[Starting the long walk with some Japanese artwork! Check out his manga!]
Well, another year has gone by. I’m back at Stately Beat Manor on the Hudson, watching the news feed, feeding the capuchin monkeys [ancestors of New York’s organ grinders], cleaning out the freezer, and holding fort until the Beatrix returns from her sojourn out west.
My primary job is to scan the Google News feed, searching for tidbits our intrepid crew might have overlooked while trying to innoculate themselves from the pedesiswhich runs rampant at Comic-Con.
Now, a word of warning… I’m on Eastern Time. San Diego is three hours behind. That means Preview Night doesn’t erupt until 9 PM my time, so there won’t be a flood of celebrity photos, announcements, or emergencies.
Think of today as a day to relax… ease into the data stream… calmly sip your Lipton green tea…
(Oh, and I’ll try to organize the feed, but a lot of it will have no rhyme or reason. Free verse blogging!)
The rules underscore the tension between authenticity and safety, which became a serious issue following the May arrest of a man who gained access to Phoenix Comicon armed with loaded handguns, a shotgun, knife, pepper spray and throwing stars. For the rest of the convention, organizers banned all weapon props, including those made from foam and cardboard. The man, who was wearing body armor, said he wanted to kill “bad police” at the event.
A spokesman for San Diego Comic-Con International said it’s the event’s policy not to discuss security specifics. As of now, it appears the country’s largest convention will kick off Wednesday with its usual costume props guidelines in place: Projectile costume props and weapons must be rendered inoperable. Functional (real) arrows must have their tips removed and be bundled and zip-tied to a quiver. And costume swords must be tied to costumes in such a way that they can’t be drawn.
A balanced article, interviewing numerous cosplayers, representing all sides of weapons and costuming.
The nerd takeover of Hollywood is in full swing. Most of the highest-grossing movies or the buzziest shows on cable or streaming involve dragons, superheroes or mystical warriors, all staples of fantasy novels and comic books. As the costumed hordes prepare to descend July 20-23 on San Diego for Comic-Con, we take a look at the most powerful names in geek culture. These are the men and women making the calls on the most influential franchises in the entertainment space and creating the big- and small-screen adventures that will inspire new generations of fans.
A few unknowns, a lot of actors, but also some writers.
Note: There’s also stuff in Ballroom 20, not to mention all of the other meeting rooms.
Friday is TV day, Saturday is Marvel and DC.
Until Comic-Con fixes this mess, I’d stay away. (Star Wars proved in 2015 that the room can be cleared quickly and orderly.) Also… why wait until 11 AM to start the panels? Hall H has a separate entrance, the fans are lined up overnight… 11-7? Make it 8 AM until Midnight. And YES, clear the rooms, ticket every event, with a standby line for no-shows. With the extra hours, extra time for clearing Hall H can be scheduled. Offer swag to exiting attendees to encourage them to leave.
A great way to get tickets is to create or join a large network of people seeking to get tickets. This way you all join the queue and each time someone comes up, they buy tickets for four people (usually themselves being one of them). Even if you got tickets via someone else, you stay in the queue because you can buy tickets for four others once your number is called. This is the most effective way to ensure you get in. Many Comic-Con hopefuls across the nation do this, using shared spreadsheets updating who got tickets and still needs them.
Hmmm… trickle down tickets?
Later in the article, they talk about line waiting and hall passes for Hall H. On Capitol Hill, since the committee rooms have no assigned seating, lobbyists pay college students and homeless people to wait in line, then tag in five minutes before the doors open. Expect an app next year adapted for Comic-Con.
The annual Comic-Con International kicks off this week in San Diego. Comic-Con makes money selling tickets, renting floor space to vendors and exhibitors, and getting sponsors. GuideStar, which tracks nonprofits, says the convention has seen steady year-over-year revenue growth for the last 17 years, as comic culture has become central to pop culture. The most recent report puts convention revenue at $19 million, which exceeds its expenses. The convention brings tourism dollars to San Diego and has spun off other events in other places.
Annual growth: 15% growth every year for 17 years.
To watch Comic-Con online, Twitter and IGN teamed up to live stream this four-day event. A total of 13 hours of coverage will be seen at comiccon.twitter.com and @IGN. While it’s only an abbreviated part of the event, it’s a chance for those not going to Comic-Con to take in the festivities.
