Friday, June 23, 2017

Awesome Con 2017 Report

I decided to do Awesome Con on Saturday because director and writer Edgar Wright was making an appearance that day only. I am already a fan of some of his work and he seems to be an up and coming director. I can see him reaching at least Nolan/Abrams status. I meet up with who gives me the exhibitor pass (thanks to our vendor buddies) which are worth their weight in gold. 

Besides Edgar, I only planned to get a couple of paid guests, and none were big names. I expected none of my wants to be pro op only. I was right except for one instance: Whil Wheaton! Not only that but his pro op was sold out! This was my PUNCH because now that meant I would have to come Sunday to get my photo op with Wheaton. Dammit! Khary Payton was a name I had thought of getting, but for a $60 table op and no one to split with I passed.

While Joresky was spending fuck money on the WWE guests, I look for someone that I know has attended awesome con for WWE folks before, namely the Shocked Undertaker Guy. I look for him, I spot him, then I show him the photo on my phone and I go "excuse me, is that you?" he then goes "yes it is, I am trying to get people to forget by not wearing glasses". He accepts my request for a photo op and I tell him that if it makes him feel any better I was seeking him out that's how I noticed him. 

Next objective, Edgar Wright. Since I did not have an autograph ticket I decide to try the panel. I go to the panel, and the audience is huge. They are going to show the first 5 minutes of Baby Driver and ask that no one records anything. They have like 20 security guards around to make sure no one records. Really? Sorry to say this Awesome Con but piracy has existed for decades long before even the Internet existed as it does today. Movies were being uploaded into Usenet binaries long before the Internet was anything close to mainstream. The movie will be pirated and the first 5 minutes of Baby Driver is but a spec if even that. One guard even yelled at me to put the camera down and I had the lens cap on! 

Thankfully after that footage showed most guards left which was good as I wanted to try and get my photo op with Edgar. When it finally ended I go to the rail, about 5 or so people waiting I ask for the photo op he goes "well..." and continues walking away. Bust!

So I join Joresky in the autograph line and I manage to score an autograph ticket! YES! That's a step in the right direction. Sadly it doesn't seem like they are allowing photo ops, but when we get there I manage to get him to pose though the guards said we can only take pictures from a certain distance. Sadly the photo op is a little blurry but I guess beggars can't be choosers at that point I'm happy to have a shot. I get a Baby Driver poster signed plus one extra item for our vendor buddies. 

Next up I decide to try and plead Whil Wheaton for a table op so I wouldn't have to come back the next day. While waiting I notice Edgar's line is pretty much dead and gone and they are having him sign extra posters. Tried calling Joresky but his phone was dead. I approach and ask for a photo op he goes "sure" and I manage to get a MUCH better shot. 

Get up to Whil, plead, but no dice. He tried to give some BS about the contract saying only pro ops and goes "I'll shake your hand". To make my time a little more worthwhile I finally decide to get a photo op with Felicia Day. Split the shot with someone via the switcharoo! Ended my time at Awesome Con by mooching a Catherine Tate photo op. They said no flash but of course I stayed silent and accepted it. 

Come back the next day, for that Whil Wheaton pro op. He's like "Oh wonderful you came back" and I got the photo op, which I split. Upon leaving Awesome Con one guy noticed Sam Ellis who is the character designer of the show Archer. Never heard of that show but got the free photo op and headed out. 

Edgar Wright

Whil Wheaton

Full list of Awesome Con photo ops

Baby Driver poster

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Some scattered meets late May through mid June

Start with some late May meets. First up is Joan Osborne who is best known for her 90s hit "What If God Was One Of Us". I decided to go for her instead of Sally Struthers for a second time since by all accounts Joan is a practically a guarantee. I arrive and find out that she is doing a post show meet and greet. So after the show I commandeer materials and blend in as I mooch into the venue. I line up and go up to her, get autographs then ask for a photo op. She says to wait till everyone is done. I wait and after everyone is done she gets up, we go to a background, and I get a photo op. I also got a photo op with the barely valid Brian Dunne who opened for her. Had Brian sign the material I already got Joan to sign and he was excited to do that saying he hadn't seen it. 

Sadly this was not without a PUNCH as I saw at least one Sally photo op. 

Joan Osborne

Brian Dunne


Next up, Kiefer Sutherland. I already have a couple of photo ops with him, but I needed to virgilize him. So I go there and wait. We are three people, he arrives and ignores us. After a little while more combo hunters arrive and sadly more audience members join us. But he stops and takes care of everyone. Nice as can be. I got a laserdisc, a blu ray, and a DVD signed. He was wearing hat and shades so I had no need for another photo op. 

