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Dare to dream big
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This time last week I was in London attending my first ever Comic-Con with my friend Sherene AKA Shez. Having done a few cons – albeit ones dedicated to a certain TV show, The Vampire Diaries, several years back, I knew to expect A LOT of people to be in attendance, but nothing could really have prepared me for the scope and scale of the event I was about to walk into.
As I didn’t arrive in London until after 1pm on the Friday, by the time Shez and I made our way to the ExCel, we were able to quickly get through the security checks and into the venue, and we both remarked at how massive the place was, with retail outlets, vendors, fellow con goers and an array of cosplayers everywhere we looked and I got talking to several CP’s including mother and daughter Pam and Lorna.
Shez and I spent the afternoon familiarising ourselves with the different areas of the venue, all the different stages, and the many, many vendors and their wares and I happily picked up a Bucky Funko Pop as well as a copy of the Marvel Movie Collection magazine with Bucky Barnes, from the TWS era, on the front. We returned to our hotel just after 7 and began preparing for the coming day the best way we knew how to – by watching Civil War and enjoying some treats.
Come Saturday morning, which was the BIG day for me as it was the day I was to meet Sebastian (ultimately the real reason I bought a ticket for the Con), myself and Shez were up and out of our hotel before 7 and we made it to the ExCel around 8. By the time we walked towards S2, the section of the venue where the autographs and photo sessions were due to take place, there was already a considerable number of people waiting for the shutters to go up at 9 and for the day to begin. It was in this crowd of people that I met one of my Twitter friends called Lindsay and a few of her adorable Bucky bears, as well as Cap, and I couldn’t resist getting a pic with them.
Having bought a Winter Soldier pass some weeks before the event (and having been very lucky to have done so because they sold out INSANELY fast), when the shutters went up, a vast majority of the people gathered around me, and myself, made our way towards the photo op area as our session with Sebastian was due to start at 9.45, but first we picked up our ‘goodie bags’ that contained a lanyard and pin badge.
Admittedly, the queue system was a bit of a mess and I wasn’t the only one first directed into the wrong line, but once in the right one, we all got talking to one another and the time leading up to the session passed enjoyably. The photo op itself was over in a flash but I was more than happy with my pic and quickly joined the ever-growing queue for the signing session that was to take place straight after. I had decided several days before heading to the con that I would ask him to sign my copy of The Devil All The Time, which he recently wrapped filming on. When he saw the book, he seemed genuinely surprised and said: “This is going to be so great…have you read this?” I told him that I had and that I was excited to see the film, adding that I thought the book would be something a little different for him to see and sign. He smiled and replied: “That’s awesome.” At least one fan also handed him a book of messages she had gathered together from people on Twitter.
Having my WS pass allowed me priority access into Sebastian’s panel which began at 1pm and was hosted by Claire Lim and so I had a pretty good view. You can view the whole panel in the video below, which was posted by YT user OneOfManyAlexas.
With little time for a lunch break, it was then time for me to join the queue for Misha Collins’ autograph. I’m not going to lie; I haven’t watched Supernatural like a die-hard fan for a few seasons now, but I have always loved Cas and Misha’s portrayal of him, so I knew, as soon as he was announced as a guest, that he was going to be one of my must-meet people. Like Sebastian’s, the signing was over in a second but Misha was lovely to me and all the other people I watched him greet and sign items for.
Straight after his signing came his panel, and I was fortunate enough to be able to ask Misha a question. The video below comes courtesy of Hollywood News Source and I’m the girl asking him about what aspects of Castiel’s character and personality he’ll take forward into his next projects at the 37 minute mark.
As the day began to wind down, Shez and I were finally able to grab some much needed food as we headed back to our hotel ready to recharge our batteries for Sunday. The next morning, we were again up early, though not as early as we had been on the Saturday and as we walked into the venue where I met another Twitter friend of mine, Anita, I noticed that the problems with the queue system from yesterday appeared to have been addressed and things ran a lot smoother. I joined that queue a little before half 10 ready for my Misha photo op, which as Sebastian’s had, was over very quickly but I’m happy with my pic.
The highlight of the afternoon was sitting in on Sebastian’s second panel of the weekend which can be viewed below, thanks to an upload from YT user Kat.
The rest of the day meanwhile was spent walking round many of the vendor displays and areas of the ExCel we hadn’t managed to check out on the Saturday, and interacting with some rather impressive cosplayers.
While it was great to have such a number of big name TV and film stars – Sebastian, Misha, Stephen Amell and David Harbour to name just a few in attendance, I must also give a huge shout out to the true fan-stars of the weekend – a group of people who call themselves SebsRebels. Not only did they get two shout-outs from Claire during Sebastian’s panels, they also gave Sebastian himself three very thoughtful gifts when members of the group were standing in line for autographs; a star, a title (he’s now Lord Sebastian Stan of Glencoe) and a dog sponsorship. Videos and tweets of members of the group surprising Seb with the gifts them are below.
