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  • Andréa Agosto

San Diego Comic Con Level Noob


For years I've wanted to go to San Diego Comic Con, also referred to as, the big one, Geek Mecca, and so on and so forth...

This year I was fortunate enough to secure a one day pass on Saturday July 26, 2014.

I. Was. Stoked.

After checking my registration pass, however, I was a little confused. Basically there was some misinformation on how, when and where to pick up the badges largely due to what I assume was a typo. My significant other (SO) and I chanced it anyway and went Friday. We pointed out the error and the staff was more than willing to help us get our badges and send us on our way. We also got a pretty sweet bag as well as guides and maps to the event.

The next day, the big day...we got a later start than I was anticipating, but still arrived there a little before 9 am.

I knew exactly what I wanted to do, Comic Con, however, had other plans for us.

I rushed upstairs to one of the Ballrooms where I knew the Once Upon a Time cast would be. After some more confusion, I found out the line had started in a tent outside and was closed off. Defeated, I sat in the corner with my SO and nommed on Auntie Anne's pretzels. We then wandered to the exhibit hall. I was not prepared. The floor was massive and filled with many talented artists, amazing merch and elaborate costumes.

There were booths of people I didn't even know were coming! I was fortunate enough to stumble upon Robert Picardo (the Doctor/Emergency Medical Hologram on Star Trek: Voyager). He was very nice, told me I had a beautiful smile and asked my SO to take a photo of us and then posted it to Twitter (the entry's photo is a screenshot of the post). I was star struck, lame to some, but cool to me. It was a person I had grown up watching on TV with my father. The Trekkie doesn't fall far from the starship. ;)

The lines in the exhibit hall were not directed well. There was just a lack of communication and it made it nearly impossible to figure out what lines were for which signing or event. In the words of my SO, "They might as well call it Line Con."

Working our way through the lines, we tried to figure out where the Once Upon A Time autograph line was. I stood in the middle of the path and was just standing there like a total noob when I saw Robert Carlyle (Mr. Gold in the series) and Emilie de Ravin (Belle) pass right by me. All I did was stand and point. For...shame. My SO had no idea what I was talking about or why I was so excited, but he stayed by my side and was incredibly patient with my random Geek-outs.

I stopped near the bathrooms because my SO needed a potty break. While waiting for him, a couple of black suits started parting the crowds and all of a sudden Sean Astin (Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Rudy) was within two feet of me. Luckily this time, I didn't blank. I pulled out my camera and snapped a few pics. I even managed to get a shot of Orlando Bloom (Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Pirates of the Caribbean) as he walked down the stairs to the signing event.

After walking nearly two-thirds of the exhibit hall, we headed out to Horton Grand Theater to see The Nerdist panel. Matt Mira (James Bonding), Gil Letelier (The Mutant Season), Jonah Ray (Jonah Raydio), Janet Varney (JV Club), Dave Ross (Terrified), Ben Blacker and Ben Acker (Adventure Hour), and Sandra Daugherty (Sex Nerd Sandra) all gathered on stage (Dave Ross was a little late). Their dynamic was amazing! Considering the fact that Gil is only eleven years old, he held his own. They were hilarious, quick-witted and great to listen to. I’m really happy that my SO suggested this panel. Since this panel didn’t have what most people considered A-listers, the line was relatively short and we got great seats. It was the most relaxing and maybe even the most enjoyable part of the convention for me.

After the panel, we returned to the exhibit hall where we tried to remember where we left off in order to continue looking at booths we hadn’t yet seen. After a few frivolous purchases at the COPIC store, Furry-Feline Creatives and David's Doodles, we headed over to the XBOX lounge. It was massive, and of course, green. There was a lot to look at and many games to play. I’m excited about the free download of Killer Instinct on XBOX One.

For those who have never been to San Diego Comic Con I do Suggest the following:

  1. Get your badge early! The line to pick up badges the day of was insanely massive and I pranced on by those solemnly waiting...and then felt guilty for aforementioned prancing.

  2. Plan ahead. Try your best to plan your day around the event you want to attend. Make sure to leave ample time to wait in line and get to your destination.

  3. Find the Event Staff. The event staff are the ones in the know when it comes to where the lines begin and end. The sooner you find one near the panel or event you want to attend, the better.

  4. Do NOT leave your Comic Con Bag at home! If you picked up your badge early and they give you a bag, bring that back with you. You're gonna need somewhere to store your merch and free stuff.

  5. Wear comfy shoes...if you can. San Diego Comic Con is a sprawling event and you will be on your feet for a very long time. To the cosplayers who wear heels or some other sort of not typically comfortable footwear, you are braver and stronger than I.

After a twelve-hour day, all in all this was a fun, crazy and amazing experience. I’m so glad I went, and with my new knowledge of the convention, I’m looking forward to next year and not being a total noob.

For photos of the convention check here: http://andreanagosto.tumblr.com

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