Kiefer signing for me

Kiefer taking care of all


Fast forward to mid June. My target is actor Ryan Phillippe. I got him once in NYC but he has hat and shades. I also had both his incoming and outgoing flights, but when I got him in NYC he was on his way to the airport. So I figured going to the airport for him defeats my main purpose. Instead I decided to try the event. I go inside the event and see him seated. So now I wait for it to finish. And boy it is dragging and dragging ugh how tedious. Finally it ends. He is nice as can be. Get a perfect shot plus autographs. 

After the fact another grapher points out former senator Elizabeth Dole. So I ask her she agrees. Go in an elevator with her, get the shot, leave. Came out a little blurry but valid. 

Ryan Phillippe

Elizabeth Dole


After this success go to a venue for the band Toto. There are four members to get in this band, three of which are original (the lead guitarist and two keyboardists). The fourth one, namely Joseph Williams, son of the legendary John Williams, is the current singer who has been with the band since 1986. But he is in very few albums and none of the hits. However, he has other credentials to his name. He is the signing voice of Simba in The Lion King! He also did some composing work for movies. For instance he composed the original song for the Mex Rebo band in Return of the Jedi. 

Wait for it to break and wait. Immediately we see a van leave and what looks like lead guitarist Steve Lukather inside it. When the van returns I ask the driver if that was Lukather and he said yes. As we wait we see Steve Porcaro, nice as can be. Get a photo op plus autographs. Next up, Joseph Williams. Again, nice as can be. Get him on my Walmart exclusive Simba figures already signed by Matthew Broderick. Hope to get the voices of child Simba one day. Didn't get him on my album because he wasn't on it. 

David Paich comes out. Isn't as nice as the others but I manage to get a photo op and 2 of the 3 items I had for him, including my vinyl. The van that initially left comes back with its passenger and it actually wasn't Lukather but a barely valid that looks like a younger version of him. To make his evening I get a photo op with him. 

Finally, Steve Lukather comes out and he is nice as can be. Get a photo op plus my items signed. It's good to spend a day where basically everyone is actually nice and accommodating (for a change).

Full list of Toto photo ops


Next day I have two trains. An outgoing for actress Olivia Munn and an incoming for actor Eddie Izzard. I have a photo op with Olivia but it's invalid. So I wanted to get another. First up is Olivia. While waiting a pap spots a guy from the Bachelor named Chris. I get a photo op. Finally Olivia shows up and is nice as can be. Get a photo op and autographs. 

Next up wait for Eddie. A Master is there and says he's 50/50 but brought him some photos as gifts to increase our odds. Finally Eddie shows up and sadly he is drag queen suited. Ugh! He gets the gifts then as he starts signing for the Master's stack he says he'll do four. I then get a photo op and autographs. Sadly I may have to go for him again but at least this shot is valid. 

Later that evening I would go to the airport for Stan Lee in the hopes of getting a signed comic book. But he is wheeled through doing nothing for no one. 


Olivia Munn

Eddie Izzard


Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Leaving NYC for a Party in the USA!

Having made the decision to leave NYC and with going the fuck money route at the Connecticut con, I had other plans.

First, I went to an airport for a flight, namely the 80s band The Romantics. They are best known for their hit "Talking in Your Sleep" which coincidentally played at the airport shortly before their plane landed. 3 of the 4 members are original, with a barely valid drummer. However, even here there would be a punch. Turns out the vinyl album I have can only be signed by 2 out of the 3 originals. Dammit. 

Lead singer Wally Palmar is first, nice as can be. Get my stuff signed and the photo op. Bassist Rich Cole is next and again nice as can be. Next up guitarist Mike Skill says he'll only sign one. He is the one not on my album. So I get him on an 8x10 and get the photo op. Finally I get a photo op with the barely valid Brad Elvis. 

Next up I try for the Pointer Sisters (I'm So Excited....I Just Can't Hide It). Sadly out of the 3 current members, only one is valid. Namely, Ruth Pointer. Technically she is not original but she started very early and is on all the hits. She is nice as can be and I get a photo op. 

On to another airport, this time for the original drummer of Chicago, Danny Seraphine. Finally find him and I get a photo op and my items signed. Nice guy. 

Now I go grab a meal, and since already in town I make the brave decision to venture for Miley Cyrus. Technically I got the shot before but my shot is badly in need of an upgrade.

The venue is huge, and there are different ways she could exit. To boot, police is all around the event and preventing anyone from being in any prime spots. When the event ends one side gets shut out due to crowd so that narrowed things a little bit. A tour bus leaves, and with that go to the spot where the tour bus is going. 

Now here is a good example of why doing stuff outside NYC is smart. For Miley in NYC, there will always be a crowd and while she isn't nasty like the majority of pop stars of her caliber, the horrid NYC crowd can take the niceness out of anyone. Here, we are not 10, 20, or 30. We are but TWO! Sadly there's a long driveway on private property. So if she wants to blank on us it's easy for her to do so. She comes out the tour bus and we call for her. She signals for us to come over. She does combos with us! Perfect shots! People pay 1K for her m&g and don't even get an auto! Wow just wow I can't believe this happened! Against all odds we prevailed! 

