Tuesday, July 29, 2014
San Diego Comic-Con 2014: SaturDAZE Part I w/ Ernie Reyes, Jr
heroes in a half shell. Unfortunately I over napped and arrived at the line 30 minutes before the panel to find a huge crowd already waiting. However, I spotted mother fucking Ernie Reyes, Jr., the martial artist/actor who played Donatello's fight double in TMNT then graduated to lead role Keno the pizza boy in Secret of the Ooze before headlining Surf Ninjas! Some other guys in line and I went over and got in quick greetings and photos as Reyes, Jr. was uber cool and rocking the red and white pizza delivery jacket costume from the movie! Oh and he looks younger than I do even though he's 10 years older. Jerk. It was a nice consolation prize as I did not get into the panel but hey, I've seen lot of Ninja Turtle stuff through the years and gotten to meet Kevin Eastman and now Keno himself.
With time to spare before my next panel, I popped into The Art of Fear where horror authors riffed on how they scare audiences and approach the craft of writing. For what I thought would be a nice filler panel, it was actually quite informative and entertaining. The panel talked about drawing inspiration from real life events such as the Salem witch trials, new strains of virus, trends in mental health and more. While some of the self induced horror smacked of BS to me (it's dark, oh no!), it was fascinating to hear about how at one time or another, things we find totally fantastic and false (witches, vampires) were real fears to large segments of the population. It will be interesting to see what people 100 years from now laugh at us for being afraid of. The authors also discussed their writing methods and how they got their starts. One uses Excel spreadsheets to keep track of her characters, sub-plots and twists while another explained how he self published to Amazon and after 10 days his title became a hit and big time publishers came looking with a 4 book deal. All in a pleasant surprise and sadly more engrossing than the panel I was actually waiting for...
and it sucked? This wasn't quite as bad but wasn't one for the Con books either. Writer Eric Powell didn't have much to say beyond he thought he could do a good Jack Burton and that John Carpenter is down to earth and not a typical Hollywood douche. Editor Ian Brill chimed in talking about the genesis of the project and how much everyone loves Carpenter while moderator Chris Sims told us he made his new lady friend watch Big Trouble on one of their first dates. I wondered if the creators went through any old drafts of the screenplay by W.D. Richter and Gary Goldman for inspiration but there were a lot of questions about nothing in particular asked. I did however sit next to a nice guy dressed as Jack Burton himself and behind a woman who attended on behalf of her super fan husband who could not be there.