San Diego Comic-Con 2014 (Part 3) – Joss Whedon Nerd HQ and Outlander Premier

Hot Nerd Girl Outlander

Welcome to Part 3 of my San Diego Comic-Con wrap-up! This section is all about the Joss Whedon Nerd HQ panel-turned-last-minute-Mystery-Guest-panel and the Outlander premier.

If you missed Part 1 go HERE. If you missed Part 2 go HERE.

NERD HQ

Hayden (Geek Outlaw), Podthingy cohost John MulhallHNG Podcast cohost Darcy Villere, and I were all really excited to nab tickets to the Joss Whedon Nerd HQ panel. Nerd HQ panels are quickly becoming the hottest ticket in town during SDCC and the tickets sell out, literally, in the blink of an eye. I’m not joking. I blinked and the tickets for The Walking Dead and Nathan Fillion panels were GONE. Joss had been our first choice though so we were happy just to walk away with tickets to his “Conversation for a Cause” benefiting Operation Smile. Then, the day before the panel, a rumor started circulating that Joss had been laid up with a sudden knee surgery and wouldn’t be able to make it. We had no idea if they would cancel the panel or Skype Joss in or try to make it up to us by bringing in someone else. It turned into the ultimate Mystery Panel (though my bet was always on Nathan Fillion). We had no idea right up until the moment we took our seats and the show started.

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It turned out that I was right and out walked Nathan Fillion, quickly followed by Liam McIntyre (Spartacus), Chloe Bennet (Agents of SHIELD), Seth Green, and Alan Tudyk.

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During the very first audience question my phone buzzed with a text message from Darcy who was sitting on the other side of the theater with John. Turns out Hayden and I were on camera the entire time the girl was asking her question and Darcy snapped a picture of it.

Hot Nerd Girl Nerd HQ The Nerd Machine

One of the audience members got more than she bargained for when she tried to ask a question. First Liam showed that he was paying rapt attention.

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Then everyone else decided to join him. With the exception of Seth who decided it was more important to take pictures for posterity.

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Then, about halfway through – tada!- Joss Whedon turned up via Skype from his bed in London where they were just finishing up filming Avengers: Age of Ultron.

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And proved that he is, indeed, the Puppet Master.

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Watch the entire Nerd HQ Conversation with Joss Whedon and Mystery Panel here (keep an eye out for me and Geek Outlaw at 10:52):

[youtube:http://youtu.be/JlLgIVt2XIc]

STARZ OUTLANDER PREMIER

HNG Outlander 1

Yes, I’m dressed like Captain Malcolm Reynolds. We came straight from Comic-Con, mmmkay?

I’ve been a voracious reader for as long as I can remember and, as a result, I quickly got tired of books meant for my age group and was always on the lookout for books that would challenge me. This is why, when I was around the age of 14 or so, my Dad handed me a book that my Stepmom had recommended to him and said “here, read this, I think you’ll like it.” That book was Outlander by Diana Gabaldon and I was smitten. It took several more years but I eventually convinced Mama Jedi to give it a try and she quickly became as enraptured by the story of Jamie and Claire as I was. Outlander is one of those books that I’ve recommended to more people than I can count. Whenever someone asked me what book I would want to make into a movie, I never hesitated to say Outlander. So it was quite fitting that two Star Trek alums (I’m a Trekkie in case you’re new here), Ronald D. Moore and Ira Steven Behr, made it happen in a way that honors the spirit and vision of the world Gabaldon created.

