro from Sky Society
*A Lilo and Stitch button from a friend
*A custom made chainmail dice bag from Rice Hat Samurai Studios that I talked about in a previous post-convention report at http://ricehatsamurai.com/
*A Chi’s Sweet Home cat magnet from Hunter Geek at https://www.facebook.com/HunterGeek
Finally a few neat gifts included a new 3DS cartridge case from a friend, A DJ Cutman handout art from the Dance on Saturday, and a big balloon figure of Leonardo from TMNT being given to a family friend’s kid. I also got photos taken with Droo’s Photography at https://www.facebook.com/DrooPhotography and Cosplay for a Cure at https://www.flickr.com/photos/cosplayforacure/sets/
This is one of the best growing conventions now in a central location yearly and doing other events throughout the year to support the fans, make them feel welcome as many noted at the closing ceremonies’ feedback panel, and simply have a ton of fun!
As always, I collect all videos of the Eastside 404s shows that can be found on the current ongoing Video Play Set at http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLcYrT6RatU-3yzE7cdQuObMY2lv72Shcb on my channel at https://www.youtube.com/user/trigunkwan
Check out this regularly updated public photo album of my convention photos (the newest photos are at the end pages of the album) at: http://www.crunchyroll.com/showphotoalbum?id=10061028
The latest events and links to The 404s can be found as well at the main website at http://the404s.com/ as well as their many social media outlets like their Group Page at https://www.facebook.com/the404s and more YouTube videos at https://www.youtube.com/user/the404s
Here, there, everywhere! Online in random spurts when I can be!