Let’s get something out of the way upfront. This was technically my first San Diego Comic Con, which our fearless editor-in-chief, Heidi MacDonald, told nearly everyone we came across, in horror. I don’t believe she was horrified because the con wasn’t good; I think it was just because it felt so small, so relaxed. I’ve heard the tales of SDCC regular flavor, as well as seen pictures and videos. SDCC Special Edition wasn’t that.

The legendary Hall H was turned into the Registration space, which felt extremely off. The expo floor didn’t have a lot of interesting vendors, mostly just merchandise, which is fine, but not what was expected, especially after NYCC ’21 had a lot of exhibits and generally interesting thing on its floor. The Artists’ Alley was tiny, almost puny, although the artists that were there had a lot of great and beautiful art; it was just a shame that SDCC Special Edition didn’t feature more artists.

There was no to little news at any of the panels I covered; my beat is TV and film, primarily, and most of the panels about shows and movies were fan run, which meant that the only news given out was secondhand fan information. There was a fun panel on fandom and shipping, and do look out for a Fandom Flames on it next week or so.

Ultimately, the best part of SDCC Special Edition were the conversations and interactions I had with other journalists and some industry professionals. I got the chance to be on Heidi’s regular convention podcast, Four Women in a Hotel Room, except this time it was Four Women in a Convention Center Hallway. I either haven’t been on a podcast in a long time, or I’ve never been one on, so this was an experience I very much enjoyed. I do love to talk.

I left San Diego early Sunday morning, able to switch my train ticket thanks to Amtrak’s fairly lenient change policy. My hostel was okay, if a little weird, and if I ever go back to SDCC, I’ll probably stay in a hotel room. Life is completely strange right now, for everyone, and it doesn’t look like it’ll return to normal, whatever that is, anytime soon. I do hope, however, that SDCC Special Edition isn’t a sign of things to come, as much as I enjoyed parts of it. I would like to have a ball at the real, gigantic thing one of these days.


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