Saturday we didn’t have anything until 1pm, but we were up and ready before the parade was over. We thought it would be a good time for breakfast since if the streets were full the restaurants wouldn’t be. The problem was, how do we get there? Nicole was still getting her awesome costume ready so Ryan and I headed out to try and scout a location. We were pretty much tied to one side of the street so we didn’t have many options. For all of the things we love about the Indigo, their restaurant closes at 11am and doesn’t reopen until 4pm. That is absolutely crazy for a hotel restaurant. The parade was breaking up, and lines started forming up in front of every place that opened at noon. There was no way that we would have survived that long, but it turns out that the Westin has a great brunch buffet that stays open late, and is too expensive to be crowded when the Metro Diner is just around the corner. The immediate need for food outweighed the price though, and we ended up shoving all the food we could find into our faces for the $33 price tag. It was a lot of food, and I might have actually eaten my weight in bacon. Then we all went to do the Geek Year 1992 panel with Dave, Oz, and Kristian Allen. Those are always fun, and gave me a chance to talk about the Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. I would do entire panels on The Legend of Zelda, Resident Evil, and Mass Effect games if someone were crazy enough to give me the chance. Everyone was all off to do other stuff, but I went to meet a Star Wars author.
And now we get to the meat of the matter. Actual Dragon Con coverage. This was my 8th year covering Dragon Con (it would be nine if it wasn’t for stupid 2020. Maybe I just shouldn’t count that year, for anything anymore), and I keep expecting to get turned down. I keep not getting turned down so thanks media relations! I was even more surprised to get approval to request both interviews with walk of fame guests and authors. I didn’t really expect to get any of my requested celebrities approve, but I got one of each! The only thing that was sad about that was that if I wanted to interview Mark Meer at 4pm on Sunday then I wouldn’t be able to be on a panel about The Thing at 4pm. Since I’d already had to drop the Halloween 3 panel on Friday due to a conflict with my podcast panel this left me with no panels for the Horror Track at all. That made me sad, but life is full of these tough choices. Not only did I have a panel for our podcast (if I haven’t mentioned it 5,000 times before I co-host a Star Wars book club podcast called Execute Chapter 66), but Chad was finally able to attend, and the Star Wars track invited us to be on a panel too. This was huge since we’d been trying to find a way in with them since we started. I was also moderating the Classic Video Game Hall of Fame again, as well as trying out a brand new idea (for me anyway). The directors of the American Sci-Fi Classics Track were kind enough to let me read an old school Choose Your Own Adventure book with a live audience. Read on to find out how that went. Spoiler alert: pretty damn well. I also had a panel with Dave, the rest of the con buddies (Mr. and Mrs. Cadaver, and the lovely Oz) had some things going on I wanted to see, and we all had a game show to put on together. But let’s just start at the beginning for now.
Well here it is, the next part of Dragon Con 2022 coverage. Let’s move on to the press releases before we get into the recap, and interview. It should have been plural interviews, but well…we’ll get to that in another article tomorrow.
So check out all of the good we did this year by collecting a lot of money and blood to help others. It always amazes me to see the lines of people waiting to give blood every year. Well done everyone.
I’ve got lots of coverage coming over the next few days (yes, I’m running behind. I got a really bad case of the flu after the con, and it took ages to recover from. Flu shot and covid booster before con for sure next year), but I always like to start with housekeeping, press releases, and the Dragon Awards. Stay tuned for more to come over the next several days for recaps, panel breakdowns, and even an interview.
Another Dragon Con is in the books, and the Dragon Awards have been handed out. Haven’t heard of the Dragon Awards before? Well you should have.
The Dragon Awards were created in 2016 as part of Dragon Con’s 30th anniversary celebration. All fans – not just Dragon Con members or attendees – were invited to nominate their favorite properties for the awards and then select Dragon Award winners by voting on the annual Dragon Awards ballot. More than 7,000 fans cast ballots for this year’s Dragon Award winners, selected from among 93 properties in 15 categories covering the full range of fiction, comics, television, movies, video gaming, and tabletop gaming. Winners were announced on Sept. 4 at Dragon Con 2022 in downtown Atlanta. Final voting was held via the dedicated Dragon Awards website, and the voting period ran from mid-August to Sept. 3. The ballot was selected in an open nomination process in which fans nominated their favorite properties. The nomination period ran from early November 2021 until July 2022. The best and most popular of the nominated properties were elevated to the ballot.
