Liv, Sigmund, Tristan and and I went to the FACTS Convention again! We were very excited, because FACTS had an amazing guest list. Besides that: We always love attending FACTS. It's definitely one of my favorite comic cons. There's always so much to do and to see. I couldn't agree more. I was looking forward to FACTS since a they announced Nathan Fillion as a guest and that feeling grew even more when Ben McKenzie and Morena Baccarin to the list. And of curse they already announced Hodor (Kristian Nairn), you gotta love Hodor! So sit back and relax, because in this article we will tell you everything about our general experiences at FACTS - The Spring Edition 2017...
We visited FACTS on Saturday April 1st (and that is not a joke). We left from the Netherlands at around 7.30 and arrived at Flanders Expo around 10. Liv and I had a press accreditation, so we went in via the press entrance. That went easy and fast. We entered in the merchandise hall and it became busy quite fast. It was a nice kind of busy however. Many people were there already, but the atmosphere was great. People were happy to be at FACTS and were having a great time. And so were we! Tristan and Sigmund came in through the normal entrance and I guess that went pretty smoothly too, because we met up with them not long after. We talked a little and then our ways parted; Tristan and Sigmund started their quest in the merchandise section, while we decided to take a look around in the Guest Hall.
There were a LOT of exhibitors at FACTS convention. Sigmund and Tristan spent almost all day just watching all the merchandise. There was a lot to buy and I loved that. Sig bought some t-shirts and dvds and games. Tristan bought some games. Liv also bought some t-shirts and dvds and I bought a jacket of the Joker. And I really love it! It was fun to walk around and watch all the exhibitors. There was a big variety of items that were sold: comics, books, dvds, games, shirts, caps, jackets, bags, candy, figurines and way, way more! There was a good alternation between the big names and smaller companies. I love searching for some unique items and find some nice clothing. Throughout the day it was very crowded at the exhibitors space. But it wasn't a problem; there was enough space to look around.
It's always great to see some of the familiar exhibitors at FACTS. I always love to browse through the racks at the stands of Cool2U, Dirtees, Startees and more like that,but it's always nice to see some new ones too. One of the stands I had never seen before was the one of Legend Icon (www.legendicon.com). They had a lot of awesome shirts AND they had a mystery bag! The mystery bag cost €20 (that is about $21-$22) and it contained 3 random shirts.You could only choose your size and the rest was a surprise. I had spotted this pretty early on in the day and I could not resist the urge to buy it. So I did! Wanna know what I got? Check out the video!
Describing the FACTS convention guest list: Incredible! I was really really happy with the guest list: Spencer Wilding (Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Game of Trones), Amanda Tapping (Stargate, Supernatural), Kristian Nairn (Game of Thrones), Nathan Fillion (Castle, Firefly), Morena Baccarin (Firefly, Gotham, Homeland) and Ben McKenzie (Gotham, Southland, the O.C.). FACTS always has a great guestlist, but this time they outdid themselves. The guest area was spacious, but the actors weren't very accessible. There was enough space to queue for an autograph, but not really to just watch them sign. Making pictures wasn't allowed in this room (unfortunately). The queues were clear and prices were stated at the tables. and at the side of the queue. The prices were the same for autographs and photo ops. The "getting an autograph" part of the guest area was relatively small, but it was well organized (like Carola already stated). There were big banners behind the guests, so you could easily find out where they were seated. Liv went to get an autograph of Kristian Nairn and we both got an autograph of Ben McKenzie. This all went very smoothly. It was possible to give them a gift and talk a bit. Of course we will write about the meeting of each actor separately, so keep an eye on our social media canals. It was clear that FACTS had a great guest list, lots of people were queuing. The actors were all quite popular. It was unique to meet them and we loved getting this opportunity. You could also find the artists in the guest hall and there were a lot of great artists to be found there. Unfortunately we did not have the time to spend much time in the artist area.
