Jared, Jensen, Misha and Company at Toronto Con
The Supernatural convention in beautiful Toronto wrapped up yesterday — due to flight cancellations and all-around craziness, we didn’t arrive until mid-day Saturday, but damn, the con packed alot into the next 18 hours! (Though we’re still sobbing about missing what was by all accounts an epic karaoke. There’s nothing like watching the guy who so convincingly plays Death bounce around the stage like an exuberant teenager. Not to mention Matt Cohen in his cheerleading skirt, which no longer seems to want to cover his toned abs. Not that we’ve heard any complaints. Or lodged any.)
We missed the panel with Matt, Richard and Rob, but we did catch up with Richard and Rob recently to chat — check back here soon for our interviews with them and an update on what they’ve been up to and are looking forward to. Richard was, of course, the master of ceremonies for the con, as has become a Creation tradition. Unfortunately for Richard, the fans have now gotten wise to the fact that he’s the hapless person who has to come onstage and tell a guest to wrap it up — which resulted in groans of disappointment and a few boos. Poor Richard, he’s getting a complex.
We literally ran into the ballroom just in time to catch Ty Olsson onstage, which immediately cheered us up. Ty is unfailingly sweet, sensitive, sexy and irreverent simultaneously, which is a combination not many guys can pull off. The SPN con gang has clearly accepted him as one of them, and Ty hung around all weekend to join his friends in the kind of impromptu antics that make these cons so damn much fun. We love Ty’s affection for his character, Benny, and his respect for Benny’s bond with Dean.
Jim Beaver was next up, and when he walked onstage the audience gave him a standing ovation and several solid minutes of cheers. Richard commented later that he’d never seen another guest get that kind of reception — that’s how beloved both Jim and Bobby are by the fans. Most of us agreed with Jim when he said that, while he loved the episode ‘Death’s Door’, he’d trade that great episode for the chance to still be on SPN. Jim is also funny as hell, with a self deprecating wit that makes us all love him even more. His story about daughter Maddie signing her reluctant dad up for a questionable online dating site was hysterical. Chip off the old block, that one!
Jim is also a fabulous writer, so we are still squeeing over the fact that he just told us that he stayed up all night last night reading our new book Fangasm — and felt it really captured the wild and wonderful world of Supernatural fandom. That totally made our day!
After Jim, it was time for the costume contest, which gets more popular every convention. There were some amazing cosplayers, among them at least forty trenchcoat wearing angels, some sprouting wings from the back, some covered in blood, some trenchcoat-crossdressing. There’s really nobody else who could judge that kind of cosplay — Misha Collins came out to do the final selection of a winner, much to everyone’s delight.
Then it was the Misha and Mark (Pellegrino) panel, which included Misha bringing out a flaming birthday cake for a fan who was in his meet and greet and confided that she’d celebrated her birthday alone. Now she was celebrating it with none other than Misha, Mark and a room full of thousands of fans!
Misha got some interesting questions, as you can tell by his expression here. And Mark’s.
Misha got lots of questions. Some were amusing.
Some were puzzling.
Some were headdesk-inducing.
And some brought out the devil in the guy who plays an angel.
Finally a fan came up to the mike and said “I have a question for Mark.” The audience burst into applause, and Mark leapt out of his chair in victory.
Even Misha was happy about it.
Mark has the most adorable smile. Hard to believe he played such a convincing Lucifer. Though, come to think of it, even as Lucifer we couldn’t help finding him kinda cute. I mean, look at him!
Saturday night was for socializing and re-connecting with lots and lots of fans. And food, which you never find time to eat at cons until frighteningly late in the day. And drinks, because they went well with the food. Hey, we’d had a tough time getting to Toronto, we were in need of celebration!
Rob Benedict kicked off Sunday with a panel that inexplicably included Ty and Misha turning him upside down while Richard watched and laughed and most of us shook our heads and muttered “they are such boys” with great fondness.
Yes, that last one includes gratuitous shots of Misha’s and Ty’s ass. You’re welcome.
