Tuesday, July 21, 2009

G-Fest Day One: The Ultimate TV Station

When we arrived at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Thursday, our first G-Fest surprise awaited us. At the base of the elevators, the sign you see to the left had been posted. When we got up to our room, sure enough: A 24-hour monster movie station was set up by the G-Fest organizers through an in-house, closed circuit hotel channel! We immediately plopped down to watch the Mystery Science Theater 3000 version of "Gamera vs. Zigra." The convention booklet included a page reminiscent of the good old days of TV Guide, with one fabulous twist: each and every show was kaiju-related--everything from Space Giants and Johnny Sokko to Gamera (including the three most recent films) to all kinds of Ultraman (including the first episode of Tiga, one of my favorites). Between programs were movie trailers and retro commercials, such as one that I remembered featuring the Shogun Warriors Godzilla (which I still have--in "battle damaged condition").
The element of surprise added to the enjoyment, but it did pose some dilemmas: there were plenty of programs that I have only heard about but never seen ("The Green Slime," "The Manster,"Go! Go! Godman") ...do you go to the panel discussion, the dealers room, or watch the movie? These are the tough value decisions one must make at G-Fest. Making the discovery of G-Fest TV got things started on a monstrously great note.

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