Friday, 22 March 2013

Supernatural Convention Report - Viva Las Vegascon Part 2: Jensen, Jared and Misha

All photos in this report (c) sweetondean 2013


Truth is, I come to these conventions for many reasons, but the main reason is to see the boys and if truth be known, one specific boy…or man…MANLY MAN (I mean these boys are in the 30’s after all!).

Normally the Js are on the Sunday of the convention. They’re the showstopper if you may, but at Vegascon, they were on the Saturday. Whether this was because of flights back to Vancouver and timings of work or whether it was because they wanted to be able to play up after their convention commitments I have no clue – but I’m betting on the later!

Jared had his mum and dad in town; they were with him at the convention at the panel and in his photo-ops. Clif flew down on Friday and Johnny and Sean came in with the boys on the Saturday.

But once again, I’ve jumped ahead! The day started a bit later than the usual J day. Normally I’m up at about 5.30am getting ready for a 7.30 breakfast start – or something along those lines. But this time, we could actually have a relaxing morning. The Js weren’t arriving at lunch until 2 and before then, we had Emily Perkins’ and Misha’s panels. So there was plenty of time to get ready, sort the makeup, do the hair…prepare for what was ahead!

(My apologies, I can’t for the life of me find my photos of Emily!)

I’ll admit we were a tiny bit late to Emily’s panel – moving a bit slow that morning – but we caught most of it. Emily is super tiny – I actually walked past her later in the casino and I’m talking TINY! She seemed a little nervous too, which was sweet. Plenty of people asked questions – it’s always awkward when there’s a guest and there’s no one to ask questions! But plenty of people lined up. There were a few of those, what do you think Becky is/was/has/done/doing questions which kind of drive me crazy, because really, unless you are asking about the character motivation in the episode they’re in, or unless the actor has created their own back-story for their character, these are questions for the writer. Some cast members are ok with saying, “I have no idea, ask the writers” but most try and come up with an answer on the spot. Convention handy hint: If asking a question, remember that the actor and the character are not the same thing and remember that the actor may not have complete insight into where the character might be now…or probably hasn’t even thought about it! I will say that when someone asked why Sam didn’t have pants on when Becky tied him up, I liked Emily’s answer – she was trying to make him comfortable and he was hot. It was left up in the air as to whether she meant he was warm or HOT! I think we know the answer to that one!

After Emily it was Mr Misha Collins! I’m going to come clean, I’m not a minion and where as I like the character of Castiel here and there, I’m not one that feels the need for him to be in all the episodes. The show for me is and will always be about the Winchester brothers. Other characters fill out and colour in their world, but they will never take the focus away from Sam and Dean, nor should they. But over the last few years of meeting Misha (whom I tend to call Collins), I have developed a healthy respect for him and frankly, have fallen a little in love with him. He’s funny and inspiring and I love that he teases the fandom and I love that he teases me! But I’ll get to that.

This convention had the most Castiels I have ever seen! From your standard Castiel, to Steam Punk Castiel, to pink Castiel! There were Cass’ everywhere!

First thing Misha did when he came on stage was inappropriately grope Richard, or at least fake it…so it was going to be one of those panels huh? Excellent. Then he grabbed Rob’s ass! Ah Misha, don’t ever change.

It was a fantastic panel, where Misha managed to inspire and offend us all at once, as only he can do. As usual, he took no crap. If he didn’t like your question or he was simply over it, you knew – I say this but he’s never rude, it’s always done very tongue in cheek and frankly, I think it’s what people enjoy about the back and forth with Misha.

To decide which side of the auditorium went first for questions he made the first people in line go up on stage and arm wrestle! The Castiel won, but then Misha never answered her question, saying he was trying to demonstrate to her that violence was not the answer! She said, he started, he said, “Don’t turn this around on me!”

People congratulated him on becoming a regular for season 9. He was asked about directing and said he was terrified of what Jared was going to do to him…which according to Jensen and Jared he should be, though I have a sneaking suspicion neither will be anything but supportive. He discussed Random Acts and how it was because of our passion and creativity that he started the charity. He could see what we were capable of and wanted to harness that into doing good (as opposed to evil, which I think he’d also enjoy quite frankly).

