Video Q&A Post for Denver Comicon

I was not happy that I had to cancel my appearance at the Denver Comicon this weekend, mostly because I knew that there were a significant number of people who bought tickets specifically because I was going to be there.

Aaron Douglas did a magnificent job (because he is awesome) replacing me, and I understand that Paul and Storm rocked several faces right off.

I thought it would not suck if I had the con organizers send me some questions from con attendees, which I could answer on videotape from the back of a limousine with Rollergirl.

They liked most of that idea, so I took their notes to heart and recorded this in my backyard Friday, with some help from Anne:

I had more fun than I thought possible doing this, and I understand that it went over fairly well at the con, so all was not lost. If you want to hear me talk about stuff for about 26 minutes in glorious high definition, I've got you covered.

79 thoughts on “Video Q&A Post for Denver Comicon”

  1. Great video. Congrats on Falling Skies Second Watch! As one of your 10 year blog followers, I can say it has been great fun. I can give you a lot of credit for being a leader in social media back before we even knew to call it that. Over the years I appreciate that you stayed honest, even if it sometimes showed your insecurities and flaws. You got hurt when people directed hate at you and you felt inadequate when you failed. We are many years past troubleshooting linux distros together, trying to solve some strange problem and kicking ideas around our small group. You have posted many cool links and many great comments. You introduced me to Felicia Day and her work. Things are really looking up for you. Keep up the great work and thanks for never being a dick.
    Happy Fathers Day!

  2. I was there, Wil. Weirdly enough, I was the volunteer who ran “crowd control” for your sessions. God (or whoever) knows you were there in spirit. We made a LOT of fun of you. (And I’m sure you got our tweets). We missed you. 20,000+ people came to the first Comic Con in the history of Denver. Come next year. We’ll see if we can find you a room, but I can’t promise anything at this point.
    Aaron Douglas gets dibs, though. That guy was awesome.

  3. Great video. Excellent mix of fun and candid questions and answers. Plus, Anne did an awesome job and added a lot of humor and atmosphere from behind the camera.

  4. I loved the point when Anne’s thumb appeared when discussing Scrabble. Made me chuckle quite heartily. :-) It was good to hear your responses to some great questions, I am sure it helped people who watch this video get to know you a little better. Thank you for taking the time to do this for your fans.

  5. i was going to ask you, are you going to try to come to dragon’con this year? i know you went last year, and i didn’t know if you try to go every year or if it’s just a one time thing every once and a while 😀

  6. I love that you do these kinds of things for your fans. But my favorite part, always, is how much you obviously love your boys. I enjoy just about all the work you do, but I always smile the biggest when you are talking about your kids. Thanks for staying true Wil.

  7. Hi, I had never heard of Soul Coughing until you quoted Mike Doughty in this video, so I Googled them. Two days later and I’m hooked. Thanks for that.

  8. Hey Wil! We missed you in Denver but all is forgiven after this great video. Thanks to Anne for her awesome impersonations. I was going to ask you if you have ever played M.U.L.E. and if you knew about the Alpha Colony Kickstarter? They are making a tribute game! I bet you have fond memories of playing it like I do, so I thought I would give you a heads up.
    Trying to be Awesome,

  9. Hey Wil, thanks for sending Colin in your place to Denver CC.  Really wanted to meet you, but Colin was awesome, and signed my ticket to ride board (with “don’t hit the board”).  Look forward to catching you another time (we get Stan next year!).

