Plano Center, Dallas, TX
July 8, 2006
Story and Photos by Dave Demel (Starfox)

 

THE FOX STRIKES BACK!
Another great Texas morning greeted me as I awoke to a beautiful Texan sunrise. The day did start early as I saddled up my trusty dewback Trigger and began our venture to the northern territories of Texas. Destination: Dallas Sci-Fi Expo at the Plano Center, just a few miles north of American Airlines Center, home of the NBA Western Conference Champions, your Dallas Mavericks!

The doors opened early, but the show and vendors didn’t open till 11am. This was my second trip to this Expo and I must say that the guests were great this time, although the show itself was much smaller than in years past. Headlining the guest list of Star Wars celebrities included the following: Ray Park, Dave Prowse, Peter Mayhew, Amy Allen, Matt Wood, Orli Shoshan, Andy Secomb (Watto) and Alan Ruscoe (Plo Koon). A very superb line up and all were friendly and seemed like they enjoyed being there, and the lady Jedi were a sight to behold in person. Also, Ray Park is a phenomenal person and was more than happy to talk with anyone about anything, a real class act! I was prepared and was able to get autographs from Ray & Amy on some figures for my growing collection.

For Firefly and Serenity fans, a special guest made a late appearance, Alan Tudyk, known as Wash. This series was cut way too short and the possibilities of where it would go were endless. If you’ve never seen the series, do yourself a favor and check it out. Alan did the first Q & A of the day and he kept it funny and entertaining. We found out why Wash died in the movie, where this series may be heading in the future and found out that he grew up right there in Plano, just ten miles from the convention center.

After his Q & A, Matt Wood did his a few hours later. He shared some good stories of where he came from and how he was chosen for Grievous and how his voice evolved. It was another great Q & A session. Ray Park was going to do his Q & A later in the evening, but this Trooper could not stay for his unfortunately, for I am sure his would have been very interesting as he is so good with the fans and kids!

For the comic fans out there, you would have enjoyed this show. Some good artists were showing their wares and talents. I visited with two very friendly artists, Cat Staggs and Tom Hodges. Check out their websites for great artwork, Airbrushcat.com and TomHodges.com and some really good Star Wars art. Other artists there included David Hopkins & Brock Rizy (Emily Edison), Ben Dunn (Marvel Mangaverse, Ninja High School), Jamie Mendoza (Ultimate Spiderman Annual 1 & 2 inker), Kerry Gammill (Power Man & Iron Fist and Superman artist), Steve Irwin( Deathstroke & Star Trek, yuk) & Kenneth Smith (Phantasmagoria, Creepy and Eerie artist), all great visual artists.

As far as the vendors go, there were some great deals to be had and some really high prices on common items as well as the hard-to-find figures and exclusives. If you never found a UGH Scorch, they were everywhere here, but priced $25 or higher! No matter what you were looking for, it was there, except for the Koto Star Wars magnets, I was hoping to score some these for home. Lots of loose figures, carded figures, comics of all types, you name it and it could be found, although there were only half as many vendors as last time. While perusing the many tables of Star Wars goodies, I ran into a fellow Trooper, Icypher and we were able to catch up on things going on. Always great to see fellow members of Sandtroopers.com in the real world!

The only really disappointing part of this Expo is that no BIG companies come to show off there goods. It would be great to see Gentle Giant, Master Replicas or Hasbro put up some small booth or kiosk to show off their wonderful products. This one lone thing probably keeps this show from being Big-Time. There was a lot of fan support, and the price was right since it was FREE admission! And the fans in costumes and the 501st troops were in great attendance and all looked superb and would always stop and pose for pics for the fans and kids.

All in all, I had a fun time and look forward to making this voyage again. Hopefully next time, more troopers will be able to make it. Starfox signing out!

PHOTO GALLERY
To see the photo gallery containing 30 photos click here.

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