What a busy day…

First Maurice LaMarche, the man behind The Brain, Mr. Big from Zootopia, the King from Frozen, and voices for about a bazillion other animated characters.  Funny, funny man.  He offered the panel crowd the opportunity to have him record something if we come see him at his table.  I’m going to find out on Sunday morning if he was being honest about that…I bought an autograph ticket.  🙂

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After a little lunch down at Majerle’s, it was up to the third floor to catch a glimpse of John Diggle himself (from Arrow), David Ramsey.  Fantastic speaker, great stories, and a true genre geek himself.  If you ever get a chance to see him, ask him about Stephen Amell’s  “butt acting.”  😀

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Next came a real treat.  I shimmied my way up towards the front rows of the ballroom for a great seat to see two-thirds of the Paternoster Gang, Madame Vastra (Neve McIntosh) and Strax (Dan Starkey) themselves!  Of course, there was no green, scaly skin makeup or potato-head looking Sontaran body on stage–but these were clearly Vastra and Strax.  Here came a little disappointment.  The crowd, ever polite, was not very knowledgeable about these two actors, or much of Doctor Who history in general.  The questions were very basic, “What was your favorite memory?” “Who was your favorite Doctor?” “If you could have appeared on any other episode, which episode would it have been?”  There really wasn’t much of a line of people asking questions, and several people went up two and three times each, possibly just to not let the panel die 20 minutes in.  Turns out both McIntosh and Starkey were big Doctor Who fans prior to being on the show.  They both loved Tom Baker’s portrayal of the Fourth Doctor.  I did actually go up to ask a question–wondering if they have been given any indication yet if the Paternoster Gang would be appearing for Series 10, which starts filming next month.  Answer: Shrug.  Apparently they don’t get much advance warning of when they’re presence is required for an episode, and have not been told anything yet.  Great to hear and see these two fine actors today.  I just wish they would have been given a slightly warmer reception in the ballroom, instead of just the 115 degree reception outside the building.

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Final panel for me today was another treat–a flashback to 1984.  Wax on, wax off.  Show no mercy!  Sweep the leg.  Yes, it was Ralph Macchio–the original Karate Kid, along with William Zabko (Johnny, Daniel’s main rival) and Martin Kove (Johnny’s evil sensei).  They talked for a while about the influence the late Pat Morita had on them, both in the movie and afterwards, then took questions.  Great panel–I was just disappointed that the panel moderator seemed to have lost track of time and cut questions off after only about 30 minutes, instead of letting the panel go it’s full hour.  I’m still debating getting autographs or a picture with the three…

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Overall, it was a fun day.  Saw some great costumes–even if there were a few too many Deadpools and Harley Quinns.  As always, some very inventive costumes, some very basic, “I have to wear SOMETHING today” costumes, and a lot of–well–questionable decisions for costumes to be worn to a primarily family convention.  Yes, there were numerous 18+ panels after 7pm, but there were plenty of eyefuls between 10am and 5pm.

Back tomorrow to see Lee Majors and Lindsay Wagner, Billie Piper, Eve Myles, and Caity Lotz!  More pictures, more people-watching, more fun!

Oh, one piece of advice from an amateur cosplay critic: me.  If you’re a guy, and you’re going to be wearing a skintight jumpsuit, such as, say, Spiderman, PLEASE wear a codpiece or a cup of some kind.  PLEASE.  #CantUnseeThat

David

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