10 People You'll See at the San Diego Comic Con

By Ethan Kaye in Daily Lists, Nerdery
Thursday, July 22, 2010 at 8:02 am
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Think the craziest of the crazies hang out at the Mos Eisley Cantina or the Legion of Doom's swamp base? Think again. Every year the crème of the geek crop crawl out of their holes and make their way towards the San Diego Comic Con, the world's largest comic convention (although the percentage of the con that deals with actual comics seems to grow smaller every year). Some attendees are totally awesome, some are sexy, some are disturbing in the extreme. And thanks to SDCC's massive, ever-expanding pop culture scope, not all of them are even nerds.

If you're planning on making the journey to the convention center, there's plenty of thing you need to do, but only this list will prepare you for who you'll meet at SDCC. We expect you'll be happy to have this crowdspotter's guide to just some  the colorful folks around you. Some people may fall into more than one category -- I admit, I'm a little bit of each of these guys. But I suspect most of the good nerd are as well.

10) Grumpy Old Fan
There's a badge of honor in attending every convention in San Diego, and there are some guys who win that badge year after year, long after it stopped being impressive. If you hear someone bitching about how Hollywood has taken over the con, and how it wasn't like this in the old days, it's this guys.
PROS: A vast resource of con history, great for stories of drinking with Bob Kane.
CONS: Will name drop like it's going out of style, and punctuate with incessant bitching about the hordes of Twilight fans.

9) Little Big Blogger
San Diego is more than accommodating with members of the press, large and small. Perhaps too accommodating -- virtually anyone with a blog can get a press pass. That includes the rabid fan who writes nothing but Deadpool fanfic and lengthy bitchfests about weekly comics jostling for the same position as top talent from Newsarama. They're one and the same in the eyes of SDCC.
PROS: If you're looking to hear how much the con sucked because there wasn't enough Deadpool, check out his blog.
CONS: Grant Morrison only has so much free time at a convention, and this guy will try to monopolize as much of it as he can. Also, he'll argue that his presence at a panel is somehow "more important" than yours.

8) Clotheswhore
The convention is both a place to see and a place to be seen. For some fans, more the latter than the former. These guys start working on their costumes for one con the day after the last one ends, thinking that people are dying to see what they come up with next. It's a runway for the Clotheswhores, not a convention.
PROS: These guys look damn fine, and who doesn't like seeing a fully decked out Mr. Freeze or Mojo walking around? And high visibility means attention from the opposite sex.
CONS: 90% of his day is posing with folks, although if you're a girl, it's more like 99%.

7) Digger
Originally, comic cons were about the comic books themselves, and dealers were the stars, not creators. Some fans still look to San Diego as a place to dig into back issues, rather than panel attendance. You'll be able to identify these fans with their checklists, full plastic bags, and their tendency to argue about a little spine wear.
PROS: They're not taking your seat at panels, and they're keeping the collector's market alive.
CONS: They will bite if you pick up that issue of Impulse they wanted.

6) The Amateur Pro
These guys aren't here for the books, the panels, or the booths. They're here for the guests, specifically to get interviews with them, show them portfolios, and try to get a job orreel them in for their own project. They'll spend all day at the Marvel booth, trying to get a job drawing Avengers despite never have done any professional art work in their life, or trying to convince Mike Mignola to do a cover for their indie book, despite having no funds to pay him. The Amateur Pro is identified by his business card, his art portfolio and handshake, all of which he'll get into the hands of as many people as he can.
PROS: If you don't want to talk to Chris Claremont, this guy will happily occupy his time.
CONS: Lack of interest in most things going on around him, not interested in you unless you're working for a publisher.

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