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Itâs seriously getting harder and harder to start writing about how each day began, because by the time I write these entries (night of) thereâs just SOOO much that goes on inbetween. For those that only get the chance to do write after the convention, I seriously pity them for having to remember all this stuff . . . especially keeping in mind that their nights didnât likely end BEFORE midnight.
Well, wake up for me this morning was before my alarm set at 8:30 AM . . . I do believe I have so far beat my alarm every single day of this Gathering . . . just simple and perpetual anticipation. After a quick bowl of cereal and a near-dragging of Goose to wake up (he DIDNâT beat his alarm), we made our way back to Universal City and the Hilton. I canât remember what we played in the car, but at one point I told Goose that I actually had the song âRappin Drakkenâ from Kim Possible. He chuckled. As he laughed, I told him to say, âI donât believe you.â The second he said it, I whipped out my cell phone, saying, âwell, Iâll guess Iâll just have to show you then!â Also along the way we looked at the schedule and we tried to figure out just who our last Mug-A-Guest should be . . . we couldnât decide between Sean Galloway and Victor Cook . . . and if it wasnât for the act that weâve had a healthy exposure (pun intended) time with Thom Adcox, weâd probably be considering his Mugging as well. In the end we kinda chose Victor knowing that we wouldnât be there at nine and expected Seanâs to fill up really quickly.
As we parked in the hotel parking, we head toward the elevator which was held open by a guy who noticed our Con-Badges. His quick reaction to say âGargoyles, huh?â made us think was a fellow fan, but he quickly silenced all speculation as he told us he was none other than Frank Paur, which was just crazy-obvious at that point, or anyone remembering his face on the season one DVD . . . his hairâs just longer. As the elevator brought us to the Lobby, he told us heâd see us later after he checked in, much to our excitement.
Anyhoo, we arrive about a half hour after nine (traffic was oddly more-so than Saturday and Goose took FOREVER to eat his breakfast) and were delighted to see that not only Victor Cookâs Mug was still open, but Seanâ as well! Thus, we quickly found ourselves in a dilemma we thought we got through . . . Sean or Victor, Victor or Sean? Oy vey . . . in the end Victor was, well the victor since we both wanted to see the panel with the Gargoyles Production Crew. As we waited for that panel to start, we hanged out in the lobby area, where we were greeted by a few fans . . . finally got the chance to tell Blaise what an awesome Zafiro he was, as well as tell Nikki how great she was at being the Gobby-pumpkin bombs at the Radio Play. I was also treated by Guardian who let me not only see her wicked collection of Gargoyles trading cards, but actually pick a couple of her various extras as well! Again, another small moment in between events, but this is an aspect about Gargoyles I never experienced as a kid . . . I donât remember once talking to a fellow classmate about Gargoyles . . . recesses were almost always about Power Rangers . . . what was a six year old to do then, guys?
So the Gargoyles Production Panel began, and it was great to hear from such talented artists (of various expertises, some even multiple expertises) talk about the creation of the show that I got hooked to nearly fifteen years ago. Discussions regarding the backgrounds of New York City, and making sure the artists overseas actually got a chance to KNOW what NYC was like was truly insightful . . . that and hearing that the team that did âresearchâ on the Big Apple was just Frank Paur and his camera. I donât know where I heard it myself, but I DO remember hearing about a New York City team . . . that was a kick to find out d:
Following the panel, I then started my day-long bout of hounding for autographs, trying to rush out in time to get Frank, Michael Reeves, and the other panelist autographs just in time before the special screening of the Spectacular Spider-Man Comic Con footage was to be seen. A quick text from Goose told me that wasnât going to happen, so I dashed my way back to the room (I think I told Brooklyn X it was starting while in line and he ran with me), finding my seat in the front with Blaise and Greg B sitting in the same row.
The footage was â" you know its coming â" spectacular! Best moment that was cut had to have been Hammerhead watching the Enforcers get duped in some pool bet with Hammyâs chauffeur, even with that error of the eight ball as the cue ball (never played pool myself, but maybe sheâs just THAT good?). The Enforcerâ reactions were priceless. I also enjoyed seeing the interaction of Ned Lee and Betty Brant, something that â" with SO MUCH else we get to see on the show â" has just barely squeezed itself in with Ned asking Betty out in season two. Shockerâs escape in âGroup Therapyâ was definite miss in the sense of continuity . . . as well as the Chameleon bit â" looks like Beck has NEVER been to prison, hee hee.
