San Diego Comic Convention or SDCC is upon us, the madness begins this week on July 8th. I’ve been attending this thing for decades and every year it gets bigger. The last few years there have been rumblings that SDCC would move in order to find a bigger venue. I personally cannot imagine this event anywhere else, and I’m probably not alone in that.
I have something of a love-hate relationship with SDCC. Long lines, interminable waiting, gigantic crowds. I had a writer friend write to me, “what kind of dummy would pay $200 to go to a circus?” Guess you’re reading it. I’m that kind of dummy. I love some of the panels, that you simply can’t get anywhere else.
I’ve grown old with Mark Evanier who is a fixture at SDCC. I don’t know him personally, but I appreciate his wit, and his vast experience in so many creative arenas. His buddy Sergio Aragonés who did the gutter drawings in Mad magazine and Groo is still an amazing artist. See the panel below which is just a tiny example of his clever art. You can stare at these things for minutes getting all the jokes and jabs contained in the intricacy. (Do a search on the web, or pick up his comics and be amazed.)
All I can say is that con is geek 101, the central bucket on the nerd/geek bucket list. I’m sad to report that yes, one year I stood in the line to see the Firefly panel (6 hours), only to have the doors close just before we got in. I don’t exactly know what kind of brain damage I have, because I keep going back for more abuse.
Perhaps, it’s just the energy in the air. You see movie stars at this thing. I was walking by a booth one year and Jean-Claude Van Dam was there with his kid. Not as attraction mind you, he was just attending the con!
Thinking of Hollywood, we saw the cast of Big Bang Theory at con before the show even aired. They previewed the show at SDCC to gauge the audience appeal. The audience really liked it and I suppose history was made. The periodic references to SDCC in Big Bang Theory always make me smile, especially knowing that they did their early screenings there.
I don’t know if I really have anything original to bring to the topic of con. I first started attending in my teens. Decades later I still can find the energy to go. I guess there’s still a kid left in me yet.