First we waited in a rather lengthy line and completely skipped Hall H in order to check out the SDCC panel. Panelists: Ronald D. Moore (Producer), Diana Gabaldon (Writer), Caitriona Balfe (Claire Randall), Sam Heughan (Jamie Fraser), Tobias Menzies (Frank Randall/Black Jack Randall), Graham McTavish (Dougal MacKenzie), Lotte Verbeek (Geillis Duncan)

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Turns out, in Scotland, Gaelic is pronounced “Gall-ick” not “Gay-lick.” I learn something new every day. We also learned that they thought it would be most difficult to cast the part of Jamie but it turns out they found Heughan pretty quickly and ended up having the hardest time casting Claire. Like me, Gabaldon was not initially impressed with Heughan’s look and couldn’t picture him as Jamie (I believe she initially called him “hideous” – ha!), but then she saw him in the part and he grew on her (me too). Moore has included Gabaldon pretty much every step of the way, resulting in a TV series that Gabaldon is both excited about and proud of. Gabaldon and George RR Martin are good friends and will often commiserate with and try to one-up each other. For example, it seems that Martin is quite jealous that Outlander has 16 episodes instead of just ten. We even got a highly amusing kilt twirl from Ron Moore.

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Mama Jedi and I also visited the Outlander booth in the Exhibitor Hall a few times. Which had everything to do with checking out the period props and nothing at all to do with the handsome men in kilts *ahem*

Hot Nerd Girl Outlander SDCC

Thanks to a little help from Geek Outlaw, we managed to nab a couple of passes to the Starz World Premier at the Spreckels Theatre just a few blocks down from the Convention Center.

Outlander invite

The crowd was impressive, as was the plaid carpet.

Outlander World Premier

Once inside, we were forced, forced I tell you, to walk through the lobby between two rows of even more handsome men in kilts standing on logs and boulders looking all tall and manly. Mama Jedi was a bit twitterpated, methinks. I almost tripped and fell flat on my face at one point because I was too busy looking at all of the studliness surrounding me and not even remotely paying attention to where I was going. I have no idea if anyone saw that. I’m really hoping that nobody saw that.

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Luckily our seats were on the aisle…

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… so we had a great view of the theatre and the screen with its bevy of Scottish Highlander historical FAQ.

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The women behind and to the right of us seemed to be in a group together and they were pretty much obsessed with getting pictures of the actors. Every time I looked over my shoulder all I saw was a sea of glowing smart phone screens.

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When the actors finally did walk in, every woman (and some of the men) jumped to their feet and surged forward. I was slightly concerned for the actor’s safety, but the fans ended up behaving themselves. Can you tell how amused I was by all of this by the fact that I took pictures of the people as opposed to pictures of the actors?

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The one exception I made was Tobias Menzies who walked by right next to me and was so close that this was the picture I got and my camera wasn’t even zoomed in.

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The show started with some intro music by three lovely and talented female bagpipe players.

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The first episode did not disappoint. It is available to watch HERE for those who are interested (trust me, be interested).

We were then treated to a Q&A with the same folks we saw on the Comic-Con panel…

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… and an almost flash from Graham McTavish.

[youtube:http://youtu.be/yrzhWGQnHNs]

After which we got a proverbial cherry topper to our Outlander ice cream in the form of a musical performance from none other than composer Bear McCreary himself.

[youtube:http://youtu.be/raTZZmKfrRU]

[youtube:http://youtu.be/IQHfBgwkCCs]

All in all, a fabulous experience well worth skipping dinner for.

And that wraps up my 2014 San Diego Comic-Con wrap-up! Thanks for tuning in and I’ll see you at the next Con!

Hot Nerd Girl San Diego Comic Con goodbye

Here’s Part 1 and Part 2 in case you missed them.

Long Beach Comic Con wrap-up 2011

On Saturday I went to Long Beach Comic Con, a fairly young comic book convention that is small enough that comic books *GASP!* are still the primary focus.

Imagine that.

Anyhooters, it was pretty epic for me because I attended as a “professional” aka a member of the press.  My list of press passes has been steadily growing but this was my first for a comic con so it was very exciting for me.

😀  <–  See?  That’s me being excited.

Here are some of the highlights:

If you don’t know what Team Unicorn is then you need to crawl out from whatever rock you’ve been living under. The second I walked up to them one of them put her arms out and said “you’re a unicorn!”  It was a proud moment for me, let me tell you!  Yes, they are hottie mctotties, but what really struck me was how nice they were.  They stood there and talked t-shirts with me (we all agree that Cafe Press sucks major monkey balls) for way longer than they needed to. Friendly hot girls? Yup, they exist.