  10. Awhile back I would have bought this whole “don’t be a dick” act. Unfortunatly I caught your act at the Phoenix comic-con this year, and at “story time” I was still fooled-however odd your little back row entourage did seem to me . You still seemed “genuine”. Alas -the Geek Prom. You came and down to the “pac-man” photo arc with your merry troop fully knowing fans whould expect a “hello” or maybe a photo, but you were there to use your fans for props for your little Star Wars themed pic and even as props (if doned in proper costumes) for your own party . Am I saying you don’t deserve a break or to not be bothered 24/7…..I would have thought nothing had I not heard a man (who by the way I noticed earlier that evening in your story time room) ask you for a pic with his wife to which you responded “That really doesn’t work for me”. He and his wife left with sad faces after which me and my friends did thinking we had been duped. And right after I learned of Sparks McGee! No time time to even enjoy it as a “fan”. Seems like the same old kid from all thhose nasty post tng interview years ago is rearing his ugly head again. Remeber fame is a fickle friend. Enoy it’s flickering before you get snuffed out again.- A former fan

  11. Point being you ditched out on the little guy and I’m sure you will continue to as you see a spark of “fame” ahead-sad

  12. Ah, I recall this night. Allow me to offer my perspective.
    First of all, my friends are not my "entourage". That's an incredibly offensive way to describe my wife, my son, one of my closest friends since high school, and four of my favorite people in the world. You call them an "entourage" and you reduce people who deeply matter to me to nothing more than jerks who want to hang around someone they think is important. I have been lucky enough to identify that type of person in my life and immediately remove them from it.
    The other thing is, I don't say "that doesn't work for me." I don't talk that way. It's rude and condescending, which are two qualities I work very hard to not have in my life. What I said was, "I'm tired, I'm here because my wife wanted to make this silly picture, and I just want to go to sleep now. If I say 'yes' to your request for a photograph, I have to say 'yes' to everyone here, and I'll be here for another 20 or 30 minutes when I really wanted to go to sleep an hour ago."
    I hope you can take a moment and put yourself in my shoes: I worked all day, signing pictures and taking pictures and meeting several thousand people… when I decide that it's time for me to just be a person and go do some fun things with my friends, I don't believe that it is unreasonable for me to expect some understanding when I tell someone, "this isn't a good time to do [thing you want me to do], because then I feel obligated to do it for everyone else who asks me."
    Finally, I am profoundly offended at your suggestion that I "use" anyone for anything. You say you were there at the geek prom, so I'm surprised that you don't recall that I was just sort of standing around to take this picture that was important to my wife and my friends, so I could go to sleep. It was my friend Joel who was asking for props, be it would be fun and cool to do that. As far as I know, everyone who loaned us things was happy to do so. Nobody was "used" and nobody was taken advantage of. You know why I know that? Because my friends and I just don't operate that way. If it's really important to you to project that idea onto me, I doubt I'll change your mind, but I know that simply isn't an accurate description of the way I interact with *anyone.*
    I'm sorry that I let you and your friends down. I try my best to never do that. If you've decided that I'm a horrible person who doesn't live up to his own ideals, I doubt any of this will change your mind. That's okay; it isn't the first time I've run into someone who is determined to catch the "don't be a dick" guy being a dick… but I'm having a very hard time not seeing an attitude of entitlement that doesn't take into account my basic humanity and limitations.

  13. By the way, you “worked” all day? Oh yeah, why did your entorouge get odd front row seats on Sunday in the hall, while all of your “fans” sat there all day to save their seats. The other cast members had family there. Why was your crew more important than, e.g., Lavar’s daughter? Finally, I did see and hear you say what I wrote above. Moreover, I was shocked to hear you say at your “story time” that you told the creator of walking dead that his show wasn’t good enough for you to be in right now, but if he improved it, then you would “consider” doing it. Sounded a lot like “doesn’t work for me” — I guess in your high and mighty world that isn’t being condecending…

  14. Okay. Clearly nothing I say or do is going to satisfy you. I'm sorry I let you down, and I hope you find someone whose work you enjoy who lives up to your expectations.

