Salute to Supernatural – Nashville 2017 Ain’t Nothing Better Than Flowers In May
Nashcon was extra fun because I got to spend it with my friend Kim, who takes gorgeous photos and doesn’t mind when I drool over them over her shoulder every evening as she’s hard at work in our hotel room. If you read this blog regularly, you know I’m behind in posting con reports (Houston and Vegas are coming, honest!), but luckily Kim was willing to write the report for Nashcon, including her beautiful photos. Enjoy!
Lynn and I had a fandamntastic weekend at the Opryland Resort in Nashville for the Salute to Supernatural Convention. I have to give a shout out to the staff and volunteers from Creation Entertainment for all of their hard work in bringing to us such a wonderful experience! I continue to be impressed by their enthusiasm, even on Sunday evening, even after working crazy-long hours. If you have the chance to attend one of these cons, please make the time to thank these volunteers for their tireless efforts in giving us these incredible experiences.
This year’s convention took place in a different theater from last year, and omg, I liked this one so much better! Yes, the seats/rows were a bit farther back from the stage, but that extra space allowed the volunteers to quickly set up tables for autographs at the end of each day; I personally didn’t mind the extra space. Honestly, I thought last year’s theater felt confining, but this year’s theater felt more open, more space to breathe, in spite of chairs that were a bit too close together. And as a photographer, I loved loved loved the lighting of this theater! So much better than the lighting last year! And yes, good lighting does mean a few good pictures, so I won’t spend too much time on the recaps of the panels, so that I can include more pics!
Friday panels began with Louden Swain playing “Start Me Up,” a fitting start to the weekend indeed. Before introducing the first guest, we were schooled on the Southern Language by Richard Speight, Jr. He explained to us that several words are pronounced differently in the South, such as the word pie, which is pronounced pah. He also took great pains to explain to us the what it means when a Southerner tells you that you are just as welcome as the flowers in May… using a water bottle to represent the proverbial flower, Richard dramatically, emphatically, and hilariously explained that the return of the flowers in May are nothing sort of a miracle, having survived the harshest of winters with all of its two inches of snow… and yet, the flowers somehow manage to return year after year, and oh thank God. Or Chuck. Or Rob.
If only those people from the six empty seats in the front row had been there. They, too, would have been baptized and saved by those beautiful flowers in May.
For those people from the six empty seats in the front row, and for anyone else who wasn’t there on Friday, here’s what you missed:
Julian Richings was our first guest on Friday, and he was not safe from Richard’s Southern Language class. Richard explained to him that when a Southerner wants you to leave, they say, “Go on now, Git!” to which Julian looked at him and told all of them to “Go on now, Git!” in his best southern accent. #adorable
Julian talked about his character, Death. He said that playing this character is the “greatest acting of his career” because he is usually “twitchy and can’t sit still.” In preparing to play Death, he drew inspiration from old school monster movies. He thinks that Death will be back on Supernatural at some point; he thinks Death may be in Chicago, waiting for Dean to walk by so he can throw a hamburger at him.
Julian also talked about the idea that Death loves junk food, such as pizza. That led to a debate on if pineapple belongs on pizza… and the answer from the crowd was a resounding No. And I absolutely put the camera down long enough to vote in this survey, because Gross. No thank you.
Louden Swain returned to the stage to play “Pretty Woman” to introduce Alaina Huffman.
Alaina had so much to say about her character(s). She would like to see Rowena resurrect Abbadon so they can be bad together and look good doing it. If she has an opportunity to return to the show, she would like to explore more of Josie because she thinks Josie’s story is very interesting; I’d love to hear more of Josie’s story! Alaina’s favorite storylines are the relationships between Crowley and Rowena, and the relationship between the brothers, because “ultimately show is about the brothers.” #Amen
She also talked about how difficult it is to live-tweet an episode because it is hard to focus when you are surrounded by friends, and food, and there is an episode playing, and all at the same time. I completely understand that!
Fun Fact: The holy water used on the show is a mixture of half water and half lube, and they call it Holy O.
Our next guest was Jason Manns bringing his unique quoncert to the stage. (A quoncert is a combination of taking questions and singing a few songs.) He sang several songs for us, including two of my favs, “Stand By Me” and “Soul.”
