While most of the San Diego Comic Con was up and runnin’ on Wednesday (SDCC Preview Night), I was among the first guests to enter the Laika Live Experience – a FREE exhibit in the Gaslamp District.
Upon waiting in line my friends and I were handed a fan with a character as well as a headband with the characters iconic headdress (I choose the helmet for Kubo) and we were seated to watch a short video regarding the movies. For my readers unfamiliar with the Laika, they’re known for handcrafted stop-motion animation and stunning visual effects. They swap out heads to mimic different expressions, but at the end of the day it takes hours to create a scene that lasts a couple of minutes. Whew!
They also recreated a few life-size versions of certain scenes, but don’t let this comfy lookin’ couch fool you, it’s as hard as a rock. So deceptive! And my hinny was in great pain, but anything for the shot! lol
I can’t say that I know the franchise all that well, but I am confidently impressed by the patience and care to detail these artists put in creating these features. During the exhibit the artist who worked on the movie showed us techniques and told us how they recorded people doing certain tasks and would emulate those actions with the characters. One artist informed us that his running style was used for one of the mother characters.
My friends who attended last year said that this was even bigger and better than last – who will check this exhibit out in 2019?
San Diego Comic Con is MASSIVE and I felt that I didn’t do the mecca nerd gathering justice by spending just a couple days. So, this year I allocated more time to dwell in the summer nerd capitol and tried to do as many of the outside convention stuff. (See Conan Taping LIVE here.)
On Wednesday my friends and I ventured behind the convention to checkout the Dragon Ball Z area and considering it was Preview Night I was surprised at how many people were already waiting in lines! But those lines were no match for the My Hero Academia panel line (check out post here). Nevertheless, the setup was most impressive and there was a ton to do and see for the ultimate Dragon Ball fan! * Note * this area was within the sectioned SDCC Badge area.
The main line was for dedicated to fans who wanted a Dragon Ball Z backpack and lanyard, among other goodies, whereas the side lines were for fans who wanted to try and win freebies such as a t-shirt or hat. There were also photo opportunities as well as figurine replicas re-enacting scenes from the series all to promote the third anniversary mobile game “Dragon Ball Dokkan Battle” – I tried it and it’s super hard, but practice makes perfect right? Lol
Dragon Ball Z will also be premiering a movie later this year. No word on which theaters, but I hope it’s “Over 9000” haha… If you can have a private viewing of an upcoming movie, what movie would you want to see?
It’s surprising to people that this is only my second time attending San Diego Comic Con and while I had a blast last year (Click here to read) there were so many things that I missed out on! This year a group of my friends and I entered the Invincible Conan San Diego 2018 lottery for a chance to see Conan, some VIP guests, and get an exclusive Conan Funko Pop! No luck on my end, but one of my girlfriends was lucky enough to score tickets for herself and friends! Woohoo!
The taping wasn’t until the afternoon; however, we were instructed to line-up bright and early in the morning to secure our tickets. The tickets all had assigned seats, but rumor had it if you got there earlier you could get seats closer to the stage. My friends and I arrived at Spreckels Theater around 6:30 am for the 9:00 am ticket distribution, and found that a huge line already formed. There were some people there as early as 4:30 am!
Once 9:00 am hit we walked through their ticket booth decorated with all types of nerdy artwork, grabbed our tickets and went on our way. Just an FYI, tickets were somewhat random, as two guys in front of us were given Orchestra seats and we were given tickets Mezzanine. So, I really have no idea about seat selection. *shrugs*
We returned around 2:30 pm (doors closed at 3:30 pm), and enjoyed the band play before Conan arrived on stage. Conan told a few jokes and eventually introduced the cast for Aquaman including: Director James Wan, Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Yahya abdul-mateen II and Dolph Lundgren. I think out of the interview Dolph Lundgren’s story about learning to swim for the role then finding out that he didn’t need to was the highlight of the interview. Though I think some would argue that the cast drink a can of Guinness was the best part of the show – to each his own!
After the show we were each handed a Conan HellBoy Funko Pop as a souvenir. I believe if you attended the showing on the other days you had to redeem their pop at the Grand Hyatt Hotel. I think as a Comic Con newbie attending a Conan show should be on everyone’s to-do list. I for one would love to attend again next year!
When I was first thinking about this post I thought to myself – man… I totally bombed the “will write a blog post every-week” goal, I “should” be making more money, I “should” be blah blah blah.. but as I looked through my rolo-dex of photos I realized that I had so many cool moments and while I didn’t meet all the goals I set out – I did achieve quite a bit and “should” remember those! This was definitely the year of “Me, Myself, and Irene” from my “Diary of a Beauty Queen’s Food and Travel Adventures (Instagram)” to opening up to my readers with my alias as @TheGeekyGuide (Instagram) to launching my College Consulting By Yu Youtube channel (website), I’m three people in one!
