Every year thousands of dedicated comic book fans descend on San Diego for the biggest comic book convention in the world. Those core comic fans are then joined by movie and TV fans, gaming fans, collectors, and popular culture fans. That makes this event a perfect place for movie studios to test out their new shows, thank the fans, and promote the hell out of everything.
I have been a comic book fan since I was a kid, and started going to the Comic Con since the early 1980’s. I was excited to meet the creators of the comics I read. I still remember standing in line to meet Mike Grell and have him sign my copies of Green Arrow: Longbow Hunters back in 1988. It was a real thrill. You can still do that at the Artist Alley section of the convention floor. For example here are two of the artists (David Baron and Alex Sinclair) that I am friends with at their tables.
These guys have art for sale, will sign comics and time permitting, they will talk comics. For me, this is one of the best things about the convention. The problem is that the artist alley section of the convention seems to be shrinking. The floor real estate at the convention center is limited and things like the art auction have been removed to make space for computer gaming and movie studio booths that look more like movie sets. So I fear that the artist alley might find itself gone one of these year.
Seriously, the Walking Dead booth was way over the top and took up a serious amount of real estate, but at least it was based on a comic book (and a hit TV show).
The San Diego Comic Con runs officially starts on Thursday morning but there is a preview night where the pros, press, vendors and select number of attendees can get in to the convention on Wednesday night. This Preview Night has grown over the years and now feels more crowded than ever. The line to pick up credentials ran the full length of the convention center and while it did move rather quickly, it was still longer than anything I have seen in the past.
Once in the convention, it seems that some of the exhibitors are still reusing the same props as previous years giving the whole convention a weird sense of deja vu. I know I have seen this Hulk before.
In preparation of the large crowds, the San Diego Fire Marshall posted the following signs all around the convention center.
It didn’t say anything about leaning against the wall….
One of the coolest parts of the Comic Con are all the people who dress in costumes. They don’t just show up on Saturday or just for the Masquerade, they are there from the preview night till the end of Sunday.
And there are Zombies… there are always Zombies.
Thursday morning found me not at the Convention center, but at a hotel ballroom miles away covering the Headless Horsemen getting ready to invade the convention promoting the new FOX TV show Sleepy Hollow. We were joined by Orlando Jones, one of the stars for the show and a FOX video crew working on behind the scenes footage.
At some point, photographer Christy Radecic handed Orlando one of the prop axes (heavy and sharp) which the Fox crew thought would make a great microphone. Worked for me.
Next up…. photographing the FOX/FX press rooms, booth signings and panels for Invision/AP