Sunday morning at GeekGirlCon ‘15 brought us one of my favorite panels of the Con. Jessica Udischas of Manic Pixie Nightmare Girl, Jenn Popkin of Gender Justice League, and Alyson McManus of Trans Lifeline teamed up for a retrospective and analysis of trans representation in genre media. (They gave the caveat that all three are able-bodied white trans women, so they only speak for a small portion of trans experience.)
Trans people are more in the spotlight than ever before, and trans representation is growing, but also changing. As Udischas pointed out, more doesn’t necessarily mean better. She gave the example of older representations such as Agent Denise Bryson in Twin Peaks. The language now seems dated, and the character was played by a cis man (David Duchovny), but in some ways the representation was more respectful than some more recent depictions.
The panel took its title from a quote from Michelle Rodriguez. Ambushed coming out of a bar, she was asked about rumors that she was being considered for the role of Green Lantern. “That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard,” she said. “Like, stop stealing […] all the white people’s superheroes.”
What did she mean by that? the panel asked.
“Part of me wants to justify her comment,” said Hassell. “We should have our own.”
But as DePass pointed out, Rodriguez was reinforcing the idea that comics are for white people, that “nerd stuff isn’t for us.” The well-known names belong to white people as the default humans.
This one-hour panel, given by Elizabeth Sampat and Zoe Quinn, was a crash course in how—and why—to make your own game. Between them, the two designers have made video games, tabletop games, board games, and other entertainments, and they brought their breadth of knowledge and experience to GeekGirlCon attendees. Each half of the panel could really have been an entire talk of its own, being condensed versions of talks and workshops that Sampat and Quinn have given elsewhere. If you’re interested in more in-depth information on these topics, check out Elizabeth’s and Zoe’s websites.
G. Willow Wilson, creator and writer of the new Ms. Marvel, featuring Kamala Khan (a Muslim Pakistani-American teenage girl living in New Jersey) skipped New York Comic Con this year to join us at GeekGirlCon for the very first time. We were thrilled to have her here in Seattle for a non-compliant discussion of women, diversity, and comics.
Moderator Sabrina Taylor set the tone by telling us, “We are here, as Kelly Sue DeConnick would say, to smash the patriarchy.” (DeConnick is the creator of Bitch Planet, a comic about “non-compliant” women in a dystopian future who are sent to a prison planet for transgressions both major and minor.)
I just got back from the GeekGirlCon ‘15 Kickoff Party and Concert, featuring the Portland-based supergroup the Thundering Broadsides—uh, I mean, the PDX Broadsides and the Thundering Asteroids, who are normally totally separate bands, but this time ended the night in an Avengers-style teamup. But more on that later!
One great thing about nerd concerts, and GeekGirlCONcerts in particular, is that you can get melodic folkish bands with complex harmonies (like the PDX Broadsides) and high-energy punk (like the Thundering Asteroids) in the same lineup, all in a relaxed atmosphere where kids of all ages can hang out, alternating between board games, dancing, and some high-quality muppet flailing.
GeekGirlCon ‘15 festivities officially kick off today, and I hope you’re all as excited as I am!
I also hope you’ve grabbed your passes, as all online passes are now SOLD OUT. There may be some passes (at early bird prices) still in local stores, if you hurry. I recommend calling ahead, and bringing cash! Check with the following to see if you can snag a last-minute pass:
Paper passes, which you may have bought in stores or at our GeekGirlCon booth at other conventions around town, must be exchanged for a badge at Registration
One-day paper passes are good for either Saturday or Sunday–Registration will hook you up with whichever badge you prefer
Folks with will-call passes need to show some kind of ID or proof of purchase when picking them up (this doesn’t have to be a photo ID, and can be the email receipt from your purchase)
Great, now you’ve sorted yourself out with a badge–how do you keep track of all those panels you want to see?
Well, iOS and Android users can download the Guidebook app, search for GeekGirlCon, and add us to their events. It’s an interactive schedule and planner, where you can create your own schedule (with reminders), tag booths you want to visit, and more. There’s also a browser version.
What else am I forgetting?
Oh, that’s right–have fun! We can’t wait to see you!
Our gaming area may be located on the lower level of the Conference Center, but if you want dank, creepy, and dungeon-like, you’ll have to get your GM to take you on a dungeon crawl, because our basement is sure to be bustling. This is shaping up to be a banner year for gaming at GeekGirlCon—all your favorites are returning, along with many new events and goodies.
One of last year’s big highlights was the Paint ‘n’ Take miniatures event. Kids and adults alike loved picking out and painting their own miniatures (provided by the ever-generous Privateer Press). This year it’s scheduled for 10am-1pm on Saturday, so be sure to show up early before the miniatures run out.
Update 10/7: Please note: all online passes are now SOLD OUT. Some stores may still have them in stock; please call ahead to make sure.
Just in case you missed the window for early bird pricing online, GeekGirlCon is partnering with a number of brick-and-mortar stores to bring you passes for the super-bargainous prices of $35 for a two-day adult pass, or $20 for a one-day adult pass!
Head to one of the following to support both your local geeky business, and your local geeky Con:
On the other hand, if you feel that a few dollars is a small price to pay for ordering at home in your Pokémon footie pajamas, that is also a valid life choice. Buy passes online, and there’s no need to interrupt your Netflix marathon.
Online prices are as follows:
2-Day Adult passes: $45
1-Day Adult passes: $30
1-Day Kids 6-12 passes: $10
Kids 0-5: Free!
Whatever you decide, make sure to grab passes before the big day—we’re headed for yet another sold-out Convention, and we’d hate for you to miss it!
We on staff at GeekGirlCon are thrilled to share that comic book writer and novelist G. Willow Wilson will be joining us as a featured contributor at GeekGirlCon ‘15 – even if she has to miss New York Comic Con to be here!
She’s one of a upcoming cadre of comic book (and other pop culture) creators who engage deeply with their fanbase, who wear their geeky fannish roots on their sleeve. She’s active on Twitter, answering fan questions and squeeing alongside us at fandom news.
As well as celebrating the amazing accomplishments of women in geekery, GeekGirlCon has always had a strong focus on helping women and other marginalized geeks find the tools, contacts, know-how, and resolve to achieve their own goals. In addition to our GeekGirlConnections room (we’ve already highlighted some of the organizations who’ll have tables there this October), we have a range of awesome panels and workshops lined up where you can pick up tips on everything from cosplay to community building to content creation.