And of course, after Greg W mentioned it, I would have loved to have seen the Emma giving mouth to mouth to Aunt May in the same ep â" some day, maybe weâll be lucky to see it.
This is where it gets hard to remember . . . I do know I saw the Spidey-Panel . . . thatâs easy to remember because I did notice the difference in guest numbers . . . Spidey-guest doubled Garg-guest there, though a few Garg-guests (Vic, Pamela Long, Greg Gular, and oh yeah, Greg W) were doing double guest duties in these panels. Problem is, Iâm not sure when I left the panel, cause I know I managed to get the Garg crew autographs as well as the Spidey crew following the panel . . . I think maybe I left as the panel ended, cause Frank and Greg G were at the Spidey panel as well, now that I think about it, I remember them watching the special screening . . . so I think I just blitzed them all with Garg and Spidey merchandise after the Spidey Crew ended. *shrug*
Funny bit â" getting Frankâs autograph and telling him a second time (after the elevator this morning), âNice to meet you!â He responded, âNice to meet you . . . again!â hah! Good stuff.
Anyways, this version of events so far makes sense to me, as I do remember walking in late for the Composing panel, which I didnât really get a chance to hear from much anyway (mostly all of their backgrounds and how they got in the business â" that was the gist of what I got to hear), because Vicâs Mug-A-Guest was starting soon. Me and Goose quietly tucked ourselves outta there as we made our way to the outside hallway of Salon 5, where we ran into Nikki again . . . she would be joining us in our second Mug-A-Guest as well. Maybe it was due to the fact that there were so many Mugs on this day, but I noticed the room was not signed up all the way this time as it was for Josh Keaton or Keith David the day before. The more awesome for us, because we all got a chance to pick Vicâs head on various things . . . one mugger (forget his name) worked as an assistant of some extant in animation before, so he wanted to know just how the various animation sent overseas gets sent back, and specifically in what form (answer: digitally, in a way that they can add stuff like snow in scenes where they might not have intended it for). I ask questions more story-related, from favorite action sequence (had to tell him mine was the Tombstone-opera) which happened to be the various Everyday-Thug-Beatings simply because thatâ where Spider-Man can be his most smart-alec self, and just how complex and unique Spidey fights with these non-super-villains . . . a particular favorite . . . using one bad guy as a weapon to attack another. I also asked favorite arc and which villain heâd most like to see next (knowing full well, that it wouldnât be a guarantee for the oh-so-desired season three) â" instead of arcs he gave eps, as that was too hard (Lizard, Sinister Six eps, Hammy vs. Silver Sable, among others) and he decided that his favorites were already in the series . . . Green Goblin, Doc Ock . . . maybe a copout, but it didnât feel that way . . . and it wasnât like I was looking for spoilers like a kid pits his parents against each other when they want something:
(What villains we going to see next season, Mr. Weisman? . . . Greg W: For the gazillion bazillionth time, NO COMMENT!! And donât bug Vic as well!!! / What villains we going to see next season, Mr. Cook? . . . Vic: Did you ask Greg if itâs okay? . . . Yes, we did!! . . . Vic: Well, in the first episode of season three weâll start the scene at Ravencroft . . .)
Yeah, you guys are smarter than that d:
Before the time was over, Vic even got a chance to mug all of us a bit . . . we all mentioned what we were doing, whether we were in school or already trying to find a job out there. Vic also mentioned his involvement with Mecha-Nation, something I do think Iâll check out while Gargoyles comics are on the (hopeful) hiatus.
