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EVENT: Geek Outlaw Travels BACK TO THE FUTURE for Steve Wosniak’s 1st Annual Silicon Valley Comic-Con

Geek Outlaw with Fox Lloyd Thompson

Anyone have the time? Can you spot the one person actually wear a watch in this photo?

 

That smell of freshly painted face masks, overpriced nachos and sweat-soaked superhero underoos can mean only one thing. No, I’m not talking about the kickoff to the annual Mexican Wrestling league, but rather the commencement of comic convention season.

Having blanketed Southern California comic-cons with enough Geek Outlaw stickers to cover an the entire surface area of Trump Towers and Kim Kardashian’s read-end combined,  I decided 2016 would be the year I venture out to some brave new locals to see if geek culture differed outside the massive overpopulated bubble I call home.

The first stop on my “Geek Outlaw Flys the Coup” Con-Tour tested whether or not I knew the way to San Jose. Luckily, the airline I flew on had that important tidbit covered which gave me plenty of time to contemplate the mysteries of life, such as, why flamingos stand on one leg and who exactly let Madonna wander on stage without taking her meds (or more likely having taken the wrong “meds”).

 

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I heard Woz had a big head, but this is ridiculous.

 

A mystery you might be formulating in your own mind – and rightfully so – why San Jose of all places? For starters, the cordial organizers of the first ever Silicon Valley Comic-Con provided a complimentary press pass to your truly. For me, turning down anything free is on par with committing a double homicide. My sharp fellow Outlaws will be quick to point out the cost of a plane flight far exceeds the cost of entry into almost any convention outside the virtual money hole that is San Diego Comic-Con. They of course would be 100% correct, however the unsuspecting… err, gracious planners of the event didn’t know I had some well-earned airline miles at my disposal.

 

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So many comic-cons, so little money.

 

All of the above pales in comparison however, to the major announcement made earlier in the year stating Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd and Lea Thompson would all be in attendance for the inaugural Silicon Valley shindig. With Back to the Future ranking up there as my second most beloved film and favorite franchise of any timeline, finding my way to San Jose was a no-brainer.

 

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Believe it or not, Lea Thompson is actually talking about her boobs in this photo. (The long prosthetic ones she wore for Back to the Future II anyway.)

 

SVCC touted the mini-reunion as the first time the three leading actors from the beloved pop culture trilogy have appeared at a comic convention open to the general public. (At least since the recent explosion in popularity of similar gatherings.) With word around the hall being this could also be one of the last instances all the actors came together, I dug down deep into my already barren dust-filled pockets to purchase a photo opportunity with Mr. Fox and Mr. Lloyd. When I found nothing, I decided I’d throw the charge on to my overheated piece of plastic and consign myself to another 20 years of daily blood donations.

Buying the above mentioned photo package on the day of the panel proved to be an adventure all its own after I had been kindly made aware I missed my picture session time slot no thanks to a major miscommunication on the part of the photo company involved. The feeling that swept over every cell of my being may have been the closest I’ve ever come to a near death experience during my existence on the planet up to that very instant. Fortunately, the company handling the photo experiences more than made up for the misfire by punting me to the beginning of the line for the even pricier photo shoot that not only included the two time-traveling companions, but the beautiful Lea Thompson as well.  Once my heart started palpitating once more, it then decided to make up for the missed beats by working major overtime as the anticipation of meeting the actors from one of my favorite films built to a fever pitch. Sadly, there was no open bar near by to ease my nerves.

 

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Forget Back to the Future, I felt as if a 1.21 gigawatt spotlight was blaring on me in the pre-photo waiting room.

 

Once in the makeshift photography room, I honestly had less time than the life expectancy of a fruit fly to get into position and snap a photo. Seeing as my window of time with the BTTF actors was extremely limited, I had to be tremendously efficient. You’ll then understand why my first words to the iconic cast were quite literally, “Hey guys, do the watch pose!” As the first person in line for the threesome photo, I can only imagine the precedent I set for the Disneyland-esque line behind me. As I was ushered out of the room by security about seventeen times my side, I was able to tell the trio I loved them before the entire 20 second shoot had commenced.  Although our time was short, the moment that stood out most vividly had to be when I first entered the room. After locking eyes (some might argue glances), the still beautiful Lea Thompson stated, and I quote, “How cute are you?!” Unfortunately, I had zero time to bask in the compliment or my now stained undergarments, but I guarantee you I’ll be taking the words to my grave along with Gillian Anderson’s similar admiration a few years back.

