By now, you are well aware that Dark Knight News is no stranger to covering conventions. In 2016 alone, we’ve covered everything from the giant that is San Diego Comic Con to the biggest and smallest shows in Michigan. Being the go to guy in the Great Lakes State, you can probably wager a guess as to which contributions were mine.
Something that I’ve been curious to do for the past few years is to check out Youmacon, Michigan’s premier anime convention. Seeing as how I love their sister con that celebrates a variety of fandoms, Midwest Media Expo, in addition to being badgered by my peers, I decided to give it a shot.
Knowing that this particular event has the biggest turnout for cosplayers in my home state was enough reason to attend this titan that took over not one but two venues in Downtown Detroit: Cobo Arena and The GM Renaissance Center. And, believe me, my feet are just starting to recover – but it was worth it.
Now comes confession time: I’m not what you would call an “anime guy.” Sure, I own DVDs pertaining to adaptations of franchises I like such as The Matrix, Devil May Cry, and Supernatural, but I’m just not a devotee of the genre.
As such, I wanted to lend the perspective of someone who is more so into American comics and is a general film buff and what this con offers someone such as myself. To be quite honest, the vendors and panels are almost entirely devoted to anime and that’s not a bad thing at all; everyone needs their niche. But that didn’t stop me from finding other ways to occupy a three-day period and have a good time.
During that time span, I was able to catch up with some old friends and make some new ones, a habit I’ve developed at cons. Not only that, I attended a concert, a rave, and a very stimulating “Marvel vs. DC” panel that, despite its name, was more so about celebrating both publishers as opposed to pitting them against each other. I had a blast geeking out with the gentlemen hosting the discussion and those in attendance.
Below, I shall delve deeper into some of the finer points. And, in case you were wondering, the evilest of all Jokers is indeed yours truly. My costume paid tribute to various iterations of the Clown Prince of Crime: Heath Ledger’s hair (the green dye IS in there), a makeup job inspired by the Batman: Arkham Asylum video game, and a suit lifted from the pages of Scott Snyder and Greg Capullo’s Batman: Endgame. In short, it formed one cohesive vision that caused me to feel as though that was the way I was always meant to look (thanks go to makeup artist extraordinaire Jazzmin Sharara).
Friday evening was capped by a concert that began with aerial artists Illuminair dazzling the crowd with various feats before the musical acts took the stage. Performers included Kieran Strange and the Chaos, followed by Steam Powered Giraffe. While I must admit that these folks were good at their craft, it wasn’t necessarily my cup of tea. Considering that the last concert I attended had a lineup that consisted of Cradle of Filth, Butcher Babies, and Ne Obliviscaris, you can probably wager a guess as to what my taste in music is. That aside, it was pretty cool to see Kieran Strange come out in full Iron Man armor for the encore.
– DC Comics Photoshoot
On Saturday, a photoshoot focused on DC Comics cosplayers went down and there was no way we were going to miss it. Joker and Harley Quinn were obviously on hand in full force, but we were treated to seeing a variety of different Batmen as well as heroes and villains from around the DC Universe.
– Cosplayers in the Wild
Now we come to my favorite part and my usual way of closing convention recaps: A gallery featuring some of our favorite heroes and villains from the show floor, along with some others we thought were too awesome not to include. Thanks to you all, it’s our biggest cosplay gallery to date!
Photos taken by Alexander Leo Carr