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Any chance fans can limit the number of times the same question is asked in panel of a Guest? "How do I get to be a VA?" or Questions that you've heard

#1 User is offline   Dark Spellmaster 

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Posted 14 March 2012 - 09:46 AM

So I don't know if this could classify as a gripe, and I think that there's little that the Staff can do about this, but I do think congoers can though so I'm putting this out there.

Could Fans please not repeat or ask the same questions ad nausum? I know this might seem crazy but I've been avoiding panels of guests due to the fact that, well, I personally (because some people probably are not as annoyed as I am by this trend) have gotten sick of hearing the same old questions that have been asked before. Now, I'm not at all saying that there aren't good questions being asked, such as for example, a video showed a fan (who clearly did their research) asking Crispan Freeman about his favorite opera (His family had ties to the Lyric Opera of Chicago), which I thought was a cool question to ask. This apparently was promptly followed up by two questions of the same manner, namely "How do I get to be a VA?" "What does it take to become a Voice Actor in Anime?" <_<

I don't know where this trend came from but it drives me up a wall. Here we have a chance to ask the guest some good soild questions about their thoughts on various subjects, and instead we get a room that seems to grow of how to get into Voice Acting/Directing/writing/whatever, and the subsequent follow up of disappointment when the actor tells them that, guess what, they need to take acting in school to learn, and then it seems, in some cases, that the fan is annoyed by the guests answer.

On the flip side there's the issue of, fans asking to marry the VAs. This has calmed down but still, why in the world would you ask that question. A VA is NOT the CHARACTER! Seriously, glad you like their voice and preformance, but doesn't it seem odd to ask someone to marry them when they don't know the person at all?

So yes that's my gripe, now is there any suggestions on how we, as a community, can...fix this?
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 09:58 AM

I would also like to see fans only be allowed to ask one question. Furthermore, I think gift-giving during panels shouldn't be allowed. If you raise your hand, ask a question. Don't run up on stage and spend 5 minutes there giving the VA a plushie or something. I skipped a lot of guest panels last year because of this behavior - it makes the panels a genuine waste of time.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 10:15 AM

I think during the last panel I attended, it was a Japanese VA and about half the Q&A was full of people feeding lines to the VA and asking her to say them as various characters. It really brought the panel to a standstill and the really neat questions were sort of left by the wayside or not touched as heavily on as they could have been. Really frustrating. :/
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 10:16 AM

I completely agree with this sentiment though it would be difficult to enforce. Not exactly the same but I like how when you call in to talk shows on radio or TV they have a person who screens callers and determines what their questions are going to be. I can't think of a good way to do something like this at a panel but some sort of "approval process" for questions might be nice. Or maybe a list of "These are questions you shouldn't ask because they've been done/aren't relevant"
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 10:22 AM

Yeah, the "dance monkey dance!" stuff can get very embarrassing and tiresome. Sometimes it's difficult for a VA to do a certain voice at the drop of a hat, too.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 11:02 AM

I understand what you mean completely. It kinda bugs me too how people ask The actor to marry them or just stating that they love them. I remember watching a Q&A panel (I can't remember the con, I think it was AX) with Mary Elizabeth McGlynn and they had a mic and everyone got in line and you waited to ask two questions. Once you asked, you sat down. It was nice and the panel flowed smoothly. People got in their questions (silly and non silly) and everyone got their turn and there was enough time for everyone. It was really cool. Maybe we can do something similar of this at ACEN?
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 12:52 PM

How about for popular guest panels when everyone is in line have someone walking up the line to verify everyone has a badge and also to write down the questions people want to ask. Then the questions are all on one piece of paper and the VA or guests can answer the ones they want to answer, and ignore the repeats and annoying questions. Sound like a plan? Anyone who wants to give gifts can do that at autograph sessions in my opinion would make more sense.

If ACEN put this in the program book then people would know and either be in line early enough to have there question on the list or not. You would ofcourse have a cut off point for questions that are taken but it is like that during a panel to when time runs out. I think more questions would get answered this way to if it can be done.

