Feeling Kind of Tired: San Diego Comic-Con 2016 Aftermath and Overview

Before I start off this post, I just wanted to say that San Diego has a really strong Pokemon GO game. It is seriously a way of life out there.

Every year after I get back from San Diego Comic-Con, I always get the comment: “I totally want to go to it next year” or some variation of that. Typically my response to that is “you should” and then something along the lines of “are you a glutton for punishment?” That’s not meant to scare anyone away or pull the rug out from underneath them but to shine some light on the painstaking reality of going to SDCC. It’s not all fun and games unless you enjoy standing hours in line with the high possibility of still not accomplishing anything (some people just call that “living life”). When I post pictures, it’s all the fun parts; so it looks like it’s a non-stop party. I’m not going to be posting anything about standing in line for three hours to shake Dan Harmon’s hand, or spending the night on the convention grounds for a chance to sit in the Game of Thrones panel in the infamous Hall H, or even how I fought to the front of the crowd to take pictures of Chris Pratt. So it’s very much like the media where you’re only getting half the picture (except it’s the more positive half instead of the half where everyone dies).

Now that I have downplayed Comic-Con (and you have decided not to try and get badges which will increase my chance of getting badges next year), let’s look into some of the things I was able to check out at this year’s SDCC.

Preview Night
Preview Night is the best chance to check out the Exhibit Hall and buy exclusives before the crowd multiplies by the thousands. It is literally a sea of people for about twelve hours a day in downtown San Diego for the duration of Comic-Con except for refreshing splashes of water you get overpowering hints of body odor (or Hodor…am I right? High five!). And much like the rest of Comic-Con, it starts with a line.

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Happiness (not pictured)

I flipped off Iron Man and gave Captain America a thumbs up.

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#TeamCap

And then it got weird…

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Get a room!

Day One
I started the day off right by waiting in a line (Line-Con) for four hours to get wristbands for the Silicon Valley signing…except when I got there, they ran out of wristbands and that didn’t start my day off right at all. It took every part of my being not to throw myself down five flights of cement stairs. Shortly after damning my existence, I joined up with friends I met at Comic-Con two years ago who were waiting in line (Sili-line Valley) for a chance to win an exclusive Conan O’Brien Funko Pop figure. My first victory of the show.

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And to think just an hour before this, I would have been rushed to a hospital for breaking every bone in my body if I had thrown myself down the stairs

We proceeded to the Game of Thrones off-site experience for the Hall of Faces. If you’re a Game of Thrones fan, cool, you’ll understand what that means. If you’re not, the Hall of Faces is a room with shelves of faces (there, you’re caught up with the show, and winter is here). While we were in line (The Game of Lines), we got to play a rousing round of “Would You Rather” with Buzzfeed and Syfy. I have many goals in my life. Making it onto a Buzzfeed article is not one of them. But I did, so I guess I’ll have to deal with it for the rest of my life.

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Still a better king than Joffery Baratheon

 

I ran back into the Exhibit Hall after the experience, because I was adamant about getting a Stan Lee exclusive figure. Fortunately, his collectible store had a booth and they were selling Stan Lee DORBZ figures with his signature on the box. This is where I ran into Michael Rooker of Walking Dead and Guardians of the Galaxy fame. I look goofy in the picture below, because that’s just how my face is 90% of the time.

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Wasn’t sure the picture was worth it when the kid in the back is forever ingrained in my nightmares

With Day One coming to a close, I met up with my friends again who were already in line (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azka-line) for Hall H. Hall H is synonymous with Comic-Con at this point. More than likely you’ve heard of the dreaded hall and how people spend nearly 24 hours in the line (Star Wars: Attack of the Lines) just to get into the panels for the next day. One of my friends that I go with is a “Hall H wHore.” He loves the ever-living crap out of Hall H and, in fact, spent the majority of his time at Comic-Con there. So once we got our wristbands, we headed to the overnight line (Star Trek: Deep Space Line) outside of Hall H and started our shift. It was quiet for the most part. We sat there and tried to start conversations with people around us just to simply pass the time. Suddenly a black Suburban drove up and out popped two actors from Game of Thrones: Isaac Wright who plays Bran Stark and Liam Cunningham who plays Ser Davos Seaworth. After recovering from a short hear-attack, I was able to get a picture with Liam.

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Ser Davos Seaworth and Sir Dumb Guy Stupidface

Day Two
The Hall H panels start off strong with Con Man, a show starring Alan Tudyk and Nathan Fillion on Comic-Con HQ which essentially parodies their lives after Firefly (a show if given the chance would have continued to be amazing like its first season which is similar to the pickup line I give when I date someone).

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Nathan Fillion “runs a very tight ship.”

