a99kitten’s Musings

I blog about a WHOLE LOT of stuff :)

I finally watched the last 2 episodes of S4 of Game of Thrones last weekend. As usual with GoT, the 2nd to last ep of the season was WAY crazier. Like…amazing crazy. Jon Snow and Ghost continue to be my favorites of all time.

But since this finale was rounding out Book 3, I was hoping to see some things that we did not get :/ And I was very bummed about this. I really felt the story they left was a key one – Catelyn??? KEY. (we’ll ignore the Arya and Hound changes right now.) And would certainly create quite the stir. And I’m left thinking that the storyline is actually not at all important for the books, so all of the future possibilities I imagined with it are non-existent, since I imagine GRRM would have insisted it be kept in if it played a large part going forward. Very Big Bummer. Although I still hope it does. But I must say, I was looking so forward to that :(

Then today I read, for the 2nd time this week and from different sources, the “spoiler” about upcoming story lines. None of it was a surprise and makes perfect sense and I assumed half of it already. BUT…in 1 of the news stories, it said how the upcoming season 5 (which should be following the story lines of Book 4) would have important details from Book 5. Huh?

So now I’m starting to think we will fast forward Book 4, which is actually pretty much fine since it was my least favorite, and head to Book 5? And since we already got things not in the books so far (hints for Book 6?), will the show veer more off the books?

All I know is the end of Book 5 made me want to throw my Kindle across the room. So I really wish GRRM would finish Book 6! And is he delaying on purpose for the show? And if the long unkept secret spoiler of Jon Snow is true (the days before the internet were kind sorta better in a way), I think we need a LOT more story and fast!

Heading to SDCC this week (SQUEEEE!) and will be trying to get into Hall H for the GoT panel. And by trying to get in I mean waiting in line for a wristband on Thursday night and hoping to get a spot in a line on a lawn (if you are on the concrete, you could be in trouble) so we can eat pretzels and energy bars for hours on end and then run but not run for seats…but then once you are in – YOU ARE IN!

HBO is having a pop-up store dedicated to GoT and there is an interactive Survive the Realm at the Omni Hotel. Will definitely try and check out both of those as well. Oh! And don’t forget getting the flocked Ghost Funko POP!! I need 2 of those :) Ned Stark will also be at SDCC…in the form of Sean Bean for a different show starting in August. I just might need to check that panel out as well. I’m still bitter about Ned…

But they never, ever give away spoilers at their panels so not expecting much in that area. Although I am imagining that the In Memoriam they do every year, and which had people almost crying (and not just me!) last year for Robb and Greywind, will cause a break out in applause and cheers for Joffrey. Muahuahuahua!

Plus Jon Snow will be there :) Now if they could just bring Ghost!!!!

San Diego Comic Con 2013 is over. I hate the day after con withdrawal. But I am quite happy to be home to Stormy!

What a trip! Up at 4:30am Wednesday morning to arrive early enough to check-in, drop luggage off and get in line for badge pick-uo. Once in line, we made line friends. This is key to con survival in my opinion. You spend a LOT of time in lines and I can’t just sit and read the whole time. Ended up meeting very nice people from LA, NY and DC. We played card games, chatted about what we all wanted to see, our past con experiences and what we wanted when we hit the floor running tonight! Turned out we wanted similar things so we divided and conquered and each picked a booth and bought the items for the others. Met up over the next couple days to exchange and it worked out perfectly!!!

Then we got our badges and moved to the exhibit hall line where we waited for hours again. But we kept our line friends :) Then we got on to the floor and I had to run across the the entire exhibit hall to get to the Funko booth….with a huge line. DOH! No good line friends there, but made friends with some security and Funko people. I won 2 things while waiting in the Funko line and got ALL of the items I wanted plus the items my friends wanted!!! Sonya had gone to the Marvel booth and got us the exclusive Old Man Logan figure and Levi got us the Stark Shields! Our line friend went to Hasbro and got Sonya the Star Wars Angry Birds set and me the Boba Fett and Han in Carbonite – exclusive black series. VERY productive evening!!!

Then we dropped off our haul at the hotel and went to dinner at Nobu. SO. SOOO. Yummy.

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Thursday was a floor morning and Hall H afternoon. We hit up the Walking Dead booth first and went on from there. The booths by the big shows/studios were all great as usual. No line for Hall H yet so we walked in and the seat master (my friend Sonya who I always go to cons with) got us seats in dead center row 11!!! For HARRISON FORD!!!