Although neither Shez or I ultimately got to do all that we wanted to in the two and a half days we were there, my first Con experience was ultimately extremely memorable and a lot of fun, so much so that Shez and I have already agreed that we will do another in the near future.
I’d like to take this opportunity to say thank you to the organisers of MCM Comic Con and in particular all the volunteers and crew who dedicate their time to helping events like this run as well as they do and are such a help to both guests and con-goers. Sebastian Stan also expressed his appreciation for such people by having a drink of whiskey, from a bottle designed and given to him by a fan, with them. See you next time MCM!
I'd like to mention, I've crewed several comic cons with several guests and not one of them, until Sebastian, has even thought to come and spend extra time with us or give US a gift back for working there. He even toasted us! Amazing guy, so thoughtful and humble💙 Thank you Seb!
Having earned considerable attention
and a strong following on the back of his debut single “I Don’t”, which to date
has been streamed more than 35,000 times on Spotify alone, the latest song by
Florida born artist Jon Davis, AKA LX Mason, addresses the desperate attempts
so many people make to forget long-term relationships. With plans for an EP in
the pipeline, LX Mason chatted to ThisIsTheLatest
about song-writing inspiration, his thoughts on social media and his long term
TITL: What makes LX Mason different from all the other
acts out there? What’s your unique selling point?
LX Mason: I think I’m unique in the sense that I’m an African
American pop artist who isn’t doing R’n’B or rap, but I don’t think that
defines me. I think we’re all just out here trying to make what’s true to us.
So my unique selling point is, I’m me. Get to know me a little.
TITL: Is there a particular story behind your new single
“Drink Me Goodbye”?
LXM: Of course! My songs are a way of coping with things that
happen in my world, so you can always count on there being some type of story.
I had a falling out with a really close friend of mine years back, and it
wrecked me for a little bit until I bounced back. However, I saw from a
distance how that person was trying so hard to forget me and I’d say that was
the part that hurt the most. We eventually mended things but if we’re being
honest, a lot happened during that time and it hasn’t been the same.
TITL: How did you come up with the concept for the video and is
being creative in that way something you enjoy?
LXM: I LOVE directing. For some reason I always have. And since
I was a little kid, I’ve always loved music videos. I bounced some ideas off of
my mates, and my co-director Jason Denison. We wanted to portray a story of the
depths that someone has to go to in order to forget someone and actually
recreate these happy memories but without the other person being there.
TITL: In terms of your lyrics and general song-writing from who
or from where do you find most of your inspiration?
LXM: Real life situations inspire me. There are some pop artists
whose writing I definitely appreciate – Julia Michaels, Lauv, Lennon Stella to
name a few – but I try not to let that influence my writing because I want to
be as authentic to the story, and the emotion, as possible.
TITL: How easy or hard do you find the song-writing process? Can
it depend on the subject you’re wanting to write about or your frame of mind at
LXM: Yeah definitely depends on what song I’m writing. And if my
head isn’t in the right place for it, I have to really push past everything
that I’m feeling to get a song out.
TITL: Is there an EP or album in the works?
LXM: I’m working towards an EP! But definitely a couple more
singles out first.
TITL: Do you have any performance or tour plans you can tell me
LXM: At the moment, it’s all about the writing and recording. But things could definitely change, and I’m always keen to perform.
TITL: If you could put together your dream show with four bands
or artists, living or dead, who would you choose and where would you
LXM: WHOA. Uhm. I would completely disregard genre and just have
a really selfish line-up of people I love.
TITL: Given that your debut single has already achieved in
excess of 35,000 streams, what are your thoughts on social media? Are you
someone who believes it to be a powerful and necessary tool in your business,
and society in general, or can there be/are there downsides to being so
“online” all the time?
LXM: There’s no question that the abuse of social
media has had an effect on mental health. We’ve seen it, and Instagram/Facebook
has done a little bit of work to improve it for the user, but I don’t think
it’s there just yet. I think there is an aspect of it where it is effective for
business, and societally it does increase your world a bit – I’ve met some
wonderful people through social media. But if -or when – it crashes, it
wouldn’t bother me. Half the time whenever I post something I think about my
caption for half a second, post it, and throw my phone across the room because
I don’t care.
TITL: What does the rest of the year have in store for
LXM: More music! Releasing some more of my own, as well as
writing for other people’s projects and potentially featuring on some tracks as
TITL: Finally then, given how “full” the music
industry is now with both new and established talent, how do you plan to make
yourself stay current in the years ahead? What are your long-term aspirations
as an artist and where do you see the music industry going/ being in terms of
its shape and longevity, as time goes on?
LXM: I think, more importantly, I want to stay true to myself.
If that’s current, then great. What’s “current” changes so frequently that if I
were to base my artistic identity in that, I wouldn’t know who I am anymore. My
long term aspirations is to get where I want to go making the music I want to
make whenever I want to make it. I think for the music industry, there’s more
of an inclination towards independence and honesty in music that can bring
people the music they want to connect to.
Check out the video for “Drink
Me Goodbye” below and for more information on LX Mason, visit his website, give his page a like on Facebook or follow him on Twitter.