Comic Con SA: Is it all just a ruse?

Cape Town – After Channel24 reported on details about South Africa's very own Comic Con event on Thursday, Lazygamer did some digging into the validity of the event, in an exposé entitled "The unfortunate truth behind Comic-Con South Africa", and found that almost everything the organisers have promised is dubious.

According to reports online, and specifically MyGaming, the inaugural Comic Con SA is set to take place from 26-28 April at the "It's a house" venue in Green Point, Cape Town.

Local organisers are claiming that they acquired the rights to use the Comic Con name and host the event in South Africa. Lazygamer e-mailed Comic-Con International to validate this claim, to which Mike Stoltz, PR for Comic-Con International responded: "Thank you for your email. We are not affiliated with that convention and don’t know anything about it."

Lazygamer also noted the spelling of the name for the South African event is inconsistent with the international Comic-Con - which is hyphenated - while "Comic Con SA" is not. The Comic Con SA domain name is also misspelled. Comic Con SA organisers confirmed to Mygaming that the naming rights to the Comic-Con brand had been acquired.

More tellingly, Marvel South Africa, which was revealed as one of the sponsors of the event, does not technically exist. Marvel is a division of the Walt Disney Company - which has an office in South Africa.

Lazygamer also notes the mysterious "It's a house" venue only has enough capacity to host 150 people.

Timing of the event

Raising more red flags is the timing of the event, which seems to be the biggest concern among fans interested in attending the event. With three weeks to go before the event, many comic fans are left with no time to make the necessary arrangements.

Several Channel24 users expressed their concern over the timing of the event. Hein Heine said: "Seriously? You give us 3 weeks to make arrangements for this... Then when it flops there is no market here for this... Seriously guys do things right the first time!"

Stefan Roets commented: "The organisation of this is terrible! I am intimately involved on a national level with 3 of the major collectible card game brands in SA and we have to find out here that they plan to host card game championships? 3 weeks notice to make travel and accommodation arrangements is a joke - this might just as well be a Cape Town affair, as I doubt the rest of the country will pitch."

Kalycia Jennifer Urquhart says: "Not impressed with the lack of planning and obvious rush. Johannesburg has the highest concentration of people, for a launch where numbers and hype are important, why is this in CT. in 3 WEEKS!? You cannot possibly have a decent PR campaign in 3 weekes, people cannot book transport and accommodation or budget for this, and most of your audience will not even hear about the even unless you have massive advertising coverage, like yesterday. Sigh."

*Has Comic Con SA taken local fans for a ride? Does their event sound above-board? As a gamer/comic book fan, does this make you think twice about planning to attend the event? E-mail us your thoughts and get published!
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