FaneXpo 2009: Day Two Recap

“Maybe your family tree didn’t fork” – Bruce Campbell

Ah, Day Two at Toronto’s FaneXpo was a little easier to assimilate having gone through the initiation of the previous day. Arrival at 9:45—doors were at 10:00—threw us for a loop somewhat as the line weaving in and out of itself was massive. Could this be the line to see Leonard Nimoy, our first stop on the day? I will admit to being more than a little frightened at this hypothesis, but all was well upon realizing the massive queue was just to get into the convention space, an area so easily accessible the day before. After waiting a few minutes, seeing our watches hit 10:05 and still being denied entry—because we weren’t in the line—Sarah and I decided to utilize the VIP badges clipped to our shirts and walked right into the far entrance … haha suckers!!! We later found out that the attendance today was the largest ever in the event history.

The first and only necessary stop was checking out RAK Graphics one more time to buy a few more of his stellar art cards, (I needed a Pinhead as Hellraiser is my old school horror of choice). Then it was off to find the real line for Nimoy, one not as long as I would have thought. I feel real bad if people lined up in the admission one instead, thinking the sheer numbers must have been for the Q&A. Well, we got in, found some seats and awaited the comedic flavor that would be a theme for the day. Leonard Nimoy is one fun guy, sharing anecdotes, playing with the audience, and is self-deprecating to a fault. Opening his talk with the fact that people earlier in the day, during an autograph session, told him they were huge fans, big fans, number one fans, he then told us what one girl said after all those … “You remind me of my grandfather”.

Some tidbits learned:
• The makers of “Big Bang Theory” have not asked him to appear, “they only wanted my napkin”
• Once decided to do a talk in Billings, MT to get away from the intruding fans at home. After just a few minutes, his motel phone rang with a girl from Colorado who heard from a friend he’d be in Billings, and she called every motel, (there were 3), to get him. Then ten minutes later, as he was leaving, the phone rang again, this time a girl from St. Louis. “How did you find me?” he asked. She replied, “My friend from CO told me!”
• Currently he is focusing on his photography, but will be guest starring in a couple episodes of “Fringe” in Season 2
• Wrote “I am Not Spock” after a mother told her young son in an airport that he was his favorite tv character Mr. Spock. The kid did not understand how this normal man was the Vulcan from his memory.
• The Vulcan “hand” greeting was self-created. When doing the episode that showed the first glimpse of other Vulcans, he thought they’d need a greeting—an alien salute/handshake/bow. Thinking back to his childhood in a Jewish service blessing, he remembered taking a peek during a Hebrew chant, when his eyes should be covered, and seeing the rabbi with both hands in that position. The shape is actually that of a Hebrew character, the one that begins Shalom, or peace in English.

We then had some time to kill before our next Q&A, this time with The Chin himself, Bruce Campbell, and so back to the convention space we went to wander around yet again. Some majorly cool stuff in there that I’d love to have hanging on my walls, if only they were free. A compilation of three horror festival winning shorts from the head of Rue Morgue magazine did catch my eye for 20 bones though … I may take the plunge tomorrow on that one. Finally the time for hilarity with Ash came, a couple smoothies later, and was he funny. Roaming the stage, mocking every Canadian city/Province he could think of, all while berating his fans, telling them to shut up, or just plain calling them losers, Campbell was my highlight of the weekend by far. Question, “Do you ever get tired of playing the sarcastic, sleezy guy?” Answer: “Shut the f*ck up.” Not utilizing a moderator at all, he went from person to person, answered those he chose to, sarcastically quipped and avoided all others, and even played a game where he’d turn his back and let the audience name a film they wanted their money back from that he was in. Let’s just say he didn’t blame the audience on most of their picks.

Some highlights from the talk:
• Opened it with the sentiments, “Bunch of weirdos in here”
• On Canadian currency: “Who drove the farthest to get here? Okay, come on up so I can give you some money to help get back. Gonna give you something that looks like a quarter with something shoved in the middle”
• On sequels: “Chumps like you pay for them. If you don’t like the first, don’t see the second”
• Bruce does not have a favorite beer because he doesn’t drink the stuff … now tequila, that’s a different story
• After a stupid question is asked, Bruce looks at his watch and says, “Man, I’ve got 40 minutes left … that sucks”
• On Bubba Nosferatu: he didn’t like the script. His respect for director Don Coscarelli is too much to fight him over so he passed on the project.
• On the Old Spice commercials he was in: “I got paid more per word than any other job I ever had. I’m wearing it right now … it smells like money”
• On Spider-Man 2: “I am the only character who ever defeated Spider-Man”
• Answering the question about whether he ever “got with” Xena, Bruce replies, “No I never got with Xena because the producer did … I’m not really kidding”

A quick wind-down after Campbell’s classic wit came next from a sneak peek of the “Heroes” Season 3 DVD. James Kyson Lee was back and he pretty much got the exact same questions asked that we heard yesterday, so sitting through it was somewhat painful. The hour was redeemed, however, with a five minute or so trailer for Season 4, and it looks like it could be a goodie—mostly because Robert Knepper is the man. Oh, yeah, and James, what’s with the leather jacket and sunglasses man? The rockstar look just ain’t working my friend.

[1] Marvel banners
[2] Leonard Nimoy laughing at fan holding his old Spock sings record
[3] Lou Ferrigno signing auotgraphs
[4] Bruce Campbell
[5] Stranger Lucca with familiar Lucca (aka Sarah Mobarak)

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