I gave Fear the Walking Dead a legitimate chance. It just didn’t quite hook me as well as other shows have. It’s not a bad show by any means. It’s just not as interesting as it’s predecessor. Granted The Walking Dead had very good source material to go off of which helped with character development and story progression. Fear the Walking Dead is just kind of flat. There are maybe two or three deeply-layered characters while the rest seem fairly one dimensional. But after the preview of season 2, I may need to rethink my position and give it one more shot. Sorry, I didn’t take any pictures during this panel.

The Walking Dead left us with a cliffhanger for its season finale. It’s a gimmick that I get fairly tired of, and that sentiment is shared within the Walking Dead fanbase. I felt like the producers and even the actors understood the viewers’ disappointment of the season finale with the apologetic tone of the panel. Oh, they also revealed that Rick took Negan’s bat (no they didn’t).

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No, that’s not the line from the Omen

I was excited to see that the Game of Thrones panel was being moderated by Rob McElhenney from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia who added a nice touch of humor to the interviews. What’s so great about these panels is seeing everyone interact with each other. You can tell this is a group of actors and actresses that are as devoted to the show as much its fans. If you haven’t seen Game of Thrones, you need to do yourself a favor. Quit your job, tell your loved ones that you’ll be gone for awhile, find a cheap hotel or somewhere secluded where no one can bother you, continuously fill yourself up with pizza, Red Bull, and caffeine pills, and marathon Game of Thrones before the next season comes out next summer. If you die in the process, just know that you will have a soldier’s burial.

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Actor Iwan Rheon who plays Ramsay Bolton desperately reminds fans that it’s only a show and to not have their dogs constantly attack him

After being in Hall H for almost six hours, I needed to do some more exploring. Comic-Con is no longer restricted to the Convention Center. It’s become so big that it has spilled out into the surrounding areas of downtown San Deigo. This is where I found this gem: The Peanuts off-site experience. It’s good to have balance. So after sitting on panels about shows with lots of death and whatnot, it’s good to relax with bright and colorful images of Charlie Brown and the gang.

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Who would have thought that Lucy is a diehard Trump fan

Day Three
I waited in line (Wolver-line) to snag a wristband for the Rick and Morty signing. During the signing, I was super excited that Chris Parnell was there. He was one of my favorite actors on Saturday Night Live, so it was a pleasure to take a picture with him. These signings are kind of awkward, because I never have anything to say to these celebrities except “you’re awesome.”

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Rick and Morty is awesome

Comic-Con 2016 was a little bit more stressful than previous years (probably because I’m getting old), so I took every open opportunity to grab a drink. I stopped by the sushi shop set up in the Mariott next to the Convention Center, Komic-Kaze Sushi, which was also serving the 50th Anniversary Star Trek beer and the two Game of Thrones beers: Valar Morgulis, a dubbel ale and Three Eye-Raven, a dark saison.

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They drink a lot of craft beer in Game of Thrones

During my meal, one of my friends had messaged me that the Guardians of the Galaxy cast was going to be at the Marvel booth on the floor in the Convention Center. Needless to say…

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“Embrace me in your arms” is not considered a legitimate fan request and is looked down upon

Day Four

That last day of Comic-Con is very bittersweet. On one hand, you’re sad to see it go. On the other hand, you’re dead. So it doesn’t matter how you feel anymore. So to save you and me some time, here is another picture collage of my friends and myself during the trip.

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Filler post and caption

It seems like everything about Comic-Con gets harder  and harder every year, but I would say it’s definitely worth the effort you put into it. I hope by this time next year, I will be able to share my experiences once again. And maybe next time, I will see you there.

San Diego Comic-Con 2016: 7 out of 10

Now, for the moment everyone has been waiting for. My last post, I had uploaded a picture of the exclusive giveaway I got during Comic-Con from UCC Distribution. Here it is again.

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To enter, you must like and subscribe to my blog (that’s how I get you); and then comment below with your response to this question:

If Donald Trump and Hilary Clinton were each Pokemon, what would they be called, what type of Pokemon would they be, and what would be their special move?

I will pick a winner next Monday, August 8th.

San Diego Comic-Con 2016 Exclusive Item Giveaway

Well, everyone. Comic-Con 2016 has come and go, and there is a lot to talk about (and a lot of sleep to catch up on). But I’m at my Airbnb decompressing from the event,  so that will have to wait for another day. I do want to really quick introduce the item that I will be giving away. With the huge success of Pokemon GO, I wanted to find something relevant. I was lucky enough to snag an SDCC exclusive from UCC Distribution. This item is also in honor of Pokemon’s 20th anniversary  (almost old enough to drink but still play Pokemon).

