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SMOF News, volume 2, issue 47
Notes from Comic-Con and NASFiC.
Comic-Con International Went Fine
After weeks of dire preditions about the effect of the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes on Comic-Con International, with it losing much of its Hollywood presence due to strikers not being available to promote struck work, the event arrived last weekend.
Variety reports that people still seem to be coming to Comic-Con for the comics:
Ted Abenheim, president of the LGBTQ comics advocacy organization Prism, said that SDCC moved the group’s panels into larger rooms for 2023 — and they were “standing room only.”
“I was very pleased to see the turnout,” he said.
Several independent publishers told Variety that they’d also seen a noticeable increase in the number of people coming to the sprawling showroom floor.
Likewise, TheWrap notes that dealers felt like it was a return to the past:
Once upon a time, Artists Alley — the rows of booths where creators of all stripes but especially indie cartoonists chat with fans and (hopefully) sell some stuff — sat close to the middle of the main floor, making it an impossible-to-ignore symbol of why Comic-Con even exists.
Comic-Con International eventually relocated Artists Alley to the far eastern side of the main floor. Right on the other side of a wall from Hall H. Fans still visited but as one vendor told TheWrap on Saturday, it felt like being relegated to a “bargain bin.” With major brands hogging the prime real estate in the middle, it got harder and harder to make a profit, let alone break even for Artist Alley creators.
As for 2023? Rachel Reed, who operates Reed’s Custom Crafts, smiled like a Cheshire cat when asked how things have been this week.
“Nothing has been better for Artists Alley than the strike,” she told TheWrap. Reid acknowledges that this might just be because SDCC passes are too expensive for most fans to discard if the celebrity lineup isn’t good. Nevertheless, they showed up, and Reid joked, “I can pay my mortgage this month” as a result.
Vendor Tony Sacarello, of Triangle Cards and T-Shirts, surmised that fans without a full schedule of panels had plenty of occasion to shop this year.
“I think people are finding out that maybe they do want to spend a lot more time on the floor, finding things,” he said. “Thursday was gangbusters. It was nuts.”
The Times and TheWrap both note that crowds outside the con, of people without Comic-Con tickets going to the coattail events that have sprung up all around Comic-Con in recent years, were noticeably reduced.
Despite the pullout of nearly every major studio, from Marvel to Warner Bros., fans still flocked to San Diego Comic-Con and by TheWrap’s account, were unbothered by the lack of major stars.
“If there is one single summation,” the producer continued, “it would be that Comic-Con is now too big to fail, and that Hollywood needs Comic-Con more than Comic-Con needs Hollywood.”
In fact, with better sales for the artists and less work to do managing the line for Hall H, traditionalists may argue that Comic-Con needs Hollywood to be absent more often.
Comic-Con News Tidbits
Dexerto reported that Comic-Con has announced an official cruise, to take place sometime in 2025.
People covered the launch of the Congressional Arts Caucus at Comic-Con.
The San Diego Union-Tribune noted that building wraps are still illegal in most of San Diego and also included a guide on where to find all of them.
NASFiC and Worldcon at Pemmi-Con
Pemmi-Con, the 15th North American Science Fiction Convention, was held in Winnipeg, Manitoba last weekend. The Buffalo, New York bid to hold next year’s NASFiC, the sole official bid, won with 129 votes out of 139 cast. There were 4 votes for No Preference, 1 for None of the Above, and 5 write-ins.
The 16th NASFiC is called Buffalo NASFiC 2024, and will be held July 18-21. Initial Guests of Honor are Alan Dean Foster, Nilah Magruder, Phil & Kaja Folio, and Tony & Suford Lewis.
The complete NASFiC Business meeting, including the vote announcement and a brief Q&A, is available on YouTube.
Among the Worldcon bid tables was LA in 2026, which has now moved past the exploratory stage and is bidding in earnest. Exact dates and location are currently being negotiated. LA joins an existing bid for Cairo in 2026.
Retro World Expo (Hartford, Connecticut, August 26-27) has added Retro Rick, Bob Neal, and Diamond Feit as guests.
FanX Salt Lake (Salt Lake City, Utah, September 21-23) has added Alison Doody as a guest.
