The Spooky Report
By Three Ghouls - Amy (@Amylia403) Ashley (@MitigatedText) and Mauri (@DarkDearieMauri),
Mauri: Another year at Spooky Empire’s May-Hem featuring Halloween Extreme down, I had a blast! On Friday I took advantage of the Brad Dourif and Alex Vincent photo op. Even though Alex is always at Spooky, Brad isn’t, so it was a rare opportunity to get a picture of them together. Then Petey Mongelli, owner of Spooky Empire, had brought his Chucky movie replica doll for the photo, so then you had Alex, Brad, and the Chucky doll photo op. I couldn’t pass that up! I love dolls, and I brought my Mr. Gold/ Rumplestiltskin doll with me because I thought it would make a hilarious picture. Chucky makes a deal with Rumplestiltskin to take over Spooky Empire. The Chucky doll was bigger than I expected. Chucky could have stomped on Rumple. I also got a picture of Rumple with Zoso himself, Brad Dourif. When I met Mr. Dourif he was polite, but reserved. He really didn’t comment much, but when I got my photo op I was first in line and they were still getting set up in the photo room. Brad was standing there and I was maybe a couple of feet from him, and as the girl was putting down a tape line to mark where the line was supposed to stop before you got your picture taken, Mr. Dourif looked down at the tape and commented, “That tape is bright.” And the girl said, “Yes, it’s pink.” Then Brad said, still looking at the tape, “It’s hot.” That’s his humor; dry corny puns. He was so funny. After my photo op I got an autograph from Ernie Hudson. I picked out a picture of him as Poseidon on Once Upon a Time, and had him write the quote from Ghostbusters, the same one that I used for my movie trivia for Once Upon a Time Fans on Facebook. “If someone asks you if you’re a god you say, “YES!” He laughed while he was writing it down. Then I got an autograph from Kathy Najimy, and her handler remembered my purple dress from Enchantacon. After getting my first round of goodies, I spent the rest of the time doing what I like best: taking pictures of everyone in their amazing costumes. I adore all the costumes and there were a lot of great ones this year. My favorites were Seymour and Audrey two because I love Little Shop of Horrors, The Key Master from Ghostbusters, Abraham, from The Walking Dead, and Tucker and Dale from Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil.
Ashley: I had a very unique point of view at this year’s Spooky May-hem as I was a volunteer, or to be more specific, a Media Guest Assistant in the American Horror Story: Freakshow room. I was often seen by fans this weekend traveling to and from events with Rose Siggins who played Legless Suzy on the show. Working so closely with the media guests made me appreciate all the hard work that goes into an event such as Spooky. I really enjoyed my amazing time with Rose Siggins and find that I am grateful we were paired together since she is a truly inspiring, no-nonsense woman and mother. Our conversations over the weekend are something I will always remember.
Mauri: The panels that I got to were Brad Dourif, Lana Parrilla, and American Horror Story. Brad Dourif’s panel was interesting. He was more talkative on stage than he was at the table when I got my autograph. He told stories of filming The Eyes of Laura Mars and when asked about The Lord of the Rings and working with Christopher Lee he told a story of them doing press together and how Christopher Lee greeted every interviewer in their own language. Mr. Dourif said he felt like, “Hi, I’m Brad Dourif. I’m from West Virginia.” He said this in a deep West Virginia accent. He answered everyone’s questions extensively, but he wouldn’t do the Chucky laugh. He liked to talk about his work and experiences.
Amy: There were a lot of great panels. Because of other events I didn’t get a chance to see all of them.
Mauri: The Freak Show panel was informative. I found out Mat Fraser was a drummer for seventeen years, Erika use to wrestle and then got into modeling and has a successful modeling career, and Rose Siggins might be TLC’s new star. I’ve liked all of the seasons of American Horror Story, but Freak Show has been my favorite because it’s the most human, and after meeting and getting to know the cast of Freak Show a little better, this past weekend I think they are incredibly inspiring and amazing people. And Mat Fraser, with his beautiful English accent, has made my list of people that I want to read to me. He’s in good company on my "wish list" with Anthony Hopkins, Alan Rickman, and James Earl Jones.
Amy: The huge panel for me, of course, was Lana Parrilla. The full panel video is up on the site for Oncers who want to take a peek. I loved the way it was set up. It began with a video montage of Evil Queen moments set to the song “Evil Woman”. After the video, the first part of the panel was some questions asked by the moderator and then the floor was open to Evil Regals to ask their questions. It was so laid back and, for lack of a better word, comfortable. It really did seem like we were all just hanging out in someone’s living room talking to Lana. That sounds weird, I know, but honestly it was probably the best panel I’ve ever attended. No chaos, no drama, volunteers all around keeping the flow going. It was amazing.