I would hope that Comic-Con International would be taping every panel for archival purposes, even if they had to be restricted. Were I hosting a panel, I would livestream it, and later post it to YouTube.
Miller, the legendary Daredevil and Batman writer-artist who also created Sin City and 300, and DiTerlizzi, the Caldecott Medal-winning illustrator behind The Spiderwick Chronicles, will exchange ideas about the heroes and antiheroes that inhabit their works, the creative and artistic heroes that inspired them as young artists and their responsibility to inspire a new generation of artists.
Two aspects that will be discussed are the precarious nature of childhood and the importance of the hero concept to their art.
I’m hoping for a Wondla movie trilogy. (Oh man… can you picture Frank Miller writing a young female protagonist?)
Ice cream pop-up opens its doors during San Diego Comic-Con® to celebrate upcoming Hearthstone® expansion, Knights of the Frozen Throne
No SDCC badge required
Amidst the sweltering San Diego heat,mortals and the undead alike scream . . . for free ice cream. Blizzard Entertainment today announced the grand opening of Ice Cream Citadel, a pop-up ice cream shop that celebrates Knights of the Frozen Throne™, the upcoming expansion to Hearthstone®, Blizzard’s smash-hit digital card game. No San Diego Comic-Con® badge is required, so all are invited to stop by for a free Frozen Cone as well as a photo op with the Lich King, Lord of the Scourge and ultimate purveyor of death and icy treats.
IMDb, the world’s most popular and authoritative source for movie, TV and celebrity content, today announced that for the second year in a row, writer/director/podcaster Kevin Smith will host three days (July 20-22) of original celebrity video interviews, the IMDboat party, a 90-minute live show (IMDb LIVE at San Diego Comic-Con, Presented by XFINITY)and other exclusive convention coverage aboard the IMDboat (#IMDboat) at San Diego Comic-Con® International 2017. Celebrities who are scheduled to appear include the casts of Arrow, Doctor Who, The Flash, Vikings, The Walking Dead, Preacher and more.
That group of guys demanded that she pose for pictures. At first, she smiled and posed, but when she tried to leave she realized she was surrounded and they weren’t breaking the circle. When she tried to push free, they jostled her around between them. It took two tall guys to get her out. Her wings were broken and she was shaking like a leaf. She left almost directly after and now refuses to attend SDCC. Not one security person intervened, and mobs of people just kept on walking without even blinking. If I hadn’t asked, the two guys who did step in would’ve kept walking too.
It’s been nine years since then, and attending Con still has had its ups and downs. Other Cons have updated their policies when it comes to conduct, but the section on SDCC badges is more detailed than its code of conduct. Girls still get held up against their will and security still just walks by. There are panels on fandom gender dynamics, but you best bring your sense of humor and thick skin if you plan on speaking up. There are more panels intended to appeal to female attendees on the schedule, but many approach the topic(s) through a seriously male-centric lens and confusingly feature mostly male panelists even when kick-ass women are available.
Attendees must respect commonsense rules for public behavior, personal interaction, common courtesy, and respect for private property. Harassing or offensive behavior will not be tolerated. Comic-Con reserves the right to revoke, without refund, the membership and badge of any attendee not in compliance with this policy. Persons finding themselves in a situation where they feel their safety is at risk or who become aware of an attendee not in compliance with this policy should immediately locate the nearest member of security, or staff member, so that the matter can be handled in an expeditious manner.
The Comic-Con Show Office is located in the lobby of Hall C of the San Diego Convention Center. During show hours you can always find a Comic-Con staff member or security guard at the Show Office. Please stop by there if you have any questions or concerns.
Whether you’re en route to the convention center or taking a break while you’re on site, we want you to be stoked and ready to face the madness. What better way than with some of the songs we all love?
Our playlist includes songs from famous superhero movies, songs from fan-favorite television shows and songs we crowd-sourced from nerds just like you. Many are even specific to this year and previous years’ show line-ups, including one by the Black Eyed Peas who are celebrating their new graphic novel in a panel on Friday.
Smart City Networks, which oversees telecommunication services for the San Diego center, announced this week that it has completed a new antenna system that is designed to significantly increase both cell service and overall capacity.