At one point he got all the Castiels up on stage and led them in a dance – what I called The Dance of the Castiels. Or rather he got them to “frolic” with him. He told them to follow him and he proceeded to dance around the stage in a way that looked remarkably like that ridiculous dance from the gag reel, complete with twirls and pirouettes!

He told an awesome story about on set shenanigans. How they recently had a guest star on set and the crew dressed in drag while shooting the guest star’s scenes and then the next day, wore ball-gags in their mouths. The guest star, to his credit never mentioned it. Just did the scenes professionally and went on home. What the cast and crew didn’t realise was that this guest star was only on set for 2 days, the in drag day and the ball-gag day! When he wasn’t on set on the 3rd day and everyone realised he’d finished up his scenes the day before, they were mortified! Because they never got a chance to tell the poor guy that it was just a joke. He must have gone away thinking, “What the hell?” This story came up again later in the J’s panel…Jensen had a field day with the sulking and the pouting, but I’ll get to that!

I love Misha’s panels. I love the way he talks to the fans. He can bounce between serious and gracious and just telling someone to get out of here! This one was probably my favourite of his panels so far – though maybe not as dirty as his panel in Sydney last year! He did manage to drop a few F-bombs, but he kept it pretty clean as a whole!

After Misha, it was time for the Gold lunch. The lunch, followed by the Js ops meant that we missed Rob’s solo panel, Richard’s solo panel and Jim’s first panel (we caught Jim on Sunday). This is the first time I’ve ever missed a panel because of clashes. I’ll be honest, I was kind of bummed. I mean Rob and Richard are two of my favourite guys… I did feed this back to Adam from Creation in my post con email (which I always do) and he said they were trying to give as much bang for our buck as they could. So, I guess yeah, if you weren’t Gold you got the panels…but I was still disappointed. I told him that next year with the 4 days (I’m going to have to go into training), maybe some of those clashes could be avoided. Here’s hoping.

Anyhoo, it was time for lunch with the boys (MEN). I’ve got to say, Creation really put on a spread! Lot’s of lovely stuff to choose from and yummy desserts. But yeah, I could hardly eat because of the nerves. My stomach was playing ping-pong or something! This was the 5th time I’d be seeing/meeting Jensen and Jared and I was still as nervous as hell! Go figure!

The boys arrived right on 2, looking fabulous as usual. Jensen in his denim shirt and Jared in some scarf ensemble which was exactly at Amy height – which I’ll explain later! The lighting was absolute rubbish so I got no decent photos at the lunch. There was a spotlight right about Jensen’s head which cast the most awful shadows on his beautiful face and we were back a fair ways as there was a dance floor in front of the stage and obviously no tables were allowed on it. My friend Karen called it the demilitarised zone! Jensen asked if we were having a dance party later!

First up, there was the usually chat about season 8, season 9 and then the boys thanked us for the People’s Choice Award. How if it weren’t for us, they wouldn’t be there or be receiving such accolades. Then someone congratulated Jensen on the bub. I must say I was very impressed with the fandom and the lack of questions about the coming baby. I feared the whole thing would be gushing about said bub and Jensen is a pretty private dude so I was worried all the baby talk would make him uncomfortable. But there was really very little. Nice work fandom! Anyway, there was the baby congrats pretty early on which led to that adorable moment of Jensen sticking out his tummy as if he was pregnant and Jared placing his hand and ear on Jensen’s tummy as if listening for a heartbeat and saying that Jensen was barley showing. Gah. These boys! (Though I think I heard fanfiction writers the world over squee in weird delight…)

One of the really interesting titbits revealed in this panel was that Jensen and Jared did not confer on their outfits for the PCAs. They both have friends who are stylists who helped them out individually. Jensen was just going to wear something out of his wardrobe…until the stylist saw what he was suggesting, and went out shopping for him! The fact that they matched – well... Jared said that they spend so much time together that now they think alike. Jensen said, “My suit actually matched your tie” the fans all said “Yes” which cracked Jared up! But, the whole matching thing was a complete fluke.

The wonderful thing about these lunches/breakfasts is that they are super casual. You don’t have to get up and queue at a microphone, you simply raise your hand at your table and the Js will get to you – point you out. I know that at Burbank, there isn’t a breakfast; it’s an additional panel, in your assigned seats. I’m hoping this isn’t the way it’s going because that would lose the casual intimacy that these events have.

