I did so much at ECCC this year that I had to split my review into two parts! This is part two, if you’d like to read part one head over to ECCC: Day 1.
Amazingly, my Saturday was actually a lot tamer than my Friday of ECCC. The first thing I did was head to the autograph area to see Gina Torres, my Firefly book in hand. I ended up spending a lot longer waiting in line for Gina Torres than anticipated which set a course of missing a few photo shoots and all the panels I had anticipated going to that day. It was totally worth it though, Gina was so sweet and I was able to get another autograph in my book! Plus, I was able to spend more time socializing with friends after a panel heavy day 1. I got to see Marissa of Titanesque Cosplay who was visiting from Texas! She was there for Saturday only and with the cell service so unreliable during con we hadn’t gotten a hold of each other most of the day, but fate was on our side and I ran into her towards the end of the day when I was trying to find a seat for the Clark Gregg panel. It was standing room only by the time I got there and opted not to stay but having found Marissa I stole her away from her family for a bit and introduced her to some friends before snapping a few photos of her fantastic Spider-Woman cosplay. It was good to take a day to relax and be with friends.
Erin and I left the convention around 6:30 in favor of getting to the Sheraton early to snag good seats for the event, An Evening with John Barrowman. There were only 200 tickets sold, so really there were no bad seats, but we scored some seats in the second row. Let me tell you, the event was everything I had hoped for and so much more! Being twice as long as a convention panel awarded us more stories, and being a private event with no cameras allowed granted us access to stories he doesn’t usually tell. It was an intimate affair and it really felt like sitting around with friends trading stories. John even made sure we all got out of our seats to socialize before he started. Not to mention all the delicious appetizers they served during the whole thing. Oh, and did I mention he brought his parents? Well he did, and that didn’t stop him from being totally naughty, in fact he kept making raunchy jokes about his parents! It was hilarious. Definitely a highlight of my whole weekend.
Sunday was a blur of photo ops and a few panels. They changed the layout this year so that the autographs and photo ops were in the same area on the 6th floor. I’m guessing they did it so that the guests could get from one thing to the other easier, and that makes sense. But having two main attractions in one area like that is pretty rough crowd wise. If they decide to have that layout again next year I would suggest taking over the whole large area of the 6th floor and moving the Writer’s Block section to another part of the convention. Other than that though everything was absolutely fantastic.
Most of my day was spent hopping from one line to the next, starting with a photo op with Tyler Hoechlin around 11:30 followed by the “Avengers” photo with Clark Gregg, Stan Lee, and Anthony Mackie. Like with con photo ops our encounters with the guests were brief but pleasant. Everything was running pretty smoothly until I went to get in line for my last photo op of the day with John Barrowman. There were so many people trying to form an unofficial line that the staff had to beg us to disperse because it was violating fire code. Eventually they lined us up in John’s autograph booth while he was still finishing up the last of his signings before heading to the photo booth area. That was definitely the most chaotic and crowded photo op line I had ever been to, with good reason really, everyone loves John Barrowman. It also turns out that Stan Lee’s photo op was scheduled right before Barrowman’s and naturally his line was so long that nothing could start on time. Once the photos did get started there were so many people that they had to move even quicker than normal because Barrowman had a panel to get to by 3pm. He was charming and sweet to everyone as usual despite how quickly everyone had to move.
Since John Barrowman’s photo op ended up starting about an hour late, I missed part of the Firefly panel. Luckily, my friend saved me a seat so I was able to jump right in though. I still caught enough of the panel to enjoy Jewel Staite and Gina Torres’ sass. They shared stories about Firefly and discussed what it’s been like for them to have played so many influential female characters in television.
Next up was John Barrowman’s panel. That man is such a delight I swear I never get tired of listening to him. Despite having just seen him the night before there was actually very little repeat of stories between the two events, which was nice. He told so many wonderful stories covering his long and successful career and even sang with one young lady aspiring to get into musical theater. His panel was humorous, heartfelt, and inspiring. I loved every moment but I’d say the part that left the most impact was right at the end when the convention staff tried to cut him off early. He stood up for us and told the staff how dare they threaten to cut his mic, everyone has paid a lot of money to come to this show and they deserve to see the guest of their choosing for the full extent of promised time. He even told them if they ever tried to pull a stunt like that again that he would never come back, and when we all let out a cry of dismay he turned to the audience and said he would come back and make his own event in Seattle if that happened. This, more than anything else showed me just how much he cares about and cherishes his fans. We were all feeling very loved and respected.
The last panel we went to was Anthony Mackie’s. He was super chill and cracked a lot of jokes, it was great. He had several stories to tell during his time on set for Captain America: The Winter Soldier and The Hurt Locker. I also really enjoyed hearing about his time at Julliard and the hard work he put into his career to get this far. A fan also came up to thank him on behalf of her younger cousin, who is so excited to finally have a black superhero to look up to. He thanked them back and talked about how happy he is to be a part of the Marvel universe for that very reason. He kept things light-hearted but didn’t stray from the serious topics either. It was an excellent last panel of the con.
After the panel I got together with my friend Pixie and several others for an impromptu Doctor Who shoot in the park. We ended up taking a ton of photos that I’m still wading through but for now here’s an epic group shot of everyone!
ECCC is one of my main cons that I look forward to all year long. Seattle just embraces the geeky culture in ways I haven’t really heard of in other cities. I’m looking forward to attending ECCC for many more years to come.
With the exception of the photos from celeb photo ops, all the photography in this article is by Fearless Photoworks.