9 Fictional TV Conventions to Rival Comic-Con

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Clockwise from left: Vivian Zink/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty Images; ABC; PBS
As we recover from the long weekend of fandom that was San Diego-Comic Con 2015, it's worth considering how conventions have grown in popularity over the past decade. Even beloved TV characters have begun attending fictional festivals celebrating their geekier interests, giving shows a chance to poke fun at themselves (and TV culture in general) while also offering viewers insight into their own nerdy habits. Here, nine small-screen mass gatherings we'd like to make reality.
Joel McHale as Jeff Winger in Community - Season 4 - 'Conventions of Space and Time'
Vivian Zink/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank/Getty Images

InSpecTiCon (Community)

When Abed became obsessed with the British TV show Inspector Spacetime, it was only a matter of, well, time before the sitcom sent him to a convention. The “Conventions of Space and Time” episode was a tongue-in-cheek parody of Doctor Who (from the character’s name to the quirky costume to the red telephone box spaceship) that accurately poked fun at the different facets of rabid fan—and television—culture.

Rob Benedict as Chuck and Jared Padalecki as Sam in Supernatural
David Gray/The CW

Supernatural Convention (Supernatural)

You don’t get to 11 seasons without a sense of humor, and as Supernatural has demonstrated time and again, it isn’t afraid to make fun of its own mythology (or its devout following). The very-meta Season 5 episode “The Real Ghostbusters” sees life imitating art imitating life when the demon-hunting Winchester brothers attend a fan convention celebrating them—or rather, the series of Supernatural books based on their lives. No doubt the episode was inspired by the various real-life conventions and book series that have celebrated the show throughout the years.

The Middle

Planet Nowhere Convention (The Middle)

Brick Heck’s love of the Planet Nowhere science fiction book series has been a recurring theme over the course of the show. So it was a pleasant surprise when Season 6 sent him and his older sister, Sue, to a fan convention that not only allowed Brick to geek out but also gave Sue a chance to bond with (and better understand) her often-misunderstood younger sibling.
Nathan Fillion as Richard Castle and Stana Katic as NYPD Detective Kate Beckett in Castle - Season 5, 'The Final Frontier'
Ron Tom/ABC via Getty Images

Nebula 9 Convention (Castle)

Who knew the cool and composed Kate Beckett (otherwise known as “K-Becks”) was secretly a sci-fi fangirl, as viewers discovered in “The Final Frontier” episode? Even though the slightly-cheesy space show she loves, Nebula 9, is modeled after Star Trek and Babylon 5, its biggest inspiration is another sci-fi series that featured Nathan Fillion. Both the fictional Nebula 9 and real Firefly were cancelled after one season, but their popularity haven’t waned, reaching cult status at conventions.


Webicon (iCarly)

In a two-part episode, Carly, Sam, and Freddie head to Webicon, an internet convention that’s a mash-up of Comic-Con and VidCon. There, the trio hosts their own iCarly panel for fans, and Freddie enters a World of the Warlords (inspired by World of Warcraft, natch) costume competition. While it would be great to attend a panel featuring the iCarly crew and finally get answers to a few nagging questions—like how a remote with only 6 buttons produces so many different sound effects—it would be even more fun to visit the Warlords area to settle who is more powerful: Aruthor or Asparthamay.

Numeric Con (Sesame Street)

Only on Sesame Street can a convention celebrate numbers and geek culture in a brilliant mash-up. As Elmo—dressed as the Dark Nine—goes about trying to complete his convention checklist and meet his hero the Green Lanten, various characters dressed as numerically-inspired sci-fi and superhero characters pop up: Doctor Two, Princess Three-a, and the Sevengers.

Equestra Con (Bob’s Burgers)

Tina Belcher’s love of horses is well established, so it’s no surprise that she loves The Equestranauts (a My Little Pony-esque animated show). Unfortunately for the oldest Belcher kid, the convention doesn’t give her a chance to bond with other teenage girls—instead, she meets the show’s older, middle-aged male fans (who call themselves the Equesticles).

Ghostwriter Convention (BoJack Horseman)

A lot of celebrities have published memoirs, but as BoJack Horseman jokes, some of them need help getting their words on the page—if not someone else to actually write them. Still, if BoJack’s day-to-day hijinks are any example, it would probably be quite entertaining to hear from the real people behind the words. (Not surprisingly, an actual ghostwriters conference has been created.)

Plus: See ALL the Hidden Gems from Season 2


Festival of Figurines (Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness)

Po has always been an unabashed fan of not just the Furious Five, but Kung Fu itself. Despite being the Dragon Warrior, the Festival of Figurines (“The Fest)” gives him the perfect outlet to celebrate the martial art he loves and share his passion with other fans dressed up as their favorite Kung Fu heroes. The Fest even gives the perpetually stoic Master Shifu a chance to geek out as well.
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