Also if someone does have a gift of some kind (and can't make the autograph session), that can be collected for the VA or guest when asking for questions. Just have a box with the VA or guests name on it and hand it to them so they can acknowledge the presents at the start of the panel and then move on to the topic(s) at hand.

This post has been edited by Stormy-chan: 14 March 2012 - 01:05 PM


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Posted 14 March 2012 - 01:01 PM

View PostStormy-chan, on 14 March 2012 - 12:52 PM, said:

How about for popular guest panels when everyone is in line have someone walking up the line to verify everyone has a badge and also to write down the questions people want to ask. Then the questions are all on one piece of paper and the VA or guests can answer the ones they want to answer, and ignore the repeats and annoying questions. Sound like a plan? Anyone who wants to give gifts can do that at autograph sessions in my opinion would make more sense.

If ACEN put this in the program book then people would know and either be in line early enough to have there question on the list or not. You would ofcourse have a cut off point for questions that are taken but it is like that during a panel to when time runs out. I think more questions would get answered this way to if it can be done.


This I like, since there would be an approval process for the questions and also people could ask questions anonymously if they wanted without being embarrassed.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 01:16 PM

I believe there was a video on Youtube somewhere of Travis Willingham that actually had fans pay him a nickel to do voice/line requests. Probably not too ethical, but one or two fans did it, and Travis's reaction was pretty funny. XD

However, I do agree with this thread. I do like a few of the funny questions at times, but a lot of questions people ask you can find tons of times with a few searches on Youtube.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 02:24 PM

I like the idea of having a list of questions being either screened or written down when people come in. Also maybe might be a good idea, I know if I was a VA I would do this right off the bat, and answer the most frequently asked questions in a fun way before I start taking questions.

"Alright people, before anyone asks: 1. To become a Voice Actor, you need to go to school and study acting. Just like an artist draws all the time, you need to practice. Go to plays, check out movies, study the actions of the actors, and practice practice practice. 2. Breaking into Anime or Video game voicing is not easy, you need to pretty much look up casting or Cattle calls, be ready for rejects and just keep coming back and trying out, eventually you'll hit. 3. Yes I am single (Or no I am not single), but no you can not marry me, but I will take your love and adoration as fans and I humbly apricate it." Etc.

The idea of two questions being asked is awesome. Really wish people wouldn't scream about cetain things, like if a VA does a line.

On the back side, please Actors don't hock your stuff to us or bring your poltical or religious views into play at conventions. Please. I know you may be into it but some of us came here about your art not your view points, and while I'm happy to hear how you stand on some issues, don't preach to us, thanks.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 02:41 PM

View PostDark Spellmaster, on 14 March 2012 - 02:24 PM, said:

On the back side, please Actors don't hock your stuff to us or bring your poltical or religious views into play at conventions. Please. I know you may be into it but some of us came here about your art not your view points, and while I'm happy to hear how you stand on some issues, don't preach to us, thanks.



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Posted 14 March 2012 - 02:41 PM

View PostDark Spellmaster, on 14 March 2012 - 02:24 PM, said:

On the back side, please Actors don't hock your stuff to us or bring your poltical or religious views into play at conventions. Please. I know you may be into it but some of us came here about your art not your view points, and while I'm happy to hear how you stand on some issues, don't preach to us, thanks.


You've been to a convention that Vic has been at haven't you? ^_-
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 02:42 PM

View PostTheStrongJaeger, on 14 March 2012 - 02:41 PM, said:

You've been to a convention that Vic has been at haven't you? ^_-


BAHAHA! You beat me to it.

Anyway, I'm loving the ideas being thrown around here. Too bad I kinda wonder if we'll ever see them come to fruition, y'know?
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 03:34 PM

We could if we bring it about to the attention of others. Maybe forward this to guest relations for their handlers?

Yes, I have regarding Vic...mind you I am somewhat religious but I prefer to keep that to myself. When I'm at a public event such things should be placed to the wayside. Why on earth you would bring bible stuff to a con that is mostly about, you know animation and has ties to japanese religion via that animation is beyond me. :rolleyes: Although I've seen it with other actors too. *sighs*
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 04:20 PM

I'll look in to some of the suggestion, as I've considered them myself. I've just been focused on other things.