     

    Check back really soon for more details. 

    Review: Flying

    Until our technology advances enough to make teleportation a reality, we are all doomed to stuffing our crap into an expensive bag or box which will eventually be a storage of dirty laundry (or broken dreams). Then we have to wait in a line to talk to someone who obviously hates themselves (and us even more) to tell them that you want to go onto a God-defying machine instead of traveling in the safety of not being thousands of feet in the air. After that, you get to wait in another line, take off your shoes, throw your stuff on a conveyor belt, and try you hardest not to look like a terrorist. Then after being poked and prodded, you get to wait again for your chance to get in a flying tube with no personal space and gamble with your life as you laugh in the face of God. If you’re lucky, you’ll land safely and get to do it all over again. In fact, I’ll be doing this very thing in about four hours to head to San Diego for Comic-Con (geeze, shut up about Comic-Con am I right?).

    I actually have no qualms about flying. It’s mainly the process of actually getting into the plane that’s a headache. Sure, I have a feeling of dread the whole time the pilot is figuratively giving God the finger,  but booking the flight, having to check-in, going through security, and then of course getting to the right gate is such a pain in the ass. I do realize those procedures are set in place for my safety, but I’m already living on the edge by willingly getting shot into the air (okay, that’s a bit dramatic…like this whole post).

    Unfortunately (or fortunately), I do have to cut this blog short. As I said before, I’ve got a flight in about four hours, and I still have to finish packing and attempt to get at least two hours of sleep. So in conclusion, flying is not for everyone. What I would suggest is saving the money you would normally spend on plane tickets and instead spend it on the research of quantum physics which I would assume would discover the ability to teleport. Sure you may not travel very much, but you’re just getting us that much closer to an alternative to flying (or in the least, getting us closer to recreational time travel).

    Flying…3 out of 10 flying f*cks.

    One more thing, I will be posting the special item in my next udpate for the Comic-Con Exclusive giveaway (when I actually get there and figure out what that item is). So once again, please stay tuned for that and possible coverage of the show. And feel free to add me on Instagram to check out my pictures from Comic-Con. Instagram: Tinktothepast. Or atleast I will try my best to upload pictures on my Instagram.

    Feeling King of Busy: Filler Post and Pokemon Go

    I’m not sure why I feel bad about missing a post last week (must be the Catholic guilt which makes me feel bad about everything I do), but things have kind of picked up at work which means I’m about to go on vacation. And with Comic-Con a week away, prepping for the show has taken priority. Now throw Pokemon GO in the mix, and my daily life is no longer my own (not that I had much of a life before). I was hoping to continue my Comic-Con-themed posts until right before I leave, but that was a chore to write (and pretty boring to read). But I will write one more post about Comic-Con before I leave, and that will mainly be about your chance to win a Comic-Con exclusive item. I have my eye out on a few exclusives already, but I will not know for sure what that item will be until I get to Comic-Con. Please stay tuned for that.

    Now, I don’t want to leave you empty-handed and since Pokemon Go is now a part of mine and everyone else’s life, here is a comic that I drew over a year ago from a time I wanted to draw webcomics. And much like everything else I do, my drawing skills are right above kindergarten level.

    That was a short-lived aspiration much like this blog will be probably.

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    Feeling Kind of Geeky: Retrospective Look at San Diego Comic-Con 2013

    I’ll try not to bore you with words  and try to keep this as short as possible (damn…Bore You With Words would have been a great name for this blog).

    Random Note: If you watched the season finale of Game of Thrones the other night, I’m listening to the song that played along with the first scenes on repeat while I write this post. It’s called Light of the Seven by Ramin Djawadi, and you can listen to it on Spotify:



    Let’s be honest. There are two reasons why people want to go to San Diego Comic-Con: have tons of fun and bragging rights. It’s literally how I started most of my conversations with women in my single days to try and impress them. “Yeah, I’ve been to San Diego Comic-Con a couple of times. Can I buy you a drink?” (looking back, it probably wasn’t the strongest foot to put forward). Surprisingly, my pick-up lines get much worse than that (or not surprising at all). So as I said in my previous post, I was in a relationship. We were actually engaged to get married (spoiler alert: we didn’t), so I was saving up for the wedding. After that fell through, I found myself with a nice chunk of change. Instead of investing or saving the money which would have been the responsible thing to do, I blew a good amount of it on a 4-day badge which I got in the resale and getting myself to Comic-Con (and then the rest at Comic-Con…and alcohol). No regrets (I’m in severe debt though, so there’s that).