Fun Fact: You can get a free digital download of “Soul” when you buy Fangasm Supernatural Fangirls!
He told us the story of meeting Jensen several years ago at a party where they played guitar together into the wee hours of the morning. He also talked about Rob Benedict, telling us that “he (Rob) is one of those dudes that’s good at everything and if he’s not good at it, then he works at it until he is… every time I hung out with him, I’d learn something else cool about him. I hated him for a while…” LOL
Jason also hinted at a possible US tour with some of the co-stars of his album Covers With Friends!
His panel ended with a little taste of the Station Breaks. Following that, he and Rob performed “Hallelujah,” with Billy Moran on guitar… and that’s the story of how I died on Friday.
Kathryn Newton was our last guest on Friday. It’s hard to believe this 20-year-old bombshell has never had a boyfriend!
She talked a lot about the show:
– She hinted that Claire and Alex might be driving somewhere on a hunt!
– She said some of her favorite scenes are coming up in Episode 16
– She’d like to do a body-switch episode and she would want to play Dean
– She told us that Jensen was on a juice cleanse during the dinner scene with Sam, Dean, Claire, Jody and Alex… so instead of eating, he built mashed potato castles
It sounds like she has a great relationship with Jensen, sort of that brotherly love – constant teasing kind of relationship. She asked him to do an impersonation of her, and he said, “Oh I know, ‘I’m Kathryn, snapchat!’…. it was really rude.” She also told us about shooting a scene where she was on the ground, and Jensen tied her shoelaces together, “cause he’s like that, so rude.”
When asked to pick her favorite character, she replied by saying she “can’t pick a favorite character, I don’t know how people pick a fav!” She also talked about her relationship with Cas, explaining Claire will probably always look for her dad in him. What’s that sound? Oh, it’s just my heart breaking for both Claire and Cas all over again.
One of her favorite things to talk about is her poodle. A fan brought her poodle up to the stage, giving Kathryn a chance to pet the dog. Kathryn’s response? “This is the best con ever!”
One of the highlights for me came when Kathryn gave a little piece of advice. She said, “Love yourself. Because once you love yourself, it’s really easy to love others.” Thank you, Kathryn, for reminding us to Love Ourselves First.
Saturday began with Louden Swain playing “Sharp Dressed Man” as Rob and Richard took to the stage wearing ‘I love KoC’ shirts. At one point, Richard and Rob became engrossed in a shaker war, with Rob on shakers and Richard clanging his mic inside a glass. Need less to say, the glass eventually shattered… and then Rob ran off stage to get a broom to clean it up. Richard’s comment: “He parties like a rock star and then gets up and makes the bed.”
One of the funniest moments:
Richard: So help me God… and I mean you (to Rob)
Rob: Oh I just got that!
Richard introduces Mark Pellegrino by explaining “we have gathered together to celebrate a show that celebrates Satan. I think that makes us special.” I couldn’t agree more.
Mark had much to say about Lucifer:
– His favorite other Lucifer is Misha because he portrayed Lucifer with “boyish mischievous glee”
– He thinks only Cas is strong enough to break out and watch TV while Lucifer is inside his brain
– He thinks Nick was helpless to do anything once Lucifer took over
– He thinks Lucifer is just someone who questioned authority
Mark: “The motif of Supernatural is family, and Lucifer is no different. He’s been hurt by his brothers and father.”
Mark also talked about Twitter, suggesting it is an addiction. He tries to stay away, but can’t resist! He also said, “You can’t say all you want in 140 characters unless you’re Twain or Hemingway.” Same, Mark, same.
Mark also talked about a few of his other roles, including Jacob/God on “Lost.” When asked what was it like to play God (on Lost) and Lucifer at the same time, he said it was schizophrenic. He added, “Weirdly, Lucifer made more sense to me than Jacob; Jacob was a killjoy who should have let his brother leave the island.” Mark likes playing the bad guy because he thinks they’re complicated, interesting characters. Although many people see his character Paul (on “Dexter”), as an asshole, Mark liked that Dexter showed that your nature may be one thing, but you can impose your will on it and change. He went on to explain that monsters give the Winchesters a challenge, allow them to be heroes. Hmmm… sounds like more reasons to Always Keep Fighting.