Michelle Boyd, Rileah Vanderbilt, HNG, Clare Grant, Milynn Sarley

I turned around and there was Clare Grant’s hubby Seth Green so naturally, I had to get a picture with him too.  I’ve been a fan of this guy since My Stepmother is an Alien so when he and Alyson Hannigan teamed up again on Buffy it was like nerdvana.  Random fun fact: Seth was also an uncredited vampire in the orginal film version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.  When I met him I blurted out that I was a big fan of his wife, which is very very true, but Seth, if you ever read this, my love of you came first 🙂

That Robot Chicken show is pretty cool too

After that we headed off to a light saber demonstration by Saber Guild, a not-for-profit costumed performance group.  Apparently they do a lot of performances for charity which I’m all for.  Some of the Jedi and Sith were better fighters than others but they were all very enthusiastic and the kids in the audience were super into it.

Big Daddy in the house

Here’s a video I took of the climax of the battle and the young Padawan who helped defeat Darth Vader:

Renowned horror master John Carpenter was in attendance.  Not gonna lie, he didn’t look thrilled to be there, but he’s one of the most prolific sci-fi/horror directors of all time so I was glad that he was.

Big Trouble in Little Long Beach

Apparently Thomas Jane was there (representing Raw Studios with Tim Bradstreet) because at one point he came over the intercom and, speaking verrrry slooooowwwly, asked all of the men to stop what they were doing, take out their “pieces” and wave them around.  I’m just going to assume that my dirty sense of humor correctly deduced what “pieces” meant.  Alas, I didn’t see him which was a bummer.

On to costumed characters!

Wonder Woman was actually there with Wolverine but Wolvie kept getting pushed aside so that WW could take pictures with Asian Superman.  Never thought I’d say this but Wolvie was kind of a bitch.

Gotta love those stunna shades

I’m pretty sure that this pop can tab creation is supposed to be Iron Man.  Old school Iron Man circa 1963 before he hired Maaco to paint his suit red and gold.

The magnetic chest plate gave it away

Believe it or not, these two crazy kids had never heard of Night of the Living Trekkies, they just randomly decided that dressing up as Starfleet Zombies would be awesome.  I’m still not sure how I feel about my favorite franchise being combined with my biggest fear…kind of seems like a conspiracy against me.

So wrong. So very, very wrong.

This guys claims he’s dressed up as a video game character and NOT a Doctor Who character but I choose not to believe him and I straight up told him so.  I’m pretty sure I made him laugh under that rubbery exterior.

No dude, I am not your mummy

Speaking of Doctor Who…I was pretty stoked to find this hot female Dalek.

Exfoliate! Exfoliate!

On to the next franchise – Star Wars!  Jango Fett was hanging out by the light saber demonstration.  Obviously doing recon.

That’s my “badass” look. Intense, I know.

Big Daddy Darth Vader was hanging out by the Occupy the Death Star booth.

What can I say? I’ve always had a thing for bad boys.

He thought I was adorable.

I don’t let just any masked man pinch my cheeks

This robotic R2D2 was controlled incognito by a guy who kept his hand in the bag over his shoulder.  People would walk up to it and it would move, confusing the heck out of them.  It was pretty funny.

See the confusion?

Y’all know I heart me some Harry.  There were no Gryffindors in sight but there was a Ravenclaw and a Slytherin.  Although, to be honest, she looked way too nice to be a true Slytherin.

With hair like that she’s gotta be a Malfoy…right?

“Occupy” paradies were all over the place but this was probably my favorite.

It’s funny cause it’s true

And last but not least, I leave you with two awesome t-shirts.  This first one I found at a t-shirt vendor.  I didn’t have the balls to buy it but I thought it was fucking hi-larious.

Tempting…

And me wearing my brand-spanking new Team Unicorn t-shirt the morning after.

So I was just kidding, I have one more thing for you.  A video shot as I was leaving LBCC.  You can see me in motion for once!