Last weekend, superheroes, sci-fi stars, and voice actors joined the politicians in Washington, DC for Awesome Con. Held on June 16-18, 2017, once again the show was held in the sprawling landscape of the Walter E. Washington Convention Center.
While the large convention center can be a bit confusing, its size is essential for the growing convention, which saw a significant uptick in attendance from last year’s numbers. Thankfully, Awesome Con provided a detailed show guide to assist attendees in navigating the landscape of the building and convention events. Granted, you had to find your way to registration first – which was a bit of an odyssey – but after that, it was smooth sailing.
Celebrity guests included David Tennant and Catherine Tate (Doctor Who), Felicia Day (The Guild), Charlotte Flair (pro wrestler), Clare Kramer (Buffy the Vampire Slayer), Khary Payton and Cooper Andrews (The Walking Dead), Count Gore De Vol (horror host), Edgar Wright (director, Shaun of the Dead), Eliza Dushku (Dollhouse), Garrett Wang (Star Trek: Voyager), Jason David Frank (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers), John Barrowman (Torchwood), Kel Mitchell (Kenan & Kel), Phil LaMarr (Futurama), Zoie Palmer and Rachel Skarsten (Lost Girl), Sean Schemmel (Dragon Ball Z), and Wil Wheaton (Star Trek: The Next Generation).
Comics guests were Stan Lee (Marvel character creator), Bryan Tillman (Ninja Empire), Carolyn Belefski (French Fry Club), Dan Parent (Archie), Daniel Govar (Amazing Spider-Man), Evelyn Kriete (Hullabaloo), Greg Capullo (Batman), Jeff Shultz (Betty and Veronica), Jerry Gaylord (Fanboys Vs Zombies), Magdalene Visaggio (Kim & Kim), Sabine Rich (Ancient Dreams), Scott Snyder (Batman), Tony Kordos (Batman and Robin Eternal), and many others.
Being that it was Father’s Day weekend, the convention sold an “Awesome Dad” shirt along with their other merchandise.
Comic dealers and stores were set up across the con floor. Some sold key back issues from the Golden, Silver, and Bronze Age giving collectors the chance to take home some notable titles. Many had dozens upon dozens of long boxes filled with Modern and Bronze back issues as well as trade paperbacks, graphic novels, and hardcover editions.
Vendors sold everything from corsets and steampunk accessories to graphic t-shirts, purses, and jewelry. Several stands were brimming with Funko Pops and items from their Dorbz and Mystery Mini lines. A few served gaming needs with board games, consoles, and even some vintage cartridges.
Awesome Con provided a wide variety of entertainment events all weekend.
Pride Alley presented by the con and Geek Out included a section of Artist Alley and panels throughout the weekend for the LGBTQ community, such as representation in fiction, stopping Queerbaiting, history of LGBTQ in comics and TV, and exploring creators of gay and lesbian comics.
Future Con presented by Science Channel hosted panels and events on the solar system, the moon, NASA, technology, theories on the universe, artificial gravity, nanotech, dinosaurs of the Antarctic, black holes, robots, and more.
The Backlot stage hosted the Mandalorian Mercs, the 501st, a panel on maintaining wigs, fight choreography, a lightsaber show, and costume contest.
There was open video gaming and tabletop play throughout the weekend, Q&As with celebrity guests, and sci-fi speed dating. Panels featured topics like giant robots, directors, Doctor Who, worldbuilding for sci-fi and fantasy, YA literature, spotlight on Asian creators, history of dragons in film, filmmaking, diversity in comics, online reviewing, comics and graphic novels in education, pro wrestling, reimaging fairy tales, and lots of others.
Cosplay events included historical costuming, intro to foam, cross-play, thrift store and closet cosplay, photography, and makeup.
Awesome Con Jr. had plenty of cool events for kids with paper crafting, childhood challenge, Building a Better Bat Cave, LEGO play, Superhero University, learning about stories from a storyboard artist, werewolf workshop, alien art, and more.
It was another good year at Awesome Con with buying and collecting options for comics and nerd culture fans, a variety of comics and media guests, and tons programing. The show was only three day long but attendees could easily have spent a week enjoying the events, meeting guests, and making fun purchases.
The show may have just ended, but Awesome Con is already planning for next year. The 2018 edition of the DC convention will be held a bit earlier in the year on March 30-April 1.
Check out our In the Limelight section to view more photos from Awesome Con.