Sunday, October 31, 2010

San Diego Comic Con 2010: Episode XII

Cast members of Glee

On Sunday, the final day of Comic Con began with Ballroom 20. Here, we saw Smallville (which was particularly special as this was the final season), Supernatural, American Dad, and Glee! Each of the panels was great, and while I am not a huge fan of Smallville or Supernatural, it was a real treat to sit there with a couple of thousand people who were screaming and vibrating over how excited they were for these shows. It made it just that much more memorable!
Like minded individual!

Following the Sunday panel, which was the last of the convention, we moseyed over to the swag room. The place was located outside the convention center at the Marriott down the street north from the convention center. On a side note, the San Diego Comic Con was being filmed that year by Morgan Spurlock for his next documentary, tentatively entitled: Comic Con Episode IV: A Fan’s Hope. I mention this because as we were walking through the Marriott we came across a room with multiple signs stating that filming and editing was in process in that area, so those walking past were to remain quiet. We were already aware that Spurlock was filming and although we remained vigilant we never did see him, but perhaps saw his film crews on a multiple occasions. Getting back to the swag room, we walked through a maze inside the Marriott and finally came to a small room where people were lined up against the wall with boxes of free swag behind them. Throughout the convention tickets were provided at random panels. These were not given to everyone either as they were limited. I had wanted to redeem the tickets earlier as the swag was a first-come-first-served basis and they did not have enough for everyone with a ticket. As the room closes at around 5, and it was located away from the convention center, we decided to wait till the last day when we would not miss too much while retrieving our swag. This is probably the best decision as you do not attend Comic Con for the swag but instead for the experience of panels and whatnot. What we got reaffirmed our initial suspicions of the swag as well. We figured the swag would probably consist of buttons and posters, and we were not disappointed. The buttons were cool but would not have been worth missing a panel for. I met some people that were obsessed with the swag, but it can be difficult to find the spots where it is given out, and sometimes the swag is given to you directly. Some of this swag is supposed to be pretty sweet. Not mentioned earlier was that previous to Guillermo del Toro taking stage, I had been given a card with ‘999’ printed on it. This card was to be redeemed for a limited edition print of the Haunted Mansion, a movie to be directed by Toro, and it would be autographed by the man himself when you arrived to pick it up. However, the rub is that they do not say what these cards or tickets are for. You do not find this out until you redeem them. I am glad I stayed in the panel as there were a lot of celebrities that I got to see, but the poster and meet with Toro would have also been nice. The point is that you have to decide what you want and realize that the ticket or card could be for something like a cheap poster or button, or an exclusive meet and greet, although if you receive a card that no one else around you was given, then it might be for something much more than a button and worthwhile going to.

Warner Bros. area on the
main hall floor.

The main floor remained open when the panels ended. This is a great time to walk around and visit the vendors you may have walked past previously. There are many deals to be had with the end of the convention as the vendors would rather sell their stuff cheap than have to transport it back to where it came from. The downside is that many of the comic creators have either already left or are incredibly tired of a busy 4-5 days. If you know of a few vendors that had wares that previously piqued your interest, go there sometime around 1-2 hours remaining in the day and make them an offer. I made off with a few good deals, but it was a mad house, so beware. The best deal was to be found at the Dark Horse Comics booth where they gave away all of their single issue comics away for free and everything else was 50% off.

On a somewhat separate note, do not try to carry too many things in the free bag Comic Con gives you when first picking up your passes. The shoulder bag may appear large, but the straps are NOT strong. As I had grabbed a metric ass-load (yes, that is a measurement) of comics and stashed them in the shoulder bag, it quickly broke when exiting the convention center. Make sure to bring a more trustworthy messenger bag or back pack. Especially one with a number of pockets that can be used for food, drinks, and keeping certain things separate like comics from pointy toys!

Finally, over the speakers came a resigned voice stating that the Comic Con 2010 was over. It was amazing to be in a giant building with thousands and thousands of like minded individuals around you that all moaned simultaneously. Despite this, everyone remained courteous, though there were a few exceptions of people frantically trying to buy up various pieces of merchandize. My wife and I slowly exited the building, and although I was sad, I was also completely content with the fact that I finally made it to the San Diego Comic Con. It is the world’s largest comic book convention, and has grown into more of a cornucopia of pop culture, catering to those who have cherished what is deemed geeky and unfashionable, but has recently become trendy with TV shows like the Big Bang Theory. My final comment and recommendation for anyone going to Comic Con is that enter those doors knowing that you will not experience everything, but be content with what you do experience. This is one of the truly magnificent features of the convention; everyone has a truly unique experience no matter what panel you go to, what event you score tickets to, who you may run into, or what you may buy. However that being said, make sure to experience as much as you can!
Comic Con was everywhere! Even a
statue got into it!

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