Mauri: Lana Parrilla, our favorite Evil Queen, her panel was fun. She broke into her Brooklyn accent and later did part of a rap song. You can check out the entire Q &A panel on our Youtube channel. The Evil Regals were excited and brought a lot of energy to the panel. Lana said it was the best shot of caffeine ever.
Ashley: I didn’t get to see too much of the actual convention due to my role, but I have to say my favorite costume that came through the American Horror Story: Freakshow autograph room was the Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Not only was this costume spot on to the screen version, but the person wearing it had the Child Catcher’s dance down pat! I didn’t get to see too many vendors either, but I was pleased to pick up some art from Michael “Locoduck” Duron. Not only did he do a fabulous AHS: Freakshow print, but I was able to get this awesome “Dark Swan Emma” print as well.
Amy: The vendor room and tattoo room were fantastic. So many great things. After the last Spooky, I had to find Michael Duron’s table. Michael is an artist who works under the name Locoduck. (Fantastic, right? Who doesn’t dig ducks?) I found him last year and bought, oh I don’t know, about a zillion pieces of his art. Slight exaggeration, but not by much. This year is no different. I picked up some Once art, along with Disney, Avengers, Agent Carter, a Horror Villain compilation, Deadpool, and several more. Luckily, or unluckily for me and my wallet, Michael takes orders for his art. You can find him on Facebook and twitter. There has to be a 12-Step program for me somewhere.
Mauri: I found a few vendors I liked this year. First is “Luna Moon Gothic Jewelry”. She had the Evil Regal necklaces. You can find her Etsy shop at www.etsy.com/shop/LunaMoonsVintage. Then “Zombie Love Squad” had some cool light-switch covers along with an array of other crafts including jewelry and pony ears. You can find “Zombie Love Squad” at www.etsy.com/shop/zombielovesquad. And then I bought some prints from Michael Duron, the artist who Amy has been promoting. She’s right; his artwork is super adorable. You can find him on www.locoduck.blogspot.com. You can also find these artists on Facebook and Twitter.
Amy: The other vendor that had some great Once pieces that I picked up were “Luna Moons Vintage”. They have a shop on Etsy, but this convention was the first time I had seen their products. I picked up Zelena’s necklace, a “Long Live Regina” necklace (which mimicked the button in the Season 4 finale) and the Emma Swan necklace. Really cool pieces, and yes, again…. I need a 12-Step program for my fan art addiction….lol!
Ashley: My experiences as a volunteer for any Spooky event have always been remarkably rewarding. I learned about Spooky last year when Lana Parrilla was first announced as a guest. I was so impressed with how the volunteer staff handled themselves in situations I knew to be tough and stressful that I marched right up to the volunteer coordinator and asked for her card. I really wanted to work for an event that knows its business as well as Spooky does.
Amy: I had so much fun at this event. Sure, we were there covering it as press so there were things to be done, but when you are having that much fun it just hardly seems like work. Spooky Empire events are definitely unique. The fans I got to talk to are not just fans of the shows, movies or TV stars at the con. These people are hard core Spooky Empire fans. It is all about the experience for them, which is great because you know they will keep coming back. I ran into tons of people that I had met at Spooky events past. I think the draw is that there really are things for everyone. Spooky isn’t just horror. It has Sci-fi, Fantasy, Comics, Movies, TV, writers, artists, actors, cosplayers, vendors….oh lord, the vendors. I am not ashamed to say that I spent a small fortune but where else would I get a chance to find such cool things? I even got a Once Upon A Time tattoo at this event, but I’ll write about that later in another article.
Ashley: My experience with the fans was for the most part positive. Every fan I encountered this year at Spooky was respectful, though please, if you go to a convention, always be mindful of giving your favorite actors and actresses some breathing room. The whole reason I do this, that I work at so many conventions, is when you’re sitting there with a media guest and you see a fan shyly walk up, excited to meet their favorite, and see their face light up like the sun when that media guest says hello… it’s amazing. It is worth everything.
Mauri: That about wraps everything up for this year’s Spooky May-hem. Thank you, Gina and Petey for another great show. See ya in October! And as they say at Spooky Empire; Stay Spooky, Oncers!