Of all the things that could have gone wrong:
  • Cops could have been a huge factor
  • She could have been in an SUV and not a tour bus, which would have made things 1000X harder
  • She could have gone to the airport and flown out of town after the show
  • She could have not been in said tour bus as suspected
  • Her people could have prevented us from coming close to her
  • The hotel employees could have forbid us from coming on their property
  • She could have blanked and ignored us 

Yet against all these odds, we prevailed! I couldn't believe it! Especially after the blow offs in NYC the prior days, this was such a fresh change of pace! 

The next day I have a flight for the B52s. Three original members are touring, namely Fred, Kate, and Cindy. Kate I already got a perfect shot with in NYC so I had no reason to bother with an airport shot. Fred sadly by all accounts doesn't do photo ops on the street. So the only thing I had to gain photo op wise was Cindy. 

Additionally, I heard their tour manager is a total asshole. So I braced for the worst. Arrive there and we are two people waiting. B52s pull up and all three sign. I get a photo op with Cindy and Fred says "I don't take pictures". Since I expected that I didn't press the issue. When I asked Fred to sign he goes "oh in blue, these are gonna go on sale" I said no they're not he goes "why do you have two of the same" I go it's for a friend. Not sure why he questioned me when the other guy had duplicates and was using blue sharpie. 

In all this chaos I still had one item left unsigned by Kate. So I wait and the tour manager is touching me and grabbing me saying I have to "leave the building" or he'll call "security". WTF? Where does he think he is? A venue on private property? I tell him in a stern voice to call whoever he wants. So I wait and a woman who works for the airline comes up to me and tells me I can't take photos. She has no legal authority to tell me that at the airport. So I lash out on her saying I wasn't taking any photos but if she doesn't "get the fuck out of my face" I will in fact take photos. She then goes away from me. Shortly after the tour manager brings a cop who tells me to back away. So I go downstairs and wait at a spot where they all have to pass. Soon after the cop says I can ask but if they say no then not to peruse. I ask Kate for my last item to be done and she is nice about it. I thank her. As the policeman is going away I say "have a good day officer" and shake the cop's hand. 

Overall I have to say based on all the stories I heard with that tour manager this went better than I expected. I got everything I wanted minus a Fred photo op, which I wasn't expecting to get. 

Now to showcase some autographs

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Sci Fi Con, Legends of the Ring, KISS Expo, and NYC

Initially I was planning to ride up to Sci Fi Con in Altoona, PA with Joresky, but this changed due to a conflict of interest. Namely I wanted to attend Legends of the Ring, which meant I couldn't do Altoona on Saturday. Joresky had no interest in Legends and could not get off his night job Friday. Additionally, Joresky wanted to attend the convention in CT but given the distance and names that were there, I had little interest in that. The last time I attended LOTR was October 2013. So I was pumped to make my return and get a bunch of names I needed, which as far as wrestling cons go is very rare for me these days. 

So I head out Friday to Altoona, which would be a huge regret of mine. I will reveal why later. My objective is three Back to the Future guests and one Pirates of the Caribbean guest. Sadly when I arrive Donald Fullilove AKA Goldie Wilson is not at his table. I get a photo op with Jeffrey Weissman AKA Fake George, a fully suited Harry Waters Jr, and Kevin McNally. Now I get NYC info for Sam Elliot, a huge want of mine. If I leave PA soon I can make exits. But sadly no Goldie around. Harry talks to Goldie via cell phone and apparently he has no plans of coming till his 6:30 panel. PUNCH! So I leave for NYC, make it there, park for free, and wait for exits. We are 4 people. Sam comes out and does nothing for no one, even the security guard stops us and tells me I should stop "crying" as I'm a "grown man". These people truly don't know what these things mean to us and the effort we put for them  to make matters worse EVERYONE in NYC got him the past couple of days but when I try I fail. What a HUGE PUNCH. In hindsight I wish I came here for entries where he stopped and skipped Sci Fi con altogether. Ugh! All I got from this spot was a picture with director Brett Haley. 

I then join Vanessa the Jersey Shore Stalker at a spot for Orange is the New Black folks where I also see and . But that spot is pulling teeth for very little as most were not stopping. I go to a spot for Oscar Issac but find out the info I read was misleading. He is apparently doing rehearsals but not actual shows. Meaning we don't know when he will be at that spot. Another PUNCH. 

Thanks to a tip from Greg I then move to a spot for Devin Ratray AKA Buzz McAllister from Home Alone 1&2. I am joined by both Greg and Suzanne. He arrives and is as nice as can be. Greg gives me his ticket to the event and Suzanne gives hers to Vanessa. We go in and eat some pizza, drink a little beer, and leave. 

I try a spot for randoms. Upon arriving we see Natasha Lyonne who blows us off (but I had her already). But sadly don't see much else after that. I then head out to NJ for Legends of the Ring, park my car, and sleep. 