First up was the Entertainment Weekly Visionaries panel. It’s 3 directors with movies coming out. They were all fantastic. But I really liked Edgar Wright- he was FUNNY. Then the Divergent panel. I had never even heard of the movie and barely recall hearing about the books. But the panel was fantastic. A lot of the cast showed up as well as the author and it was a very fun panel. Footage looked great and it intrigued me enough to download the first 2 books of the series (3rd coming out soon.) I’m about 1/3 of the way through Book 1 and really like it so far.

Then it was Ender’s Game time. Again, I have barely heard of the book but, according to the panel, is required by the US Military? Between that and the footage, I was intrigued enough to download Book 1 of that series too. Will start after Divergent 1 and 2. But of course, the main reason I was in that Hall H today was for my man. He never, ever, never does cons. When he showed up unannounced for Cowboys & Aliens 2 years ago the place erupted into to a giant flashbulb and long, unending scream. This time he was announced a week or 2 ago. Hall H was easily 1/2 empty when we showed up around 12:30. But as it got closer to Enders Game panel time (3:30 I think), the place filled up completely and there ended up being a line of people who didn’t get in. Every single person in our section said they were there for Harrison Ford. Of course :)

Of course the applause and screaming and flashbulbs went on forever when he came out. And of course during the Q&A you get the jackass who doesn’t ask him about his current movie but instead a Han Solo/Indiana Jones question. This is the reason he doesn’t go to these things. The question was “if Han Solo and Indiana Jones met, what would they say?” Everyone in the hall booed the guy and yelled noooooooo. Come on. Harrison took off his glasses, looked around and said “I’m never coming back here” and started to get up. He was obviously kidding and chuckled and sat back down. Then said “I don’t know…..’Hi. How are you?'” He has definitely settled himself comfortably into the role of the lovable curmudgeon with a dry sense of humor we all can’t help but love. Got a few good pics but this is my favorite..

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Sonya and I both agreed that I could have *easily* run up there and jumped him before security could stop me. But I restrained myself :)

Another awesome Thursday activity was being a pool of gold and silver!!! This is my ultimate Uncle Scrooge goal (but with real gold and silver) :)

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We left Hall H after the Enders Game panel was done. More floor time, drop stuff at hotel and then dinner at Lolita’s. Carne Asada fries! O.M.G. We ran into some friends so went to the MTV2 party after dinner with them. We lasted about 1 hour. Not my thing. But a big party that I think MTV spent a boatload on. Live bands that I might know if I was a tweener. Huge fireworks display, tons of interactive stuff all around plus free food and wine/beer/sodas. Plus free giant glowsticks :) It didn’t have one single thing to do with SDCC other than being a spectacle but oh well.

Friday was a beast. Sonya’s fiancee camped out in Hall H line starting around midnight. We met him around 5:30-6ish with Starbucks. Day was loaded with The World’s End (Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, Kick Ass 2 (cast), Riddick (Vin Diesel and Katee Sackhoff), The Walking Dead (huge cast panel) and The Game of Thrones (huge cast panel.) All were great but I think GOT was my favorite. Although the footage for TWD S4 was INSANE!!! But besides the fact that I love the books and TV series and the cast are always great to see on these panels, they started the panel with lights off and this video:

http://youtu.be/9m4ZPULXJKw

ONLY watch if you are caught up on Season 3! It’s an In Memoriam of all the characters who have died through the 3 seasons set to Boys to Men and with a little humor thrown in. GREAT execution. They never have footage to show since their season just ended and hasn’t start filming for the next season yet. So they need to be creative and always are. During the panel, Jason Momoa ruhed onstage and kissed Emilia Clarke (Daenerys). I didn’t hear what he said to her but then as he rushed off she said “My Sun and Stars…” You could tell they were all surprised by his fly-by so that was fun :)

After the GOT panel ended, my friends went off and did their thing and I went to the floor for a bit. Picked up a drawing I had commissioned on Artists Alley:

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It really is amazing watching these guys draw.

