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Our Fanboy Expo Totally Awesome Weekend 2017 Photos

Ripley and loader!

Ellen Ripley’s Caterpillar P-5000 Work Loader from Aliens. Sure enough, she does have a Class 2 rating.

As it worked out, our last out-of-state foray for 2017 took us to the longest-named event of our year. Since 2012 Fanboy Expo has been a staple of the scene in Knoxville, Tennessee. After a presumably successful show in June, this year they branched out to a second show in October, the Fanboy Expo Totally Awesome Weekend. We’ve never been to a basic Fanboy Expo, but we gathered the Totally Awesome Weekend spinoff was built to focus more on the actor guests than on the “comic” in “comic con”. I deduced this not from any public statements on their part, but on the fact that the guest list on their official website listed five (5) comics/animation artists and six tattoo artists. This is abnormal compared to the events held in our usual bailiwicks.

That disparity doesn’t have to be a terrible thing. My wife Anne and I are more satisfied when a show finds a fair balance comics and entertainment guests. This time, however, we saw FBTAW as a companion piece of sort, the flip side of the previous weekend’s Cartoon Crossroads Columbus. There, I’d had the opportunity to overdose on comics; this weekend it was Anne’s turn for a whirlwind reunion tour with familiar faces from the classic TV of her childhood. It was only fair, especially since her birthday’s this coming week.

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Our Cartoon Crossroads Columbus 2017 Photos

CXC Comics!

So you say you like comic books? Not just like them, but LIKE-like them? Have we got a show for you!

Last Saturday my wife Anne and I had the pleasure of attending the third annual Cartoon Crossroads Columbus, an enlightening expo in the heart of Ohio for hardcore fans of comic books, graphic novels, the Graphic Storytelling Medium, and whatever other labels my fellow fans slap on their favorite hobby. You’d think Anne and I had our fill of cons after all the shows we’ve been doing this year. We can honestly say we’ve officially reached burnout, but CXC isn’t your ordinary average “comic con”. CXC has no Hollywood actors. No celebrities. No cosplay. No photo-op booths. No gaming. No eBay toy dealers. No Funco Pops. No comic shops selling Marvel Ultimate trades by the pound as horse feed. No lengthy list of famous guest cancellations due to filming or showrunner malfeasance. And no sugar gliders.

What does that leave, you may ask before you close your browser tab in disappointment? Comics. CXC puts the “comic” back in “comic con” and then runs the “con” part through an intense filtration process to produce the purest possible form of the original sense of the phrase. CXC is the perfect show for the comics fan who’s disappointed by the increasingly mixed bag that the average Artists Alley has become at many large-scale shows. CXC is a bountiful bazaar for the collector who wants to buy something besides prints or self-published novels. CXC is a happy haven for readers who know there’s more to comics than Marvel and DC. CXC is a knowledgeable nexus for the artistic literati above my station, sneering at any comics retailer who thinks stocking some Image Comics by former Marvel writers is all the “diversity” they can handle.

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Cincinnati Comic Expo 2017 Photos, Part 2 of 2: Who We Met and What We Did

Me Falling!

Lesson learned: sometimes we all have to be reminded that we are in fact not Batman.

Previously on Midlife Crisis Crossover:

Saturday morning my wife Anne and I drove two hours southeast of Indianapolis to attend the eighth annual Cincinnati Comic Expo in the heart of their downtown that’s not so different from ours. The guest list seemed a little thinner, particularly in the comics department, but we had such a great time last year that we agreed an encore was in order.

“Boy, you guys sure do a lot of cons!” is a thing we keep hearing lately from family and friends who’ve noticed how our 2017 has been going. The tone and implication vary by speaker.

We keep expecting the Midwest convention boom that ignited for us in 2015 will eventually fizzle out, but it hasn’t happened yet. Anne and I agree and keep telling each other we need to cut back on conventions, if for no other reason than to have more time for all the other aspects and responsibilities in our lives. But the temptation is hard to resist when so many cons keep popping up within a manageable driving distance for us, based on the road-trip skill set we’ve developed over the past nineteen years. It’s harder to resist when showrunners actually invite guests we’re excited to meet. And it’s hardest when we’re talking about shows we’ve done and loved before.

That’s how Cincinnati Comic Expo, having passed all three qualifiers with flying colors, beckoned to us for a second year.

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Cincinnati Comic Expo 2017 Photos, Part 1 of 2: Cosplay!

Star Wars Lineup!

We’re used to seeing the 501st Legion and other Star Wars fan groups at cons, but in Cincinnati they really come out in full Force.

It’s convention time yet again! Yes, AGAIN.

Saturday morning my wife Anne and I drove two hours southeast of Indianapolis to attend the eighth annual Cincinnati Comic Expo in the heart of their downtown that’s not so different from ours. The guest list seemed a little thinner, particularly in the comics department, but we had such a great time last year that we agreed an encore was in order.

But first, as usual: cosplay! Presenting a showcase of the costumes we photographed during our hours walking through and around the exhibit hall. We weren’t there all day, and spent much of our time in lines plus one panel, but we managed to capture a selection of folks who caught our eyes during our limited windows of opportunity. Sorry we don’t have dozens more, but…enjoy!

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Our HorrorHound Indy 2017 Photo Parade

Sean Astin!

After the destruction of the One Ring, Samwise Gamgee enjoyed an extravagant victory tour and vaudeville revue.

Saturday marked our fourth trip to HorrorHound Indy, an annual Indianapolis convention in honor of the scary, bloody, icky, haunting, stabbing, disturbing, black-garbed aspects of pop culture. The folks at HorrorHound Magazine orchestrate the festivities so loyal fans of the murderous and the macabre can enjoy a themed geek space of their own apart from Star Wars and Star Trek and whatnot. (Well, mostly.) As we’ve gotten older and more puritanical, our touchpoints with horror, terror, and gross-outs have dwindled in number compared to the average attendee, but the intersections between their guest list and our favorite worlds continue to delight and surprise and draw us back into their waiting wings.

Exhibit A: this year’s reunion of three cast members from The Goonies, which they’ve ruled is sufficiently spooky and/or contains enough human skeletons to be on-topic. You might remember Mikey, the asthmatic yet fearless leader who guided our heroes through convoluted clues, deadly booby traps, and the clutches of the wicked Fratelli family to find hidden pirate treasure and give someone in Hollywood the idea to go make National Treasure someday. I saw The Goonies in theaters when I was 13, a year younger than Mikey. Little did I know he would grow up to be Sean Astin — underdog football winner, savior of Middle-Earth, and sidekick to Encino Man. Bonus points to the esteemed Mr. Astin for very nearly guessing my age, and not just because I look it more than ever.

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Two Notes from Wizard World Chicago 2017

John Barrowman!

Longtime MCC readers will remember our jazz-hands photo op with TV’s John Barrowman from Wizard World Chicago 2016. Somehow this gentleman keeps coming back into our lives again and again…

It’s that time once more! This weekend my wife and I made another journey up to Wizard World Chicago in scenic Rosemont, IL, where we found much enjoyment and new purchases alongside peers and aficionados of comics and genre entertainment. Friday night left us near death by the end of our day, after a few miles’ worth of walking up and down the aisles and hallways, with breaks to go stand in lines of varying lengths and value. We’re the Goldens. It’s who we are and what we do.

We’ll be posting our photos ASAP after we get home — including some new jazz hands and, yes, all the cosplay we caught on camera — but will regrettably come up one major actor short of our original hopes.

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