Monday, June 20, 2016

In Which My Theory is Validated

I survived the trip to Comicpalooza, and now I get to be home for a whole month before my next trip. This trip was really tiring, for some reason, and I'm not quite sure why, as I didn't have a lot of programming, got to bed at a reasonable hour and didn't have to get up all that early. I'm not sure I'll do this one again if I'm asked. The only visibility as an author was during the panels. My books weren't being sold in the dealer's room. People who wanted to see me couldn't find me. I did pass out a lot of bookmarks and postcards at the panels, but I don't know if those will lead to book sales. Basically, everyone who saw me on a panel would have to buy at least two books and tell one other person about my books for the trip to have paid off at all. This event does seem to be trying to add more of a literary presence to the general pop culture mix, but they still have work to do to make it work for the authors. It's a massive, for-profit event, but the authors are being treated like they're at a small, non-profit literary convention, only with less exposure. At the only event similar to this I've been to, where they were adding a literary track to a pop culture event, they paid for the authors' hotel, and they gave authors a free table in Artist Alley for book sales and autographing.

Still, I did have fun, and maybe just giving it a shot this time was worthwhile. One of the panels I was on was standing-room-only, which was nice to see. The people watching was very entertaining. I got to hang out with some of my writer friends. I went to a literary panel I wasn't on and learned some new things.

And then there was this:

Although I had a panel that wrapped up right as this was supposed to begin, I managed to get a seat near the top of the arena-style room for the Aliens reunion panel. Those dots on the stage are most of the cast. The big dot on the screen is Sigourney Weaver. She's the far-right dot at the table. To her left is Michael Biehn, and to his left is Carrie Henn (Newt), all grown up and a mom and school teacher.

There were some fun stories about the audition process and who tried out for which parts. But my favorite part of the panel was getting my personal view of the movie validated.

I've spoken before about how I consider this a rather romantic movie because of the relationship between Ripley and Hicks. He seems very impressed with her, she trusts him, and they form a real bond. Well, Michael Biehn said that was all totally intended and was in the script. He called it a "like story." That was his favorite thing about his character -- not the macho action hero stuff, but the way Hicks was impressed by Ripley, took her seriously, and was willing to listen to her. He said he caught the movie on TV earlier this year and found himself watching it all the way through for the first time in ages, and he was struck by the way that he was smiling every time he looked at Ripley (actually, he said "her" as he patted Sigourney Weaver on the arm). So, yeah, that wasn't just hopeless romantic me reading that into their relationship.

Also, there apparently is going to be an Alien 5 that's a kind of reboot, as Hicks will be in it and still alive. That's nice for me, as I've generally been pretending that everything after Aliens didn't happen. I'm curious what kind of story that will be, as it's rather obvious that time has passed. Will they find each other again, or will we learn they've been together all this time? Anyway, they have to wait until the Prometheus sequel is done (and when Sigourney Weaver is done with Avatar), but they said it was happening.

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