Harry Waters, Jr

Full list of PA and NYC photo ops

Wake up and it felt good to be back at Legends of the Ring. Saw Terence, Ken and Steve, Bill Paley, Lucas, Old School Mike, Ira, Ray Duct and his daughter, Chris Collector, plus more. Felt like old times. On the valid side both Ashley Massaro and Lanny Poffo recognized me from previous shows and told me hello. 

First stop was an upgraded Kevin Sullivan. He was wearing a hat and spectacles so I asked him to remove them (after all I want an UPgrade here). He did so. First shot was invalid so I got a redo. 

Next up, Los Boricuas. I loved the DOA/NOD/Boricuas feud, and I have photo ops with every living member of those factions except the 3 members of Boricuas. So I rectified that at Legends. I also got Savio Vega in the group shot though I have him. But honestly those 3 members are such lower names having them in any form besides the group op is pretty pointless. 

There were lots of barely valid indy workers charging $20 for a photo op. Since I didn't want to pay that kind of money to roll the dice, I decided to just get Deonna Purrazzo who seems pretty flamboyant as she worked for ROH, TNA, and WWE. Then I got to the La Resistance table. Rene and Sylvain Grenier were there but I already virgilized Sylvain in the past. I got the Rene combo and Sylvain was about to pose but the promoter said only Rene. Sylvain acted half offended but I explained that I got him before and shook his hand and he laughed and said "good seeing you again". Got Rene to complete my La Resistance 2 pack. 

Next up, the main reason I came to LOTR and the only guest I was getting from the superticket line up, Tony Schiavone. I got a photo op and had him sign my WCW trading card already signed by Bobby Heenan and Mike Tenay. I ended my time at LOTR with a Barry O photo op. I wanted to get Jake Roberts to sign my Beyond the Mat poster, but he wanted $200 (at least it went down from $500 a few years ago). 

Tony Schiavone

Full list of Legends of the Ring photo ops

I then drive to KISS Expo in NYC. My main reason to be there is to upgrade my Peter Criss photo op. While there I get a photo op with former KISS guitarist Bruce Kulick. He was in the band when they played "God Gave Rock and Roll To You" which was at the end of Bill and Ted's Bogus Journey. 

Now I am standing in line for Peter Criss. I am about an hour into that line then by chance I am chatting with Ray Ric via text and he tells me no table ops! WTF! To boot I was lucky enough to get that info shortly before the last pro op session. The web site spelled out table ops but that apparently changed. So I quickly moved to the pro op line. I got my photo op but sadly the photo op isn't very good. First off they were uploaded to dropbox and resolution was low. I was writing an email to the photographer (which I made sure to obtain before leaving the con) but then I figured out how to download the full rez shot from dropbox. So I deleted my email. Sadly even at full rez the photo didn't look too good because of both the quality of the camera used and the distance from which the photo was taken. Another PUNCH.

Sadly no email raising hell is going to fix this problem as the damage is done (cause as I said I figured out how to get the full rez shot). To illustrate I will post near full rez shots of both my photo ops from KISS Expo. Very furious how Peter Criss came out. 

Bruce Kulick

Peter Criss

After this I call some NYC combo hunters to see what's cooking, I get a tip for Heidi Klum at a spot. Additionally it's a spot where randoms could show up. I arrive and one combo hunter already waiting there tells me Usher is here. So I pull up an 8x10 that is in my car. It's off to a good start as Heidi is nice as can be. I get a photo op. Bill Hader shows up and I get an upgrade. We see Usher and ask initially he ignores. Then he sees my photo and signals for the pen. I run and hand him the sharpie he does one each. Since I have a photo op and he was wearing a hat I had no reason to ask him for another shot. 

At one point I see a short brunet and point her out to a combo hunter. I say who is this, is she anyone. She is standing there texting. Then her car comes up and all of a sudden the combo hunter goes "it's Demi Moore" as she is almost in the car! Another huge PUNCH! WTF! I was pointing her out to him for minutes and he said nothing. Well now the game has changed. I was planning to check out other spots now I gotta wait for Demi to come back. 

While doing so a car pulls up, and the combo hunter says it's Robert Deniro. We have stuff for Robert, he eventually goes into his car but denies. Leaves his car to go back inside, says he is "off duty" and doing nothing. Vanessa eventually arrives. While waiting we also see Harvey Keitel and I upgrade my photo op. Eventually Deniro leaves and again says he's doing nothing. Finally Demi comes back, we are 3 people and she ignores! Wow that rejection hurt like a mother fucker! 

Wait for a bit at another spot in the hopes of randoms, but nothing. While I had info for the next evening I knew the crowds would be insane I decided to simply leave the city and use info I had away from NYC. Stay tuned for my next report. I even took a different route to reduce tolls even further than I normally do (paid only $4 in tolls total). May have to use that in the future. 