With about 65,000 people attending, and only 7,000 voting that means a whole lot of you didn’t vote. What’s wrong? You guys don’t have opinions? That doesn’t sound right to me. So if you didn’t get to vote this year, make sure you get in on this next year. Since it seems like a lot of people still don’t even know about the Dragon Awards I’m going to included both the nominees, and the winners. I didn’t have a choice I was super passionate about in each category, but in those cases I usually pick the author or property I like the most. Having two great Star Wars books to choose from was hard, but ultimately I think the better book won. Also, Timothy Zahn really deserved some kind of recognition for how great the last three Thrawn books were.
Someday I might look at getting a hotel room starting Wednesday night instead of waiting until Thursday. Anybody else remember when Dragon Con started on Friday? I’m sure plenty of people do, but it seems like a long time ago. Anyway, my roommates this year were the lovely Nicole and Ryan Cadaver. They had to work Thursday, and I couldn’t check into the room until they got there. Not a problem since that gave me time to drop my bags at the hotel, and grab my badge. Since media badges don’t come from the Sheraton I can’t comment on the line situation I heard so much about the first few days. Most of the people I spoke with personally understood the limitations the convention was under this year, and I know the few volunteers they had did the best they could. With badge secured, and the Cadavers a few hours away I decided to wander for a bit and maybe grab an early dinner. I ended up at the food court several time over the weekend because it wasn’t nearly as crowded as usual. Not much was though overall. I then snagged a delicious seltzer drink from the Hyatt, and let me just say that the canned drinks on offer this year were pretty great. I’ve really been enjoying seltzers when it’s warm outside. So I drank my refreshing seltzer and wandered around while I waited for everyone else to arrive or get situated. The very instant we got into our hotel room to get unpacked and arranged the lovely Oz started blowing us up. He needed a buddy to go with him to badge pickup. Since Dave and I were badged I went to meet him so we could buy around while the others got their badges. A few hours later we were all set, and ready for a dance party. The Variant Ball was going on, and seemed like a good way to pass the time until we had our Troublemaker viewing at eleven. There was a line to get in, but it really wasn’t bed. And in our con excited state we didn’t realize it wasn’t that bad because a whole lot of people weren’t there yet. Fun dancing time had to end so we could get to the American Sci-Fi Classics track room to watch Wilson’s movie about Dave. There were some technical problems beyond our control so we got started pretty late. And I really should start taking notes about the unscheduled stuff we do. The nights kind of start to run together. Was that the night we went to the Metro Diner? No, that was the night Noel led us to this year’s arcade location because he was the only one who knew where Agatha’s used to be off the top of his head. I was so sad not to have the arcade attached to my hotel this year, and the game assortment was definitely a bummer, but you just gotta roll with that stuff until we get through this mess. I really missed all the crazy Japanese games I couldn’t figure out how to play though.
Well it feels like a really long time since I’ve written anything. Oh wait, it’s been close to two years. Shortly after Dragon Con 2019 we started working on our plan to start the Execute Chapter 66 podcast, and that took a whole ton of my writing time. Reading a novel every other week is a bit more time consuming than watching a movie and saying something about it. You know what makes me want to start writing again? More Dragon Con! As weird as this year was it was still wonderful, and I am so glad I didn’t chicken out. I’m really happy to be back this year to give you the lowdown on the fun that was had, and how it went. If you didn’t go, you can live vicariously through me. If you did go, you can see what you might have missed (I mean none of us sees everything in any year) so you can plan for next year. All of my fingers and toes are crossed that things will be a little more normal next year. Here’s what I won’t do – get political, give my uneducated opinion on whether or not we should have had an in-person Dragon Con, or criticize what anyone chose to do for their own sense of safety. What I will do – talk about how well the protective measures taken by Dragon Con worked (spoiler alert: pretty darn well from everything I saw), let you know about all of the cool things that I saw, and encourage you to get vaccinated so that we can loosen up these restrictions next year. Masks suck, getting sick sucks, and getting someone else sick simply because you’re selfish really really sucks. So don’t suck, get vaccinated. This will probably be broken up into a few parts because there is an awful lot to talk about.
We’ve all got Star Wars fever right now. I kind of have it all the time if I’m honest. Despite the initial bad reviews of The Rise of Skywalker I’m all in. It’s just that my life in retail hell won’t allow me to see the movie this weekend. I hope to see it sometime next week, but who knows. Until after New Year’s Day my schedule sucks. So I won’t be on the podcast Dave, Chad, Arian, and Schweck are recording this weekend. I take comfort in the fact that we will be able to start recording our podcast about Star Wars books shortly after the new year starts though. In the meantime, to help you all get even more hyped for the new movie I’ve complied a list of the best Star Wars games I’ve played. Not the best of all time, but the best I’ve played. Some of these were arcade only, some are from rather old consoles, but don’t let that stop you from picking up any Star Wars game that makes you happy to kill some time.
