Comic con is many things, to each person, every year. One year it could be a drunken escapade for you and your friends, and the very next it’s a business trip. The most boring 5 days of your life could then become the best week you can remember, 365 days later.
5 days…I keep forgetting I go to this thing for 5 days…people go to Paris for 5 days…
Regardless of your view on the con, your experience, the way you take it all in, whatever it is, one thing is inescapable. One thing so unique, that if any other industry truly realized what Comic Con had over them, they would be kicking themselves for missing it…
The fans are what make Comic Con so special. It sounds generic, trite, stupid, I know. But it’s true. No other industry, no other art, has fans like Comics. Let’s not kid ourselves here either. The fans at Comic Con are Comic fans. They might show up for a movie panel, or a toy launch, but at their core, they’re Comic fans through and through.
Give a Comic fan something to hold onto, and you’ve got a devotee for life. You have to do some very insane things to get a Comic fan to dislike you. Show me just a LITTLE bit of attention, and I’ll follow you to the creative ends of the Earth. You don’t see this in movies, you don’t see this on television, music, video games, whatever it is. Comic fans are truly unique.
And it’s San Diego Comic Con that allows them the biggest opportunity to show their devotion. The person who draws your favorite super hero is sitting just mere yards away! Walk up and say, "Hi!" Start a conversation, tell them good day and…wait…is that your favorite writer sitting behind a table across the aisle? You’ve got time! Let them know you like their work and that you look forward to their next book!
Where else can you do that? Is there a movie convention where in aisle 10 Angelina Jolie is sitting behind a table with sharpie in hand, waiting for you to approach her so she can sign your poster? Is George Clooney speaking in a room with 40 people, describing his career and the lengths he took to get to where he is?
Of course not!
And yet they, we, get derided from time to time by people in the industry. Not often, but it happens. And why? These guys and girls traveled thousands of miles from homes thatm honestly, a few rarely vacate. They push through crowded airports, sit in stuffy planes, drove through unknown cities and all so they can finally have the brief opportunity to tell you, to your face, that what you’re doing brings them happiness and joy. That your creativity helps them get through some tough times, and imagine a better tomorrow. And for some professionals and exhibitors, the only thing on their mind is when this person in front of them is going to stop talking. When they can leave for the day, when will they shut up and BUY something from you!
Musicians would KILL for such a vast population of rabid fans like this. Fans that will continue to give them attention long after they’ve overstayed their welcome in the medium. Fans with genuine concern for the professionals they adore. And there are still those in the profession that can barely muster up the energy to return that same feeling to someone who just wants to show you their appreciation.
I for one love, and am, a Comic fan. That’s why I love Comic Con. Not for the actors, or the video games, or the movies, or the theatrics. I love Comic Con because for 5 days out of the year, I’m able to be around people who share my appreciation for creativity and hard work. Sure a few might not have the most up to date social skills possible, but the lack of skill is more than made up for by their pure love of the medium.
Some of the attendees might be reclusive and quiet 360 days out of the year, but when Comic Con rolls around, you can hear them from the ends of the earth.