Review: Midwest Media Expo 2015


If there is one thing I truly enjoy. It is a great convention, the gathering of fans of tv, comics, movies,books and games alike can join together for epic memories. That is why I try to go to any con that invites me. Last month was Midwest Media Expo, and it was totally awesome. Here is my review of a fun weekend of guests, food and fun!

I got to Midwest Media Expo late night on Thursday of the event, so that we could get checked into the room and I could go over the full schedule of events for the weekend.  We got a nice room in the GM building, and I worked on getting things together for the panels that night.  The next day I came down stairs and got my schedule and went on the hunt for food.

The GM building has a food court within it, so we got our food there.  Then went up to hang out with friends.  There’s a lot of staff and attendees that Miki and I know through the convention, so we made sure to go around saying hi to everyone.  Once I got a minute to check the schedule over I found my biggest disappointment, the Steam Powered Giraffe concert, which is one of my favorite events, took place during my Friday night autograph session. 

My schedule for that day had Opening panel.  Which is the video at the top of this story, followed by a bit of a break before my first panel.  The first panel was the TMNT Comic Book Panel.  The history of the comics.  Last year my TMNT panel was an hour and a half long, so I was surprised to see that the panels were cut down to only an hour long.  Not enough time, but I figured I’d push as much as I could into that hour.  After that I had an autograph session.   I got to opening early so I could get a good seat, set up the cameras and say hi to fellow guests.

One of the guests sitting in front of me at opening ceremonies was the Nostalgia Critic, a fellow online video reviewer who has gotten well known through the years.  His channel has a lot of other stuff on it, and always has fun stuff for the fans.  Recently he worked on a review of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 2014 movie with the Angry Video Game Nerd.  I enjoyed the way they did their video, so made sure to get to say hello to him.  Sitting next to me was his wife, Robin, it was a pleasure to meet her as well. 

While talking with those around me, I was excited to see Ruth Connell come in and sit down.  Right now I have only two TV shows that I want to watch as they air, of course Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on Nickelodeon is one, the other is Supernatural.  It is an amazing series, I’ve seen every episode and find it to be one of those series that just draws me right into it.  Ruth has been recently added to the series as the mother to one of my favorite characters.  Ruth also a voice match for Merida in Disney’s “Brave”. 

I went over to Ruth and said a short hello, introducing myself and telling her that I love her character in Supernatural.  After saying hello I returned to my seat and stayed there through most of opening ceremonies.  After opening I thought I’d do some more work on my panel before starting, though I found myself going up stairs to hang out with friends.  So many people at this event that I only see a few times a year, it’s hard to work when I want to play.  We enjoyed hot tea, with some light snacks while catching up with friends and having a great view over Detroit and Windsor. 

The time for panel rolled in much faster than I thought.  I headed down to the panel.  I will share video and a write up about the panel in another story still to come here on Cowabunga Corner.  After the panel, I got my stuff packed up and headed out to the autograph table.  Andre was set up for the same autograph time as me,  I will admit that I was surprise to have a line for my autograph that day, it was fun and there was a lot of really good questions and conversations held with everyone who came up to the table.

I stayed down at the autograph table longer than scheduled as their was a lot of people to talk and hang out with.  After spending time there, I headed back upstairs to a room party where I stayed most of the night with Miki. 

Saturday was a morning panel, for the TMNT cartoons.  Before starting the panel this time, I went off and bought something from Artist alley, I picked up a Raphael puppet.  This lady had a bunch of different puppets for sale that she made including one Ninja Turtle, which after trying on I knew I wanted.  So I was able to pick up Raphael, so to have a Turtle puppet to carry around.  Anyone who knows me, knows that I love working with puppets so this was my favorite booth in Artist alley.

Andre joined me for the panel as we sat down talking about each of the cartoons.  This video will be shared later, with a write up.  After the panel we went to over to Ruth’s panel.  This is exciting to me, as I mentioned Supernatural is one of my favorite series.  I’m going to do one write up for both of Ruth’s panels that I went too sharing the video.

After the panel I went back upstairs dropping off my stuff from the panel into our hotel room.  Then I went back up to our hang out.  A lot of fun staff, friends and fellow guests.  I went down for my second autograph session, I wasn’t as busy this time.  Though that was okay, because I played around with one of my favorite toys I got from Toy Fair that wasn’t TMNT. 

