If You Go To The Con, Check Out The Panels
The Tampa Comic-Con saw thousands of people attend. Harley Quinns, Pikachus, anime characters and superheroes all descended on downtown Tampa to celebrate comics, pop culture and anime.
Of course, it was about the comics and the costumes. Fans spend hours preparing the most detailed costumes to replicate what they feel is the real deal. It’s all in the name of fun and there were a lot of people who had no problem talking shop throughout the halls about how they went about making their costume.
Of course, there’s the rows upon rows of merchandise that took up nearly the whole point of the convention center. But there’s another part of Comic-Con that doesn’t seem to get as much play as the costumes. When it comes to Comic-Con, there are panels for nearly everything. From panels on how to build Star Wars-like panels to actually listening to Emperor Palpatine and Darth Maul, panels are a big part of Comic-Con.
“(The Star Wars panel) was one of my first panel involving celebrities to go to. It was actually kind of cool,” Christopher Smith said. “Listening to Emperor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid), he actually did the voice up there, and Darth Maul was there.”
Although it was Smith’s first time attending a panel involving celebrities, it’s an experience that enhances the Comic-Con. According to Smith, his panel had a lot of unique perspective from McDiarmid and Ray Park, who plays Darth Maul.
“The one part that had all of us laughing was when (Park) was getting ready to fight Liam Neeson, and George Lucas stopped him and told him to walk back and forth like a caged tiger,” he shared. “They discussed a lot about shooting, including why they did the prequels a lot later than the other stories. McDiarmid said that Lucas used the better technology to do the prequels.”
Getting that insight from the actors and actresses themselves makes the panels a must see event according to Smith. It’s another way for fans to find out more about their favorite characters.
Sometimes it’s not necessarily about seeing someone’s favorite character but their least liked. Let it be known that Jack Gleeson plays television’s, or any media’s, worst villain. Gleeson portrays Joffrey from the Game of Thrones. For those that don’t know, Joffrey has the pleasure of owning television’s most satisfying death. It’s something that Gleeson had a chance to discuss in his panel.
Fans lined up to question him and they kept repeating one thought. They didn’t know whether to be angry with him or nice to him because of how he acts outside of the set. Gleeson, for his part, seems like an affiable person who has no problem admitting that how he acts on set is vastly different than how he acts in real life. But Gleeson talked about a lot of different things including how he prepares to be a villain.
“Maybe it’s slightly easier to play an extreme character,” Gleeson said. “The fact that Joffrey’s so extremely detestable and evil makes it slightly more approachable. Because if you are playing someone who has a bit of good and a bit of bad, it’s harder to make that character believable.”
Part of the panel also includes a Q&A with the actor and fans lined up to ask Gleeson about his role in Game of Thrones. It was a unique aspect watching this actor answer questions ranging from “do people essentially get mad at you in public” to a young 12-year old boy asking for advice on his audition.
It’s a great way for fans to get insight into the world of acting, their favorite actors and actresses and it’s something that gives Comic-Con a once and a lifetime experience each and every year.
“I think it’s underrated,” Smith said. “ I think anyone who is interested or who comes should definitely go to the panels. One to get to see the actors in real life and then to hear them talking is a lot of fun. It’s definitely a good experience.”