[In which Kim writes a guest post and makes herself cry….and posts lots and lots and lots of pretty pretty pictures…]
The first con of the year, in Seattle, was cancelled, making this year’s Salute to Supernatural Convention in Nashville the first con of the year. I don’t know if Seattle’s cancellation was the reason, but the atmosphere in Nashville felt electric, joyous, full of anticipatory excitement.
If only we had known then what we know now.
As I write this, I am walking a tightrope, trying to find the right balance. We did not know then what we know now. We were happy and excited and full of joy. We hugged old friends and made new ones, just as we do at any convention. We laughed and joked our way through photo op lines, and then we consoled one another afterwards. I cannot imagine how different it would have all been if we had known.
I think the best thing, perhaps the only thing, I can do is to give you the highlights of this convention. Add in some happy pictures, pretty pictures. Perhaps it will bring some measure of comfort, or happiness, or joy to you in light of what we know now.
Friday panels began with our most favorite unicorn, Rachel Miner. She talked about her time in Kim Rhodes’ closet, how her favorite scene was Meg’s death (written so beautifully by Robbie Thompson), and she laughed when a fan reminded her that she once wished for Meg and Cas to have little demon/angel babies. Rachel also spoke about MS and how she copes with it:
“My day is made or broken by simple kindnesses. I have everyday momentary heroes and many of them are women… I have the life I have because of you. It was your encouragement not to hide.”
Jason Manns followed Rachel’s panel. First we were treated to a few songs with Jason, Rob, and Richard, including “Wagon Wheel” and some Station Breaks!
[Lynn popping into Kim’s guest post to add: Richard Speight Jr. in glasses…. yum…}
Jason talked about working with Richard Speight Jr. in the studio, saying that he’s very professional and they’ve had a lot of fun working together.
Jason also said, “I love conventions because everyone is like on vacation with a bunch of like minded folks.” And he’s right – this is like a vacation, with all of your friends… and as I write this, I hold on to the hope of many more vacations to come.
Jason sang a few songs during his panel, including two of my favs, “Soul” and “Stand By Me.” I am literally crying now, just typing those words, Stand By Me. Damnit. * quickly begins adding pics to avoid crying *
The next panel was a convention first, a duo of Jeffery Vincent Parise and Gabriel Tigerman. Apparently, they literally met just before they walked on stage, but they were quickly friends and served up a hilarious panel – oh to go back there now and enjoy a few laughs with them.
They talked about working on Matt Cohen’s awesome film, Mama Bear:
Jeffery, on his scene with David Haydn Jones: “It was way creepier than it looked, I was so gentle when I lifted his chin up…after beating the shit outta him… it was like being a pimp.”
Gabe: “Omg now I wanna see you play a pimp so bad.”
They also did a hilarious riff which I can’t really remember (except that it was hilarious) that involved them driving together. Were they channelling the Winchesters or writing their own buddy movie? Either way, I appreciated it.
Gabe jumped into the audience to take a few questions from fans. He also reminded us that we are an amazing group of people in this fandom. Yes, yes we are. #SPNFamilyForever
Jake Abel was the next panel. He talked about some of his other projects, including Percy Jackson and Another Life, a new sci-fi show coming to Netflix.
Jake also talked about the being on the set of Supernatural. He said his favorite memory was having a beer with Jared and Jensen after his last scene on top of one of their trailers. He thought they wouldn’t remember him, but they just picked him up and hugged him.
Jake: There are few guys out there as genuine.
[Kim: Writing this post is so much harder than I thought. So I’ll just remind you that Jake said if he had the power to unlock anything, it would be the cage, and if he could be any animal, he’d be a dragon. Dragons and unlocked cages and beers on top of the trailer and they really are genuine, good guys. My heart.]
Friday panels ended with Kim Rhodes and Briana Buckmaster. These two women never fail to punch me right in the feels.
Kim said, “One of the best things when I stepped into this fandom was finding comfort in talking about sex, whether salacious or fun or whatever. My sexuality is as valid as my intellect.”
Briana followed that by saying, “And some people are empowered by modesty and it’s all okay… Authenticity should never be frowned upon.”
As if that gut-punch wasn’t enough, Kim and Briana then launched a full-out assault on my feels.
A fan asked them how they handle stress. I can admit that I do not handle stress well, at all. Epic failure when it comes to managing my stress. And lord help me, these two women might as well have sat down next to me and said, “hey Kim, we need to talk to you for a minute, k?” Because their answers hit me like a freakin semi truck fully loaded with Truth:
Briana: “Whether you are overwhelmed because you’re busy, or overwhelmed because you’re sitting doing nothing – You are in control. It is your decision how to handle it. Live moment by moment. Take each thing on the list one at a time. And if things don’t get done, well guess what, the world will go on tomorrow.”
Kim: “Make time to do the one thing that you need to do to take care of You. You are allowed to take care of yourself. It should actually be a priority.”