    After making my preparations and bragging about going to SDCC on Facebook (that’s the most important step), I had no idea how to prepare for the behemoth itself. Prior to my first trip, I failed to search for helpful guides like SDCCblog.com. It’s seriously, one of the best resources for preparing before SDCC. I frequent it about a million times right to help me prepare for the war (inappropriately overexaggerated). Instead I painstakingly reviewed the schedule, and picked the panels I wanted to attend like a fool. In the end, I didn’t even go to one single panel I intended to see. That is not a testament to my failure but to how much there is to do and see at SDCC.

    As I write this, I realized how difficult it would be to encapsulate all that I experienced during SDCC 2013 without making this too long of a post. Also, since I had no earthly idea what I was doing at my first Comic-Con, I’m not exactly sure that I would be able to paint an orderly (or coherent) picture.

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    Me at SDCC 2013 literally the whole time.

    So in order to make this bearable to read, I’m just going to pick some of my favorite moments along with some witty commentary (and when I said “witty”, I meant “not witty”).

    Meeting the crew of Regular Show
    So once again, I was completely unaware of how any of this worked. I pretty much walked around aimlessly and just let things happen. Somehow that actually worked. I happened to walk across the Cartoon Network booth, and they were handing out tickets to meet the cast and crew of Regular Show.

    Regular_Show

    For those not familiar with Regular Show, it’s a cartoon about two best friends that work at a park. The main cast consists of animals, a ghost, a green guy, and a gumball machine (brilliant!).

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    Coincidentally, I’m a very big fan of Regular Show. I actually have a tattoo to prove it (because simply enjoying a show is not good enough). So yes, in my hand I have the chance to meet the people who created and work on the show. I get starstruck pretty easily sometimes, and I say stupid things like “you are awesome” or “show is good.” Well, I may have sounded like an idiot, but I got to meet them. And that’s all that matters. I didn’t get the greatest picture with them, so I got this from the Cartoon Network Tumblr.

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    Cartoon Network Comic-Con 2013 Tumblr

    Regular Show: Regular Zone
    Continuing on with more Regular Show fandemonium, Cartoon Network had rented out the San Diego Children’s Musem and set up a Regular Show-themed arcade called the Regular Zone. I was in a euphoric state just taking a bunch of pictures with a huge smile on my face (it doesn’t take me much to reach euphoria).

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    Then the lights went out. The employees told us to rush to the other room. (This next part is full of references from the show, so feel free to skip it if you’d like) We were greeted by Mordecai and Rigby . They informed us that the power outage was due to the Destroyer of Worlds who has once again escaped his arcade game to destroy the world (obviously). And just like in the episode, we had to wield game controllers to aid them and the Lemon Chef and button mash our way to  defeating the Destroyer of Worlds. Since I was too busy button mashing, I couldn’t take a picture. So here’s a picture courtesy of CNN.

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    CNN

    We got a really cool poster for our trouble.

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    Adventure Time ConQuest
    Cartoon Network really had some of the best events. During SDCC, they were hosting an Adventure Time scavenger hunt. This was apparently they’re second year to do it. (Once again, I’m going to make some references to a show you may have not watched.) The Ice King has kidnapped princesses in the Land of Ooo, and it’s up to you to save them through texting. Starting at the Cartoon Network booth, there was a number you could text.

    You would then receive a reply of where to find one of the princesses in the Exhibit Hall.

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    Each one would lead you to a certain booth with a sign of a secret word to text. What was really awesome was that some of the booths would give out free Adventure Time swag along the journey. The final hint would lead you to a designated area outside of the convention center to claim the main prize .

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    Your reward: a really badass medal (badass not included).

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    Nintendo Gaming Lounge
    There is not much to say about this event other than Nintendo filled up a room full of popular games and upcoming releases. While playing the games, you would be able to collect tickets. You can then exchange those tickets for some really cool exclusive Nintendo Comic-Con items (double the exclusivity).

    Just being at San Diego Comic-Con
    Once again, there is no way to summarize any of my SDCC experiences and really do it justice. And really I haven’t gotten anywhere close to what other events and sights that Comic-Con has to offer in this post (which makes me wonder why I wrote this in the first place). Being there is surreal and a dream come true for me all at the same time. It’s something I’ve been wanting to go to since back in high school, and I’ve been fortunate enough to go each year since San Diego Comic-Con 2013. I’ve met great people, seen awesome things, and have a lot of memories to look back on. It truly has been a life-changing experience for me. If you are at all curious or rabid about going to SDCC, I would highly recommend it and am willing to help in your venture. Just look me up next time, and maybe I can help get you a badge or find a place to stay. It’s something I get to look forward to every year and share with others. I’m lucky enough to go this year (with the help of some great friends I’ve met in Comic-Cons past), and hopefully that luck and help will continue on.

    Oh, and don’t forget:

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