You may have noticed the rise in Saskatoon’s superhero population last year, if not for their tight, bright outfits then for their unabashed enthusiasm. They were out handbilling for last year’s comic convention so often that I started to think it was a clever cover for actually being out on patrol.
Their efforts certainly produced results – the event very nearly sold out.
Year two has seen the event double its capacity and expand its roster of guest speakers, growth marked by both a name and venue change – to Saskatoon Blitz! and the Saskatoon Inn, respectively.
The lineup includes voice actors, comic book writers and artists, science fiction authors, anime experts, and illustrators. Anime fans will be excited to see Terry Doty, voice actor and podcast host, and Spike Spencer, who’s been voicing anime since the 90s. Local comics heroes Don Sparrow, Owen Gienni, Ross May, and Kurtis Wiebe will be there, so if you’re into comic books and live in Saskatoon you owe it to yourself to meet these guys in person. Space Jam fans are no doubt the most excited – the venerable Billy West will be in attendance. He has some other claims to fame, too – Philip Fry in Futurama, Stimpy in Ren & Stimpy, and 120 other characters over the course of his career, but my informal bar patio survey has concluded that his most influential work was arguably done alongside Michael Jordan and Wayne Knight.
Panel discussions won’t be the exclusive domain of the guests, though – the event started with a community focus and it’s seeking to maintain that. The 14 hour day will be rounded out with games, comedy, screenings, dancing, and panel discussions culled from an open call for topic suggestions. The most popular will be featured, with local experts in each subject heading the discussions. I plan on making it early for what I expect to be an engaging and impassioned debate on Bronies.