I wasn’t really sure what to expect from James, as I’ve never met him before. I’m not a hardcore fan who’s seen every project of his or every interview he’s done. The few interviews I have seen, I wasn’t very impressed with. I felt he came off a little arrogant and was trying too hard to be cool. That said, I was still very much looking forward to meeting him and watching his panels. And he couldn’t have been more lovely.
James is one of those people where, when you’re speaking to him, he is 100% there with you. He listens and makes you feel important. I was watching him during his auto and photo session while I was waiting in line, and he shook every single person’s hand and asked how they were. He’s very genuine, grounded, and appreciative of his fans. And he’s adorably flirty and charming.
He also has very soft, warm hands, and is more than willing to speak Spike if the moment calls for it ;D
During his main panel, he mostly talked about Buffy and Torchwood. Apparently John Barrowman’s tongue tastes like strawberry wine, for those who are interested! James said that after shooting the rape scene during season 7 of Buffy, he was so messed up that he ended up in therapy. He talked about ‘Once More With Feeling’, the musical episode of Buffy. He said that instead of scripts, each cast member was given a tape of songs to learn, and that after listening to the tape they all came out of their trailers with ‘wtf?’ faces. They all hated the idea and were convinced it was going to be awful, but after complaining for a couple of days they realised that Joss wasn’t going to change his mind so they all got down to work and tried their best.
Someone then asked if he’d sing ‘Rest in Peace’, from that ep, but he said he couldn’t remember the words. So instead, he sang a new song of his, a cappella, and it was beautiful
I had my hand raised for a question, but someone else asked it before I had a chance. ‘What was it like to work with Charisma Carpenter again on Supernatural?’ James siad they Had such a great time. He said he and Charisma never really got to know each other during Buffy, that almost every scene they had together, she was running screaming away from him! And they didn’t really hang out together on or off set. So when they got Supernatural, they had a lot of time together and spent hours talking and became great friends.
James also talked a bit about the importance of learning how to simply be yourself in this industry. The reason I thought he was trying too hard to be cool in those earlier interviews, is because he was. He said you need to be comfortable with being stared at for long periods of time, that there’s no point trying to cultivate a ‘cool’ image of yourself because people will see straight through it, that your uniqueness is to be nurtured and valued.
James put on a solo concert on the Saturday night, just him and his guitar on stage. And he was really good, I enjoyed it a lot. He has a beautiful voice, and he seems very open and honest while he’s singing. Some songs were very moving and some were deliberately funny – James would sing a lyric, then start laughing along with all of us
When I met him for his autograph the next day, I thanked him for playing for us and told him how much I’d enjoyed it. He said the sound guy had done a great job in making him sound good, that he;d had a lot of fun and thanked me for coming along. I told him he’d sounded wonderful and how much I’d loved a couple of the songs. He said he’d been terrified beforehand, but that once he was out there he was really glad he’d done it. I said, “Well, you have to do these things to overcome the fear!” He pointed at me, said “YES!”, then he thanked me again and said goodbye
And then I flailed a bit by myself.
This girl is incredible. Exactly as awesome as you’d expect her to be. As exhausted and jet lagged as she was – she’d literally just wrapped her latest episode of Supernatural, jumped on a plane back to LA, had enough time to walk her dog and pack, then jumped on another plane to Australia – it didn’t seem to diminish her energy much! She’s very warm, and friendly, and chatty, and I felt like she made the whole audience feel like we were all her best friends just hanging out.
Someone asked her about Supernatural. She is so super excited about this latest episode! She kept wanting to tell us what happens but she’d catch herself before she spoiled it. She just said “Wait til you see what I had to do!” She said that for her last ep, ‘The Girl With The Dungeons And Dragons Tattoo’, she only worked with Jared and Jensen for one day, the rest of her scenes were shot on her own. But this ep, they were filming together most of the time, or at least on set together. Like everyone else who’s ever worked with them, Felicia speaks very highly of both they boys, and the whole crew in general. She said the welcoming, relaxed atmosphere they create on set makes it such a fun working environment. And apparently most of Jared’s off camera jokes are too dirty for the gag reel!
