I didn’t go to Comic-Con on Sunday in 2006 because I was tired of it by the fourth day. My family convinced me to go since I did have Comic-Con and trolley passes. A deal ‘s a deal! Getting there was no problem. Once inside, though it was chaos. Sunday was kids’ day. Now, most kids were fine, but what was not fine were the con newbies: parents with strollers. Pedestrian traffic was crazy because of the strollers everywhere. The parents would stop in the middle of the aisles and gawk and whatever booth, blocking the people behind them from moving. Babies in strollers would drop stuff or grab things from passersby. And crowd control was a lot worse than in 2006. Booths just couldn’t handle long lines of people so lines wrapped around and around with no indication of where the line ended or what the line was for. In 2006 I specifically saw such lines broken up to help the flow of traffic, but this year it was the norm. I tried three times to talk to staff members what was going on in the line they guarded and two times I was completely ignored. The third time I was ejected from a line I accidentally stood in. That line was important, too:
Omar Dogan, artist at Udon comics, was doing commission sketches. I think his work is fantastic so I went to his booth. Luckily, he wasn’t so busy so I could get my request in: Karin from Street Fighter Alpha 3. Mr. Dogan was very nice and he told me to pick it up around closing time. As I walked away it occured to me that I had no way of safely transporting a 11″ x 17″ art piece. But, I saw many convention-goers all weekend with poster tubes from the Fox booth so off I went. When I got there they were out of posters with a sign promising more later. I walked around some more and returned. Now there was a giant throng of people demanding poster tubes. I walked around the booth but couldn’t find where the line ended. I saw one likely spot, a corner with a staff member and what looked like the end. I asked the man if it was the end, and he said no. It turns out, the line continued directly behind me, from where I had come from. So… that meant I was in the line right? No, said both the guard and the woman behind me (whom is a jerk btw). At this point I was on the verge of a freakout so I left ending my quest for a poster tube.
I calmed myself down by first watching Spore being played at their booth, played some Rock Band in the game room. Walking through the exhibit hall made me have an attack again so I sat in a secluded area playing Phase on my iPod. Once I was refreshed I went back to see Omar Dogan. Surprisingly my piece was done (it had been around three hours). It’s fantastic: inked and shaded which is beyond what he needed to do for a con sketch. I had him keep the rough lines. I wrapped the drawing in some thick posters, forming a protective tube I had to hold closed. Having gotten that, there was nothing I needed to do so I left Comic-Con as fast as possible.
I’m not sure if I want to do it again. At least I’ll skip a year like before. Maybe two years. I did have lots of fun and got many unique souvenirs, and talked to some great people, but the aggravating times were insanity-inducing, literally. I’m pretty sure it’s all worth it, though. Maybe. Let me look at that drawing again…