Thursday, July 20, 2006

Nerd Prom '06

If you're a geek there are two major, annual events that you circle on your calendar. The first is E3, which the electronics and gaming expo that's held mid-May each year. The other is the San Diego Comic Convention, which is going on right now.

Yes, there other big events in the life of geeks. But they're not annual events like these. Every year, for about four days it's one big geek orgasm of news, toys, games, comics and booth babes. Never underestimate the power of a booth babe on geek in testosterone shock and his mind already in sensory overload from everything that's going on around him.

I have no idea what fries the synapses of female geeks. I haven't heard much about booth hunks, but I'm sure it's something.

It's mildly frustrating that I'm actually going to be in San Diego in about three weeks time. I'd love to go to the SDCC at some point in my life, and this is a very close call. Then again, I'd like to go to a much smaller convention first just to get used to it. SDCC is a massive event. Over the next four days they're anticipating approximately 150,000 people in attendance. To put that in some perspective, that's double the number of people who attended the Republican and Democratic convention in 2004...combined.

I've never been to a comic convention before. Well, there were a couple of attempts to get one going in St. John's, but to call them affectionately half-assed would be generous. I recall one organizer swearing he was bringing in Mark Hamill - right until it got out that he wanted a $10,000 appearance fee, plus his airfare and hotel covered. Then, oddly, plans for the convention fell through.

It's not just comic books at SDCC. There are games, toys, movies, books, original artwork and God knows what else for sale. There will be panels talking about everything under the sun when it comes to popular culture. Studios will be there promoting TV shows and movies. The major comic book publishers will be releasing details of projects for the next year.

Like I said, one massive, sweaty geek orgasm. Try not to dwell on that image. It'll give you nightmares.

Anyway, if you're curious about what's happening there, here are a few sites to hit over the next few days. If they aren't reporting it, they'll link to those who are.

Newsarama Blog
Comic Book Resources
Publisher's Weekly

However, my favourite page is likely to be this Flickr pool. Basically, anyone with a camera can upload what they're shooting at the con. It's tame so far, but it's likely to explode as the days progress. And yeah, a lot of it is going to be boring photos of fans standing next to pros who you may or may not know. But I'm really looking forward to the freaky photos. The folks in just bizarre costumes. The best one I saw last year was a guy in a Stormtrooper outfit. That, in and of itself, is nothing new. There are so many people dressed as Stormtroopers at cons all over that they've actually taken to using them as security at some of them.

But this guy did his costume as a Japanese Samurai Stormtrooper. No kidding, he had swords, flags flying off his back, a headband, extra armour over the outfit. It was bizarre, but seriously amazing. And that's the kind of stuff you'll likely find in the Flickr site.

Here's a taste of what you can find...and yes, that's an Elvis Stormtrooper.

But in case you don't want to wade through all that, head over to Warren Ellis site. He won't be in San Diego, and he will mock to within an inch of his life everyone in attendance, but he likely will run some of the more bizarre photos that people send him over the weekend.

Enjoy the weirdness. I plan on it...


Stephen Eli Harris said...

Awesome post here. I'm a comic book geek myself and would die to be at that Comic Con this year. Well, any year really but, this one especially as there is a big focus on the upcoming Ghost Rider movie.

Your comment on the attentance numbers was hilarious and somewhat surprising... though not much. Perhaps a little taste of geekness could add a lot to politics and get more people out... Though, perhaps there's enough fantasy writing going on in that field already.

colette said...

What fries the synapses of girl geeks?

Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn.
Sean Bean in just about anything (although he lacks the intelligence quota).
Johnny Depp.
Any guy with great bod and _good_ long hair who looks good in (a) Renn doublet and hose; (b) cotehardie and hose; (c) early medieval tunics or (d) all of the above. Looking good in Tudor does it for some (see aforementioned Sean Bean--damn). Looking good in any kind of armour/dirty and unshaven is a plus.

Any guy who looks good in pair of glasses and Hugo Boss suit, carries a world of pain and is "sensitive", (e.g. Fox Mulder)

Note: Orlando Bloom is a girly man not fit to be mentioned with any of the above. Although he seems like a nice guy in interviews.