Hello everyone! I hope you are all doing great! I am still recovering from Comic-Con Africa 2019 and Vodacom rAge 2019. I am officially done with my internship and I can rest a little now. I am back to unemployment, and although I feel sad and a little depressed and lost, I just have to keep moving forward. I can use this time to work on myself and the blog.
Thanks to my internship, I was able to do and see amazing things at both Comic-Con Africa 2019 and Vodacom rAge 2019. I want to share these things with all of you and I will be uploading articles to the blog in the coming weeks.
Comic-Con Africa 2019 ran from Saturday the 21st of September to Tuesday the 24th of September. The media briefing took place on Friday the 20th. Comic-Con Africa 2019 was incredibly tough, gruelling and exhausting, but it was also incredibly rewarding. I managed to pick up a few things, so please indulge me while I go through them. I will try and not make this post long, I promise!
I was really broke during both events and I was not able to buy as much as I wanted to, but I still got some cool stuff, and I want to show you all. I was going to combine the items I bought at both conventions in one article, but the Comic-Con Africa 2019 Haul felt like it was long enough, so I will make the Vodacom rAge 2019 Haul a separate article. Please forgive the image quality. I have an iPhone 5S and tried to do the best that I could. Please forgive me. Without further ado, please sit back, relax, and I hope you enjoy!
KFC Media Hamper
KFC was the official partner of Comic-Con Africa 2019. They even called themselves the convention’s Wingman (Get it??? Super witty!). Every journalist and media personnel at the media briefing received a KFC Hamper which included a flask, T-shirt and the bag the shirt and flask came in. I thought it was a pretty cool media gift.
Limited-Edition Spider-Man: Far From Home Dr Pepper cans
You can get some pretty cool stuff in your local convenience store in South Africa, but, due to some stringent import laws, we are not able to get some cool stuff. An example of this is American candies, such as Kool-Aid and many other stuff. There are special stores, few and far between, that sell all-things candy that comes from America. I was walking around the convention towards the end of one of the days and I stumbled on this candy booth I kept seeing throughout the convention. I did not see anything that immediately caught my eye, but after some glancing, I saw a case Dr Pepper cans. I have only had it a few times but I did not mind it.
The lady at the booth told me that the cans were limited edition, as Dr Pepper collaborated with Spider-Man: Far From Home. I was going to buy one can but the lady told me that there were two designs, so I bought two. My friends tried to stop me because I was seriously broke, but I just wanted to buy something as I had not bought anything for the whole convention. I do not regret it though… much. I still have not opened them and I do not think I will.
VS Gaming T-Shirt & Snapback
I am in a WhatsApp group with friends I know both in real life and friends I only know because of the group. One of them was working at the Telkom booth at Comic-Con. I visited him on the second day because I only realized he was working there when I got home at the end of the first day. He, AJ, is such a cool and awesome dude. Telkom, in partnership with Esports platform VS Gaming, were giving away free stuff. You could either enter mini-competitions at the booth or complete some tasks. Fortunately for me, I had pretty much already completed the tasks without even knowing, so I got both a cool T-shirt and Snapback. I could not make a decision so I told AJ to pick out the shirt and cap that he liked the most, and those were the ones I ended up choosing.
Death Stranding Poster
Death Stranding is a highly-anticipated video game that is coming out on the 8th of November, 2019 exclusively for the PlayStation 4. The game is directed by legendary video game director Hideo Kojima. This is his first game after his infamous, less-than-amicable split with video game company Konami. Kojima went on to create his own video game company, Kojima Productions. Kojima, if you guys do not know him, is the creator and director of the classic video game series Metal Gear Solid. Kojima Productions have extensively marketed Death Stranding with trailers, posters and much more.
This game is incredibly confusing as nobody knows what it is about. Even some of the cast are still confused about some of the details. Kojima himself is being very coy about what the game is, although he is starting to talk more about it with less than a month till release. Kojima ensembled a star-studded cast for this game and I can not wait to see how this game turns out. Anyway long backstory over, there was a competition for the game (which was also at Vodacom rAge 2019) and every entrant received a poster of the protagonist of the game, Sam Porter Bridges, who is played by The Walking Dead star Norman Reedus. The image on the poster is also the video game cover art. The poster is still rolled up so the image above is an HD image of the poster/cover art that I took from Twitter.
Harley Quinn Print by Warren Louw (Signed)
Warren Louw is a professional South African artist who is known for his comic book work. He has even done some amazing work for DC Comics. He is absolutely amazing! He would always be at rAge and I would always make it a point to buy a print from him or at least talk to him. He was not at rAge last year but was at Comic-Con last year. Unfortunately, I did not go to Comic-Con last year in favour of rAge and I missed out. I had no idea he would not be at rAge until the convention started.
