Back to the index page
Motorcity 2005  |  Vulkon Tampa 2004  |  Moonlight Rising 2004  |  Flashback 2004
Creation NY Buffy 2004  |  Dragoncon 2003

Melina's Buffy Con Adventure
Moonlight Rising 2003
After driving to Catskill NY, and only getting lost once, we arrived at the Friar Tuck Inn. This is a strange hotel between the Rite-aid and the Elvis diner on Rt 32 in the middle of nowhere. In addition to the Buffy con, the hotel was also hosting an NRA banquet. We quickly discovered that cell phone technology hadn't yet been invented here, and also that the hotel phone lines were broken. Luckily, we had a fridge in our room, so we quickly made a trip to the liquor store for... liquor, what else?.

hotel room
We had dinner with the other buffy fans, and got our first glimpse of the Spike look-a-like (hi mike!). We also visited the bar and chatted with the bartender about his action figure collection :)
I woke up early to have breakfast with Jess, since she was volunteering. I spent some time in the dealers room, trading cash for pretty pictures of James M. I hadn't yet discovered that the ATM was broken...
dealers room

Some people reported celebrity encounters in the hallway or elevator, but most of my close encounters were of the organized variety. The first was a photo shoot with Adam Busch ('Warren' on Buffy, and co-lead of Common Rotation).

Warren being a baddy on buffy: (More Warren screen caps here).

The procedure for photo shoots is wait wait wait in line, then get ushered into the photo room in small groups, wait some more, sit down and say something witty and memorable, smile for the photographer, get up and leave. Adam and the rest of the band walked into the photo room through one of the front doors, right past the line. I guess he's not that famous. He looked exactly like his character Warren, and for some reason that was surprising. So anyways, we shook hands, and exchanged introductions. He said "Hi, I'm Adam", like I didn't know that already! It was so surreal to sit next to a buffy actor, and I said something like "this is crazy...", and he replied "No, not at all." I said "you're the first famous person I've ever met," which got a laugh. We took the picture, he asked me if I was coming to the concert, I said yes, thanked him, and that was the end of that. See the picture below. By the way, Paul contested the fact that Adam was the first celebrity I've met, because I had already met the man who discovered mRNA... I said that was different...

 Me and Adam
Next was the photo shoot with James Leary, better known as Clem to the lay-buffy viewer. Some Clem screen caps:

When I sat for my photo with James L, there were two cute girls in line behind me, and I said something about him getting to take pictures with all the girls. He laughed and said "yeah, I have a hard job."

 Me and James L.
Later, Adam Busch and the rest of Common Rotation signed autographs. I had run out of cash, and like I said before the ATM was broken, so I didn't have a cd for them to sign. I made them sign a program instead, and they were like "what is this?" Adam said I have a pretty name :) :). Danny Strong and Tom Lenk are signed for next year, so hopefully I will get the troika pic fully autographed soon.

autograph line

adam autograph

CR autographs
If anyone knows what K.O.T. means, let me know...
I caught up with James Leary later that day for an autograph and a picture:

JCL autograph

me and JCL
Masquerade contest. There were lots of vamp-willows and demons. This was by far not as strange as it sounds. James Leary and Christopher Golden were on the judging panel.





My CR pics
Friday night was the Common Rotation concert. Fun fun fun! (Despite the incident with the beer and the elevator door and the front of my shirt.) Click the thumbnail to see my concert pics and two short video clips. There are lots more (better) pics of CR at all-night-rave. There are also mp3s from the concert - I can't find the link anymore, but I downloaded them - let me know if you want 'em. I am now officially a CR fan, and have been to a couple more gigs since MR. See pictures here. -- click the link, there are pics of me with Adam and Eric!!
Saturday was mostly talks. Christopher Golden, who has written many books and comics on the buffy license, went first. I made it up early enough to catch most of it. The morning Q&As were sparsely populated, so I got a better seat than my regular assigned one. Of all the Q&A's, this was the most serious - probably because he's a writer, and not an actor. He talked about his new book, about his X-men comics, and about buffy. He has a very conservative view of Spike's pre-soul redemption, and this of course engendered vigorous debate with the audience.
Golden Q&A
Adam Busch Q&A: don't remember much of what he talked about, except that he was funny, and endearing. By the way, the un-named person in all of these photos is Cezanne, the sign-language interpreter.

Adam Q&A

James Leary Q&A: don't remember much of the specifics of this one either. He talked about his Clem makeup, a couple funny stories from the buffy set, and about working with the other cast members. He also talked about his work in improv theater, and on the Spanish-language sitcom Los Beltran.

Leary Q&A

Some people had their photo shoots with James Marsters now (I'm tomorrow), so I headed down to the photo room to catch a glimpse of the back of JM's head when the door opened.

Photo line
The headliner celebrities talked in the afternoon. For those that are really in the dark, here's some screen caps. These are from and they have many more as well.

Tara (Amber Benson)

Spike (James Marsters)

Giles (Anthony Stewart Head)

Amber went first. Apparently, her van hit a deer on the way to the convention, so they got in late.

