MuggleNet attends Supanova Expo in
Brisbane, Australia, November 9-11, 2012
On the weekend of November 9 2012, MuggleNet asked me to correspond for them from Supanova Brisbane. This article will provide readers with everything they need to know to get the most out of attending a Supanova Expo.
Supanova Pop Culture Expo is the convention that gives Australian fans of "science-fiction, pulp TV/movies, toys, console gaming, trading cards, animation/cartoons, fantasy, comic books, entertainment technology, books, internet sites and fan-clubs" an opportunity to celebrate everything that they love in six locations around Australia on various weekends throughout the year. These locations include Melbourne, Gold Coast, Sydney, Perth, Brisbane and Adelaide.
As Supanova takes place in several different locations, it is difficult to describe the best way to get to and work through the convention. For example, while Sydney Supanova takes place completely within The Dome at Sydney Olympic Park - with plenty of parking and trains available directly to the venue - Brisbane Supanova is held at RNA Showgrounds which is located much closer to the centre of the city (compared to Sydney) but with limited on-site parking.
The best place to start would be to book your tickets online. Tickets are available to purchase at the gate but by pre-purchasing your ticket you will be able to make your way into the convention much faster by avoiding the slower moving ticket purchase queues. There are 3 main options for ticket purchase - Day Passes, Supa-Fan Weekend Passes and VIP Supa-Star passes. There are also separately ticketed events for each convention (available online) depending on the guests that will be attending.
Once you are in the gate there are several things you can do - schedules of the days activities are available ahead of time, and like all conventions, you should plan your day before you get there to avoid missing out on something you really wanted to see. Within this schedule, there are six main categories of things to do - Photo/Autograph opportunities, Anime, Cosplay Theatre, Supanova Seminars, Film Inc Features, and the vendor room.
The first thing you might want to do when you get through the gate would be to purchase any Photo/Autograph tokens from the Supanova Store (which can be located on the maps, but the friendly volunteer staff will happily point you in the right direction). Because Supanova has a low entry fee, each photo and autograph opportunity must be purchased separately inside the venue. Queues to purchase these tokens tend to get quite lengthy on Saturdays and Sundays, so take advantage of Friday (the first day for most venues) where pre-purchase tokens are available, and usually there is hardly and wait time.
Once you have your tokens you are free to take advantage of the other activities, depending on what interests you.
The Anime Area and Cosplay Theatre have full schedules for each day featuring various screenings and activities to suit the interests of people from various Anime and Cosplay related fandoms (depending on which city you attend).
The Supanova Seminars also run throughout the day featuring talks and Q&A's from various comic and book authors, and even a little anime trivia.
Film Inc Features is the place where the attending stars have talks and Q&A sessions.
Stars attending each location vary but some examples of those who attended Brisbane Supanova 2012 included Malcom-Jamil Warner (Community), Tom Hopper (Merlin, Doctor Who), Felicia Day (Buffy), James Masters (Buffy, Smallville, Torchwood), Gareth David-Lloyd (Torchwood), and three Harry Potter actors Tom Felton, Chris Rankin and Alfie Enoch.
The convention isn't limited to stars and seminars - the vendor room is a whole other experience. I couldn't resist splurging on some Harry Potter merchandise but that isn't all that is available. There is everything - toys and figurines, t-shirts, collectables, novelties and signed memorabilia - from Doctor Who, Star Wars, Avengers, Batman, Big Bang Theory, and of course, Harry Potter, just to name a few. I'd suggest taking your time looking through the merchandise, but be warned: you will be tempted to buy something from almost every vendor!
There are also opportunities to attend meet-ups with local fan groups. The only one I attended was the Darren Criss Street Team: Australian Chapter meet-up (we stood in the rain for almost an hour chatting about everything StarKid), but there are various others (depending on which city you are attending).
The fun doesn't stop there. Dressing up is half the fun! If you don't wish to dress up yourself, don't be afraid to ask for photos with the fans dressed up in amazing costumes. I saw The Doctor everywhere I looked, there were several Hogwarts students walking around including a Gryffindor quidditch player, Wolverine (accompanied by his son, a Ravenclaw), The Avengers, Batman, Superman, some Cheerios, Robin (didn't I see that costume on TV recently?), and many, many, MANY more. The time and effort put into some of these costumes was amazing!
MuggleNet was able to cover two Q&A's while at Brisbane Supanova 2012 - the first of which featured all three HP actors, the second Chris Rankin and Alfie Enoch - and the live tweets from those Q&A's can be found on the MuggleNetLIVE twitter account.
We were also given the opportunity to interview Chris Rankin and Alfie Enoch who took valuable time out of their busy Supanova schedules to talk with us. To hear the interview see the link below.