Another year, another trip to Lexington Comic & Toy Convention. Every year I get excited and look at the list of guests far in advance, getting more and more excited. “Lou Diamond Phillips?! Pauly Shore?!?! Kevin Sorbo?!?!?! DOUG JONES!!!!!!!!!”
I do this for every convention I go to. I get excited about the media guests, yet I rarely meet them. I know that celebrities are a big draw for some people, but I just can’t get into it unless it’s someone I love and the line is short. That’s my criteria. At our first convention we met Kristine Sutherland and got her to wear Wolverine claws, and a couple years ago I met Caroline Williams. I think that’s it. I think it’s amazing that these people travel to these conventions to meet and talk to their fans for hours/days/weeks/months/lifetimes, and I think it’s great that fans are so excited to meet their heroes. But it’s something I’ve never been super into.
I really wanted to meet Doug Jones this year because he’s incredible and I love him deeply, but one look at the line to meet him tossed that idea from my head. I did lurk around his table for a while and he seemed genuinely happy to meet every single person that came up to him. They all left with smiles on their faces. Not Gentlemen smiles, either: real, honest-to-God smiles.
But you didn’t come hear to read about my thoughts on celebrities, did you?
Because if you did, I’ve got some thoughts.
No? Okay then. Let’s get to it.
I’ve been doing the convention thing for a while now. I am by no means a seasoned vet, but I’ve picked up certain tricks over the years. One of those tricks is this: if you want to walk the floor, check out the booths and buy some stuff, Friday is the day. The floor is absolutely packed on Saturday, and by Sunday some vendors may be sold out of certain items. But Friday? Oh man, Friday you live like royalty. There are still a lot of people present, but it’s not nearly as packed as Saturday.
This year, my best sister and favorite brother-in-law joined me on Friday. I promised them room to walk and they jumped at the opportunity. We had a blast. You can see me and my sister here, posing in front of piles of garbage and lost limbs from last year’s comic con.
The Jawas stared at us, wondering if our heads would be the next ones to join the display. I stared back at them and made myself as big as I could, as if facing off against a jaguar. They didn’t flinch. I didn’t flinch. We stood like that for a solid 5 minutes before my sister grabbed me by the scruff of my neck and dragged me towards the convention floor.
It’s possible those were not real Jawas but I don’t think there’s any way to know for sure.
If the Jawas did steal from the wrong man, they were a very short walk from the Weasley’s flying car. I doubt they could activate the Invisibility Booster so they wouldn’t be making the most conspicuous getaway, but I don’t know that they particularly care about that.
As always, the smiling visage of the Stay Puft Marshmallow man welcomed us, arms open as if preparing for a welcoming embrace. “All are welcome here,” he seemed to say, “as long as you don’t have an unlicensed nuclear accelerator strapped to your back.”
We were greeted by an extremely sassy Jabba the Hutt, hands on his hips as he judged us from atop the pile of heads of his former enemies. Doctor Manhattan, Joker, Frankenstein, Ronan the Accuser, The Incredible Hulk and an entire host of others were destroyed at the hands of the giant, slobbering slug. He was a dominant, murderous force, and now he spends his day judging the fashion choices of all who walk by. He said particularly nasty things about the shoes I was wearing, but I knew he didn’t really mean it. My shoes were baller and he knew that.
Jabba’s sass promptly came to an end once he spotted Chewbacca on the floor. He wasn’t carrying a visible crossbow, but I know it was hidden somewhere in that fur. Not only is he a good boy, he’s also a really good shot and Jabba knew better than to risk it.
I’m trying to figure out what I find quite so off-putting about this interpretation of Van Gogh. My sister nailed it. It’s almost as if someone took a body, twisted his head completely around and dressed him up as if that was the way he was supposed to be. It was a twisted interpretation of the human body and it has haunted my dreams since I first saw him.
I wish I could have taken him home with me. Maybe because I secretly loved him, but mainly because I think keeping him close may help to keep the nightmares at bay. Something like a scarecrow for his dream self. I have zero idea if that actually works or not, but I feel it would be worth a shot. And, if it turns out it does work, I have a pretty good idea of how to make a little extra money the next time Freddy Krueger shows up.
I didn’t have to walk far to get a laugh that would make me forget the nightmarish form of a twisted Vincent van Gogh. The award for Costume That Made Me Laugh the Hardest goes to this woman for her depiction of the recently deceased Carl Grimes. It’s perfect. I mean, the hat, patch and angel accessories are obvious, but don’t overlook her shirt that reads “I’m Pudding This World Behind Me.” Words can’t properly express how much I love that shirt.
I looked up at the poster that hung over the convention floor and caught a glimpse of Greedo. As a solitary tear rolled down my cheek I said, “Greedo got the last shot.”
