Overview of Our Trip to Comic Con International 2007

on August 2, 2007 in Uncategorized

This was our second trip down to San Diego for the convention and I was once again speaking at the Comic Arts Conference. Ryan was documenting the exhibition floor, as well as the Con experience as a whole, for Microsoft Game Studios to convince the company that they really ought to have a presence there.

Upon arrival we decided that we would skip preview night and head up our hotel in La Jolla after picking up our badges. We figured a nice dinner, hot baths, and some good sleep would be more beneficial than shopping in a crowd.

Thursday morning we arrived downtown bright and early, checked out the floor and then I went upstairs to see the Comics and Education panel where I met Trina Robbins, Diana Green, Katherine Keller, and Melissa Andrada for a Women Comics Scholars lunch.

After lunch I met up with Ryan and waited for Tura Satana to begin her autograph session. I was first in line (and oddly the only woman there) and was actually a little giddy. I had just seen Faster, Pussycat. Kill! Kill! for the first time and was in awe of Satana’s formidable sexiness. She signed two photos for me (one for a friend who was watching our doggie, Giles, over the weekend) as well as a Region 2 DVD copy of FPK!K! Ryan had bought me a FPK!K! lunch box to have her sign, but I was worried I was one of those fans who was taking up too much of her time. But she was really lovely, and ever so nice. Completely Varla and completely kind, almost, maternal.

Since I hadn’t been down to the exhibition floor, we took a look around and I splurged on a limited edition copy of The Modesty Blaise Companion, complete with a bookplate signed by Peter O’Donnell (and Dick Giordano) from Bud Plant. Friday, we returned to the floor for a couple of hours. I was wearing my Television Without Pity, “The Sky’s the Limit: Petrelli for Congress” t-shirt, and while at the Heroes booth I was asked by a guy from NBC.com if he could interview me for one of their web exclusives. I was number 26, and it appears they have already posted the first 5 interviews, so we’ll see if I show up.

Because there wasn’t anything I’d be upset about missing Friday afternoon, and because hubby had been begging, we went to Disneyland for the afternoon. We managed to only get on three rides before hitting exhaustion but it was nice to see Ryan so happy.

On Saturday, Con attendees left the crowded exhibition floors for the crowded panels upstairs. Undoubtedly, one of the biggest draws was the line-up in Ballroom 20 which began the day by screening the pilot episode of the reimagined Bionic Woman (review forthcoming). This was followed by an as-always mediocre “TV Guide Hot List” a session which generally serves as filler between desirable panels. Indeed, the Heroes cast, along with Tim Kring and Jeph Loeb appeared next—which was great fun for us geeks. The session was well paced and was broken up by fan Q&A (including an audience question from Danny Bonaduce), teasers, cast camaraderie, and a surprise guest appearance from Kevin Smith who will be writing & directing the first episode of the Heroes tie-in/spin-off, Origins. The announcement was a complete surprise to the cast, who were clearly delighted. The audience also received some cool swag: a special CCI 2007 edition of a Heroes comic, and an exclusive CCI 2007 DVD Box Set sleeve. Heroes Season One will be released on August 28, 2007.

We had to miss the rest of the day in the Ballroom (Battlestar Galactica, Futurama, and Joss Whedon) as I had to give my Modesty Blaise presentation at the Comic Arts Conference and the line to get back in to B20 was doubled through the building, as well as doubled outside. Many people wasted their days standing in line, in the hot sun, for a nominal chance at entry. It’s too bad they opted to wait instead of being flexible or adventurous enough to sample everything else the Con had to offer.

Saturday afternoon we went to see “Lara Croft: Re/Visioned”—a panel featuring writers and artists who were asked by Gametap.com to rethink the character for short animations to be featured on the site. The concept was intriguing—I particularly look forward to seeing Gail Simone’s take on Lara as a teenager—but the panel was one of the most boring we’d ever seen. Jim Lee and Simone had to leave in the middle of the session to go to another panel for Wildstorm. Peter Cheung was uncooperative (bordering on antagonistic) with a you-don’t-get-me-at-all-I’m-embarrassed-for-the-both-of-us attitude towards the moderator. Warren Ellis was obviously exhausted. Everyone lacked the energy to show even the slightest enthusiasm and gave the impression that it was just one more panel they were required to participate in. It was kind of a bummer because I’ve only now started appreciating the character after reading and falling in love with Modesty Blaise.

Next, we went to see the pilot for The Sarah Connor Chronicles (again, review forthcoming) and though we were seated in the very last row of the room we enjoyed the show and Q & A very much. And even though we were cold, tired, and hungry we figured we might as well stay for the Smallville panel since we were already seated (we did leave when the fan questions started as unlike B20 the room didn’t seem to have a “kill switch” on the question mike. After 10 hours at the convention center I had no patience for inarticulate nerds). Allison Mack wasn’t in attendance, but it appeared from the teaser promo that her character may be alive (many boos from the audience when it seemed she was dead, many cheers when we saw her body sit upright in the morgue). Let’s hope being a Krypto freak saves her because after last season’s bout of crap the only reason I’ll continue tuning in is to watch Chloe. And maybe Martian Manhunter. The new Supergirl was there, but she didn’t say much.

Sunday was our last day and we separated for the first half of it. Ryan went to the exhibition floor to do some more documenting for MGS, and I went to see the Super (Natural) Women panel featuring Lucy Lawless, Lisa Klink, Marti Noxon (who arrived 4 minutes before the session ended due to an Amtrak SNAFU), Allison Du Bois, and an actress from The 4400—which I haven’t watched. I’ve also never watched Medium, but was truly intrigued by Du Bois and will have to either give the series a chance or pick up one of her books.

I went to see Trina’s presentation on the feral women of L’il Abner, but the organizer of the Comic Arts Conference who was responsible for bringing her slide presentation to San Diego had forgotten to put it on his on computer—and had assured Trina she didn’t need to bring a back-up (but the guy’s a new dad and probably hasn’t had any sleep in the past 3 months). It was too bad because it was clear she was looking forward to the presentation—she’d even sent away for a leopard print dress to wear for the occasion. She’ll be taking it all to the much more manageable Wonder Con next February instead, where I’ll hopefully be giving my Modesty talk.

Trina invited me to have lunch with her and Diana again, but I was planning on meeting Hubby for some last minute shopping. After picking up a set of TV tie-ins for The Avengers we decided we were done & done—even though we’d planned to go to two more panels. Instead we got some lunch at a hotel downtown—had two glasses of wine each AND shared a desert then headed to the airport where we had two large margaritas each. We figured all the walking we did (4 or 5 hours a day, each day) countered all the calories we consumed. Upon returning home I was happy to find that I did not gain any weight.

As usual I’ve gone through my post-con three days of exhaustion only to wake up this morning well-rested but with a head cold. I guess there’s only so much Vitamin C and Purell can do when faced with 143,000 people.

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