Teen Wolf is one of my favorite shows. It’s right up there with One Tree Hill for me. I always wanted to attend a convention for the show so I could meet my favorite actors from it. Unfortunately, the only one that’s been held anywhere near me was Eyecon’s Atlanta one a few years back. Ever since then, I’ve been praying for another one, but haven’t gotten so lucky. So, I lived vicariously through those that could attend other Teen Wolf conventions out of the country and Howler Con in New Jersey. I just didn’t have the money to travel all the way to New Jersey. However, when Howler Con announced its fourth and final Teen Wolf convention just before the show announced its sixth and final season, my friends and I knew we couldn’t miss it. So, I pulled together what money I had and made it happen and went as all out as I possibly could with the money I had (thanks to a few family members).
Let me tell you, I don’t regret it.
The guest list turned out to be more than I ever expected, I guess they decided to go all out too considering it was their last one. The actors scheduled to appear included Crystal Reed, Holland Roden, Shelley Hennig, Ryan Kelley, Tyler Hoechlin, Ian Bohen, JR Bourne, Melissa Ponzio, Linden Ashby, Susan Walters Ashby, and Gideon Emery who took Daniel Sharman’s place since he had to cancel. To say I was excited would be an understatement. I had never met any of them except for Tyler Hoechlin. So, even though I couldn’t afford to get a single photo op with each actor, I did manage to get one with everyone either in singles, duo, or trio form. This possibly being my only chance to meet these people, I wasn’t about to let the chance slip by. It helped that I didn’t have to buy all the autographs since most of them came with my ticket package (Full Moon 2nd Row). The only autographs that didn’t come with the package were the bonus guests – Tyler, Ryan, Holland, and Ian. I found that to be a pretty good deal! Even better is that I didn’t have to buy any extra photos for them to sign because we got a souvenir book that had full-page photos of each guest!
Before I get to the highlights of the weekend, I’m going to list a few of the downfalls of the convention that caused a bit of chaos and disappointment.
- Seating: So, all the seats were general admission based on your badge/ticket – aka: no assigned seats. On top of that, staff kept yelling no saving seats at all. Therefore, even if you got up to go to the bathroom or to get a photo op, you were expected to lug all your stuff with you and hope that no one would take your seat that you had gotten in line extra early to get.
- Lineups: Things would have run a lot smoother if they had called up photo ops and autos by row, but nope, everyone just ran and got in line. It’s disappointing because you would think that if you paid the big bucks for first or second row, you’d get priority in lines, but not the case here. On top of that, nothing was announced, so to know when and what was going on (photo ops and panels wise) you had to look at the schedule either on Twitter or in the souvenir book you got, but that was no use when the schedule got changed around to accommodate the actors.
- Autograph room: Utter chaos. Line confusion. Yelling. Too many people allowed in the room at once. That’s all I’ll say about it.
- No video recording: I get that contracts were signed and all that, but being strict about not recording videos and then threatening legal action if you did and post it online is a bit much, in my opinion… especially when you then charge $100-150 for a DVD of the panels. 🙁
While there were some pitfalls of the convention, like there are with any convention, I still managed to enjoy most everything else. The panels were my favorite highlight, though. I really enjoyed how they were set up with more than 1-2 guests per panel and each guest was in more than one panel, including the final panel in which everyone (minus Holland who had to leave early) was in attendance. The only problem I had with one was the special panel for Wolf and Full Moon badges, it only lasted 30 minutes compared to the regular hour-long ones. Other than that, they were great. Here are some highlights that I remember from each one.
Who’s in charge here? – Linden, Melissa, JR, Susan, Ian and Gideon
- JR and Ian seemed to be in their own little world a bit.
- Susan and Linden are adorable and kept joking with each other about their real life together.
- Melissa put herself in charge of the Q&A.
- Gideon is hilarious! Who knew he was once a stand-up comic!
- Regarding a question about fear, Ian confessed that he’s always wanted to do stand-up, which is when we found out about Gideon. That fact blew everyone’s mind and JR and Ian joked about wanting to find his skits on YouTube.
- Melissa said she’s afraid of dying unsatisfied, but JR said it’s okay because they kissed. “It’s okay. They kissed. Don’t worry girl. I gotchu. You ain’t dying unsatisfied.”
- Susan confessed that she’s pretty much afraid of everything, but she’s satisfied with her life – happy she can drive in the fog now.
- JR wants to parachute.
- They gave some advice to a middle school teacher for her students and for anyone wanting to get in the business of acting.
- Susan said she would never put her daughter in a place like Eichen House.
- Susan and Linden got their Pitbull, Oscar, at a kill shelter. She was skeptical about him at first and had Linden go to the shelter to try to get him to bite him, but now the dog is her everything. 🙂
- On what different character they would be: Melissa – Greenberg; Ian – Sheriff or dress up in drag and play Lydia (JR: “I call that a Friday night”); Linden – Cora so he could then go be the Queen of Scotland; Gideon – Jackson.
