If you’re a die-hard horror fan like myself, you would probably jump at the chance to hang out with icons such as Tobin Bell, Lisa and Louise Burns, Sid Haig and Joe Bob Briggs. I did that very thing the past weekend and enjoyed the hell out of it. I have been an avid convention goer for the past ten years and each year they seem to get bigger and more gratifying. One thing that the Midwest brings are the best horror conventions around. You will get your money’s worth guaranteed. With that being said Indianapolis may seem like an odd place to host such an event, but this is the second time I have been graced with the wonderful macabre in this city, and will forever be one of my favorite conventions to date.
Days Of The Dead is an established horror convention that not only brings actors of the horror genre, but also artists, television celebrities, wrestlers and anything you can name in the entertainment industry. This year brought some familiar faces from the Rob Zombie Films (Devils Rejects/House of 1000 Corpses), The Shining, Friday the 13TH, Cabin Fever, and Saw. If you can imagine walking down the hallway in the Stanley Hotel with The Shining twins, Jigsaw and Captain Spaulding waiting for your entrance, then you indeed have entered Days of the Dead. With the abundance of celebrity booths, vendors, and panels, it’s hard to get bored. I had the pleasure of catching a photo op with Sid Haig at the beginning of the convention and was ultimately a fan boy moment. This was the last time that Sid would be wearing the Captain Spaulding clown makeup and I had to jump at the opportunity to get a picture with him.
Further down the celebrity line, I ran into some other familiar faces and had to take some pictures. Also, there was quite the horror cosplay following throughout the three days, many of which were really well done. Being the huge Stanley Kubrick fan that I am, I had to make a special stop by Lisa and Louise Burns table to get a picture and say thank you for ruining my childhood. They were both kind hearted woman that had nothing but nice things to say about Mr. Kubrick and the filming experience in The Shining. Not to mention it was pretty surreal sharing a smoke with them outside and thinking to myself “holy shit, these are the Grady Twins right in front of me.”
Jigsaw himself, Tobin Bell, was in good spirits every time I ran into him and did a special photo op with fans on Saturday. I ran into him in the men’s bathroom of all places and of course asked the appropriate question “will there be more Saw films?” He responded perfectly with “let’s play a game.” Hopefully that means we will have something in the near future.
As a kid growing up in the Midwest, there were two ways I learned around horror movies:
1) MonsterVision on TNT with Joe Bob Briggs
2) Renting VHS tapes at the local video store
Both of which were at Days of the Dead and I was in nerd heaven. Joe Bob Briggs had a panel on Saturday and was quite entertaining. Joe Bob still has that sarcastic and ornery southern humor we grew to love in the 90s. It was outstanding to see him in person with that same level of enthusiasm.
This was the second Days of the Dead I have attended and loved every second of it! It seems each one I attend gets better and better with more celebrities, contests and surprises. It doesn’t matter if you are a die hard horror fan like myself or a person that has never seen a horror film, there’s plenty of entertainment for everyone. I have grown to know many people around the convention circuit over the past ten years and every time I run into them at these events, it’s like a family more than a friendship. Whatever your taste buds desire, Days of the Dead is one of the best horror conventions touring the United States today. You should definitely check it out before it’s too late!
To all my convention friends, I will see you all at Days of the Dead Chicago in November.
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