Full list of NYC street shots

Legends of the Ring autographs and Usher autograph

Friday, June 16, 2017

Kesha, Leno, Seinfeld, Kevin Hart, a great MASH, and more

There was an event with several celebs, but sadly I had most of them. Kesha was the only significant fresh name for me but honestly not really a fan of hers. My top want here was someone I already had, namely Hugh Jackman. I figured I could get some autos, upgrade my photo op, and in the process get a fresh Kesha, upgrade my Jay Leno shot, and get some autographs. 

I join markedout's adelta and the wait was long and in the process I get a photo op with a get if there name in Anthony Brown. After 3 or 4 hours of waiting people start coming in. 

Jay Leno was nice as can be. First shot was invalid as he commented on me doing a selfie on my camera, but thankfully I got another shot improving my previous photo op. Also got autographs. Ben Folds came and upgrade my shot. Both Hugh Jackman and Katie Couric did nothing for no one. 

Kesha arrives and takes care of every single person. Did autographs and photo ops for all, could not have been any nicer. Jerry Seinfeld arrives and starts signing. I asks if he minds if I get a selfie he goes "yes I mind". I do have a shot with him but I was hoping for an upgrade. 

Finally, Margaret Cho, who was in several movies most notably Face/Off starring John Travolta and Nicolas Cage comes in and stops for all. Joresky would join the party for exits. 

Exits was a lot less successful as both Kesha and Hugh snuck out. Jerry does nothing. Only got Katie Couric. 

Failed on my main objective, exits were basically a waste, but overall I'd say fruitful.


Jay Leno

Full list of photo ops

Jay Leno autographs

Kesha and Seinfeld autographs

Next up an evening where I set out to get an actor that everyone has but I have failed on multiple times (for one reason or another). Namely, Kevin Hart. The book event were guaranteed photo ops and pre signed books but unfortunately the jpegs were low resolution. 

I go to the event, stand in line, get my photo op, and pick up my pre signed book. At the back I see someone taking photo ops not sure who he is but I get a shot in case. At this point I am informed by a combo hunter of a spot with Alan Alda. The name is familiar to me but I can't place him. I google him and it hit me. HOLY! That's a good name. He was in MASH, Tower Heist, among other things. So rush to spot where I find out Joresky left a few minutes ago. As I arrive not 2 minutes later he comes out. He signs for one girl waiting and I take the photo op of one guy. Then I get a photo op but it's invalid so I get another. After getting my second shot I take one final photo op for someone as he is pulled away to his car. 

I guess the combo Gods made me miss Kevin Hart all these years for a reason. If I had a photo op the last thing in my life I would have ever done was go to his book event. And subsequently would not have had Alan Alda (who is not a very nice guy for the most part). Talk about the butterfly effect in full force!  

I rush back to the Kevin Hart book signing where I hope to get a full rez shot and extras as he is leaving, but sadly he doesn't come over. I then go to the photographer to try to get my high rez jpeg and he denied me. I said that you can't even print an 8x10 he goes "you can print a 5x7". I told him I'd pay him $20 for the jpeg but he still denied saying "everyone gets the same thing". I couldn't believe what I was hearing. He refused money to send one email! 

As a last ditch effort to get the full jpeg, I tried contacting the publisher and this is all I got, and I quote: Unfortunately, due to the number of photos taken and customers served, the photographer's servers offer only the resolution for a 5x7 photograph. We capture at this resolution so we are unable to provide a higher output to our guests, so we are unable to get a higher resolution at this time. We apologize for any inconvenience.

The time and effort and circles I ran around to try to get my high rez jpeg, you would think I'm trying to get Kevin Hart to appear at my son's birthday party for free 

Failed to get a proper rez Kevin Hart shot, but I got Alan Alda, an old actor who is difficult to get. I'd say a successful evening! I hope to one day get Kevin Hart again and virgilize him. I should add though, the shots I got were slightly better than either NYC or Philly events.  

Kevin Hart

Alan Alda

Signed book

Mystery black guy

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Wizard World Philadelphia and more

With the cancellation of Charlie Sheen I was no longer excited for Wizard World. I was still going due to the Gene Simmons photo op and admission that was gifted to me by Martin before his untimely death, but seeing that I only had upgrade shots to get, it was a "meh" con for me. But then they added Chuck Norris and I was once again pumped. I grew up watching action movies. They were always my favorite. At the top you had people like Arnold, Stallone, and Bruce Willis. Then on second tier you had people like Steven Seagal, Jean Claude Van Damme, and Chuck Norris. Then of course they added more lower names that I wanted which made this even better.

My Wizard World adventure would actually start with a tip from for Tim Tebow. While I don't normally go for sports, Tebow is a novelty name due to the Tebowing phenomenon. Plus it was somewhat in the vicinity of Joresky's place so it made some logistical sense to try before going to his place. 

