One Hell Of A Weekend

This was a nice, simple convention weekend for me.

Well…

As simple as it can be when you’re wearing a head-to-toe yarn suit that can cause you to be more prone to meltdowns than usual.

Given that Mark and I are in “Wedding Mode” we’re trying to be good and save money for THE BIG DAY, so we’re only doing conventions that are either a) inexpensive in the sense that we don’t have to pay too much for hotel, transportation, and all the extras; or b) feature a guest we NEED to see.  The moment I heard that Ron Perlman was coming to Toronto Comicon, I knew I needed to go and I knew I needed to dress up as Abe Sapien.

img_6708The majority of our Saturday revolved around Ron Perlman.  First thing we did was line up for the autograph table, and of course I was willing to pay extra for a picture right then and there. First thing Perlman said when he saw me was “How do you eat in that thing?”  After hearing him speak during his panel about how difficult it was for him to eat while dressed as Hellboy, it doesn’t surprise me that that was his first thought about my cosplay.  But it was apparent that he appreciated the work I put into it because when the convention staff took our picture at the autograph booth he told them to back up so that they could get my legs in the picture. Compared to other celebrity guest experiences, Perlman doesn’t seem like the kind of guy who’s overly enthusiastic about these fan interactions. He’s clearly there for the fans and cares about us in his own unique way, but he’s no Doug Jones.  That being said, Perlman typically plays gruff, badass characters so that’s the kind of person I was expecting to meet, and that’s exactly what I got.  He did make me cry though.  In a good way, that is.  After the photo op he said something along the lines of “take it easy – you’re doing great” and I burst into tears under my Abe mask.  I am so glad no one can see me ugly cry under that thing.

Apart from getting my picture taken, I have to say that this was the worst photo op set up I have ever seen at a con.  Luckily, there is only one celebrity in the photo op room at a time, so when you see other people lined up you know you’re all there for the same person.  Which is good because the lining up process was a MESS.  When I showed up, there were what looked like 2 lines, so at first I wasn’t sure if the second line was for another celebrity guest.  And then the two lines merged into one line.  And then we got split into two lines again and I don’t think anyone actually knew what was going on.  Collecting the pictures after the photo op was even worse.  Hundreds of Ron Perlman fans crowded around a tiny table in an already crowded hallway as someone brought out small stacks of pictures a little bit at a time to this table and you had to try to keep an eye out for yours and then fight your way to the front of the table to pick it up.  It took way too long to get the pictures and it was utterly chaotic and not something I ever want to have to do again.

img_6709After spending hours in my full cosplay, having panic attacks about crowds and photo op confusion, and crying over my one-on-one time with Ron Perlman, I could not wear my mask any more. Wearing Abe at Toronto Comicon was so much more difficult than Ottawa Comiccon because it was warmer (this time of year there’s no AC blasting to help keep me cool) and it was more crowded.  It was exhausting for both cosplayer and handler, so I promised Mark I will only take Abe out of storage if another BIG Helloboy name like Mike Mignola or David Harbour ever shows up to a convention.

Once I got my mask off and had a break it was time for panels. First was obviously Ron Perlman’s panel. He shared some great stories about his career and treated us to a rather hilarious impression of Guillermo Del Torro, all while being the unapologetic badass we expected him to be. He did not care if anyone was offended by his language and said we were welcome to send him bottles of tequila if we ever wanted to send a gift.  I think one of the most entertaining parts of the panel was watching the ASL interpreters translate all of his swearing and references to alcohol.

Dan Fogler, whose panel was next, also gave the ASL interpreters some interesting things to sign – but this was intentional! He was having a lot of fun interacting with them and even attempted to sign some things to them (according to one interpreter, he didn’t exactly get his message across clearly). Fogler even had a blast interacting with the fans in the audience and he was handing out little gifts to anyone who asked a question. That panel was just a bunch of fun.  He’s a fan of comics and geeky movie franchises like the rest of us, and it was clear that he was just having a blast being at this convention. The fans in the audience were having a good time because he was radiating geeky excitement.

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New shirts from Horse Fiddle Press!

Sunday was a much calmer day.  In fact, we really didn’t do much.  Since I needed a cosplay break from wearing Abe, I threw together a quick and easy 13th Doctor inspired outfit and relished the fact that I could see clearly and breathe easily. Mark and I spent the rest of the convention in the dealer’s room and artist’s alley checking out the booths, doing some shopping, and chatting with friends and any other awesome people we ran into. Our weekend haul mostly consisted of Funko Pops to fill in the gaps in our collections, but we also picked up some art prints and some clothing. Our favourite purchase was from Horse Fiddle Press.  We bought shirts from them at Otakuthon this past summer and we just had to buy more when we saw them this time.

Overall, this was a pretty casual convention for us compared to some previous experiences.  I feel like because of “Wedding Mode” Mark and I will be taking it easy at the conventions we do go to, and I know I have some relatively easy cosplay plans for upcoming conventions.  Still, I had a great time at Toronto Comicon this year and I can’t wait for the next convention.  All in all, not a bad weekend. Next convention for Yarn Monster: Ottawa Comiccon!

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