I’ve been a supporter of San Diego Comic-Con for 7 years and attendee 5 out of 7 years, but my first taste of a proper comic and pop culture convention was years ago in San Francisco. It was called WonderCon and it was held at the Moscone Center. But isn’t WonderCon held in Anaheim? That is correct, fellow nerd! It moved to Anaheim in 2012 and never looked back. Yes, I was bummed when it left the Bay Area but a new convention has stepped up to fill WonderCon’s massive shoes, and that’s San Francisco Comic Con!
SFCC started last year at the Marriott Marquis and I was pleasantly surprised how well it was attended. It is definitely a smaller convention but didn’t lack for talent from the realm of comics as well as pop culture staples like Doctor Who, Star Wars, and Dragonball Z. In addition, a slew of professional cosplayers had a panel and tables super close to each other to meet and greet fans. So in my opinion, all the main points were checked off to pull off a successful convention. Thing is, the space in the hotel was limited. Granted, they did utilize other areas and floors for the panels, autographs, and photo opportunities but getting lost finding the 501st room was too real whereas most smaller conventions have everything on the same floor.
But this year, they’ve taken over Moscone Center West and I’m anticipating a more crowded experience but expecting a leveled up programming experience. Last year, I was able to check out SFCC two days, one with a coworker on the first day and then on the second day with my son. Both days were fun. On Friday, I focused on meeting celebs and artists including Janet Varney, the voice of Korra from the Nickelodeon animated show, The Legend of Korra. I also was able to peruse the main floor and get a sense of the setup. It was actually very chill and stress-free.
The second day, my son and I found the 501st Legion and the Mando Mercs where I ran into a friend who managed my local comic shop, Tyler. I hadn’t seen him since I moved to the East Bay and it was super cool to see him troop as a Mando Merc member!
We also hung out in the kid’s room which was filled with legos, arts and crafts, and backdrops to take pictures. My twin brother and fellow nerd(col)laber, Kevin, brought his two sons so the second day was much more family time than anything. But when we got a break from the kiddos, we got to meet Heather1337, Emily aka thestylishgeek, and Kittiecosplay all in the same area! I’ve always wanted to meet these cosplayers I follow on Instagram so it was pretty cool to meet them all within 5 minutes!
We also got to take a picture with Jenna Coleman, Clara Oswald, from Doctor Who. I had already met her at SDCC but never got a photo with her. And the photo op process was super smooth, from buying your photo op pass to the lineup and to the actual photo. They herd you through super quickly but a lot of photo ops have become this and it’s a cool way to meet your favorite celebrity without breaking the bank.
Overall, last year’s convention was a great bar setter and I’m anticipating some fun times this year. Here are some of the highlights I’m excited for this year:
- Photo op with Summer Glau, actress from Firefly and Terminator: The Sarah Conner Chronicles
- Autograph or photo op with Ray Park, Darth Maul from the Star Wars prequels
- Photo op with Peter Capaldi, the 12th Doctor from Doctor Who
- Chance to meet Bruce Timm, an amazing artist and who helmed The Batman Animated series tv show
- Two Artist Alley tables to discover talented artists and new art
- The 1st ever Shortboxed Comic Swap – more details here
I’m getting excited as I write this! I’ll be attending all 3 days with my son so definitely looking to take it slow and not become crazy “Con Jeremy”.
Also for those who collect comics, I’m attending the Shortboxed Comic Book Swap aka San Francisco Comic Con After Party at Jillian’s San Francisco! I also write for this comic blog and know this is going to be a fun party mingling with comic collectors and maybe picking up a floppy or two. Tickets can be purchased on Eventbrite. Check out the FB event for more info!
This year’s event looks packed with cool stuff and I hope it continues the momentum to grow. It may not become as big as WonderCon but I have faith that it still will be a must attend show if your a local Bay Area nerd like me. Plus, having a local convention to attend with my son is the most important thing for me. See you all in San Francisco!
*FEATURED IMAGES FOUND VIA GOOGLE IMAGE SEARCH AND JEREMY’S PERSONAL GALLERY
Are you attending this year’s San Francisco Comic Con? Let us know and maybe there’ll be a sticker pack for you? Maybe?! Please feel free to leave a comment below or on our Facebook page here or Instagram page here or our Twitter page here.