Comic Con HQ has the line up to keep the spirit of comic convention strong. Featuring Con Man and Kings of Con, these two shows two different shows on the spectrum of life behind the curtains.
In its second season, Con Man continues the ever cycling cycle of meta with Wray Nerely (played by Alan Tudyk) and Jack Moore (played by Nathan Fillion). Wray and Jack were the lead characters of a science fiction show from years ago called Spectrum (sounds familiar?), where Wray played a pilot and Jack played the captain(eh?eh?eh?). Wray spends most of his time touring the country in comic convention circuits catering to his beloved fans even as he does his darndest to move ahead just a teensy bit in life. Jack is the more familiar and sought after of the pair but the two still remain friends and still strive to keep the Spectrum show alive. Co-producer PJ Haarsma brings Spectrum even further into our reality by creating an actual comic book version of the fictional show.
The show features a whole cast of zany characters that just continue to turn Wray’s life into a circus. The show itself may be based on the comic con life but it is by no means operates at a normal level. The characters and the stories are unrealistic that it eases the deep pity that we begin to accumulate for poor Wray. Although, just released episodes 7 and 8 have made me wish that this could be real. The episodes cater to the musical soul as it centers around Lou Ferrigno staging the I’m With Stupid a musical play inspired by Of Mice and Men.
Don’t believe me? Check out the website for the musical: http://go.comic-conhq.com/con-man-musical/
By the time the play rolls around, I am just in utter awe and cracking up. In the episodes, Ferrigno and Wray end up getting stuck in a basement. In a comedy of errors. other characters begin to join them one by one with the door ultimately locking them in (possible Game of Throne’s reference too?). Instead of despairing, Ferrigno’s dream of staging the musical becomes a reality as he recruits each person a part. Soon actors, comic writers, and con stragglers have become stage hands or an “owl”, “dog”, even a whoreish wife. What culminates is play that I want to happen in real life so bad. If Spectrum can be made into a real comic, than I’m With Stupid can be a play. So many awesome scenes but the scene with the “dog” had me choking with laughter! Talk about a scene stealer!
Now if zany and dark humor is not your style, then Kings of Con may be your flavor. Playing as slightly alternate versions of themselves, of Supernatural fame, Richard Speight and Rob Benedict are Rich and Rob. Rich and Rob are part of a con circuit where 13 weekends in a year, they attend conventions and also cater to adoring fans. Where Con Man is a hyper version of themselves, Kings of Con is a more slightly askew and gritty reality. The stories featured in the episodes are plausible enough that it makes you wonder which ones are based on true events. Although the show still features it’s own level of zany with cameos springing in random directions. Some of the jokes are obvious with Rob’s high anxiety and Rich’s blatant disregard for decency but many of the jokes are more low key and smirk-worthy. One highlight for me is the handler that gives zero flying fudges about the crazy antics and will always guide them with a stern but dead pan “we’re walking” to the mouthpiece.
Through it all, the connection between them and the fans are strongly felt. Although their lives could be crashing or at a standstill, they need the fans. The fans are what fuels them to keep moving, keep striving, and keep the adrenaline going. For every move that is thwarted, they can still look back at the fans as a support. Plus, the tight friendship between Rich and Rob (in the show and in real life) is one of the sincerest relationships out there. Both may be dysfunctional but they balance each other quite nicely. No wonder no one is surprised that they got hitched.
Then there are moments in the show that surprise by how real it can get. Who has not wanted to be Rob in expressing all of their frustrations. Just minus the last scene:
(WARNING: NSFW: Contains foul language)
Catch up all of the episodes on Comic Con HQ