Sunday, of course, is all about “the boys,” and Jared and Jensen didn’t disappoint. Fans came out of the morning photo ops and confided to other fans still waiting in line that “they’re in a great mood!” We keep thinking that one of these days that won’t be the case — we’ll catch them on an off day (they’re only human, after all) or they’ll have lost their enthusiasm for the show, or for the cons, or something. But it never happens. It’s sort of the same for us — you can be in a terrible mood (let’s say your flights kept getting cancelled…ahem…) and then walk into a Supernatural con and be greeted by friends you haven’t seen in maybe an entire year and hugged by the actors who make that Show you love and all of a sudden, you’re euphoric instead of irritable. EVERY SINGLE TIME.
We were lucky enough to go to both Jared and Jensen’s meet and greets on Sunday, but were asked not to share them. Up until now, we’ve been allowed to jot down a few notes, but not even a pen or piece of scrap paper are allowed anymore, so we couldn’t remember much even if we weren’t asked not to share. To be honest, we’re pretty upset about it, especially because apparently some of the fans in the meet and greets complained about them being shared. Our belief is that fandom is ALL ABOUT sharing. It’s a gift economy, not a market one — fans create art and fiction and meta and vids just to share them with other fans, investing huge amounts of time and energy and creativity and making not a penny. Fans who are lucky enough to go to cons share their photos and experience with others who would love to go but can’t. It’s one of the things we love most about fandom, that it’s based around sharing and support and collaboration, when most of the rest of the world is just the opposite. We put time and effort into live tweeting and posting reports when we get to go to cons, because we want to share our joy with the rest of fandom. We’re tremendously grateful when fans do the same thing for us at all the European cons that we can’t go to. So we’re a bit demoralized and dismayed, and hope you won’t yell at us about it. That said, I don’t think anyone can quibble with us if we share our own questions and the J’s answers, and a show-related tidbit that’s anything but ‘private’ (Actually there’s no definition of private that includes a room full of 22 people at a convention…) Luckily we asked more than one, and because they were our questions, we actually sort of remember them. But please note, it’s sort of!
Jared always turns his chair around and straddles it while he talks — that is, when he isn’t jumping up to demonstrate something. So he answered Lynn’s question from his perch on the high chair, which is completely adorable.
Lynn: In your ‘Girl on Guy’ podcast, which by the way was awesome, you said there was a deleted scene in the premiere, where Sam wanted Dean to prove that it was really him (and Sam was really dead). I’m dying to know what it was!
Jared: It was actually the scene in the beginning, Sam and Dean in the Impala, and Dean is saying “You’re dead,” and Sam’s like “Yeah, right.”
He then explained that the Dean in his head said something that only Sam would know about himself, and it turned out to be about a teenage Sam telling people (presumably his big brother) that he got a handjob from some girl, but he really didn’t. (Details fuzzy here because Lynn was busy laughing). Jared said that it didn’t seem right to him and Jensen, that it was too serious a scene and something funny would have ruined the momentum and the emotional mood. That happens alot, he said, that the writers will write a joke into the script, but it doesn’t work once they’re actually saying the lines so they’ll change it.
Lynn: Well, I trust you. You guys have good instincts.
It’s true. And it’s just another bit of evidence of how much Jared and Jensen care about these characters and this show. It would be easier just to say the lines and go with it, but they’re never cavalier about it. We get the feeling that nobody is. (Good thing, because fans certainly aren’t!)
The one other entirely show-related tidbit is that Jared actually got to play Ezekiel before Tahmoh, because they filmed out of order. When Tahmoh arrived to film his episode, he’d created a persona for Ezekiel and a way of playing him, and the director had to say well, actually, you need to see how Jared did it…
Luckily, it turned out to be alot like Tahmoh was planning to play the character anyway, so it all worked out. Jared expressed his admiration for Tahmoh as an actor, and so far, we agree.
When we chatted with Jared and Jensen a few months ago, they both talked about how much the conventions and the interaction with fans means to them. Jared said again in the meet and greet that he would hate to not have the cons, because just like it’s a place for fans to come together with their friends from all over the world, it’s also the place where the cast gets to come together. “I don’t know what I’d do if I couldn’t see Richard and Rob and everyone,” Jared said. We love that they’ve all become friends, just like so many of us have.
Lynn’s first question for Jensen in his meet and greet was also about the premiere. (If you read this blog, you know we had alot of FEELS about the premiere!)
