Our Comic-Con representative Princess Michelle gives us some final thoughts from Comic-Con ’09 (Mr. Princess Michelle contributed as well)
We really enjoy the small comics-centered sessions best of anything. They focus on a topic like autobiographical comics, or a particular genre, style, or interest. Everyone seems to appreciate the fanaticism of the Comic-Con audience and in some cases there are opportunities to continue the conversation on the exhibition floor.
In the past we’ve attended several of the bigger sessions too, but it seems like those have become overwhelmed with people in the last few years. You used to be able to show up basically last-minute and now if you want to see any kind of movie/tv session, you should probably be prepared to wait in line (and still possibly not get in). And those sessions can be hit and miss. Though, no matter what, it’s always great to be in a gigantic room with fellow true-geek fans and, of course, the people who play or create characters you love. This is particularly true when the presenter is articulate and funny. I’ve always enjoyed Joss Whedon projects but now even more so after hearing him talk about them over the years. I have noticed that a lot of those bigger sessions end up on YouTube if you know when/how to search for them (BSG from last year, for example).
There were slightly more costumes this year than years past. Enjoyed that. Also, a lot more variety – people were even more creative with their costumes than usual. A good thing about Comic-Con is that it’s very participatory. The line between the celebs and the hoi polloi is blurry.
You can count on the exhibition floor to be fun (and when the crowds really get thick, slightly panic-inducing). There is just so much to see on a level of specialty you don’t get to see anywhere else. Even though we tend to be drawn towards the publishers’ booths, comic art, and some of the goofier booths, pretty much all of them are great.
Regarding how Comic-Con has evolved
One difference this year: Twilight. A slightly out-of-place presence. Far from dominating, but there, and on a slightly different wavelength. I suppose it just means that now it is officially true: there is something for everyone at Comic-Con.
It felt bigger than previous years. Usually Friday and Saturday are those crushing crowds, not Thursday. In fact, I was shocked to have to wait 2 hours just to get in! That has never happened before. Literally, I think it’s always been 15 minutes or less, even on a Friday or Saturday. We often have had the 4-day pass and you can pick that up on Wed to avoid the same-day pick up line. But that pick up line was never that bad before. Until it started selling out every year, the longest line was for people who were buying their pass the day-of.
And has the economy changed the amount that presenters are spending?
In terms of whether they cut back on presenters, I wonder about that. On the one hand, it seems like everyone loves coming to present at Comic-Con and it’s clear there is always something to gain (one way or another) by doing so. Plus, Hollywood has been a much bigger presence in the past several years. I’ve noticed more “big” stars coming these days to help get buzz going on a new project. Devoted geeks are a great test audience because they’ll honestly dissect it (if not to your face, then at least on the Internet!). That said, this was the first time we looked at the schedule and didn’t have very many must-gos. But sometimes it’s hard to tell if that particular day just didn’t match your interests. All the Twilight people were super-happy that day!
A big Sci-Guys thanks to Princess Michelle for delivering BIG TIME!