Weekend of July 28-30
NärCon 2023, Linköping, Sweden
Mythcon 52: The Mythic, the Fantastic, and the Alien (symposium), Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
OzCon International (Oz series), Pomona, California, USA
Costume College 2023: Cosplay: Fairytales, Fiction, and Fantasy, Los Angeles, California, USA
Ropecon: Menneisyys ja Tulevaisuus (gaming), Helsinki, Finland
World Boardgaming Championships, Seven Springs, Pennsylvania, USA
Continuum (gaming), Oadby, UK
PretzCon 2023 (gaming), Omaha, Nebraska, USA
Southern-Fried Gaming Expo (video games), Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Epic.LAN (LAN gaming), Wolverhampton, UK
Maple Gel Con (Tales video game series), Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Dream Convention (anime), Austin, Texas, USA
Otakon (anime), Washington, DC, USA
AnimeFest, Dallas, Texas, USA
Tokyo in Tulsa: Worlds Collide (anime), Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA
Anime Com Fest, Kingston, Jamaica
Wasabicon PDX (anime), Portland, Oregon, USA
Dream Con (anime), Arlington, Texas, USA
Dokidokon (anime), Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA
AnimeIowa, Coralville, Iowa, USA
Anime Impulse Bay Area, San Mateo, California, USA
New World Comic Con 8, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA
Alias Entertainment Expo: Rise of the Dragon (media), Tunapuna, Trinidad & Tobago
Corpus Christi Comic Con, Corpus Christi, Texas, USA
GalaxyCon Raleigh (media), Raleigh, North Carolina, USA
TERRIFICON (media), Uncasville, Connecticut, USA
Tampa Bay Comic Convention, Tampa, Florida, USA
UK Comic Con, Manchester, UK
MegaCon Live Manchester (media), Manchester, UK
GalaCon 2023 (My Little Pony), Waiblingen, Germany
Weekend of August 4-6
Sci-con2023 (60th Japanese national sf convention), Urawa, Japan
AMA-CON, Amarillo, Texas, USA
ArmadilloCon 2023, Austin, Texas, USA
PulpFest 2023, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
LeakyCon (Harry Potter), Chicago, Illinois, USA
Cosplay World, Richmond, Virginia, USA
Surrey Steampunk Convivial, Epsom, UK
Reffurence (anthropomorphic), Antwerp, Belgium
Furry Siesta 2023 (anthropomorphic), Dallas, Texas, USA
CanFURence 2023 (anthropomorphic), Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Gen Con 2023 (gaming), Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
StarCon 2023 (gaming), Star Island, New Hampshire, USA
Pixel Expo: Level 2 (video games), Perth, Australia
Fragapalooza 2023 (LAN gaming), Leduc, Alberta
Advík (anime), Prague, Czechia
AnimagiC (anime), Mannheim, Germany
Kentokyocon (anime), Lexington, Kentucky, USA
JoMoCon (anime), Joplin, Missouri, USA
KO+Con 2023 Isekai (anime), Grand Prairie, Texas, USA
Mid City Micro-Con (comics), Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA
Really Cool Comic Con, Flint, Michigan, USA
Bell County Comic Con, Belton, Texas, USA
Fan Expo Boston (media), Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Comic Con Honolulu, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA
MonkeyCon (media), Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA
Enid Comic Con, Enid, Oklahoma, USA
Monster-Mania 55 (horror media), Cherry Hill, New Jersey, USA
STLV: 57-Year Mission (Star Trek), Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Weekend of August 11-13
Geek Out at Staten Island, Staten Island, New York, USA
Wild Prairie Fur Con: Adventures in Furry Land (anthropomorphic), Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Key City Steampunk Convention, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, USA
Wild Game Roundup, Austin, Texas, USA
Game On Expo, Phoenix, Arizona, USA
GameX 5.0 (video games), Mississauga, Ontario, USA
Long Island Retro Gaming Expo (video games), Garden City, New York, USA
Grand Tribunal (Ars Magica RPG), Cheltenham, UK
AniNite 23 (anime), Vienna, Austria
Otakukon (anime), Harare, Zimbabwe