Amber Q&A

James. What can I say. He was more serious than the other guests, which I thought was a nice change from all the comedy. He came across as very genuine, although I recognized many of his answers from previous cons. I guess it's a fine line between giving canned answers and giving thoughtful answers to the same questions over and over again. There is a transcript of his saturday Q&A up here, and a briefer summary at


Tony was really funny, cursed a lot, sounding quite a bit more like Spike than like Giles, actually. He did a flawless American accent, which he used often when he was making fun of someone. Someone asked if he would sing his duet with Amber from OMWF, and he said he'd talk to her about it... There are transcripts of Tony's Q&A's from both Saturday and Sunday at


Me and Jess at trivia...

Then Sat night was the VIP dance for people with low badge numbers, and volunteers, of which I was neither. There was also a fan re-enactment of OMWF - someone actually learned Buffy's dance from the end of "Something to sing about", and did it exceptionally well too.
Sunday morning, James Leary and Christopher Golden used their talking time for the charity auction. They were ridiculously funny together ("It's for the children..."). Most of the items up for auction were autographed Buffy stuff. Funniest moments were the signed Spike calendar, in which "signed by James" somehow became "the closest you'll ever get to James Marsters' crotch... pause... it's for the children!", and of course the $2000 Tony Head ass-squeeze. Tony was signing autographs in the back of the auditorium, when James L says into the mike
   Faintly from the back of the room, we hear "yes?".
   "Do you want to auction off your ass again?"
   After a long pause and quite a bit of commotion...
   "He said yes!".
They auctioned off a 10-second, double-handed squeeze. The bidding went up to about $1000, when Tony raced up the aisle, jumped up on stage, turned around, and wiggled his butt! An advertisement, I guess. He jumped off stage, and ran back up the aisle. At this point, there were two women who wouldn't give up, and the price went up to $2050. Tony then agreed to do two. So we got to see two 10-sec gropes of Tony Head's ass up on stage. Needless to say, the crowd was wild...

Spike Calendar

Bidding up

The 1st squeeze
Photo with JM!!! This is really the money picture right here. I was glad that I was on the second day of JM's photo shoot, because seeing him talk the day before had really reduced my awe-struck-ness. However, I was still really nervous. I mean, here's someone I've been internet stalking for years, and now I'm going to sit right next to him... When it was my turn, they announced my name, and I went and sat down... He shook my hand, and I think I said "nice to meet you." He put his arm around me, as is customary, and held my hand for the picture. It was completely surreal. 10 minutes later, I'm like "he touched me!!"

 Me and James M.
Amber, James M, and Tony talked again on Sunday as well.
Amber auctioning off a t-shirt
James M again on Sunday.
James Marsters, Amber Benson, Christopher Golden, and Anthony Stewart Head on stage together.
Tony sang! It was so good. Then he got Amber on stage as well, to sing their duet "Wish I could stay" from OMWF. Tony went backstage to look for a piano. He came back out and said in the mike "Fuck me, it's a baby grand piano." They got the piano out, recruited a volunteer from the audience to play, and also collected script books with lyrics from the audience. They had a couple of false starts, but it was good good good. Too good to take pictures :).
After the Q&A's on Sunday, the 400 and up's got to get autographs. They called us by row, so we didn't have to stand in line for very long, which was nice. I had intended to have everyone sign the same cast picture, but after hearing JM talk, I wanted him to sign a picture of James, and not a picture of Spike. Hopefully in Atlanta I can get him to sign that cast picture :). I shook James' hand, and gave him my picture. I Said something like "do you have any idea how fucking cool this is," to which he laughed, and said "no, and I don't want to." In his Q&A's he's always talking about how he tries to keep his ego in check, because big egos make actors suck at acting. As I was walking away, he called out "Let me just deflate my ego now..." Christopher Golden signed a Spike&Dru comic for me. He asked me where I was from, and said I had a pretty name. I told Amber she sang beautifully, and she signed my cast picture, and personalized it as well. By the time I got to Tony, I wasn't at all nervous any more. He agreed that it was a good cast picture. It's a rare one with Joss, and everyone's smiling candidly (except Joss, who'se not smiling at all). He commented on Nick Brendon's funny smile, calling him "Nicky". I told him that I wanted to collect everyone's auto on the same picture, and that maybe I'd be able to get everyone except Sarah. He said "Well, you never know..."

JM auto

Golden auto

Amber & ASH auto
Sunday night, they screened Amber's movie Chance, starring Amber Benson, James Marters, and Andy Hallett. This was a real highlight of the weekend, because DVDs weren't available at that time, and I was wondering how I was ever going to see this movie. We started drinking early, and brought a big bottle with us to the movie, so sadly, I don't remember how it ended. But there was James in a dress... DVDs are now available from the Chance website. Then they screened JCL's short film Stunt C*cks. The only thing I can remember from my drunken state is that it was fucking funny. Then again, most things are funny when you're inebriated. Get your DVD from the Stunt C*cks website

Some better photos:
Other con reports:
con report post
Text and photos © Melina at (except the pictures with me in them! and except the autographed promotional photos, which are shown here for fun only!)

Motorcity 2005  |  Vulkon Tampa 2004  |  Moonlight Rising 2004  |  Flashback 2004
Creation NY Buffy 2004  |  Dragoncon 2003