  15. From the age of 14 to 18, I worked every summer at a little function in St. Louis called the VP fair where countless “celebrities” came and went. They sang, announced, and literally worked their ass off in 100degree heat for over a week bringing joy and happiness to the endless fans.
    They do all this out of the goodness of their hearts and for the love of the fans. They dont HAVE to do this. They dont HAVE to do anything. I for one dont know what is all on Wil’s plate in a day. No one does.
    Wil Wheaton the celebrity, comes second… even fifth to Wil Wheaton the husband, the father, the brother and the son. His true fans know that even Wil needs time for himself or to even relax. I for one want to see more of Wil, but when one bad apple in the bunch wants to get their panties in a wad because they felt slighted, it makes every one of us look bad.
    WWWWD? (What would Wil Wheaton Do?) Well, I for one hope that Wil Wheaton can overlook the rudeness and self absorption of one bad apple and appreciate all of the golden delicious out there that are eager to see more of him. Whether its in film, tv, conventions or even on Tabletop, which I paused to reply here.
    Wil, as a side note, you are pretty freaking awesome. And I am glad to be a fan.

  16. Wil, I understand how certain people can turn great experiences into horrible ones. Sadly, this person is not remembering that you are a human being; not a god, not an immortal, and not beholden to every person on this planet to amuse them like a puppet.
    I would like to direct you to a website of a dear friend of mine. She has written a thank you letter to artists; one which, I think, after reading will reaffirm your faith in people.
    Thank you, for all you have done, and will do.

  17. Umm, I found the whole photo op thing kind of creepy. Kind of like your neighbor coming over and taking a dump on your lawn, for no apparent reason. But, we just couldn’t get out of the line! I didn’t think I could walk past you, that was just rude. So we ( the hubby and me) did our best to fuck it up. We get the pic from Phoenix Comicon about a week later, hands down, one of the best pics of us together! I don’t know what Lilth is going on about, but my hubby is now a huge fan. And we were there for Storytime. Storytime great! Photo ops……kind of creepy.

  18. Wil (I mean “Nicole Bush”)–I never said you were a bad writer. I was amused at story time and I was very amused by the above.

  19. Though I have only recently become a fan after first hearing you on the Nerdist Podcast Live at SDCC 2011 with Matt Smith and Karen Gillan, I have always seen you not as a celebrity, but as more of a role model of sorts, in the fact that you always try and live your life with your wife, family, and friends coming before anything else. I hope you can look past one person getting butt-hurt because you wanted to go to bed rather than pander to their wants and needs, which I think is just unacceptable of any person that considers themselves a fan of anything. You, as well as any other guests at a convention, are human just like the rest of us and though it is nice when we get to interact with you, we all have a responsibility as fans to not overwhelm you more than you already are.
    The sheer fact that you responded to Lilith in a very gentlemanly manner, and even apologized for upsetting other fans, just goes to show that you really do mean well and you just can’t please everyone.
    I hope you continue to do awesome work with everything you have been doing (Absolutely loving Tabletop, btw… my wife and I have bought almost every game that has been featured on the show). I hope you can eventually make it to the Houston area soon, I have plenty of dice for you!

  20. Wil, please don’t let one person get under your skin, especially one who is obviously basking in the attention that they have received by being a jerk.
    I have a good friend who is a public figure who frequently runs into this kind of attention. People who feel a sense of accomplishment when they get a response from their target.
    Bad behavior like this should be ignored, not rewarded.
    Don’t let it get you down or make you feel like “it’s never good enough”. Because it never WILL be good enough, because there will ALWAYS be one in the crowd that feels like you owe them, that your time is never your own, no matter what. That if you dare step into the public eye, you belong to them.
    You just continue being awesome and don’t let that one fan in a thousand get you down.

  21. To do my own paraphrasing: Sesame Street is brought to you today by the letter “T” and the verb “ROLL.”
    Annnnnd…moving on: Thanks for this vid. I enjoyed it a lot. I’ve been feeling the need to visit my people (aka attend a con), but I won’t get that chance until Dragon*Con, so this helped ease my homesickness a bit. Thanks!

