July 16, 2010

My first SDCC

I was cleaning out a closet a few weeks ago, and I found a Comic-Con bag full of programs and flyers from my first SDCC in 2006.  Yeah, I don't clean out closets very often.

I sort of fell into going.  Around the end of June, a Battlestar Galactica community that I stalked in those days put up an announcement that there would be a panel at Comic-Con.  The panel guests included Edward James Olmos (Cmdr Adama), James Callis (Baltar), Lucy Lawless (D'eanna Biers/#3), Aaron Douglas (Chief Tyrol), Ron Moore, and David Eick.  I mean, come on.  How could I pass that up?  I had heard of Comic-Con in a very vague way, but I didn't know exactly what it was.  I was going to be in Los Angeles by chance that weekend anyways.  I bought a Friday single day membership on July 7th.  JULY 7th people!  And there were still plenty of tickets left.  Hell, I even think that might have been the last year you could buy memberships on site.

I was unprepared in every way possible.  I didn't look up information on parking or what I could find in the exhibit hall or anything about other panels.  I barely remembered to print my registration email.  I parked a good mile away from the convention center, and of course, the heat that year was brutal.  Besides the BSG panel, which was worth it all, I stumbled into a Star Wars panel by accident.  It was about the model makers and sculptors that were going to be featured in a new book.

I wandered the exhibit hall with what had to be an expression of dumbstruck awe.  The only other convention I'd attended before that was Origins, a gaming con in Ohio.  It is tiny in comparison.  The press of people, the constant shoving of things into your hands, the giant studio booths...  I don't think I ever really found my feet that day.  I stumbled along and just tried to absorb everything I could.  I tried to be courteous and not run into people, but at some point I realized it was a futile effort.  I let the crowd sweep me along.

That first trip, all I saw was the big picture.  I couldn't separate out details, and actually without planning, I barely noticed the details were there.  I know had a great time that day, but I couldn't really tell you many specifics.  And that's okay with me.  I had enough fun to go back again and again and do it better.

Below is my only photographic evidence of being at the con that year.  My camera decided it would stop working but somehow it knew how important that photo of Cliff Simon was to me.


  1. Cool. I hope some day I'll get to go to Comic-Con, too. When I do, I'll be sure to consult the experts (like you) to be sure not to wade in to anything unprepared.

  2. I'm going to GenCon for the first time this year and I am worried about being prepared for it. I can't even imagine the scale of SDCC, but I'm going to tackle it at some point. :)

  3. My first SDCC was '04. Same thing, showed up on Friday w/ my son and got passes on site for Star Wars Day. We met Ray Park, Jake Lloyd, and Peter Mayhew. We were awed by the Exhibit Hall and have been hooked ever since!

  4. 2007 was the last year you could buy on-site, but even back in 2003 (when I started) the Saturday line was ludicrously long. I'm planning to have a blog up on Satellite Show about that (and more "spiritual" Comic-Con matters) later today.

    Anyhow, you're lucky you pre-bought since 2006 was the year the fire marshal shut down on-sites for Saturday for several hours.

  5. Eleni - Looking back, I'm amazed that I was so clueless that I didn't even look anything up before I went. Duh!

    Chronic Geek - I reallly want to go to GenCon sometime. My biggest piece of advice is don't try to do everything, because you can't and it will just make you a big, grumpy ball. Or... maybe that's just me. :)

    Trish - Wow. That's a pretty amazing first SDCC! :D

    Clint - The fire marshal? Wow. I was just there for the Friday that year.

    Nerdi Gras is a good name for it. I really enjoyed your post. I hope to stumble upon some promotional parties this year!

  6. I have audio evidence as well. That's the Comicon you did a rapup on DDC for us, right

  7. Dave - I think so... it might have been the second time I went though.

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