The first panel I was really interested in at Supanova Brisbane 2012 was the one with James Marsters. I had previously seen him when he came around in 2010 and found his panel to be interesting even if the questions asked of him were mostly the same old stuff.
His preferred method was to have the crowd ask questions and they certainly had them. James actually dared us to try and give him a question that would make him squirm, he was open to any questions though he might not answer them all.
With that dare out there second question off the block was from a young woman in the crowd asking if she could touch his butt. The guy running the panel was quick to answer no for him while the crowd roared with laughter and I got this magnificent shot of James’ reaction.
I’d certainly say that question was taken in good spirits.This time James had a number of decent questions posed and a few really interesting stories I hadn’t heard before. One of the better responded questions came from my sister when she asked if it were true that he intentionally put on weight in the last seasons of Buffy to avoid going shirtless. The crowd reaction to this question was hysterical.
This prompted him to mention how he was intentionally extremely thin because in his mind all the vampires which really stuck in the memory are extremely thin. While it look great on tv it was extremely thin and horrible in person, Sarah Michelle Gellar even told him to put on weight. It was not healthy and so he went to remedy that and perhaps he swung back a little too far. He said perhaps not wanting to be shirtless so much may have even played a part. Having come in at times with so little as just a sock waiting for him hanging up for his wardrobe, I’m not even sure if that is an exaggeration.
What was really interesting was just how intently he was looking in our direction when answering the question, really answering it personally not just to the crowd. Something I felt was really good even if it makes you feel a little uncomfortable; but hell we were all there staring at him so it’s only fair.
During the panel he talked about a range of experiences and ideas. Amongst this was talking about his early days on stage and at one point how he was tied to a large wheel spread out like Leonardo da Vinci’s Vitruvian Man. Having been promised that the lighting would be done well and tastefully leave him appropriately in the dark but of course the lighting ended up falling to the apprentice in the lighting department and it was lit up like a Vegas show. Once again the crowd was in stitches from laugher. The man really has presence and knows how to work a crowd.
In this second chance at seeing James in a panel it really came through to me how much the guy really enjoys his geek fans. In the first panel referenced Jimi Hendrix’s talk of “freak flag” and revealed his own spin on the idea and how us geeks really are ourselves and have fun with it. This time around he said that every person could be held up and studied and they would be really interesting and that he believes knowing that and letting people in is a huge win for actors.
At some point in the panel which I can’t remember exactly James mentioned that he would have an upcoming role in Warehouse 13 where he plays an ancient guy (can’t quite remember if he said he was immortal or just insanely old) with lots of knowledge on artefacts or something like that. Warehouse 13 is a show I am soon to start watching myself and James’ appearance really hammered it in as a certainty.
Once again James Marsters provided an awesome and entertaining panel and I hope he’ll come around at least once more when I have a bit more money aside (perhaps affording a VIP ticket) so I can get a photo with him and signature.