COMIC-CON... Can You Believe It?
To those of us that look forward to the annual genre-enthusiast festival San Diego Comic-Con International marking our calendars and literally working our entire live's schedule around the biggest celebration of all things cool -- we just have one thing to say: Why'd it take everyone else so long to catch up? I mean really...there's a genuinely validating feeling in the fact that the end of July now marks the most excitingly lucrative marketing gig as all of Hollywood looks to guarantee that its got the next hit on its hands whether in film, television, print or multi-media!
That Comic-Con would come to dominate on the landscape is simply telling of how seriously media has taken to the unique trends and tastes of genre enthusiast that run the gamut of science fiction and fantasy die-hards, to superhero franchise fans, to celebrity cosplayers who have been elevated to a level all of their own design. The otherwise disenfranchised voices, whether they be geeks, or kooks, nerds or conspiracy theorists, are suddenly the "cool kids" and have proven just how valuable their passion for fandom really is.
Hollywood started taking notice of the event only recently, beginning to target market its event films at the annual conventional only within the last decade or so, and quickly learned that their most critical and captive audiences were all in one place, circulating within one arena, and if you can grab their collective imaginations then perhaps you can have a blockbuster weekend, or a hit in primetime solidifying a serialized franchise or at least a cult following. However it played it out, the genre audience has exploded and to accommodate growing interests so has Comic-Con.
The largest of all the conventions, San Diego Comic-Con International (this year taking place July 22 - July 24) draws the biggest crowds teeming to a glimpse of their favorite stars, sneak a peak at the next coming attractions, or nab the rarest collectible. Hall H has become the destination for all the weekend's biggest draws and greatest revelations, and the convention floor a treasure trove for hard-seekers looking for the rarest gifts or exclusives.
In 2014, perhaps the busiest promotional cycle in the con's existence over 20 primetime shows were featured in premiere panels that played to oversold crowds and standing room only. That year returning favorites which included the casts of The Walking Dead convention favorites always, were slightly overshadowed by the impression introduction of Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment's primetime indoctrination of its new series for the fall...
The CW bolstered some serious attention with its returning hit Arrow but was about to add to the landscape with a spin-off with a familiar man in tights! That year The Flash was announced and expanding on the DC Universe with a television continuity that would run similarly to what had been established by the competing Marvel Films cinematic universe. Fox also introduced the Batman prequel Gotham and NBC launched Constantine.
There have significant changes since -- some shows have gone