Someone at work was trying to talk to me about this year’s Oprah’s Favorite Things list and using it to do their holiday shopping. I could not make her understand how much I don’t care what Oprah does or doesn’t like. I’m a nerd and I don’t need whatever throw blanket or lounge pajamas she likes this year. Or any year for that matter. I checked around for lists of gifts for nerds, but most of those had too much un-fun tech stuff. I kind of want a robot vacuum, but I definitely don’t want one for Christmas. I decided to put my own geeky list together for anyone who needs help picking out a present for their favorite dork. Okay so this is a list of things that I really want for myself, but I think a lot of this stuff is universal. I’m not getting paid to advertise anything here. I just included links in case any of these goodies strike your fancy.
I did not jump on Disney+ the instant it became available. I feel wrong for this, but I don’t know that I’ll be getting it for foreseeable future. I’m not as excited about it as I probably should be, and I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Taking a long hard look at the launch line up did explain a few of my misgivings to me though. The list is way too long for me to copy here so I’ll just throw up a link if you want to check it out. Strangely, the biggest thing to jump out at me was that I never knew the Brave Little Toaster went to Mars. Where the hell was I when this historic space mission went down?
At first I thought maybe I wasn’t the right demographic. I don’t have kids, and I don’t want to watch Cinderella. I felt like I might be too old for it because I’m not interested in Lizzie McGuire. Then again, maybe I’m too young since I don’t want to watch Darby O’Gill and the Little People either. I am also not a fan of any Pixar movie. I’m a monster, I know. They do certainly have things I like. Marvel, The Simpsons, and Star Wars are all things I include in my fandom. Here’s the thing though. For now FXX shows around 6 episodes of The Simpsons five nights a week. I’m not sure how that will change with Disney+ taking over the territory. So I can see The Simpsons pretty much anytime I want without paying anything extra. If I see that they’ll be taken off FXX then I’ve still got time to get some of my favorites onto my DVR. I own every Marvel movie I’d want to watch again, and if I do get a wild hair up my ass for something I don’t already own my father has every single one of them on his computer hard drive. I can get a copy of Iron Man 2 pretty easily if that desire ever comes up. It probably won’t, but it’s there if that were to happen. Would I like to watch some varying degrees of awesome X-Men cartoons again? You bet, but not so much that I’m getting yet another streaming service for them. As for the newer Marvel cartoons I’m not invested. I’ve watched a few on Disney XD, but none of them really grabbed me.
Continue reading “I’m Not Getting Disney+…Yet”
No, it’s not some stupid new band. Or even some stupid old band. To be honest it does kind of sound like the name of some 70’s super group. But, no. The Corman-Poe cycle refers to a series of films in the 60’s by Roger Corman and based on works of Edgar Allan Poe. There’s a very good reason that I’m talking about it today though. Other than it being Halloween today, of course.
The other week Dave had me thinking about what got me into horror. Not just the things that I love now, but stuff from when I was a kid. I’ve spoken before about my ultra-permissive parents. I was pretty much allowed to watch whatever I wanted because I wasn’t easy to scare. Thinking back on it this might have come from the fact that by the time I was 10 (or however old I was when I started picking out scary stuff to watch) I had already read a lot of creepy books. My father always had tons of books around. While he wasn’t into horror novels he did have things like Lovecraft, Wells, and Edgar Allan Poe. I read all of them, but the Poe stories stuck with me. So much so that some of the first horror movies I ever saw were the Roger Corman films based on Poe’s stories.
Now most people think of Roger Corman in relation to schlock B-movies of the 50’s or the SyFy schlock of the 2000’s-the nows. There was this lovely time in the 60’s though where he produced and directed some really good schlock featuring Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Basil Rathbone, and many other notable actors of the time. I was drawn in by the stories, but I stayed for the acting. I’m sure you can understand why. If you haven’t seen them I highly recommend you give at least one of them a shot. Clearly Corman and Price worked well together as they went on to do 7 films based (sometimes VERY loosely)on the works of Poe. They aren’t scary, but they are creepy and fun.
Continue reading “The Corman-Poe Cycle”