Gregory G. H. Rihn (milwaukeesfs) wrote,
Gregory G. H. Rihn
milwaukeesfs

OddCon, 2012



We had a very good, if somewhat low-keyed time at this year's OddCon for 2012, "The Year Earth Gets Creamed." This year's Mad Cow by Georgie was very well received and a lot of t-shirts were sold. Just to note, the cow's head-dress and regalia are based on those of a genuine Mayan astronomer-priest, although his staff was replaced with the femur bone that appeared in the very first (2001) OddCon cow drawing--.

We got to the Con after noon on Friday after a good drive over, and started our convention by listening to the "Deconstructing Green Lantern" panel, which I mainly agreed with--the film was marred by having been constructed "by committee," and by having too much crammed into it. The panel made it a very entertaining and not mean-spirited deconstruction and we enjoyed it.

Next, Georgie had her panel, "Werewolves; Embrace Your Inner Beast!" She and the panel got their teeth into discussing this most popular species of shape-shifter and its current popularity. This was a well-attended panel and the audience seemed to enjoy it.

We sat in on the "The End Of The World As We Know It" (literature) panel, in which Richard Russell and Jim Frenkel gave a good presentation on books about The End, and the various kinds of "ends" there can be.

After that, we got checked into our room, drifted around, chatted with people and quickly checked the dealers' room before meeting Bill Bodden and Tracy Benton for dinner. We went out to Takara for Japanese food, which was as good as I had remembered.

We got back well in time for the opening ceremonies, which were actually more coherent and tightly scripted than is usual for OddCon skits, ringing the changes on the "The End Of The World As We Know It" theme. Georgie was quite flattered that Janet Lewis, who appeared as "The Apocalypse Cow," had had a headdress made that referred quite well to Georgie's drawing.

After the Opening, we hung around and chatted with Leah Fisher, among others, until the Poetry Slam started. We heard some interesting pieces from the contestants, but were lured away by the Chocolate Reception in the Art Show. (Besides being yummy, I do think this is a marvelous way to lure people in for close looks at the art.)

My first panel was 11:30PM Friday night, "The Space Invaders Hall of Fame," which started with H.G. Wells' novel "War of the Worlds," up to the present day--concentrating mainly on movies and TV, since books would have been too numerous to mention. Lee Schneider, I, and an audience of insomniacs had a good time dragging out our favorite or un-favorite menaces from space.

I was up early for the first panel of Saturday morning, "Under the Moons of Barsoom," with Richard West, Richard Chwedyk, and Jim Leinweber for a far-ranging discussion of Edgar Rice Burrough's "Barsoom" stories and those inspired by them. I had put together a PowerPoint presentation of cover art from the early days on, which I, Reena Noel, a gentleman from GeekCon whose name I didn't get, managed to have flowing out of the projector just in time for the panel to start.

After that, I was on the panel "Steampunk: Is There a Canon," with TeslaCon Mastermind Eric Larson, and Professor Janice Bogstad. After an interesting discussion defining what a literary "canon" actually is, we more or less settle on the answer "yes AND no," and went on to mention what might be considered "essential" works of Steampunk.

After that, we had a break until we were both on panels at 4:00PM. Mine, about games based on other works, was staffed with game industry professionals and turned into an interesting, gossipy, where's-the-dirt story session about the ins and outs of adapting literary properties to games. Georgie's panel,"Innkeepers and Bartenders of Fiction" went well and both panelists were well prepared and played off one another nicely.

Out for dinner again, this time with Steve Johnson and Darlene Coltrain. Darlene's talented daughter, Fritha, was dancing at Shish Cafe, which was an extra treat besides Shish's excellent Mideastern food. That went pretty late, so we didn't do much on getting back to the hotel before going to bed.

Sunday, Georgie had her panel, "The Muse Feels No Respect," which talked about the tensions between creative cross-pollination and increasingly restrictive ideas of copyright, and was very well done.

Next up was "The End Of The World As We Know It" (Media) which focused on the apocalypse in film and television. Georgie had been a bit chagrined to end up on this panel, since she'd wanted to be on the Literature one, but contributed strongly to what was quite a fun panel.

We ended the con with "Improv GM'ing," a panel on what to do when the players break your game, or when you're all there and the game-master calls in sick, or you just need something else to do. Lee Schneider, "Nix", and I shared anecdotes and ideas with an enthusiastic audience.

That done, we disengaged and rolled home, another enjoyable OddCon behind us.

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Tags: conventions, oddcon
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