As to the religious comments: Enough.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 04:32 PM

Never been to a Q&A but I have to agree with the stuff about same questions being asked. Really I know some people can be forgetful or the audio may not be perfect, but can't you ask some one else? Also agreed on gift-giving. Personally I think maybe the guest should allow fans to give him/her gifts before or after the panel. Like I said, I don't know if guests get out of dodge after their panel is done, but maybe something could be worked out as I could see that being a problem.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 08:22 PM

View PostAlkaren Hyralt, on 14 March 2012 - 04:20 PM, said:

I'll look in to some of the suggestion, as I've considered them myself. I've just been focused on other things.

As to the religious comments: Enough.


Fair enough.

Also what is up with people screaming when a VA does a voice? I keep thinking maybe there would be a way to keep people from crying and fainting. I had a girl swoon during Travis Willingham's panel.
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Posted 14 March 2012 - 09:24 PM

View PostDark Spellmaster, on 14 March 2012 - 08:22 PM, said:

Fair enough.

Also what is up with people screaming when a VA does a voice? I keep thinking maybe there would be a way to keep people from crying and fainting. I had a girl swoon during Travis Willingham's panel.


And how would my staff and I stop such things?
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Posted 15 March 2012 - 09:49 AM

View PostAlkaren Hyralt, on 14 March 2012 - 09:24 PM, said:

And how would my staff and I stop such things?


Yeah, that's one thing I don't think staff can really do anything about. While it's feasible to screen questions or ask that people not ask repeat questions to VAs, telling people they can't get super emotional about the panel isn't really something that can be controlled by anyone. Anyone except the people doing the screaming and crying, at least. ;)

As to the religion issue, I think it would just be OK to say that either party (guest or congoer) would be best to avoid bringing up controversial and confrontational topics regardless of content, because they don't really have anything to do with the panel or convention at hand and are more likely to stir things up than anything else. It all boils down to acting appropriately for the people around you.

This post has been edited by Sapphy: 15 March 2012 - 09:54 AM

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 11:51 AM

View PostSapphy, on 15 March 2012 - 09:49 AM, said:

As to the religion issue, I think it would just be OK to say that either party (guest or congoer) would be best to avoid bringing up controversial and confrontational topics regardless of content, because they don't really have anything to do with the panel or convention at hand and are more likely to stir things up than anything else. It all boils down to acting appropriately for the people around you.


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Posted 15 March 2012 - 12:41 PM

View PostDark Spellmaster, on 14 March 2012 - 09:46 AM, said:

So I don't know if this could classify as a gripe, and I think that there's little that the Staff can do about this, but I do think congoers can though so I'm putting this out there.

Could Fans please not repeat or ask the same questions ad nausum? I know this might seem crazy but I've been avoiding panels of guests due to the fact that, well, I personally (because some people probably are not as annoyed as I am by this trend) have gotten sick of hearing the same old questions that have been asked before.


Repeat ACen guest Russell Lissau here.
What you have to remember is that every con is somebody's first. Likewise, while you may have seen your favorite actor, artist or writer do panels before, today's panel may be a first for an attendee. And that attendee may have been waiting years to ask a particular question, a question he thinks is the most original question ever asked, even though it's been asked before.

Imagine how the guest at the front of the room feels, answering some of the same questions over and over and over again -- but wanting each answer to sound original and fresh.

A story: I read comics long before I started working in comics, and I attended the annual Wizard World Chicago cons as a fan. For a few years in a row about a decade ago, writer/filmmaker Kevin Smith was a guest. And every time he had a panel, someone stood up at the microphone during the Q&A period and asked him, "What's a nubian?" (a line from "Chasing Amy," if you didn't know.) The crowd boo'd every time. But I have no doubt that these anonymous fans thought asking Kevin that question was the funniest thing ever, and that certainly no one had done it before.