The work involved installing throughout the center hundreds of miniature antennas that connect to the networks of different cellular carriers, including AT&T and T-Mobile. The new system, says Smart City, reduces gaps in coverage created by steel or concrete pillars and other architectural features that can interfere with the signal between the phone and the devices receiving the messages.
The hope is that the revamped system will eliminate dead spots and make for a more dependable network, the company says.
For those roaming around downtown during Comic-Con, there will be plenty of free WiFi, thanks to an agreement between Cox Communications and the city of San Diego.
Throughout downtown, Cox will have more than 600 hotspots that will be free to use through Monday. A complete list of hotspots can be found online at www.cox.com/hotspots. They can be accessed by selecting the “FreeCoxWiFi” wireless network on WiFi-enabled devices when at a Cox hotspot.
Star Trek: Discovery will also host a gallery takeover at the Michael J. Wolf Fine Arts Gallery (363 Fifth Avenue, San Diego), where fans can interact with the captain’s chair from the U.S.S. Discoveryalong with props and costumes taken directly from set. Each day, 1,000 fans will also be eligible to receive a limited-edition Star Trek: Discovery poster (see examples above).
The exhibit runs Thursday, July 20 through Sunday, July 23, and does not require a badge for entry.
In addition, from Thursday, July 20 through Sunday, July 23, CBS will offer free rides throughout San Diego’s Gaslamp District in pedicabs designed to resemble the U.S.S. Discovery’s captain’s chair.
Hasbro is now offering a “Star Wars” Monopoly set for sale in the U.S. that includes the female character Rey after an uproar that started 18 months ago with an online plea by an 8-year-old girl to include her.
The company began selling the set on its website a few days after The Associated Press reported Rey fans were still waiting to buy Monopoly sets that included the main character of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” after Hasbro promised in January 2016 to sell one.
Workplace discrimination has met its match in June Rivas. She recently launched a bold legal battle against her boss, who had referred to Rivas’ head scarf and ponytail as “unprofessional,” despite an explicitly stated lack of a dress code in their employment contract. When Rivas filed a complaint for harassment, her boss issued a memo to create a new set of rules governing employee appearance, forbidding “cultural head wraps” as well as visible straps, sandals, hats, lace, and more. Rivas is complying with the regulations—but not in the way her manager had likely expected.
Championing her prerogative to express herself as she sees fit, Rivas now turns up at work everyday in impressive cosplay. Each outfit is technically allowed—after all, the guidelines say nothing about wigs, capes, or colored contacts. In the meantime, she’s waiting for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to investigate the situation.
“I have about 50 [characters] that I’ve already developed that I haven’t shown to anybody,” he said. “And someday I will. But, there’s no need for me, really, to do anymore now.” Making one more confession, he said, “One of them [the characters] has a superpower that you’ve never seen before. They all have new superpowers, but I can’t tell you. I’m sorry!”
He then hosted his 95th birthday party that night!
At that meeting, Kirby agreed to attend their first convention, and also gave the group a crucial piece of advice. They’d been debating whether to limit the convention to comic books or to take a more expansive view to fandom. Kirby told them that they should include everything that fans like, and that “it would be a lot more fun and a richer experience if we included these other things, like film and science fiction and whatnot,” remembers Towry. This advice is one of the unique factors that has kept Comic-Con flexible and diverse over the years: instead of being focused on one thing, it’s focus is really on the idea of fandom itself.
If you’re heading out to Comic-Con tomorrow, you can stop by the BAIT booth (#5146) to check out the Hello Kitty ♥ Pac-Man merchandise that’s have on display. The items up for grabs will include t-shirts, hats, pins, tote bags, and socks. The main attraction, however, will probably be the figure set that “blends the classic arcade pixelated Pac-Man look with the supercute iconography of Hello Kitty.”
BAIT will also be on hand at New York City Comic-Con in October with largely the same line up of merchandise. It’s there that it will debut new designs in the Hello Kitty ♥ Pac-Man figure set, though at this point, neither Bandai Namco nor Hello Kitty owner Sanrio have shared any images of these figure sets.
In any case, for the rest of us, there’s also a Hello Kitty ♥ Pac-Man crossover game going live on the Google Play Store and iOS App Store today. This new title pulls Hello Kitty into the world of Pac-Man, with a number of Hello Kitty-inspired levels and power ups. You can have a look at the game in action with the trailer below.
And to take us out… Whitney Avalon stars in “Comic Con: The Musical”!