Sadly when I got there the crowd grew to 30 people and he did nothing for no one. Bust. After a fun conversation with CM Showstopper I drove to and crashed for the evening. Wake up in the morning, set the GPS to avoid all tolls and began the drive to Philly. We also managed to score a free parking spot! Always a victory when you go to WW Philly on a Saturday and you find a free spot a few blocks away from the venue. Also at Wizard World was quite a few NYC combo hunters and Masters. A good indication of how tough combo hunting has become. 

Line outside was long, so I simply mooch to the front of the line, go in, and get my wristband. Most guests weren't even at their table so I look for He-Man and Disney animator Mike Toth. First I get a photo op which he was more than happy to do. Then I have my 8 He-Man/She-Ra DVD inserts which I present to him. I hope to get them signed free (as I did with Tom Cook at a previous Wizard World) but then he stops and asks Tom what to do. I thought he was gonna say $5 per item in which case I probably would have gotten just one so as not to look like a total asshole. But then he said $10 for all of them signed. I figured that was fine. 

Next up we go to Chuck Russel, who directed such movies as The Mask starring Jim Carry, Eraser starring Arnold, the third Nightmare on Elm Street, among others. He sent me, Joresky, and markedout's AJLe to the ticket booth but as we thought they weren't selling tickets of his. He was truly dazed and confused as to what the rules were. Luckilly me and Joresky managed to get a free photo op just for purchasing the auto, but after that he began charging pro op prices at this table. WTF. I got him to sign my Mask laserdisc and he even asked me who I had on it (Peter Greene and Jim Carrey). 

I got Monster Squad's Andre Gower and Ryan Lambert with my friend Suzanne. One of them (I think Lambert) was wearing shades but she was too afraid to ask him to remove them so I was the one tasked to ask. I got voice actor Steve Blum which brought me one step closer to completing my Star Wars Rebels cast. 

I pulled the switcharoo with  and split Gregg Sulkin. I don't know who he is yet, but he will be in a Marvel show and is up and coming. I normally don't pay to pokeman but while that may be a pokemon name now I'm sure it will pay off in the future. 

Thanks to markedout's overthetop I got a free Don Dokken shot. He didn't care for the photo op so he paid the autograph price and I got the photo op free, which I thanked him for. Don mocked me by asking if I wanted him to undress after I asked him to remove his shades (which he did). But then he just kept the shades off after that. 

Noticed someone being interviewed. I asked who it was turns out he's a valid name. I got the producer of the upcoming Tupac movie. The director was also around but sadly I missed him. 

The two pro ops I got were Gene Simmons (upgrade) and of course the main event himself, Chuck Norris. When he signed by 8x10 I told him "Chuck Norris doesn't battle, he just allows you to lose" to which he chuckled at. Telling Chuck one of his Internet facts was quite an awesome treat I never imagined that would happen (incidentally this fact was also used in the Abraham Lincoln vs Chuck Norris Epic Rap Battles of History). 

Last photo op I got at Wizard World was a Rider Strong upgrade. I got him on the street but here his beard was much slimmer and he also has a beanie in my street shot. So I consider this an upgrade. I can see Shawn Hunter in this photo op a lot more than in my street shot. 

Chuck Norris

Gene Simmons

Chuck Russell

Steve Blum

Rider Strong

Don Dokken

Full list of photo ops


After Wizard World we head down to a venue for the singer and actress Lulu. I know her best as the singer of theme song of the bond movie "The Man With the Golden Gun" starring Roger Moore. We arrive and wait. There are like 40 people I couldn't believe the crowd. I have been to this venue many times and don't think I ever saw a crowd that big, even for much bigger names. The crowd was mostly older stock so I guess she must have been huge back in the day. I was honestly the second youngest in the crowd, with Joresky being the youngest. 

When she came out she was nice as can be. It's amazing how so many, even lower names, are nasty for even 5-10 people yet here was Lulu doing combos for everyone who asked. Granted I'm not a celebrity but seeing Lulu take care of everyone it seems to me like it's not that difficult to be nice to a crowd. I got her on a Bond laserdisc and some 8x10s.



Sadly all this was not without a HUGE PUNCH as I found out a Master racked on everyone from Iron Maiden except the lead singer Bruce Dickenson. This was so painful as I am a huge Iron Maiden fan and would have loved combos from Steve Harris and Dave Murray and upgrades from some of the lower names. I could have done them but I've failed on both Steve and Dave in the past so I veered my time and effort to what was either a guarantee or close to a guarantee. 

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Memorial day weekend celebrity meets

During the span of memorial day weekend I would go for meets, starting with the airport. Let us begin. 

First up I went for a flight for Auli'i Cravalho AKA Moana as I missed her during the television festivities in NYC. While there a Master spots actress Sissy Spacek who happened to be on the same flight as her! Awesome random! Then the target finally shows up. Her assistant said it's up to her if she does photo ops then her mom said no but I ignored her mom and asked her. She did the photo op no problem but then denied me autographs. Later on as she was waiting for transportation I managed to to pull teeth to get two autographs. 

