Then we walked around to other booths, and met other actors and saw artwork, and lots of pop icon merchandise and t-shirts. I was actually surprised there was no comic books – which seems to be the focus of other cons I've attended. Claudia Christian and Patricia Tallman arrived and Megan introduced us. We walked around the con some more, but it really was a small, dismal con, and not much to do. Several actors (including Claudia and Patricia) gave up and went home.
However, James Hong made us all laugh. He was sitting at the table next to Cindy and Dava accidentally threw away his teabag and he told her, “You threw away my teabag, you owe me a massage.” He took off his coat and pointed to his shoulders, so Dava gave him a massage. Then he told Cindy he wanted to dance and they danced right there in the middle of the aisle. We also visited with Richard Anderson (Bionic Woman, Six Million Dollar Man), Marina Sirtis (Star Trek: The Next Generation), Margot Kidder (Superman) and even the actor who played Wedge (Denis Lawson) in the Star Wars movies. He was very sweet, and we talked about the phenomenon known as Star Wars and how it had changed movie making forever. Outside the exhibit hall, there were several cars used in movies including K.I.T.T. from Knight Rider and the DeLorean used in Back to the Future.
When the con was wrapping up, we asked Cindy Morgan if she needed a ride back to her hotel and she said yes, so we all piled into the minivan. She was staying at the same hotel that Susan and her family. Cindy invited us all up to her suite. We ate cheese and crackers and had bottled water and Cindy changed into her pajamas and just chatted with all us, so we had a fantastic little pajama party.
Walking back to the van, we saw a maintenance cart and Tami and Susan jumped on the cart and recreated "The First Time" scene from Scarecrow and Mrs. King. You should have seen the look on the face of the maintenance worker. Priceless!
On Sunday, there was a short panic attack because Bruce Boxleitner (who we had all come to see) tweeted he was looking forward to seeing his ‘tweethearts’ at noon (the con started at 10:30 a.m.); however, Bruce arrived at his table a few minutes after the con started (Cindy was at the table next to him) and everyone lined up for some enthusiastic greetings and hellos. We all laughed, chatted, exchanged banter, and had him autograph photos, books, etc. and some of the ladies had brought gifts for him. Dava made him a B5 scrapbook, Amy made him a lovely hardbound birthday card, Angie gave him a fan from Spain, and Tami gave him a Tibetan singing bowl. He seemed generously touched by the gifts. Bruce is quite the storyteller and one of the nicest guys around in Hollywood. He seemed to be in a good mood and cracked jokes – we said we had a pajama party with Cindy the evening before, and he said he doesn't wear pajamas and that the party would have had a whole new flavor if he had joined us.
Bruce told us he wanted to get some things out of the way first – he said he hadn’t talked to Kate Jackson in three years, and was not interested in doing a reunion movie for B5 or SMK, because he feels, the magic and chemistry could not be recaptured. I don’t think that is true – if someone wrote a good script and paid him, I would think he would do it. He’s an actor first. After all, a SMK reunion movie would have to be better then some of the “B” movies he has done lately.
Greg Morton (who played Jamie King on Scarecrow and Mrs., King) showed up with his lovely wife. It was a nice mini SMK reunion with hugs and anecdotes. Bruce took photos with us and did more autographs. I only had him sign a picture of him and Cindy from Tron – Cindy had signed it the day before. I also had my picture taken with Bruce.
Then Jim, Laura, (Jim and Susan’s daughter) and Sandra went to Subway to order sandwiches for all us, while the rest of us went to Bruce’s Westerns panel with Richard Anderson. During the panel, we had heard Ernest Borgnine had died. Bruce’s face fell when he heard the news.
After the panel, we ate our Subway sandwiches. I talked with Greg about my season five project and asked him what he would have liked to have seen if there had been a season five and he said more family time – because Amanda was a mother first. And then we talked about Beverly Garland and what a wonderful woman she was and how she was the glue that held the show together, how he would love to see Kate again, and how he plans to attend the 30th. Then he gave me a behind the scenes photo of him, Paul, and Kate – I think they are in Europe. He autographed it. Greg gave everyone a photo – but we each received different ones – he really is very down to earth and sweet.
Then it was time for "The Marking of Tron" panel, which was quite lively. Cindy and Bruce fed off each other and had the audience in stitches. The Visual Effects Supervisor, Harrison Ellenshaw, was also very entertaining.
After the panel, it was time to leave. Bruce gave us all hugs. I really appreciated the fact he remember all our names and thanked us each by name as he gave everyone a hug. There were hugs and kisses from Cindy as well, and then we all walked to our cars.
Everyone, except me went to Claudia Christian’s party – but with this trip being a last minute decision, I wasn’t able to attend, so Jim dropped me off at the hotel and I ate some dinner at the restaurant. I talked with the bartender, who is a screenwriter(of course) – I had a great chat with him about writing, Star Wars, and how reality television is destroying quality shows and the Networks.
Elaine, Tami, and I started the next day with a breakfast at Astroburger near Paramount Studios. After the tour and lunch, we all drove around to some SMK locations—Amanda King's house on Maplewood, the house used in the first episode and the opening credits, and the taco stand where Lee was almost run over in "Three Little Spies." It was also used in "The Boy Who Would Be King" as a Marvelous Marvin’s. We then ended up at the Hollywood Walk of Fame by Graumann's Chinese Theatre and saw the famous “Hollywood” sign. Next, we said goodbye to Susan and her family and Tami, Elaine, Dava, Amy, and I crammed into Tami’s small, compact rental car and drove to Santa Monica – we walked the pier, ate dinner, and laughed a lot, especially after getting lost coming back to the hotel and having an hysterical, side-splitting exchange with a McDonald’s worker when Amy asked for directions. That morning, while on our way to the tour, we had a "Tron" moment, when we saw an SUV with a personal license plate that read, “I <3 Yuri.”
The next day, I left for home. When leaving LAX, I experienced another SMK moment. There was family sitting behind me on the plane, and they had a daughter not much older then four; as soon as the plane took off, everyone in the cabin heard a young voice loudly yell, “Oh, my gosh.” She sounded just like Amanda did in "The First Time" when Lee and Amanda were being chased in the parking garage. I also loved this flight as it was the first time I had flown home and was on the right side of the aircraft and the weather was perfect - so I was able to see all the Cascade Mountains. My favorite sight was seeing Crater Lake from the air. It was magnificent and the lake is so big and beautifully blue, even from the sky.
A travel tip: If looking for an inexpensive way to get to downtown from LAX, I suggest the LAX FlyAway Bus - it's a 30 to 40 minute bus ride to Union Station, only costs $7.00 dollars, and is much cheaper than a taxi.
I had a great time and was grateful I was able to attend Pop Con LA, although I feel sorry for the actors, as it was a poorly attended con, but was great for us fans who got to spend a lot of one-on-one time with our fandom heroes.