Every year fans of movies, television shows, comics, and more all gather to one place: Comic Con. Comic Con is a large annual convention that takes place in San Diego, California, and for 40 years it has been the gathering point for fandoms across the pop culture spectrum.
As one of the most highly anticipated events of the year for many people across the country, Comic Con has been able to attract not only comic book lovers but people of other interests as well. Vendors highlight everything to do with comic books, including the movies, shirts, and clothing associated with comic book characters, action figures, and much more.
Attending Comic Con
The convention takes place at the San Diego Convention Center and hosts over 150,000 people annually. To access the event you must purchase a pass, which can range from giving you access to all four days to just one, based on your preference and budget.
The passes are known to sell out within just a few hours, but for the lucky few who are able to purchase one, they are able to attend panels with their favorite celebrities, watch previews for upcoming movies, and bask in an atmosphere unlike any other.
Hotels are booked soon after passes go on sale, so participants need to plan ahead. The perks of attending include freebies, exclusive items, and content, and the opportunity to meet and greet some of the actors of your favorite shows and movies.
What to Do at Comic Con
About two weeks prior, an itinerary is released detailing every panel and feature that will be going on during the four-day event. This gives participants the opportunity to create a plan of action so the long wait in line will be worthwhile.
Panels are some of the most popular features of Comic Con, and often feature key players from television shows or movies, such as The Walking Dead or Breaking Bad, which have both hosted panels in the past.
In addition to the panels, there is a large hall dedicated solely to exhibitors who sell figures, memorabilia, exclusives, and other items related to nearly every fandom. Food is available at the convention and is similar to that of a sporting event.
People Who Attend
If you are attending Comic Con for the first time, you may be surprised at the number of people dressed in costume. At the very least, most wear a t-shirt with their favorite character or movie saying on it. Familiar characters fill the halls of the venue to represent their favorite fandoms.
Many of the Comic Con attendees will choose to cosplay (a combination of the words “costume” and “play”) as characters from a movie or television show that is recognizable to the public. Costume quality can range from store bought to homemade, but each one is spectacular in its own way.
If you want to partake in expressing your favorite comic book or movie character without the added work of putting together a costume, another alternative that is frequently seen at the convention is simply wearing a shirt with the logo or visage of your favorite characters.
Outside the Convention
Comic Con has a lot to do inside the convention center, but there are wide varieties of events that go on in accordance with the event in downtown San Diego as well. Independent panels, concerts, and comedy acts take place downtown for the attendees.
Popular movie studios and magazines take this opportunity to throw extravagant parties, often with celebrities, for a select few who make the invite-only guest list.
Other offerings of downtown include bars and restaurants offering enticing food options, as well as deals that are exclusive to those who hold a pass to the convention.
How to Get the Most of the Experience
It is no secret that Comic Con is a huge event, and it can be overwhelming, especially for the rookie participant. Attendees can have a once in a lifetime experience if they take the time to make a plan of action, and recognize that they may not get to see everything.
It is important to prioritize what you want to see and account for the inevitable long lines. Do not let one missed event ruin your time at Comic Con, because there is so much more to see and do.
It is also important to set a budget. Comic Con offers so much merchandise representing your favorite shows and characters that it may be difficult to bypass a purchase. Last, take your time and enjoy the convention, its atmosphere, the exhibitions, the celebrities, and everything else on offer. It is truly an event that cannot be experienced any other place, and you are a part of it.