Auli'i Cravalho

Sissy Spacek


Next evening I have a flight for actress Mary McCormack (Private Parts, Dickie Roberts: Former Child Star, Deep Impact) and Robert Patrick. Already got Patrick at Monstermania so this was mainly for autographs. 

First up is Mary. We spot her with her daughter and she is nice as can be. Then later on Robert Patrick who racks for everybody. He had a hat and spectacles so I had no need for another photo op. 

Mary McCormack


Next day was the day where I would dedicate the most hours. My first spot I wait for Judd Nelson (The Breakfast Club) and Tom Berenger. Since there are two ways to get in I position where I can see both doors. Two cars arrive and combo hunters attack Tom since they got Judd at the previous spot. Perfect for me, I needed Judd as I got Tom at Chiller. Judd takes a photo op and signs for me. I then get an autograph from Tom but don't bother with a photo op as he was wearing spectacles so it would have been a downgrade from my shot at Chiller. 

Go to the next spot where I meet up with and others. We wait and see nobody except Joe Mantegna who happened to be passing by. Seems they changed the hotel on us! Luckily I figured out where that was. I go there and upon arriving I get a photo op with Five for Fighting (he sings the great song 100 years) which I had to plead a little for. He goes "two minutes" then as I get my shot he begrudgingly signs one a piece for others. 

Wait till the evening for returns and it wasn't so successful as everyone I saw either didn't do it, I already had, or we couldn't spot. Most notably Laurence Fishburne who was his usual asshole self. I do get an upgrade with Robert Patrick. I like this shot MUCH better than the one I got at Monstermania. 

Judd Nelson

Five for Fighting

Robert Patrick


Next evening I time it to dedicate the least amount of time in an effort to get what I missed the previous days. Photo op wise I needed actor John Ortiz and actress Anna Ortiz (no relation). Plus I needed autographs. Sadly all I get was John Ortiz and a Mary McCormack upgrade. We never spotted Anna Ortiz and everyone else either I had or didn't stop. 

One notable incident, was with Five for Fighting who I got the prior day and who was Joresky's top want. Joe Mantegna arrives and does photo ops for all. Joresky takes everyone's photo ops and as that happens Five for Fighting arrives. Now I could have yelled for Joresky right there and then but I didn't want to make it so obvious as the guy was right in front of my face. And I didn't want to get the photo op to get Joresky's attention because he wasn't that easy the prior day so I was afraid to get it then Joresky would not. So I simply yelled "heyyyy John" in an effort to get Joresky's attention. But Joresky is so enthralled in playing photog he is oblivious. After I tell him hello he tells me hello back as he moves away from me then I finally go "JERRYYYYY" then Joresky tries to run for him but is too late.  

Sub par evening but I got one fresh shot. 

John Ortiz

Mary McCormack

The final day was basically an upgrade day. I don't like my Martin Sheen photo op so I wanted to get another. Also there was Brian Dennehy who I need a better shot with. Sadly I forgot that Costco was closed so the only thing I had to get signed was my Amazing Spiderman 2 poster (Martin Sheen has a small role there so valid). 

On entries I upgrade my Finn Wittrock photo op and get blown off by get if there actor Christopher Jackson. We never see Martin Sheen who as he found out later came to the spot really early. At one point we see a Master run to a car so we follow and lo and behold Martin is leaving early. He takes care of us all and even asked me what poster is there. I tell him Spiderman. Primary goal accomplished. 

We wait for Brian to exit and he has an ugly ass beard. So this was now an autograph only mission. I was provided two 8x10s by the Master where he would get one. Sadly he did nothing for no one. I return the 8x10s and the Master whispers "follow me". But I thought he was gonna try to get Brian to do a roll down and at that point I was talking to a girl and didn't want her to see me run like a maniac as a first impression. Not that I wouldn't have done that if this were a photo op I needed. But for an autograph of Brian Dennehy I chose to stay with the girl to secure contact info. Turns out though the Master ran to where Brian was staying and racked him on 15 things!

While talking to her though I did see Christopher Jackson go out of another door then I ran to get him. The girl was waiting for Finn to exit but sadly we never see him. So he probably left from another door while we were at one door. I then drop the girl I just met home. 

Martin Sheen

Full list of photo ops


Friday, June 2, 2017

Multi day haul during NYC television festivities

This week is one of the weeks I dread most. As many NYC combo hunters put it, "everyone and their mother" comes out for this. Because of the time needed to put in and the crowd it draws, this basically brings forth a high level of pain and anguish. Both physical and mental. So much that I probably won't even want to recap most of it in detail. And this year I even decided to reduce it, as I realize I am getting too old for this.

Despite pain and misery, it was good seeing and hanging out with everyone I got to see and hang out with. 

