2017 ToyCon + PopLife FanXperience : Of Toys, Celebrities, and DARNA!

Due to some personal matters, I wasn’t able to attend the the inaugural ToyCon + PopLife FanXperience event last year. Thus, when given the opportunity to cover this year’s iteration, I excitedly made trek to the SMX Convention Center at the Mall of Asia, despite an aching ankle.

And I got a nice treat in exchange for the pain.

A Parade of Celebrities

While the Philippine Toys, Hobbies, and Collectibles Convention does have celebrity guests every year, this is only the second time that they take centerstage in the event. That is thanks to ToyCon’s partnership with Pop Life Entertainment, bringing in FanXperience.

Dubbed the “Ultimate FanXperience”, the pop culture collaboration showcased exclusive show merchandise, exhibitions, and, of course, celebrity guests.

For this second installment of FanXperience, the event had an impressive lineup of guests. During Day 2, which served as ToyCon + op Life FanXperience 2017’s grand opening, present during the ribbon cutting ceremony were:

  • Stefan Kapicic (Deadpool’s Colossus)
  • Karen Fukuhara (Katan from Suicide Squad)
  • Kevin McNally (Pirates of the Caribbean’s Joshamee Gibbs)
  • Lindsay McKeon’ (Supernatural’s Tessa the Reaper)
  • Cas Anvar (The voice of Altair in the Assassin’s Creed: Revelations game)
  • Charlie Bewley (Dmitri from Twilight)

Aside from their appearance during the opening ceremonies, the guests also participated in the Meet and Greet event held at at the upper floor of the Convention Center.

Kevin McNally gamely interacting with fans during the opening ceremonies (Photo courtesy of Emerson Sy/AkoSiEmersonSy)

Aside from  the international guests, there were also a bevy of local pop culture celebrities present. Among them were YouTube personality and former DJ Sir Rex Kantatero and popular Sentai/Power Rangers cosplayer Chris Cantada.

Popular cosplayer Chris Cantada

I unexpectedly bumped into Cantada and his troops of Spidermen while they were rehearsing for their skit later in the evening and he happily posed for some quick shots.

Cantada organizing his Spider Horde.

Timzster, one of Cantada’s Spider-horde


Meeting Darna

But what was arguably one of the highlights of the event for for local comic book geeks (and showbiz fans) was the appearance of the latest actress to inherit  local superheroine Darna’s magical stone: Liza Soberano. Soberano is set to portray the iconic Mars Ravelo character in a new Darna movie to be directed by Erik Matti.

To celebrate her appearance in the event, ToyCon  and ABS-CBN, Soberano’s home network, launched a contest on Facebook for the chance of having a Meet and Greet session with her. I joined  the contest just for fun and amusingly ended up being one of the fifteen. winners. Due to time constraints, the Meet and Greet event ended up being a quick photo op. But I did get this great pic with her.

(Photo courtesy of ToyCon PH)

But since this is Darna we are talking about, the franchise came into full force. There was an exhibition of memorabilia, including some of Ravelo’s original drawings and comic pages for the character and his other creations. Continue reading “2017 ToyCon + PopLife FanXperience : Of Toys, Celebrities, and DARNA!”

Treasure Island Hotel’s Marvel Avengers STATION

The  Marvel’s Avengers STATION stands for Scientific Training and Tactical Intelligence Operative Network is the newest exhibit in Treasure Island Hotel in Las Vegas. This is where you get train and become an official Avengers operatives. If you are a Marvel movie fan, you’ll be excited to see this. The exhibit is actually based on the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

My entrance ticket. I got this deal from Groupon!

To access the facility, you need a mobile device (you can download the app or rent the ipod) and the first thing to do is to create your STATION profile and the device will serves as your tour information guide. You can also take photos and print out the collage after the training along with your STATION ID card.