- Ian and JR realized that JR’s nieces are the same ages as Ian’s nephews and grabbed each other: “We can be related!”
- “Don’t grow up. It’s a trap.” Ian’s advice to his younger self. “You are enough.” Linden’s advice.
We have anger issues. – Holland, Crystal, Shelley, Ryan and Tyler
- Holland confessed that she’s never up early. Ryan said that he always is because he’s just going to bed. And Shelley said she has to be careful what time she calls Holland for fear of waking her up.
- Crystal said that she channeled Allison’s death emotionally by getting pretty morbid and YouTubing deaths.
- Holland said she shot her voice filming the scream for Allison’s death. She also tried explaining some film stuff about how the director got mad because they shot it without him, and they tried to re-do it but it wasn’t the same. When she began her story everyone, including Shelley got confused by some filming terms so Tyler had to explain what they were better.
- On their favorite Stydia moments. Ryan: when they were on opposite sides of the wall. Holland: When they’re bickering with each other. Tyler: All of season one.
- Shows that impacted them personally… Holland: Lost. Tyler: Captain Fantastic. Shelley: Monsters Under the Bed. Crystal: Pippi Longstocking.
- Tyler’s most emotionally draining scene was Boyd’s death. Ryan’s was when Chris has the pole or whatever shoved into his abdomen. Shelley’s was when she was chained to the wall on a full moon and Stiles had to try to calm her down.
- Holland and Shelley loved the car scenes together
- When asked what relic they would leave behind… Holland and Crystal: their dogs. Ryan: a sign that says help. Tyler: His camera.
- Favorite season finale? Ryan: season 4. Shelley: 6a. Holland: season 2 because her and Colton got drunk and he was in a track suit that made him look like Jane Lynch and they still had to film. Tyler: season 2 because Atlanta has good memories.
- Lessons they learned from their characters. Ryan: “Always have an extra set of clothes.” Tyler: “Even if you get screwed over by someone keep trusting people.” Crystal: “Go with your gut.”
- JR always tries to make people laugh in between takes. They’ve all broken scene with him.
- “I’d bring back anyone and get rid of Ian.” – Tyler; “I would kick out Ryan and bring back Crystal.” – Holland and Shelley
Here. Hold My Beer! – Linden, JR, Ian, Tyler, Ryan and Gideon
- We got a warning about how raunchy it usually gets with these guys, but it was more tame than usual – probably because JR’s nieces were sitting right in front of him!
- There was one really tender moment when Linden started tearing up talking about a TedTalk podcast after the school teacher asked for some advice for her middle-schoolers. The TedTalk was about how a kid dropped his books at school and someone helped him pick them up. Later, the kid went on to become Valedictorian and thanked the person who helped him that day because if it weren’t for his one act of kindness, he wouldn’t have been there because he had planned on killing himself that day.
- Linden also talked about his own girls going through middle and high school and how tough it is, especially for girls because girls can be vicious.
- Tyler’s advice: “Don’t be an asshole, don’t be a dick. Be nice.” He recommended a TED talk about vulnerability – joked that it’s one of the five tweets he’s ever tweeted out.
- On lighter notes, the guys also talked about nicknames. Tyler rarely goes by Tyler and actually doesn’t really like going by it. Ian is BoBo. Ryan is R. Kelley. Linden joked that his was stud and a few others I can’t remember, but Susan calls him a rat and a few other choice words! Haha. This is also when JR learned his nieces never knew his real name until a few years ago! “You thought for 10 years I was Uncle JR?!” haha!
- Gideon broke in this panel! During a question about what their boyband would be called… “At First Bite” Gideon even sang a little skit!
- Ian loves pineapples. Tyler thought of something dirty and JR got it without it even being said.
Bitches get stuff done. – Melissa, Crystal, Holland, Susan and Shelley
- Susan repeated that she would never put her daughter in Eichen House. She said how she voiced her concerns to Jeff, but Linden helped talk her down and understand why her character was doing it.
- The girls also gave advice to the middle school teacher, which mostly revolved around being kind again. Here, Holland talked about her experience at attending an all-girls school for most of her life and then going to a public school and compared the differences.
- The conversation took a more serious turn when sexism in the business was brought up. Not everyone went into personal details, but Susan talked about an incident when she was modeling in New York. Shelley went on to share her experience of a personal trainer buying her a sports bra, thong and booty shorts and how she almost got him fired. When she showed back up at the gym, he came up to her and she told him that she would scream rape. Melissa ended that discussion by saying, “Remember, NO. is a complete sentence.”