Otakuthon (anime), Montréal, Québec
AniBash (anime), Rochester, New York, USA
Abunai!: Summer Magic Academia (anime), Veldhoven, Netherlands
Tokonatsu (anime), Henlow, UK
RakuCon Manchester (anime), Manchester, UK
Queen City Anime Convention, Charlotte, North Carolina, USA
Anime-zing!, Davenport, Iowa, USA
MatsuriCon 2023 (anime), Columbus, Ohio, USA
Fan Expo Chicago (media), Rosemont, Illinois, USA
Dublin Comic Con, Dublin, Ireland
Station Unity 2023 (media), National Harbor, Maryland, USA
Flame Con (LGBT+ media), New York City, New York, USA
Starfleet International Conference 2023 (Star Trek), online
TFNation (Transformers), Birmingham, UK
Everfree NW (My Little Pony), Bellevue, Washington, USA
Mid-week event: SFRA 2023: Disruptive Imaginations (symposium), Dresden, Germany
Weekend of August 18-20
Epic Nerd Camp, Darlington, Maryland, USA
DenFur (anthropomorphic), Denver, Colorado, USA
Dragonflight Gamecon 43, Bellevue, Washington, USA
Game & Party Con, Jacksonville, Florida, USA
Coulee Con 2023 (gaming), La Crosse, Wisconsin, USA
Lone Star Game Expo, Grapevine, Texas, USA
Field of Games, Silverstone, UK
Draconicon (gaming), Tel Aviv, Israel
HistoriKC Fest (miniatures gaming), Overland Park, Kansas, USA
Nashcon 2023 (miniatures gaming), Nashville, Tennessee, USA
SDHist Con East (historical games), Newport, Rhode Island, USA
Superstar Anime, Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA
Conjutsu (anime), Fairfax, Virginia, USA
Anime Revolution, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Colossalcon Texas (anime), Round Rock, Texas, USA
Shikkaricon (anime), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Anime Town Louisiana 2023, Gonzales, Louisiana, USA
Soda City Comic Con, Columbia, South Carolina, USA
Kelowna ComiCon, Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada
Hub City Comic Con, Lubbock, Texas, USA
Creation Charlotte (media), Concord, North Carolina, USA
Stars of Time (media), Weston-super-Mare, UK
Weekend of August 25-27
Bubonicon 54: Across the Multiverse, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA
Dni Fantastyki, Wrocław, Poland
Camp Feral!: Business Casual (anthropomorphic), Algonquin Park, Ontario
Furrydelphia (anthropomorphic), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
IndyFurCon 2023: Mission: Impawssible (anthropomorphic), Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Weekend at the Asylum (steampunk), Lincoln, UK
Northeast Ohio Steampunk Festival, Burton, Ohio, USA
FallCon 36: Dice, People & Meeples (gaming), Calgary, Alberta, Canada
LincCon the 13th (gaming), Merrill, Wisconsin, USA
MaricopaCon X (gaming), Tempe, Arizona, USA
Tacticon (gaming), Aurora, Colorado, USA
Tabletop Scotland (gaming), Perth, UK
Brussels Games Festival, Brussels, Belgium
Norwich Games Con, Norwich, UK
Retro World Expo (gaming), Hartford, Connecticut, USA
Great Escape on the Lake (gaming), Bradford, New York, USA
2D Con 2023: Another World (video games), Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
Windblume (Genshin Impact), Frisco, Texas, USA
TennoCon (Warframe), London, Ontario, Canada
Kokorokon (anime), Collinsville, Illinois, USA
Hikari (anime), Poznań, Poland
Kin-Yoobi Con (anime), Union City, California, USA
PopCult Anime Con, Waltham, Massachusetts, USA
My Hero Convention: Florida (anime), Fort Walton Beach, Florida, USA
Ganbatte 2023 (anime), Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
Fan Expo Canada (media), Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Jemcon 2023: Rockin’ Romance in Rhode Island (Jem and the Holograms), Warwick, Rhode Island, USA
Fandom Fest 2023 (media), Schenectady, New York, USA
Fairfax Comic Con, Chantilly, Virginia, USA
My-Con (media), Orlando, Florida, USA
Fandom Fest 2023 (media), Schenectady, New York, USA
Solar sail swarms (The Register)
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