Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Sailing The Sea's of Geeks

So this year was my first venture to Auckland Armageddon, and what a time to go. Totally awesome 3 days. I flew up from Wellington on Friday, and once settled took a walk to the event as a test to see how long it was going to take. 25 minutes as it turned out, with a McDonalds nicely placed in the middle (or so it seemed. Don't go to Greenlane McD's for breakfast, all the incompetant people work at that time and you'll be standing in a 2 person que for 10 minutes...).

I rolled up to the event at 8am (doors opened 9am), to be faced with an already-massive line. That didn't last long for me though, since it turned out 95% of the people waiting didn't have tickets, so I pretty much got near the front of the ticket-holders line and when the doors did open us smart ones walked straight in. Shortest line-up of ticket holders I've ever seen, I guess it's trendy in Auckland to not plan ahead.

The venue was HUGE. Such a good setup for the event. Plenty of fun stuff to do outside too.

Hey, almost like Disneyland:

Stuff to do inside too:

Everyone probably took a photo of this, and why not since it rules:

First order of business for the day (other than running around looking at all the cool stuff) was the comic guests who arrived at 10:30. Nicola Scott had to cancel last minute, which I was initially bummed about since she was the one I most wanted to see (she was cool at the Wellington event a couple of years ago). Wound up not being an issue, as the 4 guests they had was plenty. I actually hadn't noticed the Matthew Clark (Outsiders/ Doom Patrol) was attending, but he did and I wound up dropping $370 on his art. First up a Firestorm sketch:

That's such a cool drawing, one of the best Firestorm pieces I have. He also had a huge stack of art with him, and I couldn't resist. Picked up 2 pages from Doom Patrol #2:

Amusing side note: I had these layed out in my hotel room, and today when I checked out the lady on reception, who had happened to clean the room, commented that my "art was very beautiful". Ugh, it killed me to admit that it wasn't me that did it ha (I can draw like that in my dreams maybe...)

I got a bunch of comics signed, here's one from each:

(L to R: Sienkiewicz, Clark, Rucka, David)
Peter David was also selling his scripts which damn it, not enough writers do because I love that stuff.

Bill Sienkiewicz's page prices were a bit steep for my budget, but I still forked out $150 for a sketch:

Sweeeeeeeeeeettttt. And with that, my budget of $500 for the weekend was blown already. Still, the comic stuff is what I came for. Having said that, I didn't attend any of the comic panels, opting instead for the Stargate panels. Bill would've been cool to hear, but I don't follow the other 3 creators so wasn't too worried (plus, y'know, Stargate Atlantis)

I suppose this is as good a time to say it as any: I would go gay for Jason Momoa. He was really really cool. Very likeable and funny. My camera sucks, but if you didn't fork out for a gold or silver pass, this is a little of what you missed:
Jason and Joe Flannigan playing off each other was great (as was Paul McGillion, but my shots with him didn't come out). Real chemistry between them all and possibly the best panel I've seen.

If you're ever in a small panel setting with Michael Winslow, DO NOT leave halfway though and then come back a few minutes later like one woman did, because he will make jokes about you the whole time you're gone.

Oh hey, I mentioned the queue earlier, which apparently was 2 hours long for most of the day. I can believe that, since this was taken around midday:

...and that was nowhere near the main entrance. Crazy bloody Aucklanders :p

Sunday & Monday
Queue problems were sorted by opening the gates early. I rolled up at 8am to find noone waiting (which was actually a little disconcerting at first). Was cool though, I sat in the outdoor area and had breakfast.

Yep, ghost town

This year I thought it could be cool to get the actors to sign things other than the standard glossy photo. There's Stargate toys, so I went with those:

I'm not organised enough to try finding Farscape toys (if they exist), so I went with the comic instead, which was a good choice since Gigi Edgley didn't know about it:

aaaand I went with a couple of standard photos to round things off


The Irredeemable Shag said...

Dude! What an awesome trip! Sounds like you really had a great time! How many attendees did the convention have? Just curious. Sounds like it was fantastic - Sienkiewicz, Clark, Rucka, David, Flannigan, Momoa, Winslow, McGillion. What a great guest list!

I'm TOTALLY JEALOUS of your Clark and Sienkiewicz Firestorm sketches. Those are beautiful! You're a lucky devil (and brilliant to ask for them).

The Irredeemable Shag

Jon said...

Total attendance for the 3 days was 40,000 although it never really felt like it. Easy access to most of the guests, the longest queue was for the single money machine ;)

Sienkiewicz I expected to be awesome, but Matthew Clark surprised me with his sketch, I think I actually like it a bit more than Bill's (y'know, just a tiny bit heh).

Doug said...

Awesome stuff Jon! Mind if I link over on my Doom Patrol blog?

Jon said...

Hey Doug
Sure, you're most welcome. I'll go you one better though, drop me an email at yourdeadgroom[nospam]@[nospam]gmail.com and I'll send you full-size scans of the pages if you're interested :)