The tour begins with a briefing with Agent Maria Hill. She’ll give you specific instructions on how to use your device and as soon as the door opens, you’re mission is to explore the different major Avenger member areas: Captain America, The Incredible Hulk, Thor and Iron Man.

From your device, you’ll able to hear each information and as you go from room to room you’ll see a pop up message telling you to proceed with the next training mission. At the end of each room, you can answer trivia questions from your device where your scores will tally at the end of the training program.

The Incredible Hulk

The exhibit has actual movie props and you’ll be surprised to see other characters: Black Widow, Agent Coulson, Scarlet Witch, Ant-Man, Falcon and some villains too.




Marvel’s Avengers STATION is open daily from 10 am to 10 pm located inside Treasure Island Hotel, 3300 Las Vegas Blvd South, you can also purchase tickets in advance just go to their official website, stationattraction.com

Backstreet Boys – Larger than life: My Las Vegas Experience

OMG, they’re back again! Yes, that is right! Backstreet Boys announced their own Las Vegas residency and show tickets were almost sold out! The first show started on March 1 at the Axis in Planet Hollywood Resort and Casino (Las Vegas, Nevada). If I am not mistaken BSB will be performing Wednesday, Friday and Saturday in March until June (adding new shows in April and June).

It’s been two decades and a half since I’ve known them and as a fan, as soon as I heard of the news I went online and purchase my tickets during the BSB fan pre-sale and decided that I am going to celebrate my birthday in Vegas! Then, I booked our hotel for 3 days and 2 nights in Planet Hollywood and started to check sale airline tickets in December. We arrived in Vegas on Thursday March 16, a day earlier for their Friday show March 17.

Our hotel – Planet Hollywood

Before their first number, there were footages and photos shown onscreen then we were listening to the remix of BSB background songs until I figured out that they were singing llive! I heard their voices and I can’t wait to see them until the five huge LCD screens floating infront of us turned around and Backstreet Boys started to sing!

Panoramic shot of Axis in Planet Hollywood. Click to enlarge.

Unfortunately, we had a bad experience during the opening number when three girls infront of us blocked our view and occupied the empty seats. They were called out several times and the security approached them. They were debating until the security called her Manager. When the Manager arrived, she was talking to my Mom and they upgraded our seats near VIP area.

AJ, Howie, Nick, Kevin and Brian wore white suits and performed their greatest hits like “Larger than Life,” “The One,” “Get Down,” “Drowning,” ‘Incomplete,” “Quit Playing Games (with my heart),” “Show Me the Meaning of being Lonely,” “I’ll never break your heart,” “Anywhere for you,” “Undone,” “As Long as you love me,” “The Call,” “We’ve Got it Goin’ on,” “All I have to give,” “Shape of my heart,” “I want it that way,” and “Everybody.” Well if I missed some songs I think those were the times that I can’t hear them because the audience were too loud screaming!!!

Howie D performed infront of us (“All I have to give” wherein all members were standing in different seating areas) and He said “Hello” to my Mom. He shook my sister’s hand and I am trying to reach his hand but He just nodded. There was a lady who jumped on the side and the security grabbed her escorted her to the nearest exit (poor girl!). Security was strict, and I liked it!

I’ve been a fan of Backstreet Boys since 1997. I remembered they had a Mall tour in Manila and it was over crowded so the Mall decided to close down the entire Mall. I also attended some of their concerts in Manila (BSB tour minus one + complete members and with NKOTB) and here in St Louis and Chicago.

The show lasted like less than two hours. They thanked everyone for attending the show and its been 24 years we are together as a band hoping to have another 24?

I only recorded few clips of the performances because I wanted to enjoy the whole show. I screamed on some parts (or my sister, lol) so sorry about that, we’re just a fan excited to see BSB!

I heard they are having another show with Florida Georgia Line at the Wrigley Field (Chicago) in August . Let me think about it.

2017 is William Moseley’s Year

Carrie Pilby movie poster

William Moseley is a royalty. He is not of royal bloodline, but has gained recognition for playing such as he has played both a king and a spare heir-turned-crown prince-turned-spare heir.

