As I begin typing this, I can’t help feeling somewhat strange. You see, I normally attend at least a handful of conventions per year and, thanks to Covid, this past weekend’s Astronomicon 4 was my first since February of 2020. Having said that, I’m extending my thanks to the organizers for helping those who attended get back to normalcy, because I think we all really needed this.
Well, there’s that and the fact that I haven’t written a recap of this sort in that amount of time, either, so now I must get back on the horse.
This year, the pop culture extravaganza that is Astronomicon moved both in location and month. In the past, the event took place out in Sterling Heights during the month of February, whereas now it went down at the Sheraton Ann Arbor in August. Metro Detroit-based Sheratons seem to be becoming the home for horror cons for some reason, so this worked out nicely.
Truth be told, Astronomicon isn’t just focused on horror – though it does pay the genre a generous amount of respect – but comic books, science fiction, pro wrestling, and music are also celebrated as well. Just browse our accompanying gallery boasting celebrity guests, cosplayers, and a few looks at the showroom floor if you require visual evidence.
Without a doubt, the guests I most enjoyed meeting were of the pro wrestling variety. All Elite Wrestling (AEW) is my brand of choice these days, so I was quite thrilled to rub elbows with the likes of Darby Allin, Tay Conti, Sammy Guevara, and veteran commentator Tony Schiavone. Also, there were industry legends Mick Foley and Mickie James, and they were just as kind as those others listed.
Some other stars of the silver screen who showed up included Kane Hodder (Friday the 13th film series), Shannon Elizabeth (American Pie), and Dana DeLorenzo (Ash vs. The Evil Dead), along with recording artists like Twiztid, Blaze, and A.X.E. Chatting with comic book writer Dirk Manning was pretty cool, as he was there promoting his newest works like the latest installment of Haunted High-Ons and the upcoming Butts in Seats: The Tony Schiavone Story.
For those who read my preview article early last week, you should recall my mentioning how pumped I was to meet Slipknot frontman Corey Taylor. Unfortunately, he got Covid and had to cancel. Bummed as I may be, this is the world in which we now live, and let this serve as a reminder to continue taking the virus seriously. Let’s hope that the organizers are able to book him for next year’s event, or maybe even an Astronomicon-sponsored in-store signing. I guarantee that this long, longtime Slipknot fan will be there.
Speaking of which, it is recommended that those residing in southeast Michigan check out Astronomicon 5 whenever it should occur in 2022. Stay tuned to their social media channels as always, as I’m sure they’ll book some fantastic guests before you know it.
Photos taken by Josh Mundy.