FIRST LOOK: Preview Night at San Diego Comic Con 2015

I had NEVER been to San Diego Comic Con before tonight, despite living in San Diego my whole life. I’d always wanted to go out of sheer curiosity when I was younger but I was just never that into comics, so I didn’t feel strongly compelled. This year, I’d decided to just check out the events going on outside Comic Con, since it’s expanded out to other parts of downtown San Diego so much. However, Agent Nate got in touch with me about an extra Preview Night pass that he’d picked up and offered to me, and I just couldn’t say no! I’ll provide you with a brief account of my short time at the con with some pictures of my favorite things.

It was shocking to me how many people were at the convention. Even just walking around OUTSIDE the convention center made me feel agoraphobic. People were jammed onto the sidewalks, pouring off of charter buses, crossing streets en masse, and it was just generally crazy. Inside the con, this did not really change. I hung out with Agents Nate and Jamal, who were joking about how they enjoyed flailing their arms about from time to time in open spaces because you can’t do this generally while walking around the exhibition floor (I learned later they were not kidding. Flailing your arms feels good sometimes.)

We entered the con near Hall H where crazies people are always camped out for days in advance of panels. The people I interacted with at the con by and large did not view the campers as crazy people; rather, it is a badge of honor of some sort to camp out. “They’re so dedicated,” I heard people say as others solemnly nodded. They looked pretty miserable to me, just saying.

Artist Alley was the first thing we saw. It’s an area where artists can set up booths to sell their art, do sketches, autograph works, etc. I really liked Artist Alley because it wasn’t crowded and everyone working the booths seemed really sincere and into what they were doing. I hadn’t heard of a lot of the artists or their works before, but if I go back to SDCC in the future I guess I’d want to spend more time here.

I’m sure that the floor of the convention is more or less meticulously laid out to have certain things in certain areas, but all I could really tell you is that Artist Alley is at one end, there’s a football field of mush in between, and then there was video game-y stuff at the other end. Mind you, there’s some cool stuff in the mush, but there’s also a lot of stuff I’ve never heard of or would not be interested in.

The first thing that really caught my eye in the mush were some costumes from a few specific shows I review.

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It was really awesome to see the costumes up close! There are interesting things you don’t notice, like the textures on the Reverse-Flash costume.

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We also saw some costumes from Batman Vs. Superman. I have to say, I really thoroughly enjoyed the Batman costumes. The textures and overall workmanship on them were really excellent. The Wonder Woman costume was really fabulous as well!

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One thing I learned quickly about Preview Night is that not a lot of swag is given out and a lot of the cool interactive booths filled up quickly or closed down early. We tried to get in line for a few things including the Ash vs. Evil Dead experience and the History Channel Vikings booth only to be turned away. Booths that we went up to for swag started putting their swag on the floors or removing it from the displays so they could presumably save it for the other days of the con.

Another cool thing we saw was the Sideshow booth. Nate was gushing over it so we stopped to take a look. I was so impressed with the level of detail and quality on the figures. There was also this really fun and crazy R2D2 display where they had different variations of R2D2s. They were so creative and colorful!

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I liked looking at the stuff in the Warcraft movie booth as well. I even caught a GUARD exclusive- the unveiling of the main feature statue at the booth! (I was very proud of myself for the ridiculously lucky timing, although my photography skills leave much to be desired.)

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After about 90 minutes of wandering the con, bumping into 500 people, finding Agent Patrick randomly, and making our way back to Artist Alley, I was pretty much done with Preview Night. It was cool, but I have no idea how people spend four days doing this stuff. By the end of the evening, I was complaining my legs were sore, Patrick was starving, and Nate was eyeing his tattered swag bag with murderous intent.

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It’s true that it wasn’t a full con experience, since I didn’t get to see any panels and I didn’t end up buying a single thing. But, it was a great first experience and I got to see some pretty fun stuff. Check back later for my updates on events outside the con!

Sarah Wiezel

About Sarah Wiezel

Agent Sarah writes on Tuesdays for Agents of GUARD and covers Arrow, console games, anime, and whatever else sounds appealing at the moment. She has a day job in the software industry and thinks cereal is overrated.