This starts when me and start with a failed attempt at Sally Struthers in New Hope, PA. Friends of ours were successful in getting her a few days earlier so this inspired us to try. It ended in failure and from that point on when we began driving to NYC all the way throughout the week, Joresky would constantly recap the events that took place and constantly reminded me of it. This only added to the pain and suffering that was already taking place and was one of the factors that led to my aggravation all week. I am going to recap the incident here and this is my first and only time doing so. 

We waited. While waiting we grabbed photo ops with barely valids in her show but get blown off by one of them because his lady said we didn't see the show. Waited more. Then a gay guy comes up to us and introduces himself and says we can come up to meet Sally. We go with him but I am nervous as I tell Joresky it might be a decoy to get us out of position. As he goes inside I quickly go to a position where I can watch both Joresky and the door. We never see Sally. She seemingly snuck out while that gay guy took us away. What a low thing to do. He couldn't even come back to tell us that she is gone and we are not meeting her? Instead he made us wait for nothing and we missed photo ops in NYC. 

Full list of pre NYC photo ops

We head to NYC, park for free, then head to the first spot. The best names I got there I had. Then to the second spot for more names. After that we called it a night and commandeered our free parking spot for the week. 

Full list of NYC Day 1 photo ops

Day 2 is upon us. Started getting names at the first spot. Aritha Franklin came out but sadly photo ops were not happening. I got a photo op with unicorn suited Iain Armitage (new child actor) then got him non-unicorn suited shot two days later. 

The second spot is usually the most crowded and most stressful of the entire week. Lots of running around and pushing and shoving. I was running back and forth from the point where people would enter to the point where they exit. 

Got some first time wants in Jordana Brewster, Jussie Smollett, and Emily VanCamp. I also got my sole autograph of the week in John Cena. He complemented me on the photo. Upgraded my shot with Morena Baccarin and updated my Camren Bicondova shot (she is older now).

On the way to the next spot we run into Tracy Morgan and Queen Latifah. Latifah's driver says we can't stand there but we ignore him completely since it's a public sidewalk and he has zero authority. I needed Tracy more than her as I have a really bad shot with him. So when they stop talking I go for Tracy and Joresky goes for Queen. I get Tracy then when Joresky was done with Queen I asked and she did a photo op with me. Sadly I inadvertently screwed Greg but at the previous spot she went to his vicinity and he looked uninterested in even asking, so I assumed he got her at the previous spot. That was my bad and I feel guilty for it. 

Rack up more photo ops at the next spot, then go to two other spots before calling it a night. 

Tracy Morgan

Jordana Brewster

Emily VanCamp

Morena Baccarin

Full list of Day 2 photo ops part 1

Full list of Day 2 photo ops part 2

Full list of Day 2 photo ops part 3

John Cena autograph

Day 3 starts with a little break from TV festivities. Start at a spot for Danny McBride and Michael Fassbender, both wants of mine. Greg got Danny at a spot the day prior so that was painful to see. Therefore I had to get him. Michael is a huge want and he is not known to be the nicest. But I had a flight for him as a backup. If this spot didn't work, I was gonna pull all stops and go to the airport all the way till his boards the plane if necessary. 

Danny takes care of everyone going in! SCORE! Katherine Waterston does no photo ops going in or leaving. Michael does nothing going in but says he will take care of everyone leaving. I position myself in a prime spot for his exit and when he leaves I manage to score that shot! YES I was so happy I didn't have to trek to the airport. At this spot I also got Alan Menken who composed music for several Disney movies. 

Next spot, nothing too great. But I do encounter markedout's heelorton. 

Then to the next spot where I improve my Justin Hartley from prior days and get a great score in Elliott Gould! Also Matthew McCoy from Police Academy 5&6 was a complete random. Priyanka Chopra came and I needed a no shades shot. After much chaos I get a shot but thanks to a horrid Joresky photo bomb I actually prefer my second shades shot with her. Off to the next spot, then off to sleep. 

Danny McBride

Michael Fassbender

Alan Menken

Justin Hartley

Elliott Gould

Full list of Day 3 photo ops part 1

Full list of Day 3 photo ops part 2

The final day, and first spot is new territory for both me and Joresky. It was crowded and chaotic but I do well as I get a huge want in Luke Evans, Daniel Bruhl, and Rashida Jones whom I failed on multiple times in the past, at least photo op wise. It felt good to finally break that curse. Next spot where I rack more names, check out one more spot, then I go to the final spot for the television festivities. I did well last year but this year the setup changed for the worse and crowd was so horrid that I decided to cut my time with television festivities short. 

With my extra time I went to the police station to file a report on my incident. I then decided to do one last endeavor in Alison Janney. Waited and she came out with that stupid hat of hers but was nice as can be. I then headed out of the city, all tiered worn out. 

Luke Evans

Daniel Bruhl

Rashida Jones

Allison Janney

Full list of Day 4 photo ops part 1

Full list of Day 4 photo ops part 2