Dragon Con has become so embiggened over the years that Thursday, the day that used to be for checking in and kicking back, has now become as busy and populated as Friday used to be. It’s not an official con day — yet — but there were a few things for fans arriving early to do.
For full disclosure, I am not in any way affiliated with Zipcar except as a customer. That being said, I would be remiss if I omitted a ringing endorsement for them. I reserved a Nissan Versa, and saw on the @ZipcarATL Twitter that they’d added a number of cars specifically for the con. (How well do they know their Dragon Con customers? They ran a blurb on their app about the Versa being the same model that Hiro and Ando drove in Heroes.) It was so easy to pick up my gear and get it to the hotel. And the car’s home parking spot was one block from where I needed to be for registration.
Registration, while we’re on the subject, has worked out many of the old bugs. Due to back problems, I have to get my badge through disability services, but my roommates all reported a quick, smooth experience, with more time spent on going from the Sheraton to the Hilton, than waiting in line. This makes for a 6000% improvement over the 5+ hour lines for pre-registration in previous years. Yes, really! I consulted the boyfriend for the math.
The Con itself began coming to life on Thursday as well. Of course there are the cosplayers who show up for registration in costume (shout out to the picture perfect ATLA Toph Bei Fong I saw on my way to check in), but there were even a few workshops and panels on Thursday night. None were my cup of tea, though.
Laura Harcourt, WWAC News Editor, and I are playing text tag. We’ll find each other.
Friday was a slow, easy day. I set it aside specifically to hit the artists floor and to do one of my two cosplay outfits. I reacquainted myself with creators I knew like Gina Biggs (Red String, Love Not Found and the NSFW Filthy Figments), Michael “Mookie” Terracciano (Dominic Deegan, Star Power), and got to shake hands with Thom Zahler (Love and Capes), Drew Green, (Lotus for Help) and Jeremy Whitley (Princeless, My Little Pony, Illegal). All the pros were bright-eyed, welcoming, and happy to talk.
My boyfriend dressed as Steven Universe and got love from fans of every age. My costume, Connie, from the same show, didn’t fare so well, much to my dismay. I had to say one of her lines from “Bubble Buddies” to jog one fan’s memory. Another guessed every character except Connie. In fairness to my bruised fangirl feelings, Connie has been in only 3 episodes and the first season isn’t over yet. Maybe if I’d had the time to make a Lion prop, it would have helped. My day was made by meeting a Garnet cosplayer who recognized me as Connie immediately.
The rest of the day was spent admiring cosplay and being grateful for the air conditioning.
The one thing that marred the day wasn’t even my own experience. On our way to the elevators early, I encountered a Spider-Woman cosplayer. I asked if she’d had any requests to pose like the Manera cover that caused such controversy. I had expected for some reason that she’d answer “no”, and found myself wincing sympathetically when she grimaced and said she had been asked several times. She said she declined on grounds of it being anatomically impossible. If I run into her again, I’ll see if she’ll consent to talk more about cosplay and creepers.