First, I'd like to state that I was given a ticket to come and be a part of the event. I didn't buy a ticket, and mostly, the faults of what I say are more location issues rather than event issues. So, thank you to those who invited me and let me help out and meet some people. The event as a whole was pretty well done from the outside looking in.
Attending the event was unique. I don't entirely do expos or cons unless I'm a vendor. It's a unique feeling being a part of something rather than exploring as a visitor. I did it for years and moving towards a "business," I just grew accustomed to being a part of it. The added issues of being a ticketed customer were ones that I didn't entirely appreciate. Being that the expo (I assume) mainly has sponsors but also requires people to be there for it to work, I'd personally expect catering a bit more to people attending, as this is who they're doing it for. Especially noticing people flying in from out of the country, it makes sense that people coming in are rightly informed about things.
Let me get this part of the "issues" out of the way. The event location had problems and was highly disorganized on what can be done, what can be brought in, who is in charge, and all that. The first day, they had workers outside handing out 21+ and over wristbands but ultimately couldn't be more helpful outside of that. While waiting in line for about 45 minutes mid-line, I was informed bags aren't allowed in. This notice, which was a voiced issue from half of the people there, stated, "Wasn't warned on the website (event site)." This required people to leave the line, walk to their car, or PAY to check them in and go back to the end of the line, which behind me started to wrap around the back of the parking lot.
The second day had a similar issue. It was pouring rain outside, and many patrons had umbrellas. I took the hint from the second day that more than likely they're not gonna let umbrellas in. Rightly so, I was, as people all the way to the back had to check in or take their umbrellas back to their vehicle and stand in the pouring rain till VIPs were checked in and then GA was let in. Clothes, prints, posters all ruined, heard multiple people pissed about that. Again, nothing to do with the expo but the Hollywood Palladium itself. Hassling with cameras, what's okay and what's not, literally said "YES" after checking cameras, run out to get food and come back and it's "NO." Then see someone without a press pass, with a camera 5 times what my camera costs. Either allow them or don't allow them.
Away from the issues that could've bothered, angered, or made ticket buyers upset, the event was handled quite well and very close-knit. I did see models and actors, unsure of where to be or where they can vend and even unsure how long they could be there. There are a few crew members from X3 that handled it very well, but ultimately it was sort of a free-for-all in the vending/greeting section. No dedicated place where talent can tell their fans WHERE they are. Which even heard fans say they looked for a bit and even walked past some of the people they were looking for. I understand they wanted to cater to every person who BRINGS IN people, but ultimately led to disruptions and issues between some models.
The event was closed in, very intimate in meeting and greeting talent and companies really pushing their brand. I personally was able to reach out to folks I wanted to meet. Talent and brand owners were very approachable, very friendly. I posted briefly on our Twitter how I loved the welcoming feeling to everyone, and models spending tons of time with everyone. Especially including those with special needs, with other paying customers patiently waiting and didn't push, rush step in front of. It was very, very nice to see. The event didn't have many spaces that were for VIPs and if they did, the actors and people hanging out in the VIP section (I assume it was VIP because that's what I was told). The people within that section though didn't stay they mingled with GA on the main floor and talked with fans coming up to them as well. However, I do want to know what the comments were for people who paid to be there only to be greeted with empty sections, at some points.
Interesting add-in: I was upstairs at a point and the upstairs has one public way up for each side and on the other side of the upstairs, it led downstairs but backstage. I didn't know that and thought you could go up and then back down to the main floor. I walked all the way to the end and asked if I could go downstairs this way. The lady (who probably didn't know information aside from what was on her clipboard) looked at my bracelet and said, "Sure, I guess." I shrugged and walked down and realized I was backstage... Probably not the best/safest thing to allow to happen if it were someone else.
The one thing I saw that was kind of, I guess, "poorly done" was the talks with models, actors, and newcomers on stage. I wish there was a spot like the screening room to do these things. I kinda felt bad in a way for some of the people on stage, pouring out themselves answering some fun but still industry-informative questions amongst a loud, roaring crowd who's taking photos and not necessarily all at them, but literally with their backs turned to the stage where a young girl is speaking, probably on stage for the first time.
The expo was an overall good time. It has beaten other expos I've been to horror cons, and comic cons in a way of attendance. However, it is a collage of industry people hodge-podged together. Its major faults weren't the expo itself; it did feel like they did what they could with what was presented. I was going to compare the feeling and flow with another adult expo, but for what it was it was a good experience. Personally, maybe a change of venue for next year, or clearly label what is and isn't allowed on the website and Hollywood Palladium's rules clearly laid out. If it rains again maybe have some collapsible tents to cover the guests. Provide clear bags for the paying customers, as if they have to leave their bag on the floor outside (which I saw a few people say "fuck it"), they leave with something to offset that feeling.
Thanks to all the talent and people who I met and were friendly and gave their time to talk. Take photos, give things away, and hopefully, they'll be at the next one!