Somewhat faded memories of Wizard World Toronto 2012 – part 1

May 2, 2012

Because of the non-stop craziness of the A-Z challenge and continuing to do Six Sentence Sunday, I didn’t get to tell you anything about the Wizard World Toronto Comic Con, which took place April 14th and 15th. I had a really great time, (except for perhaps one moment that I’ll tell you about later,) and want to send a shout-out to the Wizard World team for a very well-run show.

I’ve been to Wizard World Comic Con in Toronto two times before. In 2010, it was actually the first fan convention I ever went to – I won a general admission ticket in a Toronto Browncoats shindig giveaway, and had a really great time, meeting Jewel Staite and Magda Apanowicz. I blogged quite a bit about the 2011 show at the time.

There were a lot of changes to Wizard World Toronto in 2012. They moved from the Direct Energy Center on the CNE grounds to the North building of the Metro Toronto Convention Center, a venue that I haven’t been to since the overcrowded 2010 Fan Expo. They also cut it down to a 2-day show, eliminating the Friday afternoon part of the schedule, and moved into April – the same weekend as the Ad Astra fan-run literary convention, actually. I’m disappointed that I couldn’t go to both Wizard World and Ad Astra this year, but I have no regrets about picking Wizard World.

I stuck with the same strategy I used in the March comic con of taking the GO bus into Toronto each day, rather than getting a hotel room downtown. I was also able to drive to the Hamilton bus station this time, in my new car, which actually made the commute a lot less stressful. I got to the South building pretty early on Saturday morning, armed with my barcode ticket printouts. It didn’t take too long to get one of the barcodes scanned and an official wristband sealed onto my person. Then helpful volunteers directed me up an escalator…

To wait in line, with the rest of the general admission peons, for the doors to the show floor to open. (Behind the advance VIP line, but they had to line up too, at least.)

But around 10 am the line started moving, and I went straight for the celebrity autograph area along the back of the floor. Not many stars were there yet, but I think there was a volunteer at Sean Maher’s booth, saying that he was on his way, so I waited around and got him to sign the two items that I’m trying to get signed by the whole Firefly cast – my Serenity blueprints book, and the graphic novel of ‘Those Left Behind.’ Waited a bit longer for somebody to show up at Amy Acker’s booth – eventually heard from somebody that her flight was delayed and she’d be half an hour – or an hour.

The rest of that morning went pretty quickly. Lining up for the photo op with Sean, by that time the word was in that Amy was on her way and a line was forming at her booth, so I joined the line, got her to sign an Angel comic and a head shot, then lined up to get my photo taken with her. I think around this point I must have grabbed a slice of pizza from the ubiquitous Pizza Pizza concession, and wandered the sales floor, looking for anything really cool I had to buy, Picked up some ‘Firefly’ promotional cards, wandered through the comic book stands looking at all the Buffy and Angel graphic novels, and realized that I had very little certainty of which titles I already owned, so I didn’t buy any that day.

I don’t really remember anything else before three in the afternoon on Saturday, which was the Vampire Diaries panel. Actually, I remember lining up for the panel shortly after two. And I think that I’ve rambled long enough for one post, so I’ll pick it up there next time!

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My Wizard world diary – day three

March 29, 2011

Crusader spotlight has been pre-empted tonight to bring you the conclusion of my Wizard World series. I expect that I’ll have plenty of plug posts in April – especially featuring blogs that start with letters that are otherwise hard to come up with A-Z posts for!

After buffet breakfast, (including some sadly uninspiring french toast,) and working on some editing in my hotel room, I packed my things and checked out of the hotel a little before 11am. Carried my suitcase over to the streetcar, and so on to the convention, where I gratefully left it under the care of friends at the Can’t stop the Serenity table, and making a ‘donation to their charitable society’ as thanks. (They were collecting for Equality Now, I’m not sure if I mentioned that last time.)

I enjoyed the Battlestar Galactica panel with the chief and Ellen Tigh – even though there were lots of spoilers about cylons, since I’m still not very far through Galactica season one.

Then the big Buffyfest panel. Read the rest of this entry »


My Wizard World diary, day Two

March 26, 2011

I arrived not long after 11. Went down the row of Buffy stars for autographs, and Julie Benz and Mark Metcalf were both there. Julie had a long line of people (twisting hack and forth,) but there were only a half-dozen people waiting for Mark.

Some of those guys ahead of me in the line were apparently from a video blog or small tv show, and they wanted to do two seperate interviews with him. I waited patiently, and got him to sign my Buffy RPG book when they were done. Then grabbed a slice of pizza and water, and brought it into Julie’s Q&A.

It was very cool having the VIP pass to get into the front rows of the Buffy fan Q&As. I remember thinking that the reserved seating wasn’t worth much for me, when I was considering getting the VIP upgrade, but it was definitely much appreciated. The MC was a guy from this Stan Lee superhero reality show – he was also there at Nicholas’ Q&A and the costume contests, and was very funny.

Back to Julie’s Q&A. Read the rest of this entry »


My Wizard World diary, day One

March 24, 2011

I wrote down most of these notes on Friday night, after getting back to the hotel after my first evening at Wizard World Toronto Comic Con, but they’ve been somewhat edited for clarity:

I’m starting to get the hang of planning my time for this convention stuff – remembering to anticipate plenty of time for getting from place to place and waiting in lines and so on is key.

I left from work around 2 in the afternoon, pulling my suitcase behind me down Fairview street to the GO train station. Got some editing done on the train, using the Aspire netbook, and when I got off the train, I headed over to the Via rail concourse, planning to grab a double burger at the Harvey’s.

Whoops. The Harvey’s location on the Via rail concourse has apparently closed forever. There was a little sign letting me know that their nearest location was only minutes away, but I didn’t bother looking for it – headed back to the GO concourse to grab a Big Mac, then headed off onto the CN Tower skywalk, and from there south to Queen’s Quay and checked into my hotel.

After taking a few minutes to unpack a few things from my gray laptop bag, (including the netbook,) it was off via streetcar to the Direct Energy center. Paid for the upgrade from an ordinary weekend ticket to Buffyfest VIP pass, got my fancy lithograph VIP souvenir, and out onto the convention floor.

I didn’t do that much wandering Read the rest of this entry »


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