The GOT cast were at the WB booth. Peter Dinklage waved at me. But sooo crowded around there I left pretty quickly. After checking out the floor for a bit, decided to head over to check out the stuff on the lawn at the Hilton Bayfront. Checked that all out and decided to get a soda and sit down. As I was tweeting/instagramming/facebooking, I looked up and saw Jason Momoa (aka Khol Drogo.) I jumped up and asked for a pic! He was very sweet and even though his handler was trying to rush him away, he did. When he saw my Chewbacca phone case he said “Your Chewbacca phone is a f***ing awesome!” LOL

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By Friday night, we were all far too tired to even consider camping for Hall H on Friday night/Saturday morning. We all really wanted to see everything in there but at some point, your adultness sets in and a bed and shower sound better. I really think they will need to do something about the camping. Pretty much not fair if a family with kids or 60 yr old wants to see a Hall H panel but can’t because camping is truly a suck option. Plus being that exhausted makes for not as fun of a day, IMO. And frankly, the non-showering situation is very noticeable. But oh well. I’ll find a college kid and pay him to camp for me next year. Capitalism will prevail.

So Sonya and I did Ballroom 20 all day instead. Only had to line up at 6:30am! And then Sonya’s seat-masterness won again – front row! All fun panels PLUS I got to run to the floor and pick up the last SDCC13 exclusive collectible that I had wanted. You needed to get in line for a wristband in order to buy it and I was able to get it on Saturday AM! Sonya got to ask a question in the True Blood panel and I got to see the panels I wanted to. While we were bummed not to be in Hall H for Tom Cruise and Marvel, we had a really great day.

The key to having fun at Comic Con is have a Plan A, B and C. There are a LOT of people, so a lot of lines. So you can’t always get into/do your Plan A. But that’s no reason to not have fun since there is sooooo much stuff going on!!

Dinner at Fleming’s was super delicious. There was a table across from us that I saw 3 different women stop and ask for pics so it was someone famous-ish. Just someone I didn’t recognize. Turns out it was some cast members from Survivor. Then saw the guy (also an MMA fighter?) who played the Mr T role in the new A-Team movie there. And then a long time twitter friend met me there with his wife for drinks. A fun day and night for sure!!

Sundays are for packing up, checking out and walking the floor or downtown. Sonya and I were strolling downtown and saw Michael Rooker right in front of the Hard Rock Hotel! Merle!!! Asked for a quick picture and he said sure even though his handler was trying to wrangle him. He was very sweet and told me take good care of my ears (was wearing my fluffy wold ears as usual) :) We went on to an early lunch after waiting in line for the Game of Thrones exhibit but giving up on it. Off to Lolita’s! (Hey – these are only found in San Diego!) Then we hit the floor for a bit. Madness! Got some decent swag and took a few more pics and then it was time for Sonya to head for the airport. I went back downtown as I wanted to go to the Chuck Jones Gallery. They always do fun things for SDCC week. I walked in, and saw the canvas of the piece I almost bought on the floor but talked myself out of several times, right there front and center. Turns out the artist was in the gallery and doing dedications if you bought the piece. Seriously? It was fate at this point. So I did it. This is the larger original:

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I actually bought 2 pieces there. When I get them (being shipped to me), I will blog again with photos and their history. Both are beautiful. At least to me.

Then it was time to go! No more buying!!! Hotel, airport, airplane, airport, driving. HOME! Plus I shipped most of my stuff so when I get that box in a day or 2, it will be like a mini-Comic Con/Christmas all over again :)

The only bummer about the Con is that Disney kept any and all news about Star Wars away. Nothing. Nada. I assume they are holding anything back and will release it at D23 – Disney’s expo. But this is truly their audience and since they realize that with Marvel, they should realize it with Star Wars. I can only hope that since they probably don’t have that much to reveal yet, they WILL change their minds and do something at SDCC14 when more information about the new Star Wars movies are available. Fingers and paws crossed.

I realized that while I was there I only saw tweets or FB posts related to Comic Con. No other tweets, no Facebook, no news, no TV, no politics, no media other than fun. And I was in a GREAT mood the entire time! I way, way prefer that. I think I need to clean up my twitter and FB feeds.

