Review Publication of
Motor City Comic Con
Convention Highlights and News for May 15– May 17
Michael & Jennifer Combs
Level Zero Media
This year, Motor City Comic Con celebrated its 25 year anniversary of bringing comic and media guests to the motor city by bringing what is to be considered the best guest list in its history. With stars such as William Shatner, Karl Urban, Ernie Hudson, Jason David Frank and John Barrowman, the atmosphere was charged with excitement as soon as press and early badge holders showed up on Friday morning. Lines had been forming outside the Suburban Showplace Collection hours before the start and many were already in costume ready to show off their renditions of all sorts of characters.
On Friday, it was hard to not notice the line extending around both sides of the building. Advanced ticket holders were given one line to stand in that proceeded around the east side of the building while those wanting to buy tickets the same day were wrapped around the west side of the building. Approximately 30 minutes before doors open, the lines had made it all the way back to the back of the building, where vendors, press, guests and more were filing into the building for setup. In my history of covering this event, I will say that I have never seen such a huge gathering for a single day.
The Convention opened up all of the halls in the building this year and even had panels scheduled in the newly added Hyatt Hotel area beside the convention center. Rooms were setup for Anime Programming as well as for Card Game events which always seemed to have people in them watching or playing passionately. While Fridays panel lineup wasn’t the flashiest schedule from guests, the highlight had to be a panel with Chris Claremont, the original story line creator for the X-Men and the creator of characters like Kitty Pryde, Cable, Gambit & Mystique just to name a few. His characters and story lines were critical in shaping the X-Men and Marvel into what it is today. The small hall that Mr. Claremont was staged in was just enough to cater all the fans that came to listen to him and ask questions. Many fans enjoyed his stories and outlooks he had on the past, present and future of Marvel as well as his work on the new Nightcrawler Comic.
Saturday brought with it a new level of challenges as the attendance skyrocketed as families began to flock to the convention. There wasn’t a single vendor on the floor that didn’t have people looking at their wares or looking though the offerings of their area. Inquiries were plentiful for comics and apparel that people could get signed by the guests. Storm Troopers, Droids, Jedi and Sith were walking the convention floor from the 501st Legion and Rebel Legion helping to charge the atmosphere more and more. Video Game tournaments were ongoing from a mobile gaming trailer near the back of the convention. Children’s eyes were wide eyed as they saw others dressed up as their favorite characters walk by them. Parents and Grandparents taking pictures of their family next to costumers that dressed in characters anywhere from Daft Punk & Doctor Who to X-Men and Spiderman. The panel lineup intensified as the day Headlined Karl Urban & William Shatner before a 25 year Anniversary Party that night.
Sunday came quickly and many of the visitors and guest who had passes for all 3 days were starting to show signs of sadness as they knew the last day of the convention was here. Many had partied hard the previous night at the 25 year bash which saw Toyota donate to help for Heroes; a charity to support comic book professionals who are fighting cancer. The showroom floor was still packed, as last minute visitors were showing up in mass and looking for the last minute deals any of the vendors may be doing for the last day of the convention. Panels included Bob Camp; the Creative Director of Ren and Stimpy, Jason David Frank, and the always funny panels of John Barrowman. All the major panels were packed so much that people who showed up after the room was full had to wait outside for a slim chance of room being available to see and hear the guests. A major saying from fans were “Thank You” to the guests for coming to the convention as some never believed they would get the chance to see, let alone ask a question to some of the stars. We had the opportunity to interview a few of the guests but a majority of the interviews available were done before the convention started and were by the local television crews that were covering the event.
Overall, Motor City Comic Con delivered an excellent line up for their 2014 show that catered to the fan boy/fan girl that lurks inside a lot of people. While not on the scale of many of the nationally known conventions, this year’s convention saw a good attendance, great panels and great organization by the team at Motor City Conventions. While we were unable to get interviews of some of the high profile guests we did enjoy meeting them, talking with fans, seeing the cosplayers, and watching the panels. If Motor City Conventions continues working hard to draw names like these in the future and continues building their attendance, then it is this writer’s opinion that this convention could be a major stop for guests in on the convention circuit in the future.
Motor City Comic Con Grades for 2014
Rating the convention from a scale of 1 (Worse) to 100 (Best)
Overall – 82 of 100