- The ladies also discussed hidden talents. Crystal is fascinated with pimple popping. Shelley is a super-fast typist. On an app on her phone, she’s ranked like #20 out of 20,000. Susan is a competitive cyclist and can out-bike a majority of the males she races.
Exclusive Panel: Oh, Hale! – Ian, Shelley and Tyler
- Like I said above, unfortunately this was only a 30-minute panel.
- A fan asked if Tyler had seen his Instagram doppelgänger (look-a-like), and he hadn’t. Everyone seemed to pull it up, including Shelley who pulled it up on her phone for her, Ian and Tyler to see. Everyone was blown away at how much they actually looked alike. A fan, Devin, yelled “The original is better!” Tyler heard her, smiled and blew her a kiss, which literally made her fall out of her seat!
- The trio also shared three things they liked about each other. Shelley did both of the guys, and then they tried to get out of saying what they liked about her. Shelley on Tyler: “Sexy, funny, and light.” Tyler on Ian: “Loyal, considerate, sore loser… no! He’s a great competitor.”
- “Whatever it takes.” Hale family motto
- “I would be a Payday. Nuts when they hit your lips… chewy center you have to work for.” Shelley would be pickle chips because she’s more of a chip person. Tyler would be a Snickers bar.
One Last Howl: All guests (minus Holland)
- They all talked about their craziest fan moments. Tyler said he found a napkin in his mail slot at his house that said, “Hi Tyler we just wanted to say hi” with their twitter handles. Crystal talked about how a fan showed up at her parents’ house and asked if she was there. Holland, Crystal, and Shelley all mentioned moments when they were out of the country at historic places and they’ve been approached by fans. Linden and JR talked about how they each nearly made a fan cry.
- For the last question, which almost didn’t get asked. A fan told her story of coming out to her parents and asked what advice the cast might have. Everyone applauded her and said how strong she was.
- Shelley’s would create a country and the flag would be the image of Tyler Hoechlin’s butt in the Superman suit.
- Tyler & Ian shared the most unique fan moment in a photo op when a fan grabbed their butts at the same time and they both had the same face.
- Shelley’s most unique moment during a photo op was holding a bottle of ketchup like Simba (she loves ketchup)
- Crystal said someone wanted to fake stab her with a real arrow during a photo op.
- Crystal thinks Allison and Derek would make cute babies. (Tyler said he would pair Derek with Allison).
- JR and his nieces announced at the beginning of the panel that over $30k was raised for the cystic fibrosis foundation!
Speaking of money being raised for Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, the auction was fantastically hilarious! All the actors were in attendance and JR served as resident auctioneer. The whole thing was full of fun banter and whose bobblehead could raise more money – some actors matching whatever the winning bid was. Not only did it raise over $30k, but some really amazing items were auctioned off! Let me tell you, these fans came to play and did not mess around with this auction! Two-of-a-kind character bobbleheads that were specially made for the actors and to be auctioned off went for up to $1,800! Howler Con shirt that was signed by pretty much the entire Teen Wolf cast went for $3,500! On top of those awesome items, there was fan made items and clothes from the set, including Malia’s overalls, Lydia’s dress, Scott’s shirt, and Stiles’ flannel and season 1 jersey – courtesy of Melissa Ponzio ;). Some fans even bought multiple items! I’ll tell you one thing, I wish I’d had that kind of money! Haha.. it was all for a good cause, though, and I’m glad they raised so much money for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation!
I really enjoyed the photo ops. They were set up to run smoothly and you got your 8x10s almost immediately after in the same room. Again, the only problem was the lineups and not being told when what was happening unless you looked at the schedule. All the actors were so nice and kind. Unfortunately, Crystal was the only one that didn’t allow for poses, which was a bummer, especially for my friend’s brother who was super excited to meet her. If I’m being honest, I heard from a lot of people that they got the vibe she didn’t really want to be there. Besides that, I think my favorite photo op – while I loved everyone – was with Ryan Kelley. He just enveloped everyone in his arms in a big bear hug, which was super sweet! Gideon dressed in some of his Deucalion gear for some of the ops, including mine and my friend’s, which was awesome! They all were really nice and genuine, though!
Overall, it was a fun convention. While I wish some things had been done differently – maybe I’m just used to things being done a certain way, but all conventions have their faults – it was still a memorable and fun experience that I won’t soon forget. I wish I’d had the chance to go to Howler Con’s first three Teen Wolf conventions, and I also wish there were more happening (that aren’t out of the country). Unfortunately, I believe that was the last one in the states besides their final panel at SDCC in later this month. So, if you’re reading this and run a convention company in the states, please please please organize a Teen Wolf one (preferably on the East Coast)!
You can find more info on CFF here.
And you can find the rest of my photos here.
Teen Wolf returns to MTV Sunday, July 30th at 8pm! Don’t miss it!