It was the year 2009. It was a dark time. Revenge of the Fallen was in the cinemas. Transformers Animated had been cancelled. The Bumblebee proliferation was picking up steam. But there was one sign of hope: a group of German TF fans of questionable sanity, who got told from all sides again and again that there was no way there’d ever be a German TF Fan Convention. It would never work, German fans are not convention goers, they’ll never show up, don’t even bother trying. But to quote the famous words of the eternal know-it-all Yoda: Do, or do not! There is no try!
And so we did it! And a decade later, on September 2, 2018, we stood on stage and welcomed our guests to the tenth annual German TF fan convention. A decade has passed since that first convention took place in a tiny little location. The size of the location has multiplied, just like the number of guests (652 this year, a new European record once again), just like the number of vendors, but a few things have indeed stayed the same: The extreme tiredness on the eve after, the spent sweat, that Alex is in tears as the event ends and in need of a hug, and of course the fun that was had by any and all involved. Oh, and the severe lightening of our wallets, too, of course.
There were also a lot of new things this year, though. It took ten years (not counting the brief cameo appearance in 2016), but finally we had Hasbro Germany on board and on location, too. They were present with their own booth where fans could pick up and try the newest figures. There was also the Prime Time challenge where fans could try to transform Elita-One faster than anyone else. And every toy Hasbro brought (except for some) then went into the raffle and were given away to fans. Many thanks for that once again, Hasbro, and we hope to see you again next year with even more toys to give away.
Speaking of the raffle, it almost ended in tears. Tears of laughter, that is. For the fifth time in a row we had John-Paul Bove from IDW comics on board, as well as his fellow IDW artist Jack Lawrence for the second time. We had a great interview with them, held by Raymond-T, where we learned, among other things, that the Marvel UK Dinobots are actually not grey, but rather pink and green (no joke!). And the two of them also agreed to help us draw the winning numbers in the raffle. So it was during said raffle drawing that Jack suddenly descended into bellowing laughter and tears, barely able to remain on his feet, not to mention read out the winning numbers. It was only later on that we learned the reason for this attack of the funnies. Given that we might have underaged readers here, I’ll refrain from telling the full story. Suffice to say that when you read numbers in German, you might end up with something that sounds rather dirty to the English-speaker. Yes, the number “Sechs” (six) was involved. Thankfully it was only afterwards that Alex learned the back story here, she had enough trouble not joining into the laughter on stage when she didn’t know the joke.
PS: I assume everyone knows that the raffle was once again suffused with Bumblebees, especially in the form of the numerous Panini comics with their Bumblebee toy extra. This is pretty standard by now and barely worth a mention. Not every year can be a Sideswipe outlier.
Another first at this year’s CONS: the Teutonicons were live on stage. The team of Germany’s first and only Transformers podcast recorded their 10th episode on location. Among other things we used highly advanced data analysis methods (to the laymen it might appear as if we simply shouted questions at the audience) to figure out how many people had been to all ten conventions (it was 7, including Lucy, Alex, myself, and Raymond-T) and we relished in our favorite CONS memories. Okay, it was a brief relishing for Magmatron, it was his first CONS.
Yet another first: Cosplayer Chaozrael held a workshop, showing us how much work it is to create a professional Transformers cosplay. For everyone interested in cosplaying, it was a very informative showing. Many thanks to Chaozrael for a highly professional and enjoyable performance.
So what else is there to write about? Well, pretty much the same things as every year. A lot of Transformers fans came together in high spirits, always ready to talk shop, and determined to spend lots of money in exchange for tons of robot-shaped plastic. So pretty much what we’ve been looking forward to all year, right? Right! And despite the fact that we had the usual plethora of pre-convention jinxes – including stomach cramps, colds, and other personnel difficulties – everything worked just fine, once again. So pretty much same procedure as every year. For the 10th year in a row. Which makes at least 10 good reasons to honor the heart and soul of the CONS – Alex and Lucy – with a big thank you on stage and a present to boot. Which, by the way, also led to Alex getting her first taste of the limelight on stage. Now she wants to be on stage even more next year. We’ll see.
Oh, and concerning all those many people who, ten years ago, told us again and again and again that we were wasting our time and that it would never work: please consider this a very sincere and utterly heart-felt flipped-bird (“Stinkefinger” in German) in your general direction. Because we did it. We did it ten times! And we’ll keep doing it!
See you all on September 8, 2019, for CONS number 11.
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