I struggle, like Every Day, with my To-Do List… gotta get it all done, today, 2 hours ago… and every day, I fail. While I did do all the laundry and I had two appointments and I did the dishes and I did all the food prep for the week… but I didn’t get the list all done… those photos didn’t get edited and the beds didn’t get made and I didn’t have time to call my mom…
And no, “that thing to take care of Me” is never even on my To-Do List. I ain’t got time for that. I gotta do this and this and this, and this first. If I get it all done, then if I have time, maybe I’ll do some yoga, or take a long, hot bath, or whatever.
So thank you, Big Big Bigly Thank You to Kim and Briana for reminding me that I am valid, that I matter.
And I’m crying again.
Saturday in Nashville kicked off with “Midnight Train to Memphis” with Richard Speight Jr. and Louden Swain. Swoon…
Tahmoh Penikett was the first panel on Saturday. One of the first things he said was, “I love being in the green room with these guys. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve laughed til I’ve cried.” I’ve never been in that green room, but Same.
He talked a lot about Supernatural. His comments included, “On the set, they’re constantly having so much fun,” and he went on to say that Jared and Jensen are very humble, great human beings.” He thinks being in Vancouver and away from LA helped with that.
[Lynn, poking her head in again: Mm mm mm, some of my Tahmoh-lovin’ friends are gonna be happy with what comes next, meaning photos, just saying…]
He also talked about his character, Gadreel. He saw Gadreel as a soldier with PTSD. He also thought there was some comedic gold with Gadreel and Cas that we didn’t get to tap into enough.
The ladies of Supernatural – Kim Rhodes, Briana Buckmaster, Ruth Connell and Rachel Miner – took the stage next. The topics included Kim and Briana’s podcast, which recently featured Rachel, and their hopes to feature Ruth soon; Briana fangirling over Rachel because she loved her in Sex and the City, followed by Ruth sharing a story about fangirling over one of the hot guys from that show that she sat next to on an airplane; the challenges of not wanting to do gratuitous sex scenes; their codenames, which included Lady Liberty, Smoky, Grumpy, and Periwinkle (you can decide who’s who) and at some point, there was a discussion about the stereotypes surrounding redheads, and someone in the audience said something that I couldn’t fully hear, but all the women on stage completely lost it. #musthavebeengood
I honestly don’t remember when Louden Swain came into the Vendor’s Room for the jam session. But it did happen on Saturday and it was wonderful and glorious and please enjoy these pics.
The Richard Speight Jr, Rob Benedict, and Matt Cohen panel is one of my favorites. I love their friendship, not to mention all the laughter that flows throughout their panel.
When asked about their favorite flavor of gum, we were treated to a hilarious story from Matt as he explained why he liked cinnamon gum the best: “My first time in a strip club, and I was right up front, and the stripper was chewing cinnamon gum…” Meanwhile, Rob and Rich are cracking up as he tells this story… Matt goes on to say that his wife, Mandy Musgrave, has banned cinnamon gum from their house. LOL
A fan asked a question about the alternate universe…
Rich: “The second Rob hears the words alternate universe in a question he’s like oh shit this is serious.”
They also talked about some of their other projects:
Matt, talking about “Hard Crime” : “They asked me if I could play a cop who gets an erection over crime? And I said Yep.”
Rich, on “Unfinished Business” : “Me versus me directed by me. It was a gift.”
Rob, on a scene with Jared: “If you have a scene with Jared, and there’s a table in the scene, he’ll do ungodly things to you.” [under the table]
Matt: “I need a scene with Jared and a table.”
The next panel was one that I have looked forward to for years, Felicia Day! She talked about AU Charlie… “My understanding is that the timelines were the same until Season 5 so I am Charlie, I am working at Dick Roman Enterprises. AU Charlie is just not as into pop culture… Yet.”
She also said she loved the Charlie who came back from Oz, taking the training Sam and Dean gave her to help her friend Dorothy.
She talked about working with Jared and Jensen. She said, “What you see onscreen is how my relationship with them really is, they tease me, but I’ve never been pranked. And that scene with Jared in the car, he’s so present and really brings out the best in me.”
Misha Collins was the final panel of Saturday. He talked about his character Cas:
“I think Cas has become nerdier and more awkward over time because he’s getting more like me.” He went on to tell us about a scene with Jared where Sam tackles Cas (which aired the week before last); “There’s dialogue unfortunately with Sam on top of Cas. There’s probably 25 minutes of everything inappropriate filmed.”
He also told us that he really wanted Cas’ tie to come back as part of his wardrobe. Aww.
Oh, and his drag queen name would be Sastiel. Lol
He also said he’s so grateful for Rachel Miner and Jeni Rivera and everyone who works with Random Acts.
He explained that he hasn’t been able to run since the marathon because of ongoing hip pain. (Ouch)
He also shared a detail about the production office – they give every guest actor a welcome packet. I just can’t with this show.
The panel ended with two more emotional moments. First, Misha talked about a fan who’s trans and changed his name to Dmitri Novak and how that’s really meaningful to him. Shortly after that, all of the fans in the audience read a Mary Oliver poem to Misha. He was very touched by that gesture of kindness.
Additional coverage of SPNNash coming soon,