Last weekend, I attended a comic and film convention at Earls Court with a friend. I’ve managed to persuade him to go to the show when I mention that Bumblebee will be there! Not the actual Transformer mind but the 1976 Chevrolet Camaro as featured in the Michael Bay movie.
When we got there, he noticed the American car immediately and started taking photos! I was more interested in meeting the stars from hit television show Heroes. In fact, four of the cast members (Hayden Panettiere, Jack Coleman, Milo Ventimiglia and Adrian Pasdar) were available and I was determined to see the cheerleader!
I didn’t get to see Hayden Panettiere until later that day, as you had to take a so-called ‘virtual ticket’ when queuing up to get her autograph. Obviously, she was one of the most popular guests at the expo and with this virtual ticket – you can wander around the show looking at the many different stands until your number comes up. When this happens, you go to the signing area, flash your ticket number and then queue up again(!) to meet your stars.
And you can guess that this method backfired immediately as the virtual tickets were oversold to meet Hayden. It didn’t help that there was a simple wipe board in front of the queuing line displaying the numbers in order to meet her. My virtual ticket was in the high eight hundreds and by mid-day she had met around 200 show visitors…
I’ve lost the number of times I had to visit the signing area to see how far she has signed up to but luckily, I got there in the end! When my number flashed up I was there instantly and that was when I meet Claire Bennet, the cheerleader.
Hayden Panettiere looked absolutely gorgeous in the flesh (so to speak!) and it was nice of her to meet the many fans here in the UK. She was signing away and it was at that moment I was struck by her beauty. I said ‘Hello’ and she looked up and gave me a warm smile. That certainly made my day!
She managed to sign some photos and you can see the result in this post. After signing, she said ‘Thank you’ and gave me another smile. After that, I checked my other virtual tickets to see if I had the opportunity to meet the other Heroes. I had two for Milo Ventimiglia (Peter Petrelli) and Adrian Pasdar (Nathan Petrelli) but it was coming to the end of the day and I had to make a choice on whom to get next.
So it was a case of checking the boards again and praying that your numbers come up! This method reminds me of Argos. You made your purchase. Got given a ticket. Wait for your item to be processed and collect it when your number flashes up!
And this Argos-style system was used at the expo to mixed affect, as people who had higher numbers didn’t get to meet the starts. Luckily for me, I got to meet Claire and also Nathan Petrelli.
So overall, did I enjoy my time at Earls Court? I say 60/40 with more negativity than positive as I found the venue horrible. It was dark, overcrowded and expensive. Yes, meeting the stars from your favourite television show and films are the highlights but I was become more stressed out as the hours went by…
Still the opportunity to meet the cheerleader made me feel all happy inside and I left Earls Court with a big smile on my face (plus some cool gifts I purchased at the stands including a DVD-box set to the whole of season one of Heroes and Quentin Tarantino’s Death Proof).