 

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I’d like to thank Mr. Lloyd, Mr. Fox and Mrs. Thompson for providing me with my new Christmas card… for the next 70 years.

 

Not long after that special moment, I headed over to partake in my photo session with Mr. Lloyd in front of the DeLorean Time Machine. While not an official film-used vehicle, the gorgeous replica was put together with the love, blood, sweat and tears of Oliver (a cancer survivor) and Terri Holler. Their charity organization ToTheFuture.org works very closely with Team Fox’s charity foundation and travel the world with their stainless steel baby, raising funds and awareness for Parkinson’s disease. I was happy to donate a few extra of my already spent dollars to a great cause and get a chance to stand with the man who played Doc and the machine his character created. Luckily, I had a few extra seconds this go-around which gave me the opportunity to tell him what a pleasure it was to meet him in the flesh. The man – who is still quite spry after 30 years since the original film – even extended his hand to me for a handshake. A true class act if there ever was one.

 

Geek Outlaw with Christopher Lloyd

That genuine look of euphoric shock on my face is still plastered across my mug as I type this.

 

As for the rest of the convention, can you say San Diego Comic-Con? Well, in density anyway. Even though the main floor was about a tenth of the size of San Diego’s gargantuan gathering, at its peak, the Silicon Valley show mimicked the former with aisles so packed with geeks, I literally had to rely on the herd to move me from one part of the building to the other. Even the outer hall made traffic in Los Angeles feel like a NASCAR race. Per the official press release, the 2016 Silicon Valley Comic-Con brought in 60,000 attendees over the course of its three day run making it the biggest comic-con to take place in Northern California. For a first time event, that is heavy!

 

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Cancer survivor Oliver Holler and his wife Terri made the above photo possible with their gorgeous time machine and hard work with Team Fox. Thank you both for an amazing weekend!

 

Not surprisingly, an announcement was made during the show on Sunday confirming the event would return for 2017. Despite not having yet booked a trip for Silicon Valley next year, I can say this year’s trip was well worth the time and debt incurred to meet the actors who helped create some of the most memorable films in movie history. Not everything was roses and mint condition Walking Dead issue #1’s though. For factors I won’t go into detail on now, as I brushed upon earlier, the Woz seemed to bite off more than it could chew with regards to capacity. Busting at the seems in only it’s first showing, there were some definite organizational hiccups in herding attendees into the larger more popular panels and as also noted previous, rescheduling of events was happening in real time. As a result, many geeks and nerds grew frustrated with the “no one that works here knows anything” routine that seems to be par for the course with larger affairs of this massive scope. As of now, a trip to San Jose may not be in the cards for the Outlaw in 2017, but as Dr. Emmett Brown says, “the future hasn’t been written yet.”

 

…and now to be continued with nothing but photos:

 

COSPLAY

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Marty McFlys, now in male and female varieties.

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Your friendly neighborhood convention-goer complete with Pomeranian-yorkie puppy strapped to his back.

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Positive #323 of dressing up like carbonite Han Solo: No need for red eye removal… ever.

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Yeah, but can he palm a basketball?

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Now that’s he’s made it big in Hollywood, Mr. Wilson can settle down and appreciate the finer things in life.

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A grin only a mother could trust.

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“But moooom, street fighters don’t smile!”

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This Marty has what every kid in a multi-child household could dream of, a photo where their brother and sister vanish from existence.

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The giving McFly directly above was generous enough to give the Outlaw a complimentary replica of the Clock Tower flyer he created. Unfortunately, the phone number of a cute girl wasn’t included.

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Needless to say, my Schwartz awakened the second I laid eyes on these two.

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Look who I found wandering around Northern California. @Hot_Nerd_Girl and I pointing the finger at who’s to blame.