After a quick picture with Vic (awesome! â" already said so in person, but if your reading, thanks!!), Goose went to the Writers Panel while I took a little trip to the Con Suite, where I properly met A Fan, saw Vicky UK again, and was treated to some vanilla fudge all the way from Boston from the friendly Chyna. I didnât have so much of chance to chat with them, as it was I was just really hungry and thirsty. After a quick thanks for the fudge, I found my way to the Writers Panel where I grabbed a seat just in time for Greg to ramble on things heâs written about on Ask Greg . . . the status of the DVDs and the ever-changing hands of execs at Disney. Except it wasnât just that, it became a full-on rant about âUNIMPRESSIVEâ execs, such as the folks that were desperate to knock KP down. This was news to my ears, especially since KP is in fact a show I very much loved and supported. I knew of the fan campaigns to support the show into an additional 22 episodes after the final 65 aired (movie included), but I never, never, NEVER knew it had such a rocky beginning . . . mad props to McCorkle and Schooley for handling that the best they could so they could actually make a great show. As for the brief talk about W.I.T.C.H. â" the second season I never got a chance to see, though I made an effort to see the first because I heard Greg W was working on the second . . . what I saw I enjoyed, though I wasnât sold . . . if I had ever got the chance to see the second season (as well as the rest of the first, ABC Kids moved it on me I think), no doubt I would be impressed as well. *Sigh*
Following the Writers Panel, I made another gambit for autographs, with all the writers that appeared in the panel and ending with none other than Greg Weisman himself . . . I have to say, I felt sorry for him as he wrote a different witty thing for each thing I handed him (Gargoyles Season One: âWelcome to the Clan!â / Clan Building I: âWe Live Again!â / Clan Building II: âWe Own the Knight!â / Bad Guys: âPheonâ is wanted!â / Spidey Season One: âKeep Swinginâ!â) By the time I gave him Bad Guys, he responded, âIâm running out of witty things to write here, man!â My only excuse was that it was my first and last Gathering, which I then thanked for actually signing all those things. You DO rock, Greg! d:
Following the massive Greg signings, I heard from Goose that he wasnât feeling so hot, and that he wasnât sure if his headache would be okay by the Masquerade. As my only ride and my friend, I told him to take it easy and that he should check out the Con Suite. He opted to stay at a couch nearby the Registration Table, while I took a peak at the Live Auction (a Brooklyn Applause figure went for 100 bucks I think!) before I realized the Silent Auction was coming to a close.
Now, throughout the entire weekend, I had my eye set on getting a key chain. I collect key chains from any chance I can get . . . from any city I visit, to any major (or minor) moment in my life that I can account for . . .it gets a key chain that I hang on my bedroom roof linked to several rings from oter key chains forming one long, long chain. My two trips to Disneyland (1998 & 2009) both got Chains. My two trips to Washington DC (2005 & 2009) both got chains hanging. My high school graduation even has a little tassle key chain among the rest in line. I even got one last night at the Hard Rock CafÃ© in City Walk, as it was the first Hard Rock I actually ate at. So it seemed perfectly awesome to try and bid on a certain Phoenix Gate key chain and have it represent my time at the last Gathering.
Well, there was just one problem â" as the last hour of the silent bidding for the various art pieces was coming to a close, I found out one of my newly made friends here â" Abby, or Abigail â" was also set to win that key chain. So then began the struggle of one convincing the other they wanted the key chain more. The conversation between us was civil in the beginning . . . from chit chat about the series and comics to figuring out ways to make the other understand why they should get the keychain Gate. I went with the fact that I actually TOOK Latin at my high school cause of Gargoyles and actually used the Gate in a little project we had in trying to find Latin in todayâs culture (most kids used university mottos, I used the Latin incantations on Gargoyles, including, um, THE PHOENIX GATE). She went with the pity angle, saying how she was leaving Sunday morning and that she also couldnât attend the banquet, unlike me. I reminded her that I lived in, uh, hellooo PHOENIX (Arizona, folks). About seven minutes left in the silent bidding and she was already stomping my feet (steel toes, baby!) and pushing me away from the bidding sheet, as I prepared to poise my pen to make my final bid. At the rate we were going, this chain wasnât going to come cheap. At about three minutes left in the count I realized that she wasnât going to let me have it cheap, even if I tried, and that Iâd get a better deal if I aimed for the Phoenix Gate 2-Piece necklace . . . only problem was the bidding sheet showed a bidder with some serious effort to claim the winning bid. So I made my pact with Abby . . . she help me cover the table to win the necklace (should the other serious bidder show up in these last minutes) and Iâll remove my bid on the key chain. In the last seconds everything flowed smoothly, and we were ecstatic as being winners of our respective Gates. (The third Gate went to Justin âIâd Rather be Pillagingâ to no real last-minute competition and the three of us took a picture with Aaron âHalloweenking,â the maker of all these gorgeous Gates.)
All in all, this was continuing to be an awesome con experience . . . we were all laughing about the last minute silent auction feuding as we saw Greg W. slowly making his way what I believe was the Banquet. A quick, yet polite request for a picture between conversations, and we also made our way to the Banquet separately, glowing in the excitement that weâve been experiencing all day. A quick question to Greg B as to where the Banquet was, and we soon found ourselves waiting for the feast to begin. As our badges were checked for âbanquetâ stickers, we opted to sit next to Ben Diskin (Venom), since neither me nor Goose really got to hear from him outside the Spidey Panel the day before. As our table filled up with Mike and Jennifer âCrzy Demonaâ Anderson herself (the two names I remembered), we discovered that Ben was a really awesome guy. Getting to know him was as cool and natural as getting to know Josh at his Mug-A-Guest, and this was with the challenge of talking over the dinner babbling.