The toy I speak of is called Sphero, and it’s a blast to play around with.  As no one knew who was controlling it.   Sphero is a little ball that rolls around and you control it with your cell phone.  It can swim, fall from high places, and play games.  I had it going up and down the escalators, through crowds of people and dancing when it would catch people’s attention.  By time I got back up stairs with Sphero the battery died.  So I rested up, and just talked with friends.

A lot of us were going to the Jon St. John Roast.  For those who don’t know who he is, watch opening ceremonies panel at the top of this page.  He’s most known for the voice of Duke Nukem.  When that time rolled around, we headed down stairs and got good seats to enjoy the roast.  I know people could pick on Jon, he’s been coming to the conventions out this way for awhile now and a lot of the normal staff, guests and attendees know him well. 

How I got to know Jon was at the Dead Dog party for Youmacon 2014.  I was really depressed during this time, because of losing the family home, going through the Michigan flood and just my overall feel of life at that time.  I hung out with Jon St. John that night, as well as some other friends who were at the party.  They helped pull me out of the depression I was in, and I don’t think they realize how much they helped me.  As a thank you I wanted to do a sketch for Jon, so I drew a photo of a Ninja Turtle done up like Duke Nukem, and gave it to him after the panel was over. 

My favorite part of the Roast goes out to Kieran Strange.  Kieran is a musical artist who was a guest last year, while not here this year she had done a video.  They played this video during the panel, and it had me laugh so much.  Basically most of the jokes everyone else picked on was in this video.  I just love the way she did it.

After the panel it was another room party night.  The worse thing during this room party was that I had a spasm early on which made it so, I had to sit down most of the night instead of go around talking with people.  That’s one of the worse things with the RSD, the pain from the spasms are really bad.  I ended up calling it a night earlier than I would’ve if the pain levels were not that high.

Sunday morning I woke up and came down for my last panel of the weekend.  Once again Andre joined me as we talked about the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Movies.  As soon as my panel was done I went down to watch Ruth’s panel.  To my surprise she was leaving right after her panel, so we made sure to talk a little before she had to go.  Ruth was a very awesome person to meet.  

After the panels I had to start saying goodbye to people, as so many were leaving early.  Not even going to be there for closing ceremonies, which was the surprise for me.  Andre, Steam Powered Giraffe, Channel Awesome and so many others.  I watched as people said their goodbyes, then went to closing. 

I really did enjoy Midwest Media Expo.  I made a lot of new friends, hung out with some old friends and shared information about TMNT to fans of different ages.  This was a weekend I will not soon forget. 

So many great friends that hung out who’ve not been mentioned here yet…

Kayleigh!  Thanks for all your help!  Sorry you couldn’t spend the full weekend with us! 

Eileen!  It was great seeing you, wish you could’ve stuck around more.  We gotta hang out sometime soon.   

Jess!  Your booth was totally awesome, hope you had a total blast through the weekend!

Kroze!!  You’re awesome as always to see!  Hope to see ya around soon.  Wouldn’t be the same without you as one of the amazing guests out here.

Of course there was many others that I saw and talked to over the weekend.  A big thanks for everyone for coming to my panels, stopping by the autograph table, hanging out with me in artist alley and chilling at the evening parties with me!  I hope to return to Midwest Media Expo for 2016, as I can share different TMNT panels as well as a few other ideas that has come up.  Most of all, to see all the great faces that I’ve gotten to know through this convention.  If you’ve not been to Midwest Media Expo I highly recommend checking it out!

The last thing I want to talk about for Midwest Media Expo this year was the food.  As mentioned there’s a food court in the GM building.   I knew most of the places down there, as this is where we eat for Youmacon and Midwest Media Expo.  This time though, there was something different “Mac & Cheese”, I checked it out and what I found is a place that is bad for anyone’s health but taste buds would love!

“Mac & Cheese” makes all sorts of different types of Mac & Cheese, but the cool thing I enjoyed was how you can order your dish as a Grilled Cheese sandwich!  Truly a tasty and surprising idea.  I know I could not have this often, as it’s very heavy and just one of those foods that will stay with you.  Though I’m only there one or two weekend a year, so this may be one of those treats that I will take part in during a good convention weekend.

Did you go to Midwest Media Expo?  If so what events did you attend over the weekend?  Please share reviews, comments and questions below!

Entertainment Earth