Pros On Cons: AkaiCon Review

AkaiCon Sailed It

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: AkaiCon is a magical, mysterious unicorn of a convention.


The first weekend of August 2015 saw the third year of this amazing event and it was as impressive as it was in year two, when this newbie of an anime con managed to double it’s attendees from year one. We at the blog had so much fun on our one day adventure into Akai last year that this year we knew we couldn’t miss a second (Also, the theme was pirates and you know how much we like pirates).


So what makes this ‘Akai’ thing such a big deal? Sure, Nashville has seen it’s share of uber successful Anime conventions over the years and, honestly, it’s only because of these predecessors that Akai can be all the magical, amazing, unicornness that it’s proven to be. But what makes Akai so special, so wonderful, is this uncanny ability to put exactly the right people in exactly the right positions.


And just a whole lot of pretty!

See, Akaicon is the brainchild and baby of lots of folks who have spent years attending, volunteering, and staffing other local cons. In the vane of hindsight being 20/20, these beautiful people have seen what works, what doesn’t, and what needed a fresh face and they implemented these changes. This wouldn’t be possible for ground-breaking cons, cons that were brand new territory in a land of country music and sport. But, it’s only because of those pioneers of geekdom that AkaiCon can be the convention that it is, so let us never forget.

While walking the halls of this wonderland of love and friendship, I never once saw a single member of staff looking harried or overwhelmed. And I wouldn’t have blamed them a bit if they did! But no, every time I saw a red ‘Akai’ arm band the, wearer was all smiles and excitement. And that’s the main draw of this con for me: the excitement!

This amazing, infectious, happy, excitement permeates every second, every panel, every event. This is an excitement that trickles down from the very top to every director, staff member, and volunteer. How could the attendees not pick up on that and share in it?

Now, down to the brass tax: Is this a con I wanna go to?


Also: Yes.

Into Cosplay and wanna see some amazing costumes?

Attend Akai.

Like informative or fun panels like Con Etiquette, Cosplay on a Budget, or Creating a Rule 63 Cosplay?

Go to Akai.

Wanna meet amazing, friendly voice actors?

Akai’s got you!

Wanna hang out with your favorite geeks and make new friends in a safe, fun, supportive environment?

You guessed it, Akai lends itself to that, too.

This year AkaiCon was held at the Franklin Marriott in Cool Springs and it was all nostalgia and feels for me. You see, just a few short years ago, I walked into that very same hotel for my first convention ever, in my first cosplay ever. I stepped foot into that lobby for Geek Media Expo volume four, knowing no one, with no idea how my life was about to change.

This time, it was like coming home again. The atmosphere and excitement of Akai hits you the second you step foot on that carpet and doesn’t leave you till sometimes days later. Wanna see just how much this con means to people? Just take a peek at the Facebook Page, read the numerous outpourings of love and affection people have for this event. It’s astounding and humbling.

Just over two thousand fans and friends filled those halls last weekend and the consensus seems to be that it was EPIC. We certainly had and epic time, ourselves.

This convention has a LOT going for it and it’s only going to get better! Next year, AkaiShi, is gonna have a horror theme, so get started on your best, creepiest, cosplay and we’ll see you there! (I’ll be the one cowering in the corner).

Episode 5: MTAC 2015


Pros on Cons reviews the

Middle Tennessee Anime Convention’s ’15 to Life’.

A long time ago….

It’s been a very long hiatus, I know. I took some time off to finish my degree and then.. well, then just not doing anything became a sort of habit.

But I’m back, geeklings!!! Pros On Cons will be going, full-swing this year and I’ll be revisiting my “geek girls go gaming” series, starting with ‘those kids in the park on Sundays’. You’ve all seen them, right? It’s called Dur Demarion and I’ve already scoped it out.


If you’ve been thinking about going out, now’s the time! The weather is turning towards spring, the flowers are blooming, and the foam is swinging!

The season opener would be a great time to wet your toes and get started with these awesome, friendly folks. Check it out via the Facebook event: Here

Or join them on Meetup: Here

Also coming up fast, we will be attending MTAC 15 to life on Easter weekend.


A weekend which also marks the opening event of Al’se’war, High Fantasy Colonial LARP,  with the Non-profit organization, Heroic Interactive Theater.

We’ve also been invited out to Catan Con, hosted by Mayfair games, which has our gaming hearts all a-flutter!