Ben may proclaim himself as the quiet one, but this guy has a definite sense of humor, laughing at my retelling of what just went down at the silent auction (he just spotted my Gate necklace in my hands, which I had no found a way to carefully put it away, there wasnât like a box for it and both chains were small for my neck) as well as virtually anything Mike, Goose, or Jennifer had to say. This was a great table to sit at â" and great view of the stage too, as Greg W. brought up all the guests for a special Q&A.
Aside from asking if Ben did anything as goofy as Crispin being Peter MacNicolâs arms (to which I got a surprised look of âIâm the quiet guy!â and a explanation from Greg of the crazy challenges they put Benâs voice through), I simply enjoyed hearing the other peopleâs questions, though I DID enjoy getting interrupted by the sudden late arrival of Thom Adcox, waving a fresh empty plate like hat from the set of Hello Dolly . . . but thatâs cause I just saw Wall-E recently on DVD . . .if he wasnât as short maybe Iâd think of a different musical d:
A touching moment during the Q&A was hearing Michael Reeves return the credit back to Greg Weisman. The two have been bouncing the credit back and forth all day during the various panels, but it was especially touching here . . . Michael is truly an example of a brilliantly talented person whoâs also such a gentleman. I was so happy to see him at this Gathering.
As the banquet ended we asked and took a picture with Ben and Crispin Freeman . . . both are terribly gifted voice actors and tremendously friendly people . . .along with pretty much the rest of the cast from both shows.
Well, the wait for the Masquerade was on the longer side this time, further accentuated by the fact that despite the awesome time he had at the Banquet, there wasnât much distracting Goose from his headache now, and he wasnât sure if he wanted to stay much longer. I basically asked if it was okay if we got a glimpse of the Masquerade, as I never been to one before (my excuse ALL weekend, and a good one at that. If we do get another convention sometime in the future, Iâll definitely have to provide my own transportation, cause the old excuse just wonât work anymore d: ). While we waited I ran into Nikki again and the two of chatted about the recent Trades, mostly Clan Building Volume II. All three of us were costume-less, but that didnât stop us from enjoying the ones other people were wearing and thinking about costumes we each worn in the past, mostly for Harry Potter release parties d:
As the clock was starting to approach 10 PM I was wondering if the masquerade was ever going to start when the doors opened and we flooded in. A quick look at the panel of judges revealed Keith David and Carl Johnson, two people I havenât yet had a chance to ask for an autograph. But there was no time to ask as the show was already on the road with the Masquerade contest . . . my definite favorite were Justinâs King Arthur, Aaronâs Jackal, and Jadeâs babyâs Alex costume . . . that thing was adorable on paper and it became exponentially cuter in real life. I was particularly jealous of the Illuminati pins worn by Shari and Illuminati members d:
While the judging was being finalized, music video came next, and some real good one at that . . . my two favorites after the special tribute to Greg were the Demona vids . . . âBetween these Hazel Eyesâ and the âPoor Unfortunate Demonaâ â" thereâs no doubt in my head that while both were awesome, the second enjoyed a better atmosphere following the first. After an emotional Demona video, nothing was more fitting than Demona as the Little Mermaid and Puck as Ursulla. Priceless.
**Takes long breath and cracks fingers**
After the Dance âofficiallyâ began, I made my way for the Judgeâs panel and asked for Keith and Carlâs autographs . . . seriously, I must come off as annoying at this point, despite my sincerest Please and Thank yous. Again, these pros (voice actor and otherwise) have been awesome the entire weekend, and I so appreciate their patience and understanding through such a busy weekend where they pulled and tugged every which way.
As I put my DVDs away, I found Goose again and we slowly headed back to the parking lot, knowing that I was going to be up all night writing this latest entry. I of course would have liked to have stayed longer to see the dance, but Iâm not complaining â" I got to see the Masquerade, see the music videos, as well as the presentation of the âThom Adcox Memorialâ Award . . . nothing more touching d:
Gotta say it again: Jadeâs baby stole the show with her down-right cuteness!!!
Oh yeah, tomorrowâs the LAST day . . . man, this flew by quick!
The whole thirteen years flew by for me!