Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Report from Salt Lake Comic Con 2014 Fan Experience!

Before we get started, does anyone know what to call this thing? I've heard Comic Con, Fan Experience, Salt Lake Fan Experience, Comic Con Fan Experience... I went to the thing and I don't know what it's called except TWO DAYS OF AWESOME!!!
For this post I'm calling it Comic Con but just realize I'm referring to the name in the title.
So in the weeks leading up to Comic Con I was heeing and hawing as to weather or not I wanted to go or just sell my tickets. The event being a month away from my wedding and a week away from finals, spending a ton of time and money on the event seemed to be a little much.
And then they announced Nathan Fillian.
It was settled.
Fun little pirate band
I called my fellow geek Tyler up and told him I knew what we were dressing as. This was his first Comic Con so he wasn't too keen on dressing up, till I said Dr. Horrible. Joss Whedon's internet sensation starring the Fillian and Neil Patrick Harris was the logical conclusion for us was to dress up as Dr. Horrible and Captain Hammer. I was especially into cosplaying as something that didn't require a ton of makeup, unlike my Harley Quinn from last year so this was a win-win.
Great Belle Cosplay (Color altered by me)
Night before though was when the excitement hit a new high when it was announced that the Con would feature none other than the legendary Patrick Stewart was going to show up, a prospect that sent my little heart pumping with glee. I grew up on Star Trek the Next Generation and X-Men, so this guy was probably the biggest name I could ever hope to see. Needless to say, we were excited.
So off we went.
We attended Friday and Saturday of Comic Con with the goal to interact with as many Star Trek: The Next Generation cast as we could, as well as our beloved Captain Reynolds. Our group ended up containing me, Tyler as Dr. Horrible, my roommate Adam, and fellow Mormongeek writer Stephen. Just walking in we were overwhelmed by the amount on display in the main halls. Double the size of last year, there were times we'd just stand in the middle of the aisle not sure where to go,and we could never get across the main floor without stopping for a photo op, seeing something amazing, or just squeeing at amazing cosplays.

Let me emphasize some highlights:

*Meeting Dr. Beverly Crusher, Commander Riker, and Lt Tasha Yar
Nathan and Adam on the main floor
It took a bit of waiting in line, and at for one $40, but I got to meet the actors who played some amazing characters from Star Trek. Johnathon Frakes couldn't chat for long but Gates McFadden and Denise Crosby were so sweet to us we fell in love all over again. Gates to me is the best TV mom out there, and to meet her in person was a real treat, especially finding out how nice she is. Crosby told us about how she loved Salt Lake and how she is now working on The Walking Dead, which makes my heart jump with glee knowing that she'll bring the same strength and passion she brought to Yar into a show I love.

*Seeing the panels
Tyler and I being excited
Last year I spent the entire Comic Con on the floor and never saw the famous people, but this time with so many of my faves I had to check out the panels. I attended six: Nathan Fillian, Patrick Stewart, a double with Michael Dorn (Worf) and Marina Sirtis(Troi), Brent Spiner(Data), and Johnathon Frakes(Riker). Each brought something new to their show. Spiner impersonated Picard and had us rolling in the aisles as well as some hysterical stories about Data and tips for budding actors. Frakes talked about directing and had some great fun with some of the female audience. Dorn and Sirtis told some incredible stories about their treatment by producers and Troi even kissed a fan in a wheelchair that made me tear up. Stewart talked about a new movie coming out that I'm seeing as soon as I can, as well as made me flat out bawl when he talked about his work with battered women's shelters in Great Britain. And Fillian... Well check the next highlight.

*Stephen stumping Nathan Fillian
My favorite Batmobile
So the audience had the opportunity to ask these folks some questions, and Mormongeeks own Stephen Larsen got to talk to his hero Captain Reynolds. First Stephen wanted him to run lines from Serenity with him, which sadly Nathan couldn't do because nobody in the world can do Firefly/Serenity lines as well as Stephen. But then Nathan told us a story about Firefly, and how he ate steaks with Adam Baldwin in the kitchen of the ship and how it felt for a split second that he was home. It made every Browncoat in the place just fall in love with the 'verse we love and miss all over again.

The Lego display this year was amazing, and there's no way I could describe it, so here's my pics.

Adam even introduced me to one of the builders, a gentleman by the name of Quinn who helped put the sets together. I'm always eager to meet more Legomaniacs.

Let it go or Brand new day?
My suvieneers besides pics with my buddies this time around was art. I wanted art for my new home and I was able to pick up some great stuff. Out of respect to the artists I'm not going to show the art since I didn't think to get all their names so I don't want to not credit them, but I did pick up a Steampunk city,a drawing of Korra in the Avatar state, some Harley Quinns to add to my collection, and Calvin and Hobbs taking a nap in a tree. My house is going to look great.

*Meeting Ben Hansen from Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files
As I said in a post once, I love paranormal and cryptozoology stuff. Ben Hansen's show Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files is intriguing and definitely worth checking out. Plus, he graduated from University of Utah, so we're basically bros.

Tyler and I with Ecto 1
*Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog Sing-Along
At the end of the weekend we gathered in a room with about 200 other Dr. Horrible fans and watched the hour long show, singing all the songs at the top of our lungs. "Brand New Day" and "My Freeze Ray" never sounded so good as when they were being sung with friends.

Speaking of, last but not least:

*Spending a weekend geeking out with my buddies
Despite what many believe, I don't spend a ton of time with my friends playing games and watching movies. Between jobs, school, families, and for me wedding stuff, a chance to just be a geek has been rare for a little while. This was just what I needed to hang out with my bros, have some fun, and just be me.

Spider-Man and Deadpool
We had so much fun this year I was sad to see it end, but alas it did. The good news is that if I really need to go back the next one is in September.
Wonder who's coming then...

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