Toronto Comicon

Toronto Comicon 2012 preview

Conventions are becoming increasingly popular congregation spots for fans of the bizarre and the fantastical. Many see conventions as Mecca for the socially malnourished, but there's a lot of fun to be had for those who have even the slightest interest in science-fiction, fantasy, horror, or adventure fiction. Even at smaller venues like this weekend's Hobbystar-hosted March Comicon, there are always crazy and cool people to meet and sights to see. You just have to know where to look.

Care for a quick guide of what to see? Read on.


Actors, artists, writers, and other heroes of the nerd world are attracted to conventions big and small like moths to an endearingly awkward flame. This year is no exception, bringing in the likes of Bruce Boxleitner, Revenge of the Nerds alumni Robert Carradine and Curtis Armstrong, Charisma Carpenter, Tia Carrere, and the venerable John de Lancie. It doesn't end there. Voice actors such as Spike Spencer and Christian Potenza are expected to make appearances, and booths will be populated by comic book veterans like Jeff Lemire, Michael Cho, and Richard Pace.


Ah, cosplay. Ordinary folk have a nasty tendency of laughing at the geeks in their homemade battle maid outfits, but I find them fun to look at. Whether sporting costumes bought online or made at home, you can't help but admire the craftsmanship that goes into putting the uniforms and armour together. It's not surprising to see bands of cosplayers representing the same series or franchise gathering in some corner of the con or another. Organized geek groups such as Steampunk Canada, The Toronto Browncoats, and Star Wars cosplayers (see photos from last year) The 501st Legion are expected to be stalking the floors as well.


Arguably, my favourite part of Fan Expo is meeting all of the talented folk in Artist's Alley. For those new to the convention circuit, Artist's Alley is usually where artists local and international gather to show off their skills with the pen, the marker, and the paintbrush. This is an ideal place to not only meet some of the more creative guests at a convention, but also a place to buy original prints, paintings, comics and other goodies.


Yes, people still play Magic. And, yes, there are Magic: The Gathering play-offs, sometimes on grand scales. The March Comicon will host a massive Magic: The Gathering tournament, with the competitors battling for a chance to win up to $2000 and a number of other prizes! Interested parties can pre-register here.


Ever wanted to become a voice actor? Care for quick art lessons? Want to know the ins-and-outs of the entertainment industry? Conventions are a good place to learn about such matters. A number of how-to workshops and Q&A sessions will be run this year and hosted by industry professionals.


No, seriously. Not all fanboys and fangirls hole themselves up in apartments sharing Monty Python and Portal jokes. There are those among the geeks who enjoy the nightlife as much as other people do. To prove it, counter-culture blog G33KPRON will be hosting the Toronto Comicon Kick-Off Party at the Tattoo Rock Parlour on March 9th from 10 PM to 2 AM. Drink specials, guest appearances, prizes, and nerd burlesque (don't ask me) await those who want to join in on the fun.

You can find out more about this weekend's Toronto Comicon here. Single-day tickets cost only twenty dollars, but a weekend pass is only thirty dollars for those interested.

Writing by Robert Iveniuk

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