San Diego Comic-Con 2013: Friday – The long and winding line
2013 San Diego Comic-Con plans went awry today as hours (many of them early in the morning) were wasted in a futile attempt to gain access to a coveted seat in the convention center’s hallowed “Hall H.” As many attendees’ dreams of air-conditioned comfort, mixed with sneak-peeks of genre films and television shows, were dashed, an ominous “Despicable Me” minion-airship hovered over the sky, mocking the crowd of fools below.
My day began at 4:00 a.m. (after just a couple of hours of sleep) and I arrived at the convention center at around 5:30. But any crazy thoughts I might have had that this would be early enough to snag a decent position in line dissipated faster than the the early fog on a sunny San Diego morning. After walking by the first dozen or so bodies that were sleeping on the sidewalk, and obviously had been there all night, I knew I was in trouble.
I had a similar experience during the 2012 Con, where I wasted an entire day standing in line and never made it inside the building at Hall H. When I finally reached the end of today’s line I was in relatively the same position I had started at the previous year. And though this year I was there a couple of hours earlier, I hadn’t gained any ground.
Despite the inevitable outcome, and because I had already walked the 10 miles (it felt like it) of line that wound throughout the seaport village behind the convention center, I decided to stick it out and see if I might get lucky. And after only an hour or so wait, a kindly volunteer came by to tell us there was only 3,600 attendees in front of us.
I couldn’t believe it. Position 3,600 and the hall holds 6,000. My line-mates and I fist-bumped each other as we celebrated the news, and with our hope regenerated the long wait didn’t feel so bad, knowing that we would get in the building – for sure – right? Not so fast speedy!
It turns out that counting skills are not a highlight of our informative and well-meaning volunteer’s expertise; because as we came within 400 people of the Hall H entry, the line ground to a halt and did not go any further for another three hours – which was when I abandoned all hope, surrendered, and tried to salvage something from the remainder of the day.
So after six-hours wasted in line, I spent the rest of the afternoon covering the main exhibit hall and checking out all of the areas which I hadn’t seen yet, and doing a little shopping in the process (with the highlight being a sweet “Monsters of Filmland” t-shirt featuring King Kong battling a T-Rex.) I also ran into one of my favorite artists, Mr. Chet Phillips (at booth space #O-1), and checked out his newest line of monkey and Cthulhu themed art.
After the early morning start, no food or drink, and being on my dogged feet all day, I decided to retire early, reluctantly missing the PBS “Superheroes” panel I wanted to see on Friday evening. The plan is to rest and to try Hall H one more time on Saturday morning, (no, I haven’t learned my lesson), as all the biggest movie events are scheduled for that afternoon.
Until then, enjoy some of the photos (below) from today’s adventures. Follow Nerdvana’s coverage all through the weekend, both here and “live” via Twitter @Nerdvana.
Nerdvana’s San Diego Comic-Con 2013 – Friday Photo Gallery
(Click to see larger image.)