Sunday, August 1, 2010

Comic-Con 2010 Rundown - TUESDAY: the ramp-up and remembering Shel Dorf

O.K.! And here....we....GO!

I'd have to say that this year was probably one of the, if not THE most exciting Comic-Con I've attended yet! This was my sixth time, and due to the insanely idiotic idea (!!!) the San Diego Marriott Hotel & Marina had of charging everyone the full amount of a one's stay when they booked (even a little under a year out from the event), it was decided that another hotel would have to be found.

As far as I was concerned there were only two or maybe three other options, since I was now pretty much spoiled by the concept of staying right next door to the San Diego Convention Center! These were the Omni Hotel (right across the street) and the Hilton San Diego Bayfront at the opposite end of the convention center from the Marriott. Rebecca suggested that the Hilton would be the best solution because it was right next door to Hall H and we'd have a bird's eye view of how the lines were forming right from our room. I definitely liked this idea a lot. Also, the Omni definitely fell to the second choice slot because it was across the street and on the other side of several train tracks. Yeah, O.K. so we'd only have to cross over these travel ways which wasn’t much, but I still appreciated the idea of having everything right outside the hotel door.

Let me just say with a great amount of enthusiasm that the decision to jump on board with the Hilton was a dream! When booking our stay I requested a room facing the convention center on a high floor. After checking in and taking the elevator to the 13th floor (you heard it, 13) Rebecca and I had the perfect view of not only the area where fans line up for Hall H, but the entire convention center AND a beautiful panoramic snapshot of the San Diego bay and skyline of downtown San Diego. I was instantly hit with a feeling of complete satisfaction!!

One addition to this year's Hall H waiting line area was the inclusion of a series of tents. This was definitely much appreciated as shelter from the elements, including the hot sun during the day and for those fans camping out overnight. The weather was really nice, not too hot, and not too cool. Sun was scarce during those wait times outside, at least for us anyway, and we were loving it!

Before we start the rundown of the days events, I think it only appropriate to acknowledge the passing of a man who was the founder of San Diego's Comic-Con International forty one years ago; Shel Dorf. He died at age 76 on November 3, 2009 in San Diego, and if it wasn't for Shel we would not be experiencing the excitement, wonder, and thrills that this annual event brings to so many people!

When he began Comic-Con it was a small gathering of comic book fans held in San Diego's US Grant Hotel, then moving to the El Cortez Hotel where many current fans now acknowledge as the first major gathering place. If it wasn't for his creativity, organization, and continued perseverance in the world of comics and his inspired involvement with the convention itself, we would not be appreciating such an incredible event as what we now call home every July. What I mean by 'home' is how at home we all feel hanging out with fellow fans and appreciating, as a true force to be reckoned with, our passion for comics, movies, TV shows, video games, and science fiction in general.

The one thing I sincerely regretted about this year was not being able to attend a tribute panel for Shel. Due to a scheduling conflict I was not able to be a part of what I'm sure was a wonderful remembrance of the man. I only hope there are some type of future tributes that I might be a part of. I really do owe so much to this guy who was originally just trying to bring like-minded comics fans together, all out of love and passion for their favorite pastime. That love is now 125,000 people strong each year (in actual attendance), with hopes that an expansion of the convention center will yield much needed space and more room for all of us who, like Shel Dorf, loves to immerse in the group appreciation that is the San Diego Comic-Con International!

You can learn more about Shel and his legacy at

Now, on to the rundown...!!!


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