Where to start with MegaCon Tampa Bay! This is the first expansion of MegaCon (now owned by Informa) convention shows into the Bay area and was also my first convention being on the attendee side of the table. Having usually been on the artist side for MegaCon for the last 7 years, I can tell you, it was a nice change of pace and a chance to mingle and walk around freely. David Tennant of Doctor Who (and Broadchurch) fame was a major draw for many people (myself included) as this was his first convention in the state of Florida. Daleks, Cybermen, Tardis dresses (even an Optimus Time) and other whovian fandom clamored for a spot in line waiting to meet the 10th Doctor.
That is what really brought the crowds to MegaCon Tampa Bay this year; the stellar line-up of guests. Aside from David Tennant and Billie Piper we were treated to a solid mix of guests from across the gamut of media and television. Brent Spiner and Levar Burton from Star Trek, the inconceivable Wallace Shawn from Princess Bride, and Matthew Lewis the much grown-up Neville Longbottom of Harry Potter. The guest list went on but they had the media side covered in spades.
Straight from the drawing board, my biggest surprise of the show was seeing Rob Liefeld as a comic guest! Best known for creating the irreverent Deadpool, as well as Youngblood. (On a side note if you haven’t seen The Image Revolution, it’s a great look into the history of image and it also not only gives you a better respect for Liefeld, but also how funny he is.) The rest of the comic guests are a nice mix of industry pros like Greg Rucka and Chuck Dixon, and local up and coming pros like Elliot Fernandez and Austin Janowsky. Convention staples the 501st were in attendance as well as the CAT5 Ghostbusters squad and an array of cosplay and tattoo artists and guests to round out the convention floor with Artist Alley. Tons of amazing artists in Artist Alley this show, and although the floor was a little tough to navigate, I’m sure it’s just growing pains being in a new location. All in all, I’d say they had a steady first show. It’s tough to gauge these kinds of things with more than one major show hitting a city per year, but I’m excited to see what next year brings!