As @yurockstar I finished my term as Miss Taiwanese World Queen and passed the torch (blog entry), and visited so many cool restaurants – the Exchange Restaurant being my favorite this year! (blog entry) – and festivals as media including the LA Food and Wine Festival (blog entry 1; blog entry 2; blog entry 3) where I got to meet Tyler Florence and Brian Malarky. I also got to be a guest on Gordon Ramsay’s “The F Word” and critiqued the competitors dishes. 2017 was also the year when I got to visit San Diego Comic Con (blog entry) for the first time and hear Disney Legend Alan Menkin perform his classic hits at D23 (blog entry)! I also bought an annual pass to Six Flags Magic Mountain (blog entry) and convinced four of my friends to go on roller coasters with me. On a totally random note – I also won a mattress from an Instagram contest through yelp, woot!
To be honest, I was kind of a closet cosplayer and nervous about cosplaying one of my childhood idols. The live action Wonder Woman movie debuted earlier this year and I felt very conscientious about wearing a corset, let alone portray such an iconic character. I was selected as one of Game Spot’s Best DC Cosplay at SDCC and WonderCon, and featured on the LA Time’s “Why Cosplay as Wonder Woman” video. But more importantly, I loved when kids came up to me to ask for a photo opt – just to see them smile made me feel that that 2 hours it took to do my hair and make-up all the worthwhile.
I also debuted Chun Li this year and was invited to join a Street Fighter group! Everyone does such a great job in portraying their character, and they inspired me to revisit and brush-up on my martial arts and dance techniques. I also upgraded some of my Sailor Mars uniform and had a blast with various photoshoots with the Sailor Scouts and Tuxedo Mask! I’ve made so many awesome friends through cosplay and it’s always awesome to see familiar faces portraying different heros and villians.
I grew up watching Bruce Timm’s Justice League animated series and could not be more excited about a live-action movie. So, when I successfully got San Diego Comic Con (SDCC) tickets as a first time attendee (Read my first impressions here) I was beyond thrilled that the Justice League cast planned to do a fan autograph signing during the convention. While I knew that it was going to be near impossible to get their autograph, I made it a top priority to snap some shots of the entire cast at the DC booth – even though I faced several roadblocks. It didn’t say anywhere on the program when they were going to do the autograph session and staff members were quite hush hush on the details. Attending SDCC on Saturday July 22nd was beyond crazy. There were crowds of people and swarms of fans left and right. And of course there was a DC meetup so I made sure to dress up as Amazon Princess herself – Wonder Woman! I got to meet some incredible cosplayers and was interviewed by LA Times (here). They asked, “Why cosplay as Wonder Woman” and I was lucky enough to be one of the Wonder Women featured! After the DC shoot, I heard rumors that the Justice League autograph signing was going to happen in the late afternoon. Because I so desperately wanted to snap a few shots, I waited in the DC booth with 300 or so other fans just to try to get a glimpse. I felt like a can of sardines, but it was incredible when they finally came out. They also dropped a new trailer moments before the actors came out and it was very apparent that the Man of Steel will not be absent in this film.
Which villain do you suspect will make an appearance in the live action movie? I’m hoping for Dark Side!
As a foodie I refuse to eat bad food, let alone expensive convention food. But with long lines, and long days it’s often hard to go too long without eating, and packing snacks/lunch is not only economical, but also healthy. At the time I was dieting for my Wonder Woman cosplay, so my choices leaned more on the nutritious side. I meal prepped the night before and packed roasted chicken, sautéed spinach, and quinoa in my tupperware for lunch. I usually ate out for dinner.
But if bringing your own lunch is too much of a hassel consider these snack items to munch on while you’re in line – you kill two birds with one stone and you won’t be hangry 😛 So here’s my list of food to bring to any convention. For convenience I buy in bulk at Costco
Packaged Seaweed – Seaweed has great health benefits is low in calories, and is low in calories. It helps curb my craving for something salty and it’s packs nicely in my bag. I usually get the 10 pack at Costco
Clementines – Easy to peel and sweet to eat. You can bring them as is, but I usually peel two cuties and put them in a tupperware for easy access and nom on them during the day. They’re always popular and you’ll make a lot of friends in line. Who can resist?
Figgin Fruit – At first I was skeptical about these snacks, because the last healthy bag that I bought tasted just that – healthy, yuck! But this brand is actually pretty tasty. It’s kind of like one of those bars, but in a bite sized circle form. At Costco they sell the Fig, Blueberry, and Acai flavor in a blue bag. I usually grab a handful and put them my tupperware or bag.
Meiji Hello Panda Chococlate Creme Filled Cookie – To be honest, I bought these because they were on sale at Costco, but it’s the perfect portion to curb my sweet tooth and they’re individually packaged so extremely convenient as well!
Ready Snack (carrots, grapes, cheese, and pretzel) – This was beyond convenient.