After having just seen Greedo, I felt zero remorse for this Scout Trooper. I hope one day you’re happy again for a few minutes and then you find out where that blue milk really came from.
And on that day I will be there and I will be laughing RIGHT IN YOUR FACE.
(Solid photobomb from the super happy girl over his shoulder. I strive to be that happy one day.)
This guy’s confident take on Shirtless Kylo Ren made me laugh entirely too hard. Kudos to you, sir.
You know I love Spider-Gwen. You also know I love a costume I’ve never seen before. BAM. Gwenom. It’s a cool twist on a costume I’ve seen dozens of times.
When stars collide / Like youuuuuuuuuuuuuu and I / No shadows block the suuuuuuuun
You’re all I ever needed / Oooooo baby you’re the one
Listen man. When you walk into a building in a mask and swords strapped to your back, you’re going to have your Hello Kitty backpack searched. That’s just the way it goes. I don’t make the rules.
When I saw Gwenom, I was convinced I had seen my favorite costume of the weekend. Ladies and Gentlemen, I was mistaken. Here is your costume of the weekend. This makes the second straight convention where my favorite costume was Beauty and the Beast inspired (check out my favorite costume at last year’s ScareFest here). It’s simple, but it’s a costume I’ve never seen before and it’s wonderfully done.
Some women want to find the sensitive creature inside the beast. Others just want to escape their captors and will do whatever it takes to be free.
Let’s talk about Sweet Tooth. Created by Jeff Lemire, Sweet Tooth follows a world that lost a large percentage of adults due to a mysterious virus. The children who were unscathed by the virus were all animal/human hybrids. It’s a unique comic to be sure, one that’s equal parts hopeful and heartbreaking. I want to revisit it at some point, but I’m not sure my heart is ready.
Anyway, I don’t know how popular or well-known it is, but I love it completely and I freaked out when I saw this gentleman dressed as the titular Sweet Tooth. I yelled “Sweet Tooth?!” louder than I had any reason to, seeing as how it was a relatively empty area. He looked nervously around for Jeppard. Once he realized help wasn’t coming, he resigned himself to have his picture taken.
Those deer hybrids are a jittery bunch.
I asked if I could take this guy’s picture and he responded with, “Sure man.” He may have actually been The Dude.
I was going to ask him what was in the bag but I already knew the answer. I’m a golfer.
My favorite costumes at conventions are the ones with a little thought put into them. Something that takes a character and looks at it from another angle, or mashes a couple characters together in a way that makes some kind of sense. Anyone could go to the store and buy a costume; what I’m looking for are the ones put together with love and care.
So it should come as no surprise to you that I absolutely adore this Captain America/Rosie the Riveter costume. It’s amazing and she was so happy every time I saw her.
I love these two kids and sincerely hope they make it in this crazy, mixed-up world. We’re all rooting for you.
I had a notion to walk celebrity row on Saturday, but it was packed. Unlike in past years, the celebrities weren’t on the main floor. They were set up on the floor of Rupp Arena. It was a really great idea and freed up the main floor, but getting in during a crowded time was a bit of a nightmare. Totally worth it if you wanted to meet one of the celebrities, but for someone just wanting to look around, it wasn’t worth it.
In a really cool move, they opened up some seating in Rupp Arena. From there, I was able to sit down, take a break and take in the chaos and beauty of celebrity row. It made it feel like everyone on the floor was on display. Like some grand experiment unfolding beneath me as I sat above it all. I was their puppet master. PULL THE STRINGS. PULL THE STRINGS.
Also, there were wookies walking around down there and I was really excited about that. It’s the simple things in life.
Last but certainly not least, I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out some of the amazing purchases I made there.
I recently moved to a new house and was looking for some art to put on my office walls. They just seemed so bare. Thankfully, the great Matt Peppler was set up with his tremendous artwork. These four are now hanging in my office, but there were a dozen more I could have easily bought. Everything he does is amazing. Check out his website and pick something up. Super nice guy and extremely talented. You can pick up an 8″ X 12″ poster for $10.
I was also looking for something for my daughter’s room. She’s not quite three years old and she loves Groot. When I came across this in a booth, I could help but buy it for her room. It was made by Pat Kenrick at Amourable Art. He had a ton of different themes to choose from, but Groot and Rocket was an easy choice. Check out his website and get lost in all the amazing.
I’ll close this out with a brief story of my brush with a celebrity.
On Friday, we hit celebrity row. As we were working out a plan, a man walked right in the middle of our group and stopped, looking around as if deciding where to go next.
That man? Kevin Sorbo. Hercules himself was briefly a part of our group. Before I was able to take a picture or ask him to Sorbonate something, he was off again, most likely in the direction of his table.
Anyway, he seemed cool and I think we’re best friends now.
So long everyone! See you at the next convention!