A few months ago, we learned of a new convention happening in Ontario, California calling itself Comic-Con Revolution. Since its first announcement, Revolution added more and more intriguing names and seemed to be gaining traction with a strong social media campaign. We sent Jeremy from the Rolling 20’s to get a feeling for the convention and find out if a new legend began in this Los Angeles fringe-town.
Registration ran very well for a fledgling convention. I had the inference that the convention paid attention to the number of people pre-registering and adjusted their plan accordingly. They did open the door a bit late, but when they did, they had the equipment ready to scan bar codes on phones and printed forms to confirm their status and get them a wristband. This system may need to be adjusted when the convention moves to a multi-day schedule, but Comic-Con Revolution was well in command of their situation and stayed ahead of their needs.
Being a new one-day convention, the hotel didn’t have a need for hotels and/or shuttles. I stayed overnight just to give myself extra time at the convention center and not stress about my drive home. Hopefully, I make it next year and can review one of the local hotels for you.
It does appear that Ontario is seeking more events for their convention center. I’ve seen more advertisements for events happening within their walls, and it appears to be paying off for them.
Their convention center is a lot like post 80’s Southern California civic architecture; white stucco and concrete, lots of large windows to let in light, and a vague theme of water running throughout the venue with blues in the carpeting.
I do think that the convention tried to give people more places to sit than they have for other events I attended here because, again, it was a one-day convention, so there needed to be an incentive for people to stay and spend and interact more. The side-effect of that, though, could be seen at the Marvel cosplay gathering when the tables were suddenly pressured by photographers and there was a glut of people both in the seating area and surrounding it.
This is something else that will probably evolve a bit with at least one more day added to the convention.
To say it bluntly, it was not the most robust Dealer’s Hall I have ever seen. It followed a formula I have seen before where sellers were primarily on the outer ring or two of booths and there was a bevy of industry and independent artists in Artist’s Alley (or in this case, would it be “Artist’s Island?”) taking up about half of the space and seated directly in the middle of the Hall.
While there were comic book sellers, and a few vendors selling what you would come to expect at a comic book convention (toys, T-shirts, obscure DVD’s, leather goods of the non-whipping variety), it felt like there wasn’t much of a selection to really go through. I don’t mean to make that sound negative, but there wasn’t much to talk about when it came to filling in gaps in my collections, though if you’re behind on the last few months of comics, this was a good place to catch up.
On the other hand, Artist’s Island (I’m going to make that a thing) was filled with notable names in comic books; Todd Nauck; Joe Rubenstein, Art Thibert, Dennis Hopeless. Hope Larson, Chris Bachalo, and Jim Starlin among the people you could meet and the signatures I’m sure comic superfans were looking for. Comic Grading Corporation (CGC) even had a large booth and took comics on site for grading.
I can’t say for sure this Dealer’s Hall was a must view place, but being able to meet multiple members of Overwatch’s voice acting cast and meet several industry creators for a few minutes still made for worthwhile visits to the Dealer’s Hall.
There was a number of panels that happened in four different rooms over the course of the day. While there were no industry panels outside of the voice actor’s panel, there was a number of fan debate and information panels. I attended the cosplay photography panel that was run by four hobby and professional photographers. It was more than informative!
I tempered my expectations since this was the first year of Comic-Con Revolution, and I think they put together an above-average slate of panels for such a situation. It makes me more curious for what will be on the slate for next year.
I was curious to see what a first-year convention would see as far as cosplay beyond fan groups like the Mandalorian Mercs, Ghostbuster groups, and so on. I was not disappointed.
While I didn’t see anything I hadn’t seen earlier in the year, there was still a good percentage of cosplayers at the convention letting their fandom fly through their costuming. I don’t have much of a gallery as I was working alone, but you’ll find that there was a good selection of characters to view and turn your head. The Stormtrooper Cupid was a nice cosplay, though I wonder if they can hit anything…
The staff appeared to be on-point all day. Most panels and events ran on time, the staff was attentive and adept, and complaints appeared to be minimal all weekend. My own run ins with the convention staff was prompt and to the point. Everyone appeared to know what they needed to do and was very helpful.
The convention center staff also was to the point, though they were notably quieter. They didn’t seem to have any issues with the fans running around and gave people room to use the building with a few exceptions.
Ontario, at least in the vicinity of the airport, is a bit barren. There’s hotels and motels in the immediate area, but if food is your concern, you’re either slim on options or you’ll have to bring a lot with you.
There is a couple of mini marts on adjacent blocks, an Indian restaurant, a higher-end Italian restaurant, an American restaurant, and a couple of fast food joints. If you walk a bit further away, you’ll find an In n’ Out and a Denny’s.
I guess, in short, you’ll need to be able to entertain yourself if you leave the building. You won’t find much around.
As it was a one-day convention, this section, as you could understand, has nothing in it. If there is more next year, we will be sure to take a look and let you know how it was.
This convention fell into the category of “I’m sorry that it’s over.”
With the convention being brand new, it had moderate expectations to live up to, and managed to completely jump over them. Fans and professionals alike weren’t just mingling; they all seemed to be having a really good time.
In addition, Comic-Con Revolution has already announced that they are continuing next year on May 19 and 20, 2018 and, as you can tell, they’ve added more days.
I expect this convention to be a lot of fun next year!