Anyway, this lunch panel flew by. They are 30 minutes and I think this one may have been the fastest 30 minutes of my entire life! It was a blur of nerves and laughter and lurve…and it was all only just beginning…

Next up it was photos with Jensen. I had 2 singles and a shared with Hazel. Hazel and I laugh that in our friendship, she’s the Jared and I’m the Jensen. You know how Jensen is always going “What?” and turning to Jared who whispers what the question was or what was said? Well that’s us. Something happens to me at these convention things and I lose the ability to hear properly or think clearly, or something! So thank goodness Hazel is there to organise me! I’m forever going “What are we doing?” and she tells me!

I never do daft poses with Jensen. I mean, I mix it up a bit to get really good shots, but I’m all about getting my arms around that man! I’m always polite, say hello, say please and thank you, say goodbye. So first I asked for a hug photo and along with a big smile, I got a great, big all engulfing hug! Then I asked if I could kind of hug him from the side with my arms around his belly and he pulled me in, wrapped his hands over my hands and well…he pulled an adorable face! Like he’s doing an O with his mouth! Of course I didn’t know until I got the photo back, but it’s super cute and I love that he does that without me asking. I guess he’s seen me enough now to know he can play up and have a bit of fun and I’ll be cool with it. If you follow me on twitter it’s my current icon.

As usual, it was all too quick and it was off to wait for our J2s. Oh, I also have to say, my friend Kellie was a first timer this year and joined us in the photo op queue. She was so nervous about her first op. We gave her some in-queue coaching and backup! She got an epic hug from Jensen and bless her, was so thrilled when she came out of the room. I waited for her to see her reaction and it was shaky and teary and giggly. I remember my first time I met Jensen, I ran to my friend Tiny and hugged the life out of her and we jumped up and down on the spot! Of course, I’m pretty sure Jensen caught that! Seeing as we were still in the photo room! I love seeing people meeting him for the first time. It never gets old and it never gets old for me. He glows, with inner and outer beauty. And yes…I ran my hand down his back again. I simply can’t help it. It’s a subconscious thing, honestly it is! I just gotta touch the man! *sigh*

Ok, then it was our J2s. We had a single, a shared and for something different we got an op just with them. So my single was hug city again. By the way, that Padaleski dude just keeps getting more gorgeous. He’s like a golden God! Seriously, every time I see him I’m like…crikey, he got prettier again! Anyhoo, for our shared op we asked the boys to hug each other and we’d hug around them. Well, when we got the photo back they’re giving each other funny looks and sort of pushing each other away with their hands up like, yuck don’t you hug me, man – it’s brilliant! I’m in love with it! Then we got them to do a pose on their own and they did this kind of rock n’ roll thing with Jensen pointing at the camera and Jared kind of pulling a rockstar face. This one will never see the light of day I’m afraid. It’s really epic and just for us and well, we don’t want it all over the net!

Then it was queuing for Jared time. We had to wait at the photo room straight after our J2’s because we had Jensen’s meeting and greet and we had a 10-minute window to get our Jared ops and get to the meet and greet room!

Now like I said, Jared was wearing a scarf and it was Amy height. So when I went in for my hug, I was buried in scarf! I stopped Chris and asked Jared if I could shift his scarf and he said, “What’s happening?” and I said “You’re blocking me with your scarf!” and he said… “Oh yeah, I do that kind of thing!” and grinned at me. Gah! Then my second op, even though I change positions, it happened again and I said, “Err Jared, you’re blocking me again” and he laughed and shifted the scarf saying, “Is this better babe?” Bless him. This also happened with his collar at Vancon…so I must be just the right height to get buried in Jared’s clothing – not such a bad thing. By the way…he called me babe, sweetheart and love. Good grief! Oh and also, Mrs Padalecki was in there videoing the photo ops…so we all may be on a Padalecki family home video!

After our lovely Jared ops it was time to sprint down to the meet and greet room for our 30 minutes in Heaven…I mean, with Jensen.