We bought two photo ops: A photo op for Ben McKenzie & Morena Baccarin and one for Nathan Fillion! A HUGE advantage at FACTS convention is that you're allowed to go on one picture together (max 3 people). And you only have to buy one photo op ticket. I really love that. It always makes me buy more photo ops haha. The queue for Morena & Ben was okay. There was a bit of a delay. But not that much. The queue for Nathan took very long. The photo op itself went fine. There weren't many people (I haven't seen any) that requested a specific pose to one of the actors. We received the photo directly after the photo shoot. This all went very quickly. We had expected it to be very crowded at Nathan Fillion's photo op, so we decided to get in line early. This way we hoped we could catch a little bit of the Q&A of Ben McKenzie. Unfortunately when we got there the queue was already immense, so we realized quickly that our plan was a mission impossible. Of course I get that it all takes a lot of puzzling to make a program, but we "lost" one and a half hour in that queue. That is a shame. Maybe next time when an actor is this popular, it's better to make multiple groups for the photo op. But hey, we eventually ended up having a lot of fun in the queue; to kill the time we made a series of little vlogs and you can expect the compilation very soon.
Liv and I attended 4 panels: Spencer Wilding, Nathan Fillion, Kristian Nairn and Morena Baccarin & Nathan Fillion. Sig and Tristan attended the Q&A of Ben McKenzie (Liv and I were queuing for Nathan's photo op at that time). I loved watching the panels as always. The sound was good. The lighting was great. I love it when you're able to make some great photos. The background and lighting were perfect to do so during the panels.
The presenter was also doing a great job(as always)! I always love the way he presents the panels. He talks with the actors and introduces them. He walks around to give people the microphone to ask a question and helps them where needed. Even people who don't know English very well, are able to ask a question. He also fills awkward silences (that moment when everyone is thinking what to ask and no one asks for the microphone yet) by asking some questions and talking to the actor. He knows what he's talking about and asks meaningful questions. The panels were really interesting to listen to. (No questions like 'Can I get a hug'). The only thing that was a bit confusing was the seating. There were special VIP places. But when they stayed empty, you were allowed to sit there anyway. Sometimes that meant moving a bit and trying to get a good spot twice. There were also quite a lot of VIP seats. Not sure if they were really used or eventually everyone just moved forward. Some of the panels were very crowded and it was difficult to find a spot. Most of the unlucky people that could not get a seat had to stand behind the chairs. I don't mind standing, but you will always see that at the last moment someone with a big hat or some giant will slide in front of me. Maybe it is an idea to try and fit some more seats into the Flexroom? Of course I get that there probably are a lot of rules and regulations that keep you from being able to do that, but a girl can ask right? All in all I always love the panels at FACTS and I totally agree with all Carola said.
Fanville is also a place we love to be! I love seeing the props and make pictures. And costume groups are also great. As always we made a lot of pictures. There were some old arcade games to play. Sig, Tristan and Liv had a lot of fun doing some of them. Not too long ago Sig and I watched the Stephen King movie Christine. I loved seeing that car on FACTS! We also saw Dutch Garrison at FACTS again, together with some awesome other groups. FACTS always has the most props, photo opportunities and costume groups of the conventions we've attended so far. And I really love that about FACTS. It's so much fun. And as big movie fans, it's a pleasure each time to see all these wonderful props. It gives you the opportunity to see a bit more of the movie. And of course there's also the opportunity to connect with the costume groups and talk about your shared passions! This Spring Edition, FACTS gave us "The Beast"; the world's biggest inflatable obstacle course. We, unfortunately, did not have the time to try it out (it was very popular and you had to registrate), but it looked like alot of fun. We took a little time to take some pictures and have a look around...I can tell you I saw a lot of big man turn into little kids on "The Beast".
We had a great time at FACTS and somehow we never seem to have enough time to do and see all we would like. I guess that is a good thing, because that means there are a lot of fun things to do. I always love the whole atmosphere at FACTS, everyone can be who they want to be. We also saw a lot of cool Cosplayers. Also there was an after party planned on Saturday, with DJ Hodor behind the turning tables. Unfortunately we weren't able to stay that long, so we missed it. We would love to hear about how it was, so if you were there: tell us about it in the comments. We would like to thank FACTS for another wonderful edition and we can't wait for the next edition!
Keep an eye on our website and our social media canals for a lot more FACTS related articles in the upcoming month!