Hello all, and welcome to yet another con report from yours truly. This time around, we cover the annual big one in Florida: Megacon. Every year this convention is held at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida,and this year it was from Friday march 21-Sunday March 23. Unlike the previous annual Megacons, where the promoters held it inside the main building, it was decided to hold it in the newer South wing section located across the street.
This congoer was amazed as to the enormous amount of space this new location had, as it was held on all 3 levels of this building, with anything ranging from gaming, to panels, to anime, to even a special section dedicated for this year’s returning featured guest of honor: Stan ‘The Man’ Lee himself. The main attractions for the con itself: The vendor booths, guest signing areas, and artist alley, as well as the featured Hero Initiative booth, were located on the bottom level, which could be accessed once you entered from the 2nd level itself, and came down either by elevator, or escalator.For this year, it was decided that inside the same bottom level 1, there would be 2 sides for entry set up: On the left was the pre-registered and VIP tickets (presold online, and of note:VIP pkgs were sold out before the con online), and located to the right was the onsite ticket purchases. Also located before the entrance to the con itself was the photo op section for the featured media guests- Mind you, i’ve never really done the pro photo op thing, because of the nightmares I heard after the Froggy’s Pro photo debacles of 2012 and 2013, where people werent receiving their photos after they were taken due to miscommunications between staff and congoers, but the new company: Celeb Photo Ops, did a very smashing job at not only taking those pics (one of which was mine and stan lee together), but also insuring those who had taken their pics got them-Kudos to the fine staff in their handling of both taking the orders at their booth and insuring lines went along smoothly for these pics as well as the after pickups of these pics.
The good- There was much to do around the con this year, ranging from tattoos for adults, to legos for the children, to the many booths offering many different items for sale- from comics, to toys, to posters, to anything in betweens. There was also the artists’ booths located both in the center aisles of the con, as well as in the back-artists’ alley. You also had on one side of the con, the media guests section, where you could get signatures from shows like: Classic Battlestar Galactica (Richard Hatch(Capt. Apollo), Dirk Benedict (Lt. Starbuck), Anne Lockhart (Sheba), and Herbert Jefferson (Boomer)); Power Rangers (Jason David Frank (Tommy Oliver (Green Ranger-MMPR,Zeo Red -MMPR Zeo, Dinothunder Bracheo Black- PR Dinothunder)); Star Trek (JJ Abrams version)-Karl Urban (Dr.Leonard ‘Bones’ McCoy); Various voice actors ranging from Rob Paulsen (Animaniacs- Yakko Warner; G.I.Joe (Sunbow series- 1983-87)- Snow Job,Tripwire,Flash; Transformers (Sunbow series- Gen.1 (1984-87)- Slingshot,Chase, Air Raid), to Jennifer Hale (Black Cat/Felicia hardy- Spiderman TAS (1995)), to Jim Cummings (Winnie The Pooh; Monterey Jack- Chip and Dale’s Rescue rangers); and also some cast members from AMC’s ‘The Walking Dead’. On the booth side of things, AMC’s ‘Comic Book Men’ panelists Ming Chen, Mike Zapcic, and Bryan Johnson were there as guests at the show, and even held a panel on Sunday, which I not only got to witness, but also participated in the Q&A session as well. There were also artists ranging from small print, to the well-known artists such as George Perez, located in the Hero Initiative booths, as well as returning artist Neal Adams in his own booth.
The bad- There was again way too many things going on for this congoer to enjoy this entire weekend, ranging from the panels, to the autographs, to the pro photo op w/Stan Lee- it literally overwhelmed me to the point that whatever little free time i had to go around the con not spent in line for the photo and signatures on Fri and Sat was spent more looking for friends in between, which meant another lost year of not being able to go around to the vendor or artist booths in between to visit my artist friends that i know like i would normally do. Saturday was crazy because not only did the con sell out for another year on that day,but i was hearing rumors of people being charged exorbitant amounts to park near the con late afternoon,which i found hard to believe given i had parked earlier that morning for a fair price (<$10 inside the lot leading to the South wing). Also, because the venue had changed, there was some confusion as to which line was which when it came to either paying onsite, or picking up prepaid passes on the first day.
Overall though, this con was yet another excellent year for Megacon, and I cant wait til 2015 for the next one to surprise me w/even more things in store to see and do. As always comments are welcome about my reviews, and con pics will be posted on my personal facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/john.cruz.946/photos
As always, if you see you’re not already tagged by me in the album under Megacon 2014, then feel free to do so
Til next con-seeya!!!!!!!!! The JDOC