Sunday at San Diego Comic Con 2015 and my final thoughts - FOX Carolina 21

Sunday at San Diego Comic Con 2015 and my final thoughts

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One last look back as I say goodbye. One last look back as I say goodbye.
SAN DIEGO, CA (FOX Carolina) -

My Sunday at Comic Con this year started off a bit unusual.  I was actually looking forward to the show ending and heading home.  That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy my time in San Diego.  The weather is amazing, and I come for the atmosphere of the town itself as much as I do the show.  But the show has gotten so large, I’m starting to slowly feel like it’s losing its magic for me.  I get too frustrated with the crowds, and it’s a lot of walking as I’ve mentioned before.

Typically a Sunday at comic con is good for deals.  You have two types of dealers at the show on Sundays.  Those that still haven’t made enough to pay for their booths, so everything is on sale.  Or the type that don’t want to carry anything home, so they also mark down items.  Both types of dealers have the same outcome: cheaper goodies for you.   

I started out headed to the FOX booth and picked up an exclusive Blu Ray they had at the show of Big Trouble in Little China.  It’s one of my all-time favorite films by John Carpenter, staring Kurt Russell as Jack Burton, a bumbling, but loveable truck driver turned hero in a battle to save the world.  If you’ve never seen this movie, I highly recommend it.  You won’t be disappointed.  This along with many other FOX films were being sold with show exclusive covers stamped Comic Con 2015.  Since I didn’t have the movie on Blu Ray yet, I figured two birds one stone.  

After leaving the FOX booth I headed over to the Fantagraphics booth who publish some of my favorite books to read when I want to be taken back to a simpler time in my life.  These are the people who bring us publications such as: Peanuts, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, and my personal favorite and what I went to pick up, Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge. 

Now anyone who grew up watching Duck Tales every morning knows who Scrooge McDuck is.  A man by the name of Carl Barks was his creator.  Years later, a man by the name of Don Rosa would take over drawing Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge comics in such an amazing fashion to be loyal to Barks’ vision of those books.  It’s Don Rosa I first came to know when reading the books, and its reprints of his work in these beautiful Fantagraphics books that I am now collecting.  Volume 3 of the Don Rosa collection was available for purchase at the booth, and lucky me it’s in hardback (who wants to carry that home?), and because it’s Sunday it’s marked 20% off.  Done.

Well believe it or not, this was basically the end of Comic Con for me.  And the strange part, it wasn’t even noon yet. The show didn’t end until 5pm.  So what to do now for five hours?  Well I went to one end of the building, walked all the way to the other side, and back again.  That killed about an hour, so after that I met up with a friend of mine and we got lunch, then we did something neither of us had done in my 10 years and his 23 years of attending the show.  We left early.  That’s it.

As we walked over the bridge to catch our shuttle back to our hotel, I took one final look back at the convention center. I wondered when the next time I would see it again would be, if ever?  I said I wanted to go this year to give myself an even 10 times attending the show.  Then I could stop.  I didn’t have to go back anymore (like it’s some terrible burden right? Some people wait their whole life to attend Comic Con and I just take it for granted).  My first show was in 1998.  When I thought about attending the show almost two decades ago it made me wistful for those early days (I know I sound like some aging hipster, but it was REALLY different back then).  It made me think back to those times that instead of traveling with one friend, we were traveling in a group of four or five.  Maybe that was what made the show so much more fun in those days?  Someone once said, “I wish there was a way to know you’re in the good old days, before you’ve actually left them.”      

I have a lot of great memories hanging out with those friends.  But I also believe the show has gotten too big for me to enjoy as much as I used too.  I don’t like not having everything confined to the convention center.  I don’t like walking between multiple hotels because I want to see something.  I don’t like how almost everything has a line now. 

But then there were moments that made me smile.  And not moments for me personally, but for that five or six year old kid that was running around excited at everything he saw.  For that kid that jumped in front of me as I was taking pictures of toys yet to be released.  He was so excited because he could name every Batman hero and villain toy he was looking at.  His parents apologized to me and I told them it was okay.  And it that moment I knew it was okay.  Because 17 years ago, even at the age of 18, I had that same excitement.  And that is what San Diego Comic Con is about.

Comic Con is that place where you meet your favorite writer, or your favorite artist, or that legendary creator that dreamt up all the characters you had hanging on your wall as a kid.  It’s a place you meet people dressed as your hero, and for a kid in that one moment, they are standing next to that hero. 

Comic Con has a certain magic.  It’s like the magic in the sleigh bell from the Polar Express that only a kid can hear jingle.  There are some people, that for them, this magic never fades.  It never waivers.   As the years pass on, its magic has started to disappear for me.  There are moments that I still enjoy it, but I find them to be fleeting.  But I couldn’t help but smile at that kid and be envious of his excitement.  And no matter how jaded or grumpy or reminiscent I am for those “good old days” with my friends, I smile.  I smile because that kid’s days are just beginning.  

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