  22. Fantastic Q+A video! As someone who would never be able to make it to one of your American appearances, I really loved this slice of what you do at such things. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Dear Wil,
    A young friend of mine who is 8, just finished off her school year, which was overshadowed by a bully who took glee in tearing down this sweet, intelligent, creative creature. She would leave for school skipping, and come home crying. Naturally, her mom was furious and is doing what she can to keep her little girl from getting bullied again in next year’s class. However, the 8 year old has to figure out how to deal with this soul-tearing bullying and get past.
    Mom, who is a wonderful geeky woman, pointed out she needed to be like Harry Potter and invoke her patronus. That this kid was acting like a dementor and feeding off all that’s good in her.
    In this case, dementors can find a way to get at the 40-mumbles. Don’t give this one the satisfaction. Just remember Ryan, Nolan, Anne, the menagerie and the legion of fans who consider you a huge inspiration. You truly help end world suck and you rarely forget to be awesome. Visualize all that, point your wand and summon that patronus.

  24. Funny, the whole Lilith conversation makes me feel infinitely better about the people in my life who misinterpret me and ignore all of my good intentions. This reaction usually provokes the “Fine, I’ll just take my ball and go home” reaction in me, but I must remember that other people understand and appreciate my efforts.

  25. Wil…There is a dick in the house and it ain’t you…Some people can never be satisfied…They spend their lives in an endless state of righteous indignation…It’s too easy for them to wipe out your humanity just because you’re a celebrity…
    I think that no matter how famous or infamous you’ve ever been…You’ve always been human first…And people should keep that in mind when they see you in public…You’re not some semi-sentient rag doll to be hijacked by your fans at anytime…anywhere with no exceptions allowed…You deserve the same respect everyone else deserves.
    Don’t let someone else’s unrealistic expectations ruin your fun…Just be the best Wil that you can be…And that’ll be just fine for your fans…and the people that you love.

  26. The only thing I can add personally is that I met Wil at PAX Prime 2010. I asked for a picture, and he concisely explained that he was there to attend the expo, and would feel obliged to take pictures with everyone. AND THAT MADE PERFECT SENSE. He was still a nice guy and I still appreciated having met him.
    Lilith, I don’t understand your sense of entitlement to other peoples’ time. Do you think that once a person offers some of their time and effort to the public, you are thereafter entitled to ALL of that person, whenever and however you desire? That they can no longer limit their interactions with you?
    The fact is that people are invited to cons because they have done something special and a crowd wants to see them. After they hold up the end of the bargain (whatever that agreement with the con is) you don’t think they deserve SMALL perks while attending that con? Because you were not personally satisfied, and other people voluntarily took a Star Wars themed picture, you’re this enraged?
    There’s a huge difference between being a dick and not being able to give everyone (or let’s be honest, just you Lilith) everything all the time. Imagine if you were famous, Lilith. You do what you can to give some people an enjoyable time. Then, you want to do something to enjoy the con yourself. Can you honestly say that I have a right to your time? That anything you do that doesn’t involve me is you being an asshole?
    I understand you’re just trolling and will feel vindicated by people even responding to you. You’re still a dick.

  27. Loved this video! Thanks for taking time out of your day to answer some fan questions. I absolutely love listening to you and Anne together. (Anne, you are freaking hilarious!) Keep being you!! <3

  28. Don’t fret about the jerk in the room, Wil! I’m sure you’ve already had to deal with your fair share of them and this one will go away just as the others have. If they decide from one miniscule encounter that you are not a person to look up to, then it’s honestly their loss.
    I can’t judge you as a person because I do not know you personally, but I can say you seem like a very honest and down to earth individual who honestly does want to be able to make his fans happy while also being a great husband and father. Nothing should be more important than your family and your personal well being and that’s something that fans should understand. You aren’t just an actor and entertainer, you are a person first and foremost and should be treated with respect and empathy.
    Just keep doing what you do and don’t say you’ll never attend a con again! I’m still looking forward to the day I may be able to afford to go to one that you might be at so I can attend a panel and be able to enjoy your words in person. 😀

  29. Phew and i felt like a dick when I said that QR-code thingie wasn’t good for the health of the internet. I’m “glad” that there’s always a bigger dick next in line.
    Wil, she’s clearly trolling you. Regard it as indirect praise that this is one of the few times trolls make it to your comment section.
    And thanks again for the free content your provide. The Nerdist podcasts, TV show and especially Tabletop were the best things you ever did for me – not diminishing everything you did before that starting with “Stand by Me” but Tabletop and you connecting with @nerdist over that oven mit and that story you told on the cruise about you adopting your son made me feel so extremely warm and fuzzy inside making me have something in both of my eyes… I can not for the life of me understand what she’s writing there.
    You owe us nothing yet you give so much.

