Fandom Connection Spotlight: AJ A.

Sideshow’s goal is to connect you with the characters you love and a community to share your passion with. That’s why we love to hear about how you embrace fandom in your daily life!

We want to feature you and your pop culture story through the Fandom Connection Spotlight, sharing true stories of global geeks just like you! We’ve asked collectors to tell us what pop culture means to them personally, and now we’re highlighting the heartwarming, nostalgia-filled fandom.


Hey there! Please introduce yourself.

I’m AJ A. from Michigan and I have a very wide range of fandoms. I love Star Trek, Star Wars™, Marvel, DC, Dragon Ball, Gundam, most of the major fantasy titles, and some others I’ve probably forgotten about.


Did someone like a family member, friend, or anyone else get you into pop culture?

My connection to geekdom starts with my parents. They have always been into geeky properties. My dad is and has always been big into sci-fi and action-oriented films which steered me to Star Trek, Star Wars, and properties like The Terminator. My mom always tells me stories of how she used to read comics when she was younger and she loved Spider-Man and the X-Men.


What is your earliest geeky memory?

From a very young age I remember watching Star Trek and really getting excited for each episode or movie. One of my earliest connections to Star Trek is when my parents took me to see my great aunt in San Francisco and we visited the same aquarium that they filmed Star Trek IV.

I was rather young at the time, but it was like I was in the movie itself. To my young brain it was larger than life and every time I see that movie I can’t help but draw from my own memories. It will always have a close connection to me. From there I was soon introduced to Star Wars and my geeky way of life expanded very quickly from there.


What are your favorite fandoms?

It’s really hard for me to pick just one property to gush about. Geekiness is so engrained into me, it’s everywhere in my house and my life. From my room of sixth scale figures and statues to my 30 or so Dragon Ball shirts, to the art prints and movie posters on my walls.

I’m always either wearing something geeky or even using something in my kitchen that is geeky. I’ve got a Star Wars slow cooker, a Star Trek pizza cutter, and even mugs and drinkware from Game of Thrones and Harry Potter. My two cats are even named after the Buffy characters Xander and Willow.

Everything I do is either influenced or enhanced by all the geeky properties that I love and I wouldn’t change anything about it.


How do you engage with your fandoms?

I wear, collect, watch, talk, and am influenced by my geekiness. Visitors will be introduced to my collection and I have lengthy conversations about the geeky properties that I love. I’ve had movie marathons and stayed up late for movie, book, and video game releases. If I can fit in a geeky reference somewhere or pick up something unique and geeky I will.


Do you have a favorite pop culture-related life experience?

For me, I would say going to my local comic convention every year. Nothing is better than spending three whole days immersed in the geeky community. I’ve gotten to know local artists who look forward to meeting me every year. I always love the thrill of collectible hunting and never knowing what I may find.

At these shows, I love meeting and having great encounters with celebrities too. I meet as many as eight a year and have had a great time meeting the likes of William Shatner, Tom Welling, and James Marsters. I can’t help but count down the days to next year’s show right after the current one ends. Right after this would be the Renaissance Festival. I dress in garb and have a fantastic time going with friends and family multiple times a year.


Have you ever traveled for a fandom-related reason?

Outside of my local comic con, I haven’t traveled for a geeky reason in a while, but wouldn’t say no if the right event was in the area. I remember going to a Gundam exhibit that was kind of far away about 15 or 20 years ago to check it out. It was really cool and I would be open to doing something like that again.


Anything else you’d like to share?

I’m grateful for all the friends and memories my geeky fandoms have brought into my life. Without them I don’t know where I would be. They rock and I love taking part in them!


For your own chance to be featured in a future Fandom Connection Spotlight, be sure to fill out our survey below or by visiting side.show/fandom to tell us what your fandom means to you! Then, keep an eye out for future Fandom Connection Spotlight blogs for a chance to be featured.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s make that connection!