In case you missed it, since late 2014, there has been a growing interest over the former teen actor who portrayed the young king Peter Pevensie in The Chronicles of Narnia movies.

Moseley as the young King Peter Pevensie in The Chronicles of Narnia movies

Thanks to the E! scripted series, The Royals, William Moseley has now become a certified rising star and a bonafide heartthrob. His character on the show, Prince Liam Henstridge, allowed Moseley to showcase his fine acting chops for three seasons now. The show has been renewed for a fourth season which will start shooting by summer.

In the meantime, Moseley has movies lined up for him this 2017. He stars in Little Mermaid, whose trailer has just been recently released; The Veil, with Latino hunk William Levy; and Carrie Pilby, which will be in Philippine cinemas starting March 29. Moseley plays Cy, a music prodigy, opposite Bel Powley’s titular character Carrie Pilby, an intellectual prodigy herself.

William Moseley as the dashing Prince Liam Henstridge in E!’s The Royals

The movie depicts Carrie’s “struggles to make sense of the world as it relates to morality, relationships, sex and leaving her apartment”. With the movie’s tagline “Live your life before it passes you by”, it makes a very interesting film to watch out for. Carrie Pilby had its world premiere last September at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Yup. Certified hottie William Moseley.
Movie poster for The Veil. Starring William Levy and William Moseley.
Two very hot Williams in one movie.

William Moseley will be flying to Manila to help promote the movie.

Follow William Moseley on Instagram @goodproblemstohave and on Twitter @williammoseley.

Andrea is an Occasional Pastry chef. Occasional Blogger. Full-time Superhero.

Jollibee releases new Pinoy pride jingle for Independence Day

Rachelle Ann Go and Darren Espanto with JollibeeRachelle Ann Go and Darren Espanto performs #PinoyAndProud anthem

World-class talents Rachelle Ann Go and Darren Espanto brought the latest Jollibee anthem “Sarap at Saya” to life.

MANILA – This coming June 12, the country’s number one fast food chain is set to release its latest anthem that is sure to make Filipinos #PinoyAndProud. Titled “Sarap at Saya”, this inspirational song is written for the country’s 118th Independence Day, to remind everyone how joyful it is to be Filipino and to highlight the many qualities that make every Pinoy proud of our beautiful country and unique culture.

Jollibee has consistently introduced generation-defining jingles through its TV commercials over the years. Top hits include the iconic “Beeda ang Saya” and “I Love You Sabado,” which captured the hearts of Pinoys of all ages. The brand’s latest anthem—especially composed for Independence Day—is slated to become another classic.

“Sarap at Saya” redefines Pinoy pride by igniting interest in commemorating the one truly Filipino holiday of the year, and in celebrating Independence Day as one resilient, jolly, and hopeful nation.

Pinoy and Proud!

Emerging international musical titan Rachelle Ann Go, star of the London West End productions of Miss Saigon and Les Miserables, and The Voice Kids Philippines Season 1 runner-up and teen singing sensation Darren Espanto brought the anthem to life with their heartfelt rendition.

The song will be performed live for the first time by Darren joined by The X Factor Philippines season 1 champ KZ Tandingan at the Jollibee #PinoyAndProud: 2016 Independence Day Celebration and Countdown on June 11, 2016 at the Metrotent Convention Center in Pasig.

The music video version, starring Rachelle Ann and Darren, will premiere on local TV and online through the Jollibee Facebook page and on the official Jollibee YouTube channel on June 12.

Catch the performance of other top Pinoy talents Sarah Geronimo, JK Labajo, Elmo Magalona, Spongecola, and Itchyworms during the program that will run from 7 PM all the way to midnight to welcome Independence Day. They will be joined by Jollibee ambassadors Jodi Sta. Maria and the Legaspi family Zoren, Carmina, Mavy, and Cassy.