So my advice? Learn to live with it. And be happy that there are other people in the world who love anime/manga/comics as much as you do, so many right here in the Midwest that a con like ACen can attract 20,000+ of them every year to celebrate together.

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 02:47 PM

View Postrlissau, on 15 March 2012 - 12:41 PM, said:

Repeat ACen guest Russell Lissau here.
What you have to remember is that every con is somebody's first. Likewise, while you may have seen your favorite actor, artist or writer do panels before, today's panel may be a first for an attendee. And that attendee may have been waiting years to ask a particular question, a question he thinks is the most original question ever asked, even though it's been asked before.

Imagine how the guest at the front of the room feels, answering some of the same questions over and over and over again -- but wanting each answer to sound original and fresh.



Thank you Russell, I was having some difficulty putting my feelings on the subject in to words.

Also folks, rememebr that screaning questions takes time and could slow down the panels flow, when the guest/s want to possibly keep a quick pace because they have a lot of stuff they want to cover in their panel. I'll look into the whole...line up with a mic thing, and get back to y'all.
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#23 User is offline   Dark Spellmaster 

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Posted 15 March 2012 - 05:21 PM

View Postrlissau, on 15 March 2012 - 12:41 PM, said:

Repeat ACen guest Russell Lissau here.
What you have to remember is that every con is somebody's first. Likewise, while you may have seen your favorite actor, artist or writer do panels before, today's panel may be a first for an attendee. And that attendee may have been waiting years to ask a particular question, a question he thinks is the most original question ever asked, even though it's been asked before.

Imagine how the guest at the front of the room feels, answering some of the same questions over and over and over again -- but wanting each answer to sound original and fresh.

A story: I read comics long before I started working in comics, and I attended the annual Wizard World Chicago cons as a fan. For a few years in a row about a decade ago, writer/filmmaker Kevin Smith was a guest. And every time he had a panel, someone stood up at the microphone during the Q&A period and asked him, "What's a nubian?" (a line from "Chasing Amy," if you didn't know.) The crowd boo'd every time. But I have no doubt that these anonymous fans thought asking Kevin that question was the funniest thing ever, and that certainly no one had done it before.

So my advice? Learn to live with it. And be happy that there are other people in the world who love anime/manga/comics as much as you do, so many right here in the Midwest that a con like ACen can attract 20,000+ of them every year to celebrate together.


Mr. Lissau, I understand what you mean, yes it's peoples first cons and I do understand that.

I have no problem with living with it, it's just that, to me, if a question is asked once then please don't ask it again and again. It's not like the guests answer will change radically if you ask again. If you are asking for details then at least say, "You just answered about this topic a minute ago, can you expand on how one can enter this field and what you would suggest doing for someone who hasn't yet entered college?" or for someone in college, "What classes would you recommend someone take to further their shot of being in the industry."

I'm not telling people to stop asking, just don't repeat the question over and over. If the question is asked move onto the next question, and if you go to the guests panel again, let someone else ask that question if the guest has already answered it for you. That's all I'm asking. I'm sure the guest at times must get tired of answering the same question, that's why, I honestly think, if it is a really common question -a serious one like "How do you get into [insert job field here]?" Maybe the guest should be allowed to have a quick FAQ thing by one of the staff to cover questions that are the most common ones asked. This way the guest could prepare interesting answers for the questions and fans could ask things that may not have been inquired about, either about the field, "What do you think is harder doing voices for characters where you only get sketches and have to create them all yourself based on what the director tells you, or dealing with pre-created characters that have had their roles already set in stone by another actor, and you have to play off the scene that's already been created?" or about their characters, "Do you think {insert character here} acted such a way because of {insert event here} or do you think it was just because they are {this type} of person?" or maybe something about them personally, "So are you a fan of Cats or Dogs? Or do you go for pets that are not all that common?"

