Just got back from TFW and man was it fun and inspirational! The buzz of all the horror fans gets in your bones and makes you feel like you’re not such a weirdo after all. Not that I mind being weird, but it’s nice to be around those who “get you” every once in awhile.
I’d have to say that the guests this year were some of the usual suspects, some focuses on the cast of the movies Alien and The Lords of Salem, Danny Trejo! and Gary Busey! and an over abundance of The Walking Dead celebs. The line for Chandler Riggs and Jon Bernathal was ridiculous. Even though Lew Temple and Norman Reedus had to cancel last minute, the WD fans seemed to show up in hoards. Just a tad disappointing in my opinion. I mean I love The Walking Dead, but I enjoy meeting the original, classic horror makers and stars even more. I thought that last year’s line up was a bit more exciting for me in general – especially meeting Lamberto Bava!
I got a Demons poster signed and took some silly pics of him putting a replica of the Bloody Sunday mask on me. But it takes all horror fans to make an army, so my heart is happy.
B.O.T. didn’t have a booth this year, so that allowed me to actually enjoy the convention. Walking around and meeting all the vendors, film makers and friends was definitely fun. Hopefully some of the evil pacts made will benefit our members and make it an exciting year for B.O.T. members. Unfortunately I didn’t take many pics to share this year. I really need to work on that. Boo for me.
Most surprisingly, I discovered that I don’t like watching screenings at a convention. I was so excited to see The Last Will and Testament of Rosalind Leigh from the publisher of Rue Morgue magazine, Rodrigo Gudino. It’s been around for a few years but I’ve never been able to see it. So I get a drink, find a seat in the banquet hall, about seven rows back, and the disappointment begins. The screen is hard to see, I can’t really hear the movie, people were talking and some genius brought in their toddler – so you know how that went. After about ten minutes, I had to walk out. Went directly to the Rue Morgue booth to get a copy, but it won’t be officially released until July. So while I was there I picked up a book on 200 Alternative Horror Films You Need To See. That should keep me and my couch busy for awhile.
So I guess I found out that I’m too spoiled watching movies. I’d rather see them at the Alamo Drafthouse or at home on my giant screen TV. I believe in seeing them in all their true glory is all, so I will patiently wait.
Another surprise was how much I enjoyed the panels. Next year I will definitely focus more of my attention on those. I sat in a panel for Monstro Bizarro which was very interesting. Lyle Blackburn, singer of Dallas band, Ghoultown and bona fide cryptid hunter, talked about his adventures hunting and investigating elusive creatures in the woods. His latest book, The Beast of Boggy Creek, has been very successful - and with his many TV appearances and a regular column in Rue Morgue Magazine – he had tons of info and stories to share.
And of course the vendors were out in force. There was a wide variety of items, spread out into two giant halls. A ton of horror shirts – to make any horror fan’s wardrobe for the year – and memorabilia to decorate their homes. A special congrats to our co-founder Craig Meritt of Pallbearer Press. His booth has grown into an impressive display of horror wares and wants. His artistic renditions of classic and obscure horror films and characters - displayed on t-shirts and pillows - are one-of-a-kind. And speaking of artists – in the middle of all this horror – they are my personal favorites. This year I got lucky with a screen print from Arlington, TX illustrator, James S. Cole. I discovered his work two years ago at TFW 2011. He had many amazing illustrations but I was particularly enchanted with a certain print. Unfortunately I didn’t have the money at the time.
Last year our booth was directly across from his, and he still had a few left… but again, no money. This year he had one left, and thanks to Mastercard, it’s now all mine. But I did scoop in and take it from Derek of Obscuri photography (the main photographer of Gore Noir Magazine). Sorry Derek but it was meant to be mine.
This year was also about finding gems from Texas independent horror filmmakers. I’ll admit, I haven’t gave them the proper attention they deserve in the past and that’s a shame, because there are some really talented – and very approachable, genuine – people out there making horror films on minuscule budgets. All they ask is for your time to watch their version of horror. And I’ll thankfully take a break from the usual Hollywood horror drool as of late. A few stood out to me and I happily bought their DVDs. I’ll blog about them separately in the near future. Tease. Tease.
That about wraps up TFW 2013 for me. Next year I’ll be buying a V.I.P. pass so I can get the full benefits, sit in more panels, stay longer, continue the after hours drinking and mingling in the hotel bar and make more connections and friendships with those that “get me.” Long live horror!