On this episode of Nerd & Tie we make our triumphant return to video! We talk about the Anime News Network hack, Disney planning its own streaming service, and Netflix buying Millarworld. Then we head to the con scene, where Angry Goat Productions is at it again (and using a different name), five GeekGirlCon staffers have quit claiming “reverse racism,” and Otakon had a rain drainage system dump all over their artist alley.
It’s hard to imagine that I hadn’t heard of Angry Goat Productions until January of this year. The ongoing drama surrounding their (distinct lack of) events has been kind of amazing. First they were trying to run an event called “Cosplay Unplugged Los Angeles” which was raising red flags for Sailor Moon fans. What we found was a company run by a man named Ray Jelley that continuously announced events and cancelled them.
Then Angry Goat Productions, unsurprisingly, cancelled that event. A month later, weirdly, the company announced similar events for Sailor Moon and Outlander fandoms, which were pretty much what they were planning before, just slightly scaled down.
With no new events listed on the company’s official website, you’d be forgiven if you assumed that there was nothing coming down the pipe from this (extremely confusing) promoter, but you’d be wrong. Based off a tip we received from a reader and backed up by our own research, not only is Ray Jelley and his company as active as ever, but they’re “organizing” an off-brand “Harry Potter-esque” LARP event on a train.
We’ve talked a lot about the ongoing drama surrounding Angry Goat Productions‘ Sailor Moon themed event originally scheduled to take place in Los Angeles this weekend. First we looked into accusations on social media that the event was a scam. What we discovered was Angry Goat Productions and its owner Ray Jelley have a reputation for scheduling events and then canceling them. Then all signs pointed towards the Sailor Moon events getting canceled, only to have Angry Goat Productions turn around and relaunch the festivities at an insane price tag.
It’s been kind of crazy.
On the sidelines to all of this has been an Outlander themed event, called “Outlander Live,” which we’ve only touched on occasionally. Mostly it got ignored in our reporting because the Sailor Moon half of the coin was just so insanely weird. Well, maybe we should have dug more into it more, because it seems to have fallen to the same fate that all Angry Goat Productions events do — “Outlander Live” has now been canceled.
Update (5/9): And it looks like Angry Goat Productions has canceled these events. The original article remains below.
One of the weirder stories to follow in the con scene this year has been the saga of Angry Goat Productions. They first came to our attention when a supposed scam warning started floating around Facebook about the Sailor Moon themed events at something Angry Goat was planning called Cosplay Unplugged Los Angeles (CULA). While we managed to confirm that this whole thing wasn’t so much a scam as it was an extremely poorly mismanaged company, as time went by it appeared that the events were cancelled.
We apparently were wrong though.
Over the last couple of weeks, Angry Goat Productions has launched a new event website, added new information to their company site, and launched a new Facebook event for “LA Moonfest.” The event is scheduled for the same weekend CULA originally occupied (May 13-14), though at a new venue — the Doubletree Hotel Downtown Los Angeles.
Red flags like advertising their venue as Los Angeles’s “The Reef,” which they hadn’t actually booked.
What we found was a company that appeared to be one of the most poorly managed fandom events companies we’d seen for a while. Despite years of operations and multiple announced events, none of their cruises, conventions, or train rides ever seemed to actually take place. Our advice was simple: even though we didn’t think anything criminal was happening, these guys seemed like people it wasn’t worth giving your money to.
On the longest episode of Nerd & Tie so far, we mourn the passing of John Hurt, Warner Bros wants to make an American live action Attack on Titan, Star Wars Episode VIII finally has a title, the Axanar lawsuit has finally been settled, Jughead apparently isn’t asexual in Riverdale, Comic Excitement Convention flops, Phoenix Comicon has changed its staffing policies a second time, Angry Goat Productions is looking either incompetent or shady, and Evercon has filed for a restraining order against Scott Windorski.
The more I’ve dug into this and organizer Ray Jelley though, the more confusing the maze has gotten. Are people getting scammed by Angry Goat Productions, or is this simply a case of Angry Goat Productions being really bad at this.