Phoe’s Spectacular Sebastian Stan filled weekend at Wizard World Tulsa
Last week Wizard World Tulsa was in full swing, during that weekend, I start chatting with a fan who was attending the event with her son. I was drawn to her very sweet personality and awesome Harley Quinn cosplay. Long story short, we became fast friends and have similar Sebastian Stan fan stories, as well as lots of things in common.
It’s amazing how one common fandom can bring you together! 🙂
Phoe was so kind to share her story of her Wizard World Tulsa and Austin experience, including photos from both.
Over the early winters, my best friend—my Steve—informed me that she wanted to go up to Philly for the Wizard World because one of her favorite actors, David Duchovny was going to be there. Considering she’s my Steve, I sat down with my budget, my bills and my credit card limit to figure out how much it would cost to get her there. Of course, I was interested because of David and… because of Sebastian. Long story short, it turned out that we wouldn’t be able to make it to my great disappointment as well as hers. She told me that she hoped I got another chance and I swore to her that she would get David’s autograph one day.
A couple months later and another friend told me Sebastian would be at Austin and Tulsa. We quickly made plans for Austin, mainly because she had gone to Tulsa the previous year and had only horror stories to fill the books with. So I bought our tickets and all I could do was wait. As the time passed, I introduced my son to the Marvel world. He saw the emotions I had with Bucky, he would ask why I liked him so much and I would explain to him why; his loyalty, his devotion, his darkness and how he’s able to still breathe despite probably wanting nothing more than to shut it off. He stared at me and declared he liked Bucky too. Couple months before September I was talking about an outfit for the con. He asked me what con; I explained to him that I was going to meet Sebastian Stan. He asked “who” and when I told him, his little heart could not handle it. He started to cry and say how much he wanted to meet Bucky and that it wasn’t fair. That night, feeling awful… I purchased us tickets.
Austin is a beautiful city… if not confusing. It has great food and now, it holds fond memories. I cannot say they are the best… neither city can I truly claim that, but in truth… they are mine and they are cherished. Saturday we arrived for Sebastian’s panel. I had a question to ask so I got in line fairly quickly. I watched from the floor as he talked and answered the questions before me. I was near the end but was able to explain that I had heard he wasn’t interested in having Bucky pick up Captain’s shield, and so asked him that if he had an ultimate direction he would like to take Bucky in, what direction that would be? He answered that he thought it would be inevitable that Bucky would, and he actually liked having him go crazy because all he had to do was show up, march around, glare and throw punches, and that in the end, it was up to the writers but… he would like to have him in a leadership role. I thanked him for his time and scurried back to my seat.
After the panel my friend and I hurried downstairs for his autograph because of our photo op time. I had purchased a beautiful piece of artwork from a vendor friend to have him sign, they wrote my name on the sticky pad and placed it over my picture. We went through the line, not all that quickly, but at a steady pace. When it was my turn. He grabbed the painting and read my name. He tried to announce it, and I went “Yeah, Charli, like Charlie Brown.” And He nodded and started to sign it, only to start the “e”. I started to say “No ‘e’” before he realized his mistake, and his face went red as he groaned, cursed and went “Shit! I am so sorry! Sorry! Shit! Fuck” and tried to fix it. I assured him that it happened all the time, and he wasn’t the first. It was endearing and kind that he felt that bad about misspelling it. I then gave him a letter and offered a question, he said he would think about the question and I told him he had time because we would have to go through the line againSunday. He said he would think about it.
We quickly ate, though I was too nervous and exciting to actually eat before our photo op came through. My friend and I got in line, and began to wait. We noticed the people began to move, and so we got ready… except that it wasn’t moving as quickly as we’re used too. Then suddenly, we’re getting yelled at for no poses, no hugs, take the picture and go. My friend was shoved to the line and got her picture taken. It was my turn and I walked up to him, smiled and told him that I was going to stare at him ‘cause I’m a dork and he gave me a very confused look, went ‘okay’ and stared, I ended up shrugging and he glanced at the camera, rose his brow and the moment was over. The rest of the day floated by like a dream filled with spurts of giggles and my friend reminding me to breathe.
Sunday we arrive with the VIP’s and get in line. I wish I had a good story for Sunday. But… it wasn’t like it was Saturday. He hardly looked up at people, even those in front of us. He signed and went. Some probably had amazing stories, but that day… was not one of them. My friend handed over a teddy bear she had made into the Winter Soldier. He took it, and without breaking conversation over pizza with his bodyguard, signed it and handed it back. I took the opportunity to ask about the question, not to my surprise… he didn’t remember the question. But remembered I had asked him one. I told him not to worry about it, and I’d see him again and that I hope he had a great day. He nodded and we were off. The rest of the con was great. The volunteers were nice, and honesty… the only other issue we had was with the attendees, and for the sake of not sounding petty… that won’t be discussed.
