Day before last, I posted about the site Outside Comic-Con. A great site for adventurous nerds wandering near the convention center, but lacking a badge to San Diego’s greatest pop-culture event of the year. So, wanting to see more of the con than just the lines for Hall H (or the lines for the lines to Hall H) I started my day by printing off the information from this site and heading for areas just near the convention center.
First up on my wanderings was a parking lot taken over by a giant floating Axe Cop. Fox Animation Domination Experience has taken over a parking lot on the corner of 2nd and Island ave where they offered anybody walking by free pizza, water, and a chance to get a small Axe Cop (3D printed) figure! The location also offered a small golf course and was adjacent to the History Channels Vikings event. Which also featured a boat rowing contest and free comic books! This small corner of Comic Con in itself was incredible fun! I ate my pizza, took photos of the Axe Cops fighting the Viking women (something you would only see at an SDCC) and made a few new “line buddies!”
Next I was off to the local Ralphs for some sun block! Turns out having vampire white skin and hanging out in the sun too long are a bad idea. I am now, in a very real sense, a redneck… and it hurts. The Ralphs is located just north of the Fox Animation event on 2nd ave. A great place to get snacks and water at reasonable price. Just remember there is a Ralphs in the area before you plunk down six bucks on a soggy Pretzel Dog!
Now slathered in SPF 70, I continued my non-con wandering down towards the Gas Lamp Hilton where I encountered SEGA’s free game expo! This was a great opportunity to get off my feet and play a strategy game called Total War: Rome II. An amazing strategy game where if you played the Roman side and won an entire successful campaign – you could win a t-shirt. I got my butt kicked by the computer, but (meh) it was a wonderful chance to sit, relax, and game for a bit. Thanks SEGA!
Just past the SEGA expo, and on the front lawn of the Gas Lamp Hilton, was the Ender’s Game exhibit and a huge line! It’s not comic con if there aren’t huge lines. Unfortunately this one was underneath a baking July sun, but sooner than not, I was up inside the exhibit and out of the sun. Inside, there were props and costumes from the movie as well as movie trailers and photo opportunities with set pieces. They even had a giant star (one of the things Ender bounces off of in the battle room. Read the book!) in one corner of the exhibit.
By this point I needed a break, but fortunately I had the information from Outside the Con and I knew that Geek & Sundry (wtf “sundry”) had taken control of Jolt’n Joes, just off of 4th ave, and right up the street from the Gas Lamp Hilton.. At this point I have to give a big old “thank you” to the fine folks at Geek and Sundry (serious, what the fuck is a Sundry?) for providing sitting space, SWAG, free video games, and events for wandering (sun burned) nerds. Getting the chance to sit and relax was awesome! So, while there I grabbed a couple of beers (Four bucks a beer! CON!!!!) and a burger and took in all the geek awesomeness going on around me. I was kind of bummed out that Felica Day wasn’t there at the time, but my very tired legs couldn’t have gotten up to say “hi” anyways. So, I rested.
Not to sound too anti-climatic, but once I left the Geek & Sundry (I don’t even care what a sundry is now) I mostly just wandered around the con area snapping photos. The Gas Lamp and surrounding hotels have all been transformed into little pieces of pop-culture that we all love, and it was cool to see giant Teen Titans on the lawn of the Hilton or a very authentic looking Ecto-1 parked out on the street. On one corner a bullhorn shouting priest led a chained Zombie up and down the street, and after them were all the gorgeous, scantly clad, beauties handing out fliers and enough sexual fantasies for another year! I’m very glad there is so much to do outside the convention hall that doesn’t require a badge of any sort. Which means that even if you didn’t get a badge to this years Comic Con, you still don’t have to miss out! I had a blast today and I didn’t have to pay a lot of money or wait in many lines to do it! So, if you get the chance, head on down to the Gas Lamp and have a good time! If you happen to see a pair of chubby geek twins waddling around, say hello to us! We always love meeting a fellow El Moochadore!
Enjoy Comic Con folks!