Comic fans, cosplayers, and nerds descended upon the Gas Lamp District of San Diego in droves this past week for the annual Comic Con show. SDCC is known as the largest comic convention and happens every year in July since 2003. This show has fans vying for passes each year, instantly selling out the very day passes become available. This was my sixth year in a row to attend the awesome show, and each year is a new experience. As the show has grown, so have the crowds and their expectations. Filled with panels, previews, and celebrities, Comic Con can be very overwhelming yet incredible.
As I picked up my passes on Tuesday evening, I was excited and curious to see what the crowds would be like this year. For the first time, the main road outside of the convention center was closed to all traffic except emergency vehicles and shuttles. While we are used to the first couple of blocks being shut down for the festival atmosphere the con brings, convention attendees were required to have their pass or their paperwork in order to step onto convention center grounds. This was wonderful! While I was a bit disappointed to not see the droves of cosplayers outside who often don’t have passes, it was such a relief to be able to walk outside the event without the area being overcrowded with people just wanting photos.
With my access to preview night, day one of the show for me was Wednesday night. My past experience with Wednesday night has always been positive, until now. Usually the crowd is more mellow, less people, and maybe even some celebrity sightings as they check out the show floor for themselves. This year was very different. The hall was packed! Preview night actually looked like a Thursday night/Friday morning crowd. I immediately knew this was going to be a sign of what to expect for the rest of my week. Since it was so busy, I decided to load up on items that would be harder to find as the con went on. I scored an XBOX exclusive Fallout 76 T shirt which I was quite pleased with.
As I hit the show on Thursday, I decided to go early, shop, and go solo. While I’m usually with friends, this was the first time I walked the floor alone and I must say I enjoyed it. Not having anyone to answer to, I was able to stand in lanes, get gear, and check out displays on my own time. As I was slowly wandering the floor, I ran in to a buddy of mine that I only see at shows. That is one of my favorite things about SDCC. We chatted for a bit, and I moved on to see what else the show had to offer. While going alone can be fun, it can also be a hit to your wallet! I spent more cash on my own, than the entire weekend with friends. It was awesome getting my goodies, but I also realized how financially dangerous it can be. I decided to save myself and leave the show after just a few hours.
Since I knew I would be spending the weekend at the convention, I decided to skip Friday, get some work done, and rest up for the weekend. My friends and I were at the con Saturday morning nice and early, and it didn’t disappoint. We spent the day checking out every booth, and every Funko POPs stand in the show. I ended up leaving with 16 POPs over the entire con and even turned my friend into a new addict! As he would help me find pops on my list, we’d spot new ones and get sucked in. Riverdale pops were definitely on my list., but he was stoked with his Kurt Cobain find. Scoring con exclusive pops is often impossible, so I never bother trying to get a ticket to actually buy from Funko Pop because the system is bullshit. You see toy dealers leaving with massive bags, and we all know they’re just going to mark them up online. It’s really cute how inexperienced SDCC friends ask me to grab exclusive goods for them. I laugh. I can’t even get them for myself.
Some of my favorite sights of the show included a DeadPool stage. You know those silly mechanical shows with the singing Chuck E Cheese? Well it seemed as if the DeadPool marketing peeps stole an entire set up, and put an automated DeadPool front and center. Singing Dolly Parton’s 9 to 5, crowds circled around the stage to enjoy the show. DeadPool also came through covering our asses, literally. Every bathroom was loaded up with DeadPool toilet seat covers. I don’t think I’ve ever been so comfortable on a man’s face. This ploy also earned them a ton of Instagram posts. What a brilliant idea! I may or may not have snagged some of the seat covers. SSSHHHHHHH. Don’t tell.
All in all, SDCC 2018 was great. I do feel like the con sold way more tickets than necessary, and I was disappointed that there really wasn’t more promotion from some of my favorite shows. Since the con seems to be all about everything but comics now, I’m not really sure what the future holds. The amount of cosplayers was less than any year in the past, so it’s seems as if the rumors are true. The die hard comic book fans and cosplayers are being replaced by newer con goers looking for their main stream fix. It definitely makes me appreciate the smaller comic cons that much more.
Enjoy our take from the show in our photos below and leave us a comment about SDCC 2018!