Lynn: In the scene where Dean is trying to convince Sam not to go with Death, and says that memorable line, “There ain’t no me if there ain’t no you,” alot of us weren’t sure if that was actually Dean — if Ezekiel sent Dean in to convince Sam and then switched places with him to possess Sam — or if that was Ezekiel looking like Dean. When you were doing that scene, how were you playing it?
Jensen: I was playing it as Ezekiel.
Lynn: (gasping rather dramatically) Noooooo, that’s not the answer I want!
Jensen: (probably rolling his eyes a little at Lynn. Which is totally understandable) Sorry!
He went on to explain that Ezekiel was, however, expressing Dean’s genuine feelings about Sam, but putting it in words that Dean himself probably would never say out loud.
Lynn: *looks less traumatized*
In other words, the line was the truth, but we all know that Dean’s not very good at putting his feelings out there, which even Lynn had to admit was true. Jensen said similar things have happened in other scenes between Dean and Cas and between Dean and Sam. [ETA again, omg this is exhausting – another person who was there posted a clarification of what was said – thanks!]. Jensen said something about the scene with Cas beating Dean up, there was consideration of Dean saying ‘I love you,’ but it didn’t seem like something Dean would actually come out and say, so it was changed to ‘We’re family’ (My interpretation is that in both cases, he was talking about familial love, hence the change to ‘we’re family’. I also thought that might explain how certain priceless S8 gag reel scenes happened…) There have been times when they’ve considered the same for Sam and Dean, but the brothers just aren’t guys who are able to express their feelings openly. Jensen did leave Lynn with a bit of hope though.
Jensen: They should save that for the finale, then the brothers can finally say how they feel.
Jensen: *is relieved*
Lynn: Actually your explanation totally makes sense, as much as I wanted it to be Dean saying that line — that Ezekiel knew how Dean really feels about Sam, and put it in the words that Dean can’t say but Sam needs to hear.
Another thing we talked about when we chatted in August was Jared and Jensen’s excitement about Season 9, which they had only been filming for a few episodes at the time. So Lynn had a follow-up question at the meet and greet.
Lynn: When we talked about it last, you said you were really excited for Season 9. Do you still feel that way?
Jensen: Yes. Especially now, because Episode 9 is a game changer, and I’m really excited about it. That’s the thing about this show, you get some episodes down, you might start to get complacent, and then they change it up. It’s what keeps it exciting — and what’s kept the show on the air!
Lynn: *is beaming again*
After the meet and greets, it was time for the J2 panel. The ballroom at this hotel is gigantic, and it was an emotional (and loud) moment when the boys took the stage while ‘Carry On My Wayward Son’ played. Jared and Jensen both wore plaid, and can we just say that it suited them?? Boy, did it ever. We’re having a shallow moment here, but come on, look at them!
A fan asked them what their ringtones were. Neither could remember, so they pulled out their phones and began calling each other. “Boring,” they announced at the standard rings.
Honestly, these two could read the phone book and it would still take us an embarrassingly long time to get bored.
After all these years, Jared and Jensen are as close as ever. The opening video was an ode to being best friends, and left the entire audience going “Awwwww”.
There were a million funny moments that are no doubt available all over the internet already, but we caught a few. Jensen told the story of when they auditioned for SPN. Usually at auditions there’s a waiting room full of people, but when Jensen walked in, it was only Jared, sitting on the couch. Jared interrupted his story:
Jared (in mock delight): “And Jensen said, ‘Is this my birthday?'”
We also got a hug, which makes us just as gleeful as when we get one from Sam and Dean.
Jared talked about how he’s played Sam for such a large portion of his life, and lamented that he now had a few gray hairs. Jensen helpfully investigated, and then plucked one out to corroborate. Such a good friend.
The time goes by ridiculously fast when J2 are onstage. At the end of their panel, they always give credit to the fans for keeping the Show on the air all these years, and express their gratitude. It never fails to make us wish we had a box of tissues nearly.
Jared and Jensen then turned to each other and gave a high five, sharing their success with the fandom that helped make it possible. Damn, where are those tissues?
Stay tuned for our chats with Richard and Rob. And if you’d like to read lots more of our chats with Jared, Jensen, Misha, and the rest of the SPN gang, order your copy of our behind the scenes roadtrip through Supernatural fandom, Fangasm: Supernatural Fangirls from the amazon link at the top right of this page!