As for controlling someone from freaking out, I know Acen can't do that, but I'm curious as to what a con-goer can do when this happens? Because, apparently, some may see the action of trying to comfort someone as harassing them, which is odd, but I suppose understandable. You don't want to say, "Are you okay? Do you need help?" but you don't just want to sit there and be like "Ummm....okay, she's really moved." Could we, as con goers ask the person sitting next to us, if they start screaming, to calm down, or just ask them to treat the event like it's going to the movies or theater? Because that's how I see guest panels, you're in a theater where someone is putting on a show of sorts, and the polite thing to do is keep your phone on vibrate and cheer but not be obnoxious about it. It's one thing if it's being happy about something it's something different where you're screaming in someone's ears because you have the hots for said actor/actress and need to shout out "I LOVE YOU!" at the top of your lungs as if you were at a Lady Gaga concert out doors.
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#24 User is offline   Stormy-chan 

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 08:26 AM

View PostAlkaren Hyralt, on 15 March 2012 - 02:47 PM, said:

Thank you Russell, I was having some difficulty putting my feelings on the subject in to words.

Also folks, rememebr that screaning questions takes time and could slow down the panels flow, when the guest/s want to possibly keep a quick pace because they have a lot of stuff they want to cover in their panel. I'll look into the whole...line up with a mic thing, and get back to y'all.


Lining up with a mic might be the way to go, but with people who usually line up to 30 min before a panel starts I would think that would be enough time to screen and write down questions of those in line just standing around waiting anyways. Though if there is to be less time waiting this year to get into panels then yes the line up for the mic might be the best option there. Though for presents, or gifts for the people I still think a box to collect them in would be best as people walk into the panel room. Maybe have paper square's for them to write there name down and pin to item when placed in the box? just an idea.

And I dont mind happy and hyper fans but when they kneel on the chair and start to wave their arms so wildly that I feel in danger then I DO SAY something because that is just to much and I WILL NOT be hit by some overly inconsiderate fan who ignore's those around them in the attempt to get noticed and called upon! This happened to me one year NEVER again........

#25 User is offline   Iris 

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 08:35 AM

I really do like the idea of lining up people who want to ask questions. It can weed out useless questions (like 'will you marry me' or repeat questions that were already asked in that particular panel). But it's also time efficient in that we don't have the whole "I can't hear you please talk louder" situations and it cuts down on the time that guests are trying to pick among a sea of hands who to call on.

#26 User is offline   Dark Spellmaster 

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 10:10 AM

View PostIris, on 16 March 2012 - 08:35 AM, said:

I really do like the idea of lining up people who want to ask questions. It can weed out useless questions (like 'will you marry me' or repeat questions that were already asked in that particular panel). But it's also time efficient in that we don't have the whole "I can't hear you please talk louder" situations and it cuts down on the time that guests are trying to pick among a sea of hands who to call on.


That's a good point, when you have someone that might be very shy or struck in awe at talking to their favorite actor it can be hard to hear a really good question. I like the idea of the writing a question down and then having someone ask it. That was done with Travis Willingham at another con, where a staffer read the questions to him and he answered them to the audience. Also, as Iris said, you have guests that try to pick out hands, maybe we can get cards with big numbers on them and hold those up?

@Stormy-Chan: Completely agree with you on the box idea. I can see why some people might want to do it because then they can see the actors reaction, but if you want to do that, do it after the panel ends or before it starts. Also it makes others feel a bit down that they didn't have anything to give to the person.
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#27 User is offline   rlissau 

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 01:47 PM

Lining up at microphones is a good idea in the big rooms. It helps things move smoothly and lets us (the guests on the podium) hear questions.

As for yelling, screaming and such, I guess I'm fortunate that I haven't experienced any of that... and really, I'm not that kind of a hunky superstar anyway. But I know it happens.

As for gifts... That happens so much that it's a problem for some people? Wow. Anyone who wants to bring me a nice bottle of single-malt scotch is welcome to do so. ;-)

This post has been edited by rlissau: 16 March 2012 - 01:50 PM


#28 User is offline   Alkaren Hyralt 

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 01:57 PM

View Postrlissau, on 16 March 2012 - 01:47 PM, said:

Lining up at microphones is a good idea in the big rooms. It helps things move smoothly and lets us (the guests on the podium) hear questions.