And don’t forget about Marble City Comicon (Never forget Marble City!) at the end of April.

marble city

Okay, that’s a quick run-down of a few things we’ll be covering in the coming weeks. I hope we see you all soon!

Episode 4: GMX

Episode 3: Nashville Zombie Walk

A special guest joins us to review the Nashville Zombie Walk. We talk about attendance, costumes, route, the city and the geeks (and then GMX, cause we can’t NOT talk about GMX)

Episode 2: Nashville Mini Maker Faire

Party Jack, Brianna Reed, and I sit down with Lucas Leverett to share our experiences at year two of the Nashville Mini Maker Faire.

Pros On Cons is a GO

I started Pros On Cons as a supplemental video project while working on articles for The idea behind Pros On Con is simple enough: I wanted to give people more than one opinion on events. Reading or watching event reviews can be tricky: what if I don’t ‘con’ like this person? Maybe this person attends events for different reasons than I do?

For instance, while attending events and conventions I rank higher those which peak my personal interests. Good SciFi, fantasy, and literary tracks will make a convention great for me. I go to events to socialize, network, and learn a thing or two.

But, that’s just me! I have friends who attend events to cosplay and to see amazing cosplays. There are those who enjoy the game rooms to an ‘unhealthy’ extent. I even have friends who go to cons based on what guests will be there (and even then, tastes vary by person. This person wants to meet ALL THE VOICE ACTORS while this one is only interested in big names).

The idea was originally born at a local, long-time anime convention that recently had what we will call ‘a rough year’. For a myriad of reasons this event was not what it’s attendees had come to expect. From the get-go, the con was struggling. The amazing part was, however, that a handful of us attended and all had vastly different experiences. We would meet up at the convention from time-to-time and share our stories. It was then, as some of us wondered if we were, indeed, even attending the same event, that I realized the potential of this experience.

So, TL;DR: Pros on Cons is a laid back, round table discussion via YouTube, where-in myself and other random attendees of conventions and other geek events sit down together and try to give you a good,  rounded out review from more than one perspective.

We give you: The pros and cons (Word play is fun).

You can subscribe to my channel to keep up with the progress HERE

Episode 1 AkaiCon

For our premier episode, Pros on Cons snagged time with Richie Roberts of Fairy Tail Podcast.

Nashville Geek Life’s Party Jack gives us the scoop on AkaiCons night life, and Sed Lanas compares 2014 to last year.

Marble City Rocks Knoxville

Way back in October I learned about a new comic convention, featuring lots of cosplay in Knoxville, TN. As an avid comic geek and amateur cosplayer, it was a no brainer to attend this first year con. Fast forward to April 11th and I was happily on my way to Marble City Comic Con. Knoxville is a bit of a drive from Nashville, but always worth it.


Held inside the fantastic Knoxville Convention Center, Marble City Comic Con certainly did not disappoint. I spent hours wandering, shopping, and chatting with everyone. The atmosphere was friendly and open, the venue was spacious and interesting, and the geeks were enthused and upbeat. This was all around a great time.

catThe amazingly talented (and fun) Daniel Lasris of Katmandew face & body art made me a kitty pirate.

I hope this con survives and is given the opportunity to grow to it’s full potential. Knoxville is just beautiful all around, lending a lovely backdrop to any event. The city is very well equipped to host any number of guests at one time, as evidenced by this weekend. See, while we geeks were donning our Lekku and bow-ties, thousands of other guests and residents were strolling festivals, admiring old cars, or cheering for the home team in matching shirts (I’m told it was a sportsing thing).

bounty Bounty hunting is a sport, right?

The convention center itself is easily accessible from a number of directions and virtually surrounded by hotels, not to mention the architectural beauty of the place. Cosplay photo ops abound in this 4 story building and it’s gorgeous gardens (complete with fountain and waterfall). The space that the Convention Center affords offers this first year con all the growing room it could want.

earring Hehe, diamond earrings

Our friends Cosplay Kasterborous judged an impressive cosplay contest. The Twisted Twins gave out tons of hugs and the D20 girls geeked out with us for a while at their booth.

I DO heart them!

                         I DO heart them!

There were ‘meet & greets’ and photo ops with awesome folks like Kevin Nash, George Perez, Riddle, and more. Someone let Deadpool in the 1989 Batmobile, Face Off’s RJ Haddy offered a number of demos, and the local 501st was representing.


Femtrooper Julie looked amazing, as always.

All in all, Marble City was a good, laid back, geeky time. I’m still hoping The Doctor will swing by in his TARDIS and let me do it all over again!