As you’re probably aware, Creation has modified the guidelines around the private meet and greets. They’ve asked that attendees do not transcribe or report verbatim what was said. I know there’s been a bit of a kerfuffle about this, but let me say, as someone who’s done 6 meet and greets – 4 with Jensen, 1 with Jared and 1 with Richard, I support this request. These are relaxed and open forums where the guests feel comfortable sharing information and stories with a small group. Both Jensen and Jared have said things in the meet and greets I’ve attended, which I’ve never written up because I didn’t feel they were appropriate to share. Sometimes things slip out and it’s up to us to ensure that anything that may have been said in candour remains protected. This is about protecting the people we’re fans of. It’s also about protecting the integrity of the private meet and greet situation. I want to ensure that Jensen feels comfortable in the room and doesn’t have to worry about anything coming back to bite him on the ass.

To clarify the new guidelines, I contacted Adam from Creation. He told me that blogging about the event and paraphrasing a few lines here and there was fine, but entire transcripts was not in the spirit of the event. I guess, they’re not doing an interview; they’re having a candid chat with fans. There is a difference. To be honest, I usually only remember a handful of questions anyway, because I can barely remember my name when sitting in a small room with Jensen, let alone exactly what was said! So, with respect for Jensen (always), I will just paint a picture of the experience.

As usual, we had to pull numbers from an envelope to allocate our seats. I pulled front row but Hazel pulled second row (there were only 2 rows). It’s Hazel and my policy to always sit together at these things (I say it’s our brand), so I swapped with a reader of my pieces on The Winchester Family Business, I took her second row seat and she took my front row seat.

Anyway, Jensen strode in all smiles and hellos, seating himself on a tall chair in front of us. He was wonderful, as usual. There was discussion around directing and around his interest in photography, which he was warned would become much more important soon! We talked about the introduction of the MoLs bunker and Dean’s room and I discussed with him Dean’s prayer to Cass and the fact that Dan Loflin, the writer of that episode, had been on set when that scene was shot. I congratulated him on the scene and he thanked me, I said it was very emotional and he smiled and thanked me again and then I said, “At least it was for me” and he gave a great big laugh! I made Jensen laugh! I think that might be one of my favourite meet and greet moments ever!

He was gracious and attentive. He always ensures he puts maximum thought into your question. Mine was such a good one that we went back and forth with it a bit. I was totally stoked! He always looks you right in the eye when he talks to you and addresses his answer directly to you. It’s your answer and he ensures you have your moment in his orbit. He’s funny and yet soft-spoken. Jensen is quite different in this environment than he is in the panel with Jared. Less boisterous, a little more quiet. This is not to say there isn’t plenty of laughter, he has a great sense of humour and likes to joke and tease. There’s a lot of laughter in these things believe me! He seems totally relaxed and at ease with us in this environment. It really is awesome. Jensen’s meet and greet is always my favourite moment of the convention. I can’t imagine not doing it, like ever and I’ll always have his back no matter what. I have to say, these 30 minutes generally feel like a good amount of time, but it’s always so sad when he thanks us and gets up to stride back out. I could sit and talk to him for hours. He’s smart and interesting and amusing…and yeah, incredibly beautiful to bask in.

So then it was the J’s panel!

Richard told us in his meet and greet on Sunday evening that the Elastic Waste Band was not originally supposed to be on stage with the Js. But Richard asked Jensen if he’d like them to stay and Jensen said yes and thank goodness for that, because having the band on stage with the boys during their panel was so much fun. I mean, I’ve always thought Jensen must love to dance…what with how often he dances around on the gag reels, well, in this panel…he danced quite a bit! He bantered, played air-guitar, air-drums and of course…he sang. Jensen really enjoyed the band. But hey, I’m getting ahead of myself again!

Jared brought the PCA out for us all to see – which Jensen then danced across the stage with. Jared is so proud of that thing. They set it up on the podium on stage so we could all enjoy it during the panel.

Thankfully someone had said to Jared that the chairs were too low on stage (they were) so the boys sat up on the back of the chairs so we could all see them – and enjoy their long legs sprawling!

I think Jensen is getting sassier in these things. In the couple of years that I’ve been doing the Creation conventions, he has definitely relaxed more and now he gives the fans so much cheek! Also, he’s naughty and sometimes kinda dirty! It’s so appreciated I can’t even tell you!

There was a great question about script writing and what they like and don’t like as actors. For me, hearing them talk about their craft is always a highlight, because they are both so passionate. Later there was a funny moment about method acting, where the nervous fan tried to explain method acting to Jensen, which made Jared whisper – “He’s a professional actor”.