Mark Sheppard, ladies and gentleman. Mark freakin Sheppard.
If you have not attended one of his panels, then for the love of all that is holy, please go watch the videos. Yes, he can be snarky and sarcastic when not answering fan questions. Yes, he roams the theater the whole time, making it very difficult to get any decent pictures. But when he talks about this show, and his costars, and this fandom… Oh. My. Heart.
He talks so genuinely about his costars, about how proud he is of them, how proud he is of all that they have accomplished.
He plugs the Saturday Night Special as if it is truly the Greatest Show on Earth.
He is genuinely inspired by the things we as a fandom do together, saying “The amount of good being done is incredible, you guys make it so much bigger, so much more meaningful.”
He uplifts and supports us by saying things like “it takes courage to wear your heart on your sleeve (to a cosplaying fan).” And when asked about the idea of being a fan or a nerd, he responds by telling us, “Now we’ve won. We’re in. We’re the coolest people on the planet.”
And he ends his panel with this thought:
“We make TV by ourselves. My idea of fun is traveling around the world and meeting fans. It’s very special to me. I hope I get to do this for a long time. Thank you for the love & support, thank you for this life.”
Mark’s love for this fandom, his understanding of this fandom, his support for this fandom… it is simply beautiful and precious and inspiring.
Thank you, Mark.
The Richard/Rob/Matt panel was… it was… well, it was hilarious. Yes, there were a few serious moments, like when Richard talked about directing ‘Stuck in the Middle.’ He said the script (by Davy Perez) had several Tarantino call backs so he kept the vibe going; he also gave a shout out to the incredible editing by John Fitzpatrick.
There were probably other serious moments, but I honestly can’t remember any. I mean, the hilarity started right from the start when a fan asked if they get mad or annoyed at each other, and then they launch into a dramatic fake fight. Then it was just one hilarious moment after another. Matt let us know that Richard has buns of steel. Richard said a fan asked him to go jacket off during photo ops, and you know where that went… at one point they were fiddling with their organs… at another point, and I don’t remember why he said this, but Rob suggested a Collins/Speight ticket in 2020, and yeah, I’d vote for that! Another topic focused on what they would do if they could switch parts, which led to Richard and Rob saying they would cradle Matt’s junk.
And of course, there was also a fan happily showing them a pic from a previous con which highlighted Richard’s moose knuckle.
Rob on the recent detainment in the UK:
“As me as my witness, there were no drugs!” Oh Rob. Or Chuck. Or God.
A fan asked what Disney characters they would be:
Rich – Sebastian
Rob – Olaf (he likes warm hugs)
Matt – Prince Eric
And the fanfiction writes itself.
The panel ended with Misha asking a question in a high pitched southern accent, “Do you really call your wives Misha’s name in bed?”
Richard, Rob, and Matt, y’all. And worth Every. Damn. Penny.
Louden Swain played “Angel” (by Aerosmith) as Misha Collins took the stage.
Misha started his panel with a cute? story about Maison and her bathroom habits. Then his panel became something of a group problem-solving workshop, from learning how to make friends (via Gishwhes!) to figuring out how to shoot more episodes of Cooking Fast and Fresh with West.
Misha’s comments about Supernatural included him saying that we would see the cosmic consequences of what Cas did play out later this season. He also told us that his two favorite versions of Cas to play were Casifer and Human!Cas, but then he explained that it was hard to get into Crazy!Cas.
At one point, he did show us his orange underwear.
And he also mimicked a fan when he aggressively shouted back, “I love you too!”
“That’s just a taste of what the friendship would be like.”
In a more serious moment, he told us that building the orphanage and helping the Syrian refugee families were two of the most rewarding things he and Random Acts have accomplished.
Fan to Misha: You make the world a better place.
Yes, Misha, you do make this world a better place, and I am forever grateful for You.
Thanks to Lynn for giving me the opportunity to write the NashCon articles this year – next up is The Saturday Night Special!
just a mom with a camera