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And the cosplay award for “Most in Need of an Air-Conditioned Costume” goes to…

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It’s not everyday an attractive lady lets me touch her droid.

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I was shocked that this little Doc Brown had even heard of Back to the Future, let alone know every line int he film!

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I present to you the pop culture equivalent of diversity.

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The only bounty hunter I’ve met with a penchant for 50’s pulp superhero fiction.

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These fellow Dino-lovers can be found roaming Isla Nubar in their replica Jeep & @JurassicJeep13 on the Twitter.

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Great Scott! Either this guy has four legs or I need more sleep.

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Either Pikacu has grown up a bit, or I’m shrinking much faster rate than my doctor said I would.

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The cosplayers that swing lightsabers together… well, swing lightsabers together.

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My first nominees for Parents of the Year. (Mini-Kaylee’s mom also took this photo.)

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Is there a doctor in the house? More specifically one with a Ph.D and a license?

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That’s the last time I try running in a walk only zone.

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Look who I found again. I felt like I was in some sort of fourth wall version of Inception.

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This little droid found the Outlaw he was looking for (but now regrets it.)

 

STATUES, PROPS, CARS & OTHER INANIMATE OBJECTS

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30 years have passed and these two still cause me to drool uncontrollably all over my jersey.

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Wondering if I can squeeze this all into the overhead bin on my flight home.

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Well this little Caddy looks awfully familiar. My geeky fellow Outlaws should be familiar with this car’s kissing cousin.

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Before there was Advil or Aleve. (Doc Brown’s original mind reading helmet from the original film.)

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At $15,000, this authentic prop taken off the actual DeLorean used in Back to the Future, may qualify as the most expensive vanity plate of all time.

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This new fan of the Outlaw was more enamored with me than the oddly realistic wax figure of Captain Kirk. Can you blame her?

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He’s in my spot.

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You know it’s time to give up the dream of a Jennifer Lawrence romance when even her wax statue won’t give me the time of day.

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That huge grin on his face can mean only one thing; he hasn’t seen the reboot trailer yet.

 

 

ARTISTS & THEIR ART

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This all-pencil all-new Spidey was mine the second I laid mechanical eyes on it.

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With pencil Spidey’s friendly neighborhood artist, Lenny “Lenzilla” Romero.

See more of Lenny’s work @ Lenzations
LennyAromero@gmail.com
Facebook.com/Lenzations
Lenzations.Deviantart.com

 

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Courtesy of executive producer Steve Concotelli and signed by producer Joe Walser, this “Timeless” poster will find itself on the wall of Geek Outlaw until the end of time (or walls no longer exist.)

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DeLorean audio restoration engineer Andrew (left) with the main grease monkey in the middle, Joe Walser, helped bring the original time machine back from that big parking lot in the sky.

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So impressed with my new BTTF jersey, producer Joe Walser gifted the Outlaw with his very own Flux Capacitor patch to be added to the collection. It’s a badge I will wear with honor as it makes jersey wearing possible.

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“Are you not transformed?” ToyWorth.com proves some of the best art in life is free. How can you go wrong with a Gladiator / Transformers crossover? Never I say!

 

PANELS

“Spotlight on Back to the Future


Since my video came out a bit choppy to say the least, here is the entire panel in all it’s glory for those unable to get in or attend.

 

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Pondering the mysteries of life and how the guy with the X-Files cowboy hat got in the auditorium.

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Mr. Fox is another celebrity that Patrick Stewart seems to have shared his youthful elixir with.

~

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OUTATIME: Restoring the DeLorean


Overhaulin’ meets Back to the Future in this trailer for the full length film coming soon to a DVD & Blu-Ray player near you.

 

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I ran into producer Joe Walser (left) and executive producer Steve Concotelli (right) at the San Jose airport, ironically enough, looking for a ride to their hotel.

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The best, the beautiful, the only… A car. The main operating vehicle from the film in all it’s 1980 glory.

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For those into replicating VIN plates, here is the original from the A car, which fittingly enough, was born on 10/1.

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Back to the Future producer and co-writer Bob Gale (front left) showing his enthusiasm for The Simpsons Ride that replaced the ride based on his 1985 hit.

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