Comic-Con, just hearing the word bring a flood of images to your head, of incredible cosplay, swarms of people, a sensory overload of sights and sounds from decades of pop culture, geek heaven. And you know what?
Oz Comic-Con is the ultimate pop culture experience, a festival of art, games, and media, all directly tied into the community surrounding it. Comic-Con isn’t just a gathering of fans and vendors, everything you see is either community run or involved.
There were fan art stalls and props for sale, a giant x-wing to climb inside, a bb-8 playground, photo shoot areas, and an anime station, where you can just sit, down, relax, and watch some anime. Most of the vendors it seemed were just huge fans like any of the attendees, and just wanted to share their passion.
There was also a Just Dance stage where anyone could get up to bust a move, and that was always pumping. It was super inclusive, with small children and adults all getting involved, and a huge crowd was always present.
But the main attraction for sure was the incredible level of cosplay. Everywhere you looked was some recognisable character, I’m tempted to say there were as many people in cosplay as not, it at least felt like it.
The cosplay ranged from good to mind-blowing, and it was fantastic seeing everyone giving it a crack. There we’re some clear professional cosplay artists there in some incredibly detailed outfits, but even the amateur work was lovingly crafted and looked awesome.
There was no sense of elitism either, the professionals were getting amongst it, and cosplayers from the same universe flocked together for photoshoots. Gangs of Deadpools, Spidermen, and Ricks roamed the halls on the hunt for more of their kind.
There was also cosplay repair stations where cosplayers who had torn or otherwise damaged their costumes could get it fixed.
There was a game section too, and it it was board games and card games galore, there was a Warhammer 40k play and painting area, a console section with a variety of games like Mario Kart and Dragon Ball FighterZ, and a giant Overwatch competition stage which was always popular.
There were even two legit tattoo stalls which we’re constantly busy, full of those ready to commit to the memory of the event.
The various stages set up throughout the venue we’re always pumping, with community leaders, pro-cosplayers, and various writers and artists discussing anything from their careers, LGBTIQ representation in gaming, unboxing, and even DnD for dummies.
Outside the show floor, cosplayers and fans gathered to avoid the throng of people trekking the convention and the shoulder to shoulder bustling, and spent their time awing at each other and discussing their costumes.
But what I noticed most prominently, what really stood out, was the sheer positivity, everyone, young and old alike, was just stoked to be there. Everyone had a grin on their face and the politeness and positivity really shone through.
Comic-con was a wild experience, full of incredible cosplay, endless fan-service, and a general over-load of stimuli for the inner-geek within us all. It’s an invitation to share with others your love of TV, film, and games that would otherwise be confined to your close circle. An invitation to share your craft, or just appreciate the craft of others, there’s no pressure to cosplay, and nothing but respect for those who do, on any level.
It was an awesome time and I can’t recommend enough everyone attending at least once in their life, if not every year.