Someone asked Felicia what it was like to be home schooled. Felicia said she loved it, sometimes it got a bit lonely, but she didn’t have anything else to compare it to, so she loved it. She said she structured her own days, made her own study timetables – that her parents were hippies who didn’t make her do anything, she was the disciplined one in the family. She woke up when she liked, watched TV during the day, played her video games, and aced every subject.
She talked a lot about The Guild and its filming process. She spends a few months writing a season, then they prep for filming for a month or so, then they shoot the whole season in 2 weeks. Felicia got asked why she decided to change the theme music for the 6th season, and she said she couldn’t believe how much negative attention the new music has gotten! She changed it because she got bored of the old one. And she’s a little baffled as to why people are so upset about the new music when it’s only 15 seconds out of their lives!
Felicia said she desperately wants to pet a koala while she’s here, as cliche as it is. “I want to pet a koala so bad! Wait, is it true they have chlamydia? Will I catch it if I pet one? But they’re so cute!” etc etc… It was funny
She got all exited at the man-Codex in the audience, made him stand up and show off his costume. And a cute, dressed up little girl asked her a question about The Guild, and Felicia thought she was so adorable she asked to girl up on stage with her so they could have a photo together.
Felicia asked us about vegemite – she got some with her breakfast that morning and she didn’t really know what to do with it. So she asked us how she was supposed to eat it, and what time of day it was meant for. Pretty much everyone in the audience started talking at the same time, telling her a hundred different thing! Felicia kind of looked bewildered for a minute, then she says “Wow, this is a really controversial topic, isn’t it?!” She said she was definitely going to try some, and she’d include it on The Flog. She also did not promise to like it!
Felicia also talked a bit about how important it is to be doing something you love if you want to be successful at it. Do what you love and the success will come. She mentioned Will Wheaton’s Tabletop series, and how much he genuinely loves table top games, and that he didn’t start it to try and make any money. And how she started The Guild because she loves games, so she wrote about what she knew. (Felicia also told us how she managed to make Will rather angry by not playing the games properly when she appeared on the show with him… )
James and Felicia:
As part of my Whedonverse ticket, I got to attend the special panels with Whedonverse guests. James and Felicia did a panel together and it was awesome. They talked about their very different first encounters with Joss Whedon – they both thought they were going to get fired pretty quickly!
James said that when he first started playing Spike on Buffy, Joss cornered him on set one day and just started screaming at him, something along the lines of “Damn you good looking actors and your cool accents and your hot clothes! This role is going to get you laid for the rest of your life!” etc etc. James said he was terrified, but he said to Joss, as respectfully as he could, “Well, you chose me for this role, I’m wearing the clothes you picked out, I’m saying the words you wrote for me…” And Joss went “I know!” and stormed off! So James spent his first year or so on Buffy scared of Joss and thinking he was about to get fired every week.
Felicia hadn’t watched any Buffy before, she didnt know who Joss was, had never met him and didn’t know what he looked like. It was one of her first days on set and she saw this guy at a table surrounded by women. As she was walking past, Felicia heard him say something about all actors being stupid. So she turns around and goes, “Excuse me, I have a math degree, a violin degree, I was valedictorian and I have a 4.0.” Later on, she found out the guy was Joss and thought he’d kill her off the show pretty fast. But it turns out that Joss likes sassy redheads
Felicia also told us about ‘Commentary:The Musical’, which is a behind the scenes featurette for ‘Dr. Horrible’! I havent gotten around to looking for it to watch yet, but Felicia said it’s on YouTube. She said it was so much fun to film, that they all just made fun of each other and themselves.
Also, once they get going, James and Felicia both talk a lot and I can’t remember much of what was said, just that it must have been funny because I remember laughing through most of their panel
Thanks for reading!
<3 Shell xx