As for yelling, screaming and such, I guess I'm fortunate that I haven't experienced any of that... and really, I'm not that kind of a hunky superstar anyway. But I know it happens.

As for gifts... That happens so much that it's a problem for some people? Wow. Anyone who wants to bring me a nice bottle of single-malt scotch is welcome to do so. ;-)


I'm considering bringing some scotch to a-kon. If you remind me on facebook or something I'll pick up this new scotch I got about a month ago that I really liked.
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#29 User is offline   Dark Spellmaster 

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Posted 16 March 2012 - 03:14 PM

View Postrlissau, on 16 March 2012 - 01:47 PM, said:

Lining up at microphones is a good idea in the big rooms. It helps things move smoothly and lets us (the guests on the podium) hear questions.

As for yelling, screaming and such, I guess I'm fortunate that I haven't experienced any of that... and really, I'm not that kind of a hunky superstar anyway. But I know it happens.

As for gifts... That happens so much that it's a problem for some people? Wow. Anyone who wants to bring me a nice bottle of single-malt scotch is welcome to do so. ;-)


Usually the ones that scream are the fans that are a bit...overly excited and tend to view the guests as their characters or just a voice rather then a person that provides the voice and vocal expressions for the character. Some guests, not ours but at other cons, act at times like "Super stars" and like making the audience yell so that they get noise to the other rooms, as if announcing "I have this many fans." Other times it's just the fans that get overly excited and basically act as if the cast of Harry Potter walked in half naked thus, screaming and waving their hands to get noticed, which could cause pain to the person sitting next to them. <_<

In the cases with the gifts it usally goes like this:

Fan A: Mr. Smith, I don't have a question but can I come up and give you a gift?

Mr. Smith: Why sure.

Fan A runs up on stage and gives gift and recives a hug, and talks for about two to three minutes in private with guest before running down again.

Fan B: Asks a question.

Fan C: Asks another question and asks to go up and give gifts. Another three to five minutes of time taken.

Fan D: Asks a question, then asks if they can get the guest to do an impression/call a friend/etc.

Mr. Smith: Does as requested can take several minutes for this.

Fan E: Asks a question.

Fan F: Gives another gift or wants a hug. Gets to go up and get hug. Takes up more panel time...

Wash rinse Repeat.

Like I said, happy to have fans be excited, ask question and give gifts. But it gets tireing when you have person after person pull off stuff like above and time runs out.

This post has been edited by Dark Spellmaster: 16 March 2012 - 03:16 PM

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#30 User is offline   Darkspawn 

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Posted 18 March 2012 - 10:10 AM

View PostDark Spellmaster, on 16 March 2012 - 03:14 PM, said:

Usually the ones that scream are the fans that are a bit...overly excited and tend to view the guests as their characters or just a voice rather then a person that provides the voice and vocal expressions for the character. Some guests, not ours but at other cons, act at times like "Super stars" and like making the audience yell so that they get noise to the other rooms, as if announcing "I have this many fans." Other times it's just the fans that get overly excited and basically act as if the cast of Harry Potter walked in half naked thus, screaming and waving their hands to get noticed, which could cause pain to the person sitting next to them. <_<

In the cases with the gifts it usally goes like this:

Fan A: Mr. Smith, I don't have a question but can I come up and give you a gift?

Mr. Smith: Why sure.

Fan A runs up on stage and gives gift and recives a hug, and talks for about two to three minutes in private with guest before running down again.

Fan B: Asks a question.

Fan C: Asks another question and asks to go up and give gifts. Another three to five minutes of time taken.

Fan D: Asks a question, then asks if they can get the guest to do an impression/call a friend/etc.

Mr. Smith: Does as requested can take several minutes for this.

Fan E: Asks a question.

Fan F: Gives another gift or wants a hug. Gets to go up and get hug. Takes up more panel time...

Wash rinse Repeat.

Like I said, happy to have fans be excited, ask question and give gifts. But it gets tireing when you have person after person pull off stuff like above and time runs out.


You hit the nail on the head with this description. This is why guest panels are becoming very tiresome for me, which BLOWS because the main reason I go to cons is to see the guests.
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