Ty swung by for a visit to ask a question about the J’s identical trailers and motorcycles and then bring a little boy, whose name was Jensen, up on stage to meet big Jensen. Awwww.

Then later Misha tried to crash the panel – sneaking up on Jensen and Jared, even though they could see him in the monitor on stage – which made Misha laugh like a crazy man! They sent him off to the band to play the cowbell and the band started playing (Don’t Fear) The Reaper. The guys totally cracked up. Great moment.

Another brilliant moment was when a girl asked what’s it like to be really attractive and Jensen turned to Jared quick as a whip and said, “I should probably take this one”. Jared totally lost it! One of his hand clapping, laughing fits! It was fantastic. Then someone shouted out that Jensen wouldn’t know because he’s married! Which made him go on a baffled tirade about how obviously a wedding ring was an ugly ring and how you must disappear when you get married! It was epically snarky!

Then there was the moment when Jensen went to tell the story about the guest star and how the crew dressed in drag…which of course we’d already heard! Jensen said “That little shit stole my story…I don’t wanna tell it now.” Then he fake pouted and Jared took it and ran with it going, “But did he tell you” and Jensen jumped in and said, “Oh I’m sure he told them that” and they ran that shtick for a bit, back and forth! It was brilliant to watch them adlibbing a joke on the fly!

Of course there had to be one awkward question. A girl asking Jared about some I Blame Jared Padalecki for Everything Facebook page. Beyond the initial confusion, it went down like a tonne of bricks – but it was cool to see Jensen jump to his friend’s defence, shoot the question down in flames. Why do fans ask inappropriate questions? It wasn’t funny; intentional or not, it came across kind of rude and was a bummer at the end of a great panel.

Anyhoo…through the panel there was loads of good-humoured yelling out from the audience, which was so funny. It’s great that the audience’s off the cuff comments can completely crack the boys up. I’m pretty sure they enjoy themselves doing these things just as much as we enjoy watching them. This panel was probably the most laughter filled one I’ve seen. I don’t know if it was the Vegas thing, but everyone, including Jensen and Jared were in incredibly high spirits.

Of course then the band cracked into The Boys Are Back in Town and Jensen did a bit of air-guitar and then joined Rob and Richard to sing. Jensen loved having that band on stage, you could just tell!

After the panel, it was time for the J2M op. It was super quick, because the day was running behind and the guys had to be out by 9pm. But it was still great; I mean how often do you get squished in-between Jensen, Jared and Misha! Never! In my op, at the very last moment Misha kind of scooped an arm around me and then had to quickly adjust, as he was about to grab my boob. SERIOUSLY! The photo looks like he’s cupping my boob! Hahaha! Awkward!

Then it was autos. I got Jensen to sign my Mac! I have a Dean and the Impala decal on my Mac and now I have Jensen’s signature above it! I’ve literally have started calling my Mac, Ackles. I do so love my Mac…and now I love it even more and Jensen thought it was pretty cool! I also got a Sam, Dean and Cass banner signed by all 3 of the guys.

When I got to Jared I was so exhausted, I absently mindedly leant on the autograph table and let out an exasperated sigh! Jared looked up and said, “Deep breaths, deep breaths and relax” and laughed. I was like, “Oh ahh sorry, forgot where I was for a minute.” When I got to Misha he looked up and went, “Oh it’s you!” Now I’ve met Misha like 7 times now I guess, because he’s been to Australia a couple of times and last time he was here I ran into him in the lobby of the hotel and we had a chat. Then, because he recognised me, he teased me at the cocktail party and then in the photo op, so now I guess that seems to be a thing with us! Because in my op with him later that night with Hazel, he looked at me, shook his head and said, “You keep going!” and pointed towards the door…before breaking into a great big smile. So I guess now I Misha fodder! I’ll see him in a couple of months in Sydney again…let’s see what happens this time!

And then it was over. It was one hell of a long and wonderful day. But it’s always so heartbreaking…because when you walk away from your autos with Jensen and Jared, you know that’s it…and you’re not going to see them for a while and like I’ve said before, every time I see Jensen, it’s harder to walk away…

Coming soon… Viva Las Vegascon – Part Three. Sebastian dances, Mark drums, Ty parties and the Richard’s meet and greet.

Thanks for reading!

No comments:

Post a Comment