  30. I’ve never commented before (though I’ve been reading your blog and books for a few years). I just want to say, don’t let the bastards get you down.
    Maybe think of it this way: You are KILLING IT so hard lately that you’re attracting more attention than usual (I, for instance, see you on regularly when I re-watch episodes of TNG, then on Eureka, AND on Tabletop!). As you well know, more attention usually equals more negative attention from that consistent percentage of the population who insist on bringing others down. You do your best, and most of us can understand that it must be difficult to live constantly under scrutiny.
    As a uni. and high school teacher, my students “evaluate” me every semester. I think I’m a pretty good teacher, and the vast majority of student feedback reflects learning, satisfaction, and even happiness (I have some really wonderful students). But, there are always one or two really negative comments. Every time I read one, I sit there for a while and wonder if I failed. I wonder if I could have changed something to make that person happy or to help them learn more. Sometimes I change my approach for next time, and sometimes there just isn’t anything I can do. But no matter how many great, positive comments I get, that one glaring insult still gets under my skin. It still makes me feel kind of worthless. And this is one comment out of only 100 or so! The scale of your experience is so much larger than that. I think we just need to put those things behind us, and keep them away from our fleshy, soft hearts and up in our tough, logical brains. We need to focus on being the best we can possibly be, and try to feel more sympathy for the offenders than empathy. Our best IS enough, because it has to be until we have time to grow and to become more awesome…and we get a little more awesome all the time! :)
    So, we’re here for you, man, and (one more time) don’t let the bastards get you down! -A fan

  31. I read the “exfan’s” responce and I could not disagree more! One of the biggest reasons I wanted to go to the PhoenixComicon was to see you. I knew that this year I would not be able to do a meet and greet/photo op/autograph but I still couldn’t wait to go see you on a panel. A friend of mine did get to do those things and she couldn’t have been happier, her husband(my best friend), her sister, and her brother in law all said the same thing, “Wil Wheaton was amazing, so nice!.”
    Are you not allowed to have personal time at a convention? You are a fan as well as one of the actors. You have panels, the meet and greets, photo ops, and the autograph sessions for fans, there is no reason you shouldn’t be able to walk the floor or attend one of the events as just a fan yourself. I’m not sure what I’m saying here is making sense but I will continue to very much be a Wil Wheaton fan, to read your blog, to follow you on facebook/twitter/tumblr and be very much thrilled in the thought that next year I will hopefully get to see you again at PhoenixCC.

  32. Wil, you should know better than to feed the trolls! They’re like stray cats – once you show them any attention or toss them a few crumbs, they’ll come back again and again, howling outside your window, spraying your house with their acrid, fetid urine, and generally making life unpleasant. Even a good swift kick only encourages them to lower lows. Best to ignore them and let them wither away and skulk off to their dirty little hovels.

  33. Other people have addressed the reasons for which that seems like a pretty reasonable refusal. I’d just like to add: People never fully succeed in living up to their ideals. They get overloaded, they snap at people, they have bad days. After multiple years of Wil’s advocacy of not being a dick, we now have a person who has come forth with an example of him being maybe a little abrupt in a way that is actually pretty understandable. Frankly, this makes me think that the key inaccuracy in Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure is that the future religion that ends all war will be based on Wil, not on Wyld Stallyns.

