Friday at Dragon*Con is always exciting because everything feels fresh and new and full of possibility and your feet don’t hurt yet and it is great. We slept in a bit because there weren’t any early panels we were dying to see and so were able to get right into costume and venture into the world as fully formed cosplayers! Jon attempted his first zombie look, including latex and stage blood, and I garbed myself in a Blind Mag costume that left me 100% satisfied and happy. Our first panel was in the Sheraton, where we were staying, so we were able to rush downstairs and walk right into a session about The Guild (GUYYYYSS NEIL GAIMAN WAS ON IT THIS WEEK WHAT), with the actors Amy Okuda, Robin Thorsen and Wil Wheaton. Actually I meant to say Wil Wheaton!!!!!!! WESLEY CRUSHER GUYS COME ON. Anyways, if you don’t watch The Guild you really should, I wrote about it awhile ago.
So the panel was fun and Wil Wheaton is awesome but I was really distracted by this one and a half year old adorable girl dressed as a Nyan Cat. This is what a Nyan Cat is:
(Ungh, I just spent ten minutes watching all the Nyan Cat video varieties, like the Russian one with his little Vodka bottle, and the smooth jazz one, guys, the internet, seriously).
And this is the adorable child dressed as a Nyan Cat:
Is that not top five most adorable things ever? It was difficult for me to get a non-blurry shot because, as her mother said, she’s like the Nyan Cat, she never stops moving!
So after The Guild panel we went to the trusty Peachtree Food Court to get some lunch. And we were stopped lots of times for photographs y’all! How awesome is that. You can view one of my favorite ones here. Seriously, how awesome do we look? Oh, this photograph also happened:
So awesome. One of the most gratifying things that can happen to a cosplayer is to have someone stop them to compliment their costume/makeup and to ask to take a photograph. Many of the photographers who shot me over Dragon*Con have been good enough to send me the photos, which is fantastic!
Anyways, after lunch (sushi and sundries from Yami Yami) we headed back to the Sheraton to attend the Star Trek Voyager panel with Kate Mulgrew, Robert Duncan McNeill, and the Trek Track director Garrett Wang (yes, he is the director of the track and he was on Voyager). Since Jon and I finished marathoning Voyager literally the Tuesday before Con we were all about this panel. Voyager isn’t nearly as awful as people make it out to be, although the whole Seven of Nine thing is pretty gratuitous and coffee in that nebula, really? Anyways, I adore Kate Mulgrew and always love to see her talk shop, and the three actors seemed to have a good rapport. I also used the opportunity to get some pictures of how disgusting Jon looked:
I mean, what can I say, he’s not the best when it comes to shaving.
Also, guys–and this is disgusting–but when Jon went outside his stage blood would liquify and he would drip. I mean, it was revolting, truly. Once he asked me how his makeup was doing and I was all, “You’re dripping,” and a woman overheard us and she couldn’t stop laughing about it. Some things one only can say at Dragon*Con.
After the Voyager panel we ran to a quick Warhammer 40K meet-up so that Jon could meet some like-minded nerds and see some of their costumes. Jon had planned on making a Warhammer 40K costume and had wanted to march with the group in the Dragon*Con parade, but time constraints forced him to postpone the costume until next year. I had been e-mailing with one of the Warhammer group’s organizers and she encouraged us to come to the meet-up regardless; as always it was nice to put a face to a screen name and I was glad to thank her in person for being a source of Warhammer at Dragon*Con information. Most of the meet-up had cleared out by the time we got there, but we did see a few costumes up close and we also got some (a little bit too much fondant, but free!) cake.
We popped up to the room to freshen up a bit and then Jon set to the task of zombie-fying Marc for the night’s Zombie Prom. I headed to the Exhibitor’s Halls in the Marriott to look at shiny things to purchase while Jon and Marc got dressed. Dragon*Con is the one time of the year when Jon takes longer to get dressed than I do.
I eventually headed to the food court to wait in the mammoth line at Chick-Fil-A and ended up chatting with two Stormtroopers from the Wisconsin garrison of the 501st. I ended up seeing them in the food court the following night as well, evidently we were all on the same eating schedule. We supposedly had some leaders of the 501st staying across the hall from us and we were warned about “epic parties” but as far as I know those parties never happened. Bummer.
Anyways, once food was had it was time for my favorite part of Con: epic parties and people watching happiness.
Our first stop was the Zombie Prom, which is what it sounds like. They even crown a Prom King and Queen and have a little photo area with a photographer who takes prom shots. This is also the time when people turn their normal costumes into zombie versions of their costumes, like zombie Star Trek red shirts and zombie Disney Princesses. As you can imagine there is a lot of stage blood involved.
We also used the empty Sheraton stairwell for an epic zombie apocalypse photo shoot of doom and terror.
Anyways. After a stint at the Zombie Prom we headed over to the Hyatt for the Masquerade Ball, which was supposed to be a big fancypants affair celebrating Dragon*Con’s 25th Anniversary. Masks mandatory, of course. We ran into Dr. Stephen Granade, one of the main personalities on Dragon*Con TV, and I quickly and gleefully got my photo with him for ThinkGeek’s Dragon*Con Photo Scavenger Hunt (A Dragon*Con TV person was number 10 on the list. I got 37 out of 42 items, not too shabby y’all!)
So after this victory I was disappointed to discover that the Masquerade Ball was a bore. The lights were on, the music wasn’t remotely danceable (not even in a waltzy way) and the crowd was pretty dead. Jon had spent a lot of time hand-making masks, however, so we hung out for about ten minutes just to get some use out of our fancy face pieces.
We did, however, run into one of my favorite cosplayers from last year: the zombie Marie Antoinette.
We spent most of the rest of the night doing the Marriott thing. Meaning: hang out in the Marriott Atrium and look at people’s costumes and take pictures of people’s costumes and talk to people about their costumes. This is one of my favorite things to do at Con, because people are so creative and so willing to talk about their ideas and techniques. Also, photo opportunities y’all.
A little after midnight my feet started killing me (next year I am totally skipping the boots and finding some close-toed ballet flats, maybe even some sandals that sort of match because, guys, Atlanta in September is no place for close-toed shoes) but Jon was deep in conversation with a couple of Sith lords. One of them had an amazing two-sided lightsaber and he let me play with it for a bit (I can’t think of a way to write that without it sounding a little dirty, sorry y’all). Evidently I looked far too happy to be a convincing Sith lord but what can I say, if you give me a two-sided lightsaber then I am going to get pretty giddy.
We ultimately cut the evening short as I had to get up crazy early for the parade in the morning and we were all a little sleepy. So we skulked back to the Sheraton to prepare for Saturday’s shenanigans.
I’ll write about those tomorrow y’all!