Now we’re getting closer to October. I ask my son if he wants to dress up as Captain America when he meets Bucky or as the Winter Soldier. He said Winter Soldier, so I ordered the costume. Because of this he asks me to dress up as Harley Quinn, who he has a huge crush on. (Like mother, like son it seems.) I explained to him that I wouldn’t because there’s a lot of pieces I’ve gathered and we may not have the trunk space. He grew disappointed and replied ‘all right.’ Now, I only see my son on the weekend, and every time I woke him up he would question if we were going to go see Bucky. Before he fell asleep, he would ask if we were going to go see him that night. My son is seven years old, and he was diagnosed with Autism when he was about three or four, so the concept of time escapes him, as well as the fact that Bucky wasn’t real, no matter how often I tried to explain it. A couple weeks or so from the con I realize that I could try to do a tribute to the Mad Hatter, and I got some of the pieces on order. It wasn’t until the Friday before the con that I came up with the idea of combing the character my son adores and a character that I adore. So I went with a Harley Quinn/Mad Hatter look. My friend helped me with the hat, and I gathered the pieces from my closet. That weekend finally comes and he could not be more excited.
Friday we check out the place and Will turns to me to ask where Bucky was I explain to him that he plays Bucky and he won’t be there until there until the next day. (He accuses me of lying to him because I had said he was supposed to be there Friday and that he was mad at me. The anger didn’t last long.)
The next morning we attend Sebastian’s panel and my son listens and asking questions that I couldn’t provide answers too. He didn’t understand why and after the panel we move down to the autograph line. There’s a little bit of a wait, but eventually he comes out. I escort my son forward. I stare at him as he stares up at Sebastian. He smiles at my son and bows his head. I encourage Will to say something. So Will squeaks out a “Hi.” Like mother… like son. The poor thing freezes up, so I explain to Sebastian that he’s been waiting for this for months. He nods in understanding, I hand over a painting a friend had drawn of him, and my gift to him. He takes it, laughing and shaking his head. He then starts to sign my photo. He reads it, laughs and responds that he knew he recognized me. I laughed and apologized before wishing him a great day. Out of the line I turned to William and told him he had just met the man who plays Bucky. In his excitement he nearly started crying with how happy he was.
Come our photo op, we’re in line and William begins to mentally shut down. The fans around us are generous, asking if he’s okay and offering small food. He has me pick him up and he clings to me, and he wants to take the picture with me holding him. The line finally starts to move, and I put him down to put my stuff on the table. I tell them that it’s the two of us, and then one of my own. They tell me that we have to go first and then me. I turn to tell Will that we’ll be first and realize he’s gone, only to see him standing before Sebastian, looking up at him in awe. Sebastian sees us and says ‘Hi, again!’ I laugh and I say ‘Hey. Again.’ I go in next to them and grab my son to tickle him to smile. (He doesn’t get the concept of smiling in photos, and I want to make sure he doesn’t look miserable… he doesn’t…) We tell him to step out and I turn to Sebastian as I take off my hat. I ask him if he would mind doing something with the hat. He shrugs, says ‘sure,’ and takes it. He stares at it, and then asks me what I think we should do. I told him “whatever you’re comfortable with.” He nods and asks if he should put it on. I said ‘sure?’ so he shrugged again and put it on his head. I step closer to him and pose.
After we get our photos I ask Will again, how it was. He smiles and says ‘good. I like him.’ We go through the rest of the day, and every now and then he’d ask if we were going to see him again that day. I told him no, but possibly Sunday. That night when we get home, William starts to draw pictures. He holds one out for me and goes ‘this is for you mommy.’ And I take it and tell him how much I love it and appreciate it. He goes back and says “This one is gonna be for Sebastian. I wanna give it to him.” And so I tell him that then tomorrow we’ll go give it to him because I had an autograph voucher for Sunday.
We get there fairly early and walk around only to get there and wait in line. I asked him if he wanted to give the drawing to him. He nods and he’s holding it. Then as it gets closer, I ask him again if he wants to give it to him. He suddenly realizes he doesn’t and asks me too. So I take it and soon it’s our turn. I guide him forward and ask again if he wants to give the drawing to Sebastian. He shakes his head so I turned to him, he says ‘hi’ and I give him the picture, telling him that Will had drawn it and wanted me to give it to him. He takes it and smiles, and says ‘Wow, this is great. Did you do this this morning?’ and Will almost yells “no!” The man jumps and says ‘Okay, well thank you.’ And he puts it in the pile of gifts. I give him my photo and he smiles at it and says ‘Man, that hat turned out great,’ as he signs it. Once again, he misspells my name. I debated pointing it out, but not wanting to be that person, I close my mouth. I tell him thank you again, he nods and says “No problem, I’ll see you next time?” And I laugh nervously and reply “Yeah, probably.”
Throughout the rest of the day, Will once more asks me if he can go see Sebastian. People walk by talking about seeing him and he whines about not seeing him. I tell him maybe next time… Maybe next time…It’s not the best story. He didn’t write anything other than his name. I honestly cannot tell if I just annoyed him or not (I think I did.) He didn’t remember the question I asked, which I do not fault him for, but he recognized me (I tell people it’s my hair) and that means a lot. But honestly… at the end of the day… he was good with my son. He didn’t scoff at the picture. He didn’t laugh. He didn’t scowl. My seven year old adores this complete stranger. My son, who doesn’t do well with people, is asking me when we’ll see him again. When everything comes to an end… that’s the best thing I could ever ask for. Is this chance, this opportunity to share this meeting with my kid, who finally can tell the difference between Bucky and Sebastian, when he doesn’t do well with deciphering the two. In the end, the only thing I can say is… Thank you, Sebastian for being good to my kid.