I have tons of fun every year. It gets crazier each year plus more and more crowded and maybe I will get tired of dealing with that at some point, but probably not. I like finding new shows, movies, comics and books to investigate and it’s fun to be surrounded by people who like the same things. Of course, I can only take that many people for so long :) Sad SDCC is over but now back home in the mountains with NO lines, very few people plus my very own Hoth Stormtrooper so it’s all A-OK :)

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Flickr link for all the pics: http://flic.kr/s/aHsjH1QZjv

If you have not checked out yet, or as other TV shows wind down, and you find yourself with an hour or 2 a week with nothing to do, I HIGHLY suggest:

Season 2 just started on HBO (2 eps in.) I am probably 30-40% through Book 3. Book 2 – which season 2 of the show is going to follow – is CRAZY! Book 1 was awesome! And Book 3 is getting even CRAZIER. HBO just renewed the show and I read that they will probably break up Book 3 into Seasons 3 (and hepefully picked up season 4.) I am very stressed as I read it. But I cannot put it down either.

The casting and acting of the HBO show is amazing. Truly amazing. There are a lot of characters to keep track of but it’s very worth it. The GOT panel at last year’s San Diego Comic Con was GREAT! The actors were very engaging. Although I do wish they would have brought the direwolf puppies :)

Do yourself a favor. Check out this show. And the books if you are so inclined. House Stark rules!! (yelled out just like San Dimas Highschool Football rules!) :)

Today was crazy! A good crazy. Comic Con crazy. Woke up, looked outside and saw the GIANT line for people waiting to get their badges (happily picked mine up yesterday), got ready and was outside the main hall doors at 9:28am. They were late and didn’t open at 9:30am. There were grumpy, sweaty geeks ready to storm the doors. And they said so. 2 of them said “Don’t make us geeks sweaty and grumpy. You won’t like us when we are sweaty and grumpy. “At 9:35am, the doors opened and a giant collective cheer went up and then everyone raced to the main floor.  Stuff like that makes the Con and crowds fun.

I found several of the Con exclusive that I wanted and bought a few for a friend who couldn’t come.  I missed out on Squirrel Pool at Gentle Giant. That sucked. Especially after seeing several go up for sale on eBay this morning. Jerks. I hate scalpers. And eBay. They ruined the collectibles market forever.  And this coming from a good old fashioned capitalist.

Hasbro had a couple things I really wanted. And the line at the Hasbro booth has always been out of control busy. But this year you had to go upstairs to a room to wait in line to get a ticket so that you were now special enough to get in an even longer line at the Hasbro booth to wait to buy stuff. Give. Me. A. Break.  And then I saw several guys later with bags and bags and boxes and boxes of the Hasbro toys. How much do you want to bet they are all up on eBay now.  Jerks. And I mean Hasbro, eBay and the scalpers.  All guilty.

BUT – while I was looking around trying to find a booth I ran right into a booth with Peter Mayhew signing! Right then! NO LINE! I do already have his autograph from my first Con ever but I decided to get another J I went up to the booth and while I was deciding on which picture to buy/use (so wished I had the Chewbacca action figure that my brother gave me last October before he died. I did almost bring it just in case but the decided against it so it wouldn’t get damaged), the guy that was at the both helping with the signing looked at me and asked “So…you like Chewbacca.” Huh? Who me? With the Chewbacca backpack and Chewie toy in my hand (that some guy who walked up to me just handed me after saying “you look like you love Chewie” I’m still wondering if it has a GPS chip in it or something and he is stalking me!)

Anyway, got a Han and Chewie pic and he signed to me J Yay!! And he said thanks for being such a big Chewbacca fan. Like how could you not?? J

The floor is hard – so much to see and check out  – total sensory overload. Times a million.  There is s till so much I want to see there but not sure if I will have time. That’s a bummer.

Ran to meet my friend in line for Ballroom 20 to see the Game of Thrones panel. And we hoped to see Ringer too which was right before it. In line for 3 hours. Yikes. But we did make it in! Sarah Michelle Gellar was GREAT! Super cute and funny. Adore her even more now. And the rest of the cash was fantastic too. I shall definitely check out the show – Tuesday at 9pn on the CW – go set your tivos! She was cute when a fan asked her what character she would dress up as to go to Comic Con. She said “Well, if I went as Buffy, I KNOW most of you would see me and say ‘OMG – look at that girl – she is an awful Buffy!” LOL!!