  34. Hi Wil,
    First, I want to say thank you for taking the time to do this video. Even those of us who were not going to Denver appreciate the Q&A (BTW, Anne was outstanding!). Now, I don’t want to offend anyone…but when you answered the question about writers you would like to work with and you said Kevin Smith I got ‘girl wood.’ I love Kevin Smith (have you seen Spoilers yet?) and his movies (Dogma is my favorite)! And to have you and Kevin together would be beyond great (IMHO)!!! So – keep up the great work (TableTop and 2nd Watch are dipped in awesomesauce) keep on not being a dick…because you clearly are a great guy.
    Thanks, Wil.

  35. I’ve heard that one of the reasons why LA Kings players like playing in LA is because Los Angeles isn’t a huge hockey town (well, it’s not), and because with Hollywood in close proximity, the populace has kinda gotten used to living around celebrities. Apparently hockey players like being able to go out for dinner with their family and not being mobbed by rabid fans.
    (I remember hearing a story about a couple of players who went out for food together, no one said a word to them, figured that no one recognized them. . . then as they got up to leave, the entire restaurant started chanting, “GO KINGS!”)
    My point, and I do have one, is that people have lives and we should let them live it for a bit when they’re not working.
    Also, Go Kings.

  36. Thanks for the vid — loved it, even though I wasn’t at the con. Also, I think you need to borrow @scalzi’s Mallet of Loving Correction and play some Whac-A-Dick (wait, that doesn’t sound right…).

  37. No, no! You are getting it wrong! Always feed the trolls, because it is fun to watch them get stuffed and then explode.
    Oh wait, no. I’m thinking gremlins. That’s right. Always feed gremlins. After midnight.
    Trust me: I never screw up advice.
    In fact, I might have been the one who advised Lilith to express her fantasies on random websites as part of her 97-step process of reintegrating into society after her abduction by Antarctic waterfowl.
    It seems to be going quite well, don’t you agree?
    PS – If you are in need of surrealist therapy, I only charge six melted clocks and one apple cow per session. My office is the one next to that surly kid’s lemonade stand.

  38. Mark, he couldn’t go, but it would have been pretty funny if everyone mailed him one instead. In heavily wrapped, teeny tiny packages.
    I do wonder something else about the bucket o’ dice, though. Has anyone given up a coveted d7 or d14? Those Zocchi dice are the coolest.
    I vote Dungeon Crawl Classics for a future TableTop, for the dice chain alone!

  39. Wil,
    Ignore this Lilith woman. She sounds the type to be unhappy and slighted over everything. I work at cons all the time every summer and I know how much the celebrities, artists, and everyone involved works. Not everyone is going to be happy and we just can’t please everyone no matter how hard we try. I think you are a great artist and a talented person and you should be allowed your private time and to say when enough is enough. Why do people not understand these things is beyond me.
    Just keep being awesome Mr. Wheaton.

  40. I would like to relay my impressions of Wil. Take it for what you will, but here is my 2 cents worth.
    I have been reading Wil’s blog for a while. I have posted on blog, and even sent him emails from time to time. He has responded to me both here and in email. He had absolutely nothing to gain, but he wrote back anyway, being very helpful, although he has nothing to gain from it.
    He even said a few kind words when he found out I had a friend whose young daughter was fighting for her life. He didn’t have to say anything, but he did. He got nothing out of it, but it meant a lot to my friend, his wife and me that someone as busy and famous as Wil, who didn’t know them from Adam and Eve, would send them words of sympathy.
    I do plan on meeting him some day, and when I do, if he is too busy or tired from spending days with tens of thousands of fans, I will understand. I will just remember that he was the famous guy who took a few minutes out of his day to send his sympathies to my my friends when they were dealing with the all to real fact that they may loose their daughter before she reached double digits. That means more to me than anything he might say or do if I ever meet him face to face, and in my opinion that speaks volumes about the man.

  41. I know he couldn’t go, but he posted that he would have someone there to collect dice and get them to him.
    I saw the pictures posted a while back and I would love to see how much the dice collection as grown.
    LOL. I wonder which one Anne gets more frustrated with. The space taken up by his homebrew equipment, or the space taken up by all the dice.

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