31 Things I Learned At San Diego Comic-Con

I went to Comic-Con last weekend, and I learned a lot about comic books, video games, open bars, and waiting in long lines. If you’ve never been, maybe this will help convince you to make it out to San Diego next summer. Seriously, there was something for everyone.

1. There are trading cards for pretty much everything that has ever existed.

…and they’re super expensive. These signed “NCIS” cards we’re going for $40-$100. The most inexpensive signed “Game of Thrones” trading card I saw cost $180.

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2. Crossplaying (crossdressing cosplay) is pretty popular.

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We saw male Black Widows, male slave Leias, and a TON of male Batwomen. (They said they were dressed as “Batman”. Go figure.)

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It went the other way too.

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Plenty of female Robins, female Spider-Men, and female Wolverines running around the show room floor.

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3. Costume Weapons are heavily controlled.

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4. The most abundant types of food were hot dogs wrapped in pretzels and liquid cheese.

I had one for breakfast every day I was there.

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5. Pleather Cat Woman outfits are hard to get out of to pee.

This is BuzzFeed editor Gavon Laessig, who attended Comic Con as “Man Hathaway.”

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6. People enjoyed whipping Man Hathaway.

Including Kari Byron from MythBusters. (All of the MythBusters were super cool, as a matter of fact.)

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..while others enjoyed being whipped by him.

Jason Biggs was more than happy to be whipped. He took some time out of promoting “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” to be a good sport.

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7. Lines for the big events and panels were over 12 hours long.

This is a line that was so long that it went out the door of the convention center, and wrapped around the building several times.

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Some people spend their entire trip to Comic Con waiting in lines.

These people were waiting to get in to a “Game of Thrones” panel. They claimed that they had already been waiting for 8 hours at that point. (They were nowhere near the front of the line.)

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8. It’s entirely possible that you will run into Joss Whedon just walking down the hall.

That’s him on the left. Nathan Fillion was about 20 feet behind him.

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9. Babies are welcome.

But not their strollers.

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10. The WiiU is fun, but it’s hard to look cool when you play it.

Especially in a Catwoman outfit. This was at the Ubisoft party, where we “zombified” ourselves with “Zombie U.”

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11. There were little bottles of SDCC vodka all over the place.

In fact, there was a lot of alcohol pretty much all over San Diego, except at the convention center.

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12. There were a ton of street preachers shouting at people, but an equal amount of trolls mocking them

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13. Anywhere someone was handing out fliers, there’s usually a trash can 20 feet later crammed with discarded flyers.

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14. There is a ton of stuff for sale, and they give you giant bags to fill with comic books and toys.

They were so big that Gavon could fit inside them.

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15. Napping in busy hallways was normal.

This very dedicated boyfriend fell asleep holding a little moon thought bubble above his girlfriend’s head.

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16. There were breathalyzer machines in pretty much every bar in San Diego.

They cost $3.25 to use. Gavon and I both used one after a couple drinks. I blew a .06, he blew a .09.

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17. If you managed to make it in to a panel, this was the typical view.

We had priority access to this Firefly panel, but we still got stuck in the back of the room with no view of the panel.

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18. Erotica and pin-up art seems to be treated the same as comic book art.

It was all over the place. We bought these 3D nudie cards at a bar where they were selling queer comic books and doing an erotic live drawing class.

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19. Taking the balloon off a hot air balloon basket and using the burners as pyrotechnics at a rock show is a great idea.

This guy was firing off his burners in time with dub step music. It really made me understand the appeal of dub step for the first time.

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20. People in large costumes make it hard to get around.

Especially this guy dressed as Arthur with his massive cardboard wings. It creates a bottleneck of human cattle.

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21. Animals can be nerds, too.

A lot of pets were paraded around in cosplay, including this little fellow dressed as a biker.

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22. San Diego is very accustomed to this insanity.

Everything is so crazy during Comic-Con that no one even stopped to look at this woman grinding sparks from her boobs.

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23. Stilts were everywhere for some reason.

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The streets of San Diego surrounding the convention center were crawling with people in stilts.

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24. A game of “cornhole” is not as dirty as you might think.

It’s just a bean bag toss. This cornholing was at The History Channel tent.

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25. San Diego is such a clean city that people felt fine walking around barefoot.

This Incredible Hulk was incredibly brave.

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26. The Praying Pitbull lives in San Diego.

He was just chilling in front of the convention center.

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27. The convention hall started smelling funny after four days.

Tens of thousands of people in sweaty costumes can really build a musky stench.

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28. You can buy tasers at Comic-Con.

We found a pop up zombie apocalypse store not far from the convention that was selling a variety of stun guns. We bought one. It wasn’t a great idea.

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29. Sir Ian McKellan shoved a dude in front of Hooters.

We saw Sir Ian McKellan, a.k.a. Gandalf, coming out of a haunted house attraction next to Hooters. One of the actors dressed as a ghoul jumped out in front of him and tried to scare him. Sir Ian shoved the guy out of the way and looked quite upset. This is him right after the altercation, composed and smiling, for he is a badass.

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30. Ensemble cosplaying trumps regular cosplaying.

If you’re going to go to Comic Con as something as popular as Doctor Who, invite your 12 closest friends to do it too. Nobody takes a picture of one lone Doctor Who, but if you bring a crew, you’ll get stopped every 10 feet.

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31. Just because you’re older or can’t get around very easily, that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun at Comic-Con.

There were a lot of people in wheel chairs or with walkers dressing up and having a great time. This was our favorite example, incorporating the walker into the costume.

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