I am so glad I got to see him at Comic-Con this year. I was able to purchase a print from him too. I asked which one he liked the most and he pointed to the Harley Quinn. I love Harley Quinn and so does he. I did not hesitate to buy it. He signed it for me as well! I also got to watch him do a live drawing panel, which was pretty cool. He is just an awesome, down-to-earth and incredibly talented dude, and is such an inspiration to so many people.
Black Dress Print by Ilya Kuvshinov (Signed)
I discovered DeviantArt shortly after I graduated high school in June 2013. I would visit the website frequently and follow so many artists. One artist, in particular, would always create art that captivated me: Ilya Kuvshinov. Ilya is a Russian artist who currently lives and works in Japan. I did not even know he was coming to Comic-Con Africa until the first day of the convention.
I was so blown away by this. Never in a million years did I think I would ever meet him, let alone be able to buy one of his artworks! I remember him selling out of prints on the second-last day of the convention. I also had the chance to talk to him a little amidst the chaos of the Artists Alley. He is so sweet and humble and also funny. I asked him which artwork of his I should get because I could not decide, and he chose this one, which is called Black Dress. He signed it and even drew a quick sketch on the back! It was such an honour meeting him.
Gambit Print by Afro Tokyo (Signed)
The Artists Alley at Comic-Con Africa 2019 was incredibly huge and showcased incredible local and international artists. In attendance was Afro Tokyo, a Zimbabwean Pre-Production Company specializing in Storyboarding, Conceptual Art, Animations, Video Game Development, Illustration, Animations and so much more. They add an Afro-Japanese spin to their work. At the end of the final day of Comic-Con Africa 2019, one of the artists had a few prints left, so he was just handing them out for free.
I remember standing at Ilya Kuvshinov’s booth when the artist from Afro Tokyo appeared with the prints. I chose Gambit, a superhero character from the Marvel Comics because my brother loves him. He gave Ilya a free print as well! I even got him to sign it to my brother, but I feel like I will end up taking ownership of it.
Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection signed by Nolan North
I was very busy in the days leading up to Comic-Con Africa 2019. I knew some of the guests who were coming but did not know all of them. Two that completely went under my radar until only a few days before the convention were Nolan North and Troy Baker. Nolan and Troy are two of the best video game voice actors and voice-over artists to ever exist. They are so cool and so talented it’s crazy! You may not know them, but you have definitely heard of some of their work. Nolan North is most famous for his performance as Nathan Drake in the video game series Uncharted, and Troy Baker is most famous for his performance as Joel in the video game The Last of Us. The two of them also host a YouTube show called Retro Replay where they play classic games and just have fun. They even recorded a live episode of the show on the second night of Comic-Con Africa. It was so awesome!
I also never thought I would see these two people in my entire life and I was not about to let the opportunity pass me by. I wanted Nolan to sign something, but I had nothing for him to sign. I then made the decision, thanks to some friends I made at Comic-Con, to buy Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection. This collection encompasses the Uncharted trilogy that was released for the PlayStation 3. I have only played the first Uncharted, Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune, so I felt that the purchase was warranted. I got him to sign it, had a conversation with him at the autograph booth, and right after that I took a picture with both Nolan and Troy. Nolan is so funny, witty and wise. It was honestly a dream come true.
Signed Troy Baker Albums
In addition to being an amazing voice actor, Troy Baker is an incredibly talented musician and multi-instrumentalist. Troy had a music performance on the first night of Comic-Con and it was indescribable. Each song was so fantastic, and he had stories to go with each song. He has experienced so much and he shares his life stories through his music. It was surreal being in that crowd, listening to him perform his music. I had never listened to any of Troy’s songs before that performance, and I am ashamed to admit that.
I hoped he would be selling them after the show, but he was not. The next night, however, my luck changed. That night was the recording of the live Retro Replay episode, and Retro Replay T-Shirts were being sold, as well as Troy’s albums! I did not hesitate to buy both of them. Right before Nolan signed my game, I was over at Troy’s booth and got him to sign the albums. He is so incredibly knowledgeable and just an awesome human being. We chatted while he signed the albums and then shortly after I got to take a picture with both of them. This was on the last day of the convention. I am truly grateful for this internship because I would not have done any of this if I was not accepted for the internship.
The Entire Collection
Thank you all for reading. I apologize for the length. I felt like I had to give a backstory to every item. I hope you enjoyed reading it, and I will see you all soon!