What do you bring for snacks when going out? If you’re going to LA Comic Con this weekend be sure to say hi! Chun Li (Friday), Wonder Woman (Saturday), and Sailor Mars (Sunday)
I’ve a veteran convention goer, but San Diego Comic Con is a completely other animal. The standard logic in making the most the most of a conventions don’t apply SDCC, and giving yourself enough time to secure an activity is of utmost importance.
For me, I absolutely love attending panels and I saw on the Comic Con app the new Marvel TV Show: Marvel’s Inhuman in Ballroom 20 – I definitely wanted to see that! So, after I hopped off the trolley, I headed straight to Ballroom 20 – arguable SDCC’s second most popular Hall. BTW, I highly recommend taking the trolley if you’re not staying in the Gaslamp District. Driving and parking in this area is really tough and expensive.
I was advised by some friends that if there’s a popular panel that you want to watch you should sit in on the panels before it to secure a spot. Not knowing if the new Marvel series would be a hit or miss I decided to sit through all the two panels beforehand. Luckily, the shows at least peaked my interest.
When I first entered Ballroom 20, I was blown away by the sheer size of the room, the room capacity is 4800 and and while it wasn’t overflowing, I’d say about 90% of the seats were taken. There were multiple screens for people to watch the panels so even at the back of the house attendees could still enjoy the panels.
After looking for single seats I was able to secure one about mid-way in the room. The Season 4 actors and actresses from “The Strain” all came out and they even showed us an exclusive clip from an upcoming episode. In a nutshell “The Strain” is an American horror drama television series about vampire zombies, and while it’s not really my type of show, it was cool chat with the cast.
The panel following was “Legion,” a series tied to the X-Men franchise. They showed an amazing silent film style clip of the mutants fighting to “Bolero” an orchestral piece by Maurice Ravel, and while the two ideas seem to clash it was so tastefully done. Prior to coming to this panel I knew very little about this series, but I left wanting to watch the entire series. Thankfully FX renewed Season 2 and the series is expected to air in February 2018.
Finally Marvel’s Inhumans Panel was up. I was beyond hungry at this point (my stomach kept growling at me), but was thrilled to learn all the juicy details on ABC’s newest series. The entire cast came and spoke about their auction experience and gave us some insight to their character. A number of them told us how they had no idea who they were auditioning for and after they were casted understood some of the very strange requests from the directors. It was pretty hilarious.
They then showed us a few teaser clips from the premier episode. One was of the royal family having a discussion on next steps and another was a battle scene between two unexpected characters.
The one thing I thought was silly was that they were going to show a premier of Inhumans THAT night – but it was scheduled to show right after this panel and at a location 15 minutes away. Good thing I’ll get to catch it at home on September 29th (8/7c).
Which show excites you most? “The Strain,” “Legion,” or “Inhumans”
AHHH!!! So it finally happened! I FINALLY got a badge and attended the world famous San Diego Comic Con (SDCC) – the mothership of geek conventions and the crown jewel of San Diego. And let me tell you SDCC definitely deserves all the hype and recognition of being the Con of all Cons, because it is. When I stepped off the trolley, I was beyond overwhelmed. There were lines everywhere and I wasn’t even inside the convention yet. But after I got my bearing I just took it all in and remembered that just being there was exciting!
Space wise, I wasn’t even close to covering the entire convention ground and I went four days! I didn’t dare brave the “Hall H” Line, which is a like a convention in and of itself – for virgin SDCC goers like myself, it’s in essence THE place to be to see popular blockbuster panels like Big Bang Theory, Justice League, Game of Thrones etc. People camp out at least a day in advance and if you planned to do Hall H on Saturday, be prepare to camp out on Thursday!
And no joke, there are people who had legit camping tents and padded mattresses. I’ve been to other big scaled conventions (ie. WonderconDisney D23, Anime Expo) where the hard-core fans camped out, but never had I seen it in this extreme fashion. There was a line to get into the convention, a line to see panels (other than Hall H), autograph lines, an “exclusives” line, concessions stand line, line to take pictures… actually they were more like mobs of people – ha! Regardless, there were lines galore!
But, would I do it again, ABSOLUTELY! There’s no other convention quite like it. Sure there are other conventions where there are shorter lines or no lines, but the shear size and star power that this convention can attract is like no other. Where else can you get a sneak peak of upcoming trailers, autographs or photos from the entire cast from your favorite tv show, cosplay with groups of nerds, and hang out with geeks from all over the world? And don’t even get me started on the shopping. Nerd heaven!!!
Now I get that getting a badge is extremely difficult, but the convention geek scene expands past the convention doors and the entire city basically welcomes the nerd herd to seek refuge at the Gaslamp District and beyond. There are TONS of giveaways just outside the convention, so even if you don’t have a badge you can still have a great time geeking out just like the rest of us.
As virgin SDCC goer, I didn’t really know what to expect, but if you love superheros, cosplayers, toys, free stuff, celebrities, this is the place to be – with or without a badge. I’m sorting through my photos and boy was that an adventure.
What part of SDCC are you most excited to read/see? Cosplay? Panels? Shopping? Life outside the Convention? Let me know below!