Junior Reporter: What is Comic-Con All About?

July 26, 2017

By Madison V.

Our intrepid Junior Reporter, Madison V. was on the ground at Comic-Con International, taking in the sights and sounds. She even interviewed people at Comic-Con. Fantastic job, Madison. We love your report!

SDCC front view

Comic-Con is much more than just comics. It’s a celebration of sorts that has evolved over the years.  Initially Comic-Con was solely about comics and sci-fi. Today it includes comics, sci-fi, manga, anime, popular television shows, video games, card games, art and fantasy books and major movie productions.  Being exposed and showcased at Comic-Con is a big deal. This event has become the place where production companies promote new and upcoming shows, movies, and novels; but it is also, at its core, an opportunity for the fans to show their support for their shows by cosplaying as their favourite characters.

San Diego Comic Con (SDCC) has been reported as one of the largest conventions of it’s genre in the world. The first year Comic-Con took place was in 1970 and roughly 100 people attended the event in a hotel basement. The event’s popularity has flourished over the years, and in 2016 over 100,000 people were estimated to have attended SDCC. The number of people attending the 2017 San Diego Comic Con is estimated to exceed 100,000 attendees.

SDCC has attracted people from all over the country and world. For some people, like me, Comic-Con is a tradition.

My father and I have been attending the San Diego Comic Con since I was nine years old; yes this is my 6th Comic-Con.

Two people I interviewed at the event, a father and daughter, who cosplayed as two Attack On Titan characters, said they had been trying to get tickets for 3 years and have attended the last 2 years. To these two, Comic-Con is a father-daughter bonding event and they drive from Chandler, Arizona to bond and be fans of their favourite shows.

Nickelodeon booth

Large companies like Nickelodeon, Lego and Hasbro have large booths to promote upcoming products and shows. Above is an image of the grandiose  Nickelodeon booth.  People lined up around the booth for autographs from the voices of their favorite cartoon characters. Well known companies like Marvel, Funimation, and Viz.Media setup attention grabbing displays, have celebrity appearances and giveaways to attract fans; I scored a limited edition One Piece poster. People vie for free souvenirs like pins, posters, flyers and wrist bands from vendors and booth operators.

When attending Comic Con know that attendees go all out cosplaying as their favourite characters. Cosplayers are one of the things that make Comic-Con, Comic-Con.

Moanna cosplayers

I interviewed numerous people,  but four people stood out the most; with the most elaborate and detailed costumes. They cosplayed in a group as four characters from the new Disney movie, Moana. When I interviewed them they said they spent several months in advance preparing and perfecting their costumes. They also told me that this is their 5th time attending the San Diego Comic Con.

Image 4, Marvel Cosplayers

 Outside of the grand hall, while in line to receive their badges, I interviewed 3 cosplayers from Kansas City, Missouri. This was the first Comic-Con they’ve attended and they purchased their costumes. They were dressed as Marvel characters, Captain America and Green Arrow. 

Image 5, SDCC trademark

In my opinion you can’t say you’ve gone to Comic-Con unless you have a jumbo bag to prove it.

One of the trade marks of Comic-Con are the ridiculously oversized bags given away at SDCC. These bags are almost 2 feet tall and a foot & a half wide and can be  worn like backpacks. Each bag advertises an upcoming movie or show and is worn by most attendees.

SDCC isn’t solely about the inside of the grand hall.  Comic-Con exceeded the San Diego Convention Center years ago and now takes up virtually the entire San Diego downtown area. 

(Impractical) Jokers Block Party outside the venue

Fans who couldn’t win the ticket lottery still come just to see what attractions await outside the San Diego Convention Center. Throughout the downtown area you can spot celebrities making appearances to promote their shows and pass out free stuff to their audiences. Impractical Jokers attracted a large audience at Petco Park and Q, Sal, Murr and Joe all made an appearance too. Behind Petco Park was a small area with more attractions, giveaways and a large audience. Surrounding hotels and restaurants also have attractions inside, like Fear The Walking Dead and Walking Dead  attraction at the Hilton Hotel across the street from the San Diego Convention Center. The lesson here, even if you don’t get tickets you can still enjoy Comic-Con.  The off site attractions, events and of course the cosplayers walking around are so much fun.

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For me Comic-Con is a tradition I have been holding with my father, younger sister, younger brother, and step mom since I was 9 years old. Comic-Con is my time to be an open fan for all my favourite shows like One Piece, Naruto and The Walking Dead while bonding with my father as we both marvel at what our favorite booths have to offer. Getting to see how each company represents their popular shows is always exciting along with receiving hand outs and limited edition items. Seeing attractions for our favourite shows. I hope to be able to continue to go to SDCC for many years and enjoy collecting limited edition items, autographs and souvenirs from my favourite shows, and bond with my father while we fangirl over every attraction for TWD.