The GOT panel was utterly fantastic. The cast was funny. Had great answers to all the questions. Totally got into answering the questions. Loved them all. And I shall put the books back on my Kindle after deleting them after some repeated animal sadness on the show. I will just fast forward through those pages. The actor who plays John Snow made me one of the fans after answering who his favorite cast mate was with the husky who plays his direwolf. Ok – I like you :)

We then hightailed it over to Hall H to see the Jon Favreau and Gullermo del Toro panel. They were both awesome. Jon has been good in every panel I have seen him at SDCC.  But Guillermo stole the show. He was swearing up a storm and then finally noticed the sign to the panelists saying to their watch their language since it; s a family audience. But his commentary was great!

We got about 7-10 mins of footage from Cowboys and Aliens. Of course I think it looks AWESOME!  Jon had a great little bit about how social media really shows him how different a clip can be perceived.  He said after he released the full trailer with Transformers 3, he saw tons of AWESOME comments on twitter but then just as many “YUCK. Weird. How can you mix those 2 genres” and “how unrealistic”. He was like umm…unrealistic. OK. But machines turning into the trucks – that’s OK. Well alrighty then. He then described his approach to movies like this and how he wants to make the movie perfectly set in its genre and take that 1 little thing that changes it (like in Iron Man all the world was the same except for Iron Man.) In this, it’s a western. Cowboys like we are used to seeing in the movies. But this thing occurs and they have to deal with. But they are still cowboys. Still out in the west riding horses, living their lives in little towns, etc. Nothing is different but this one thing. Hearing him describe it made perfect sense.

Bit of a peeve concerning this movie though. Jon made it seem like he was bringing the world premiere here to SDCC for the fans. His fans. Fans of the genre. Of the graphic novel. But all of the promotions for the tickets have been off site. Too far off site for anyone who is attending SDCC to go. And they are all open to the public. So it’s really a premiere for San Diego and its residents. Because if you are a true Comic Con fan, you are busy all day with panels, signings, being on the floor and never-ending waiting in line for all of these things. So you can’t just run off site 10 blocks away on a minute’s notice. So I do have to say that’s been very disappointing.

Even tomorrow, he announced a signing he was doing where he would give away some tickets. Yay! But no – it’s offsite – at the Hard Rock. In the middle of the afternoon. So no – I will not be going. Because there is no guarantee I will even get in the signing, or then get a ticket. The only guaranteed thing is that I will miss everything going on at the show. Which is why I am here. So that’s a bummer. And I feel a bit mis-leading to say this is for the Comic Con fans. When not a single giveaway has been at the Con. Except for the 1 pair he gave a kid who asked him a question at the panel and was wearing a Cowboys and Aliens shirt. Which was cool of him.  Oh well. A bummer for sure.

Overall a very fun day though. But I guess SDCC has gotten too big. There was a line that was supposedly 1.5 hours long to buy the official t-shirt. To me it looked even longer. Give me a break. Every other year they basically had to give those away on Sundays. But they said “there was a limited amount” in the program. WHY? It’s a frackin’ 2011 Con t-shirt. Make enough and just sell the bastards so people walk around with them and the con gets free advertising.  I do want one. But no way am I waiting that long to buy a t-shirt.

Lines for panels. Line for tickets to get in line for panels (to wait again.) Lines to buy ANYTHING. Lines to win a chance to maybe be pulled from a lottery to be 1 of 100 to get an autograph. WHAT? Come on. So maybe I am just longing for the good ol’ days (3 years ago) that you could see any panel. Buy anything. As long as you were there an hour early. Now – if you want to buy 2012 passes, you had to get in line at 5am this morning to wait for them to start selling them at 8:30am. Jeez. No thanks.

I am still having fun. But I do wonder how long I will keep coming. It’s get more and more expensive and more and more crowded. This year I am just recovering from a broken ankle plus a plus dealing with a pinched nerve so can’t run around too much so I think experiencing longer and longer lines has annoyed me. And then to not even be able to buy what I wanted because scalpers got it got them all or there’s even more lines for them elsewhere – GAH! I almost lost it when trying to plus my iPhone in to charge in the ladies restroom in Hall H. This woman was taking up 2 plugs and then tied taking a 3rd for friends phones. The lady who was using the 4th was like wth? I am only charging to 30% so other people can use the plug, I looked at her “Breathe…we are at the con….have fun….” But really… I wanted to smack the lady in the head too.

I know there are more funny tidbits (correcting the KTLA reporter when he said Star Trek when he meant Star Wars, the costumes, the booths) but I need to go to sleep now so I can get a half way decent night’s sleep so that I can do what? Get up at 6am to get in line….sigh…