Wow, how to explain this one? First off, Big Apple Comic Con is a great comic show that is put on twice a year (formerly 6 times a year) in NYC. I'm not a regular at the show, but I do go from time to time, depending on who is on the guest list, or when there's some cool stuff I want to buy from the dealers. Captain Zorikh, who works at the convention, is a buddy of mine, and I asked him about having me come to the show and put on some of my panels, the way I do at other conventions. Maybe a lifecast, "how to" panel, or a demo of some sort. He told me to come to the convention on Friday, and meet with Mike (the guy who runs Big Apple), and pitch my ideas to him and see what he says.
So, Friday, I hop the train, head into the city, get into the con, and finally get 2 seconds to talk to Mike. I introduced myself, told him I wanted to do some panels on FX make-up at the next show, and he said "done". So there it was. Did what I came to do, and was about to leave the con and head home, when Zorikh came up to me and asked me if I knew anything about sound equipment. I know a little bit about everything, so I offered to help him out. After wandering the city to try and find a PA Amp, unsuccessfully, I headed back to the con and decided to try and wire up the PA system with the gear they had.
It was not easy. The sound gear they had was a hodge podge of all sorts of different bits of gear, lots of wires, but not a lot of things that were compatible. I did the best I could, and in the end, did get it to work, but the system was just not loud enough. Mike pulled Zorikh and I aside and asked me if I could get it running for the next day of the show. I told him that I wasn't going to be at the show on Saturday, and Mike told me that I was incorrect. He even went so far as to offer me a free hotel room and a few other perks to make me want to come back the next day. How could I say no? Mike explained that he needed good crowd control in the big ballroom to cover all the people coming up to meet Hayden Panettiere (the Cheerleader from Heroes) and get her autograph. So I sat down and drew up a plan for it before heading home to get a few hours sleep.
So, Saturday, first thing in the morning, I came back to the show, and somehow ended up with Zorikh being in charge of the entire 18th floor. Setting up barricades, rope stanchions, and answering 1,000 questions every ten minutes. Before I knew it, I was the "go to guy" for anything involving the 18th floor so that Zorikh could take care of the other aspects of the convention that he needed to be in charge of.
I spent almost the whole day taking care of Hayden and making sure that she had everything she needed. I must say, she was quite the sweetheart. Much prettier in real life than on the show, and a real trooper. I kept trying to get her to take a break for lunch, and she said she wouldn't leave as long as there were fans wanting her autograph. Super sweet. She told me to tell everyone on line that she would sign anything they brought, except their underwear. Many fans were saddened by that news.
I did get to work for some other celebs at the con as well, including Val Kilmer and Gigi Edgley (Chiana from Farscape). Gigi was another sweetie, and super nice to her fans as well.
Bumped into my friend Mike. Mike was there with the NY Jedi and putting on exhibitions all day. Great lightsaber fighting!
Once the convention finally ended, and we got Hayden out and back to her hotel, it was time for me to finally relax!
I found some Ghostbusters outside the show. Of course, I was trying to get a pic of the car, but these guys got in the way!
Here's their Ecto Mobile! What a thing to do to a Mini!
Last Nerd Standing! That's right, the last Trooper of the night! It was great having my fellow Troopers from the Empire City Garrison at the con!
Here's the Hayden and Kristen sign
And here's the hallway leading to my hotel room. Doesn't it look like something out of the Matrix? I swear the doors look like coffins!
After dropping off my gear and cleaning up a bit, I headed out to the bar. I needed a drink. Badly. And after that first drink, a few more accidentally slid down my throat.
The next day it was time to set everything up again, but this time, in a different, much smaller room, and with Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars, and Elle on Heroes). Which means a lot more people on line, and a lot more crowd control. Thankfully, the show gave me quite a few helper monkey volunteers to help me out. I was back in charge of the 18th floor, and had a lot of work ahead of me!
I finally got to meet Kristen Bell, another sweetheart! Thankfully, I had 2 girls to be in charge of, and neither of them were Divas, and both were easy to work with. And Kristen is also a lot prettier in real life!
Here's Christie (one of my helper monkeys) with Froggy. Froggy was there taking the glamour type photos of the fans with Hayden and Kristen.
Some kind of Lobster Demon waiting for the costume contest.
Zorikh's Costume Contest!
Ash, with his BOOM STICK!
And here's me with Kristen and Hayden! Hopefully, we did right by them, and I hope they had fun at the show and will come back again!
Once the girls left, the con was basically over for me. With the big crowds cleared out, I got to play with the sound and video system again (which we're pretty close to perfecting), and then once the movie room was set up and running, I was able to finally relax, and finally eat something. At 6pm, I realized that I had not eaten anything the whole day. Literally. So I found a box of donuts, and ate one. Rough day.
Here's a pic of me with my 3 main helper monkeys, Christina, Christie, and Lisa.
Froggy with my girls.
Me and Zorikh with my girls.
Me and Zorikh showing how we beat the convention!
Me and Froggy getting friendly.
I wandered down to the second floor (which I barely got to see all weekend), and found one of my security guys, Doug, getting beaten up by Jasmine Mai, an Import Supermodel.
In the first shot, you can see that she's actually being flipped and is in the air! It was pretty scary. I was sure she was going to end up splitting her skull open at some point. Which is why I kept the camera out and snapping away!
Me and Doug.
And, finally, me and Mike C. The man behind Big Apple Comic Con!
Well, it was a long weekend, and a quite unexpected one. Basically, I went to the convention for an hour, and ended up in charge of part of it for the rest of the weekend. Only in America!!
BIG, HUGE thanks to Captain Zorikh, and Mike C for shanghaiing me and putting me to work at the show. I hope I did a good job! Thanks to my main Security guys, Keith, Nick, and Doug. Big thanks to my volunteer helper monkeys, Kevin, Shawn, Richard, Jessie, Christie, Lisa, Dana, Maria, Scott, Christina, and all the others who helped out whose names I may have forgotten over the course of the weekend! Thanks to Froggy and his team, for getting me pics with Kristen and Hayden, and for helping out my team with pics when they could. To John and Mike and the other handlers of the girls. And of course, thanks to Kristen and Hayden for being so much fun to work with! I'm sure I'm forgetting people, and I do apologize, but, again, it was a long weekend, and my brain is pretty well fried!
For everyone who came to she show, I hope you had a good time, and if so, be sure to contact the convention and let them know. And if there was anything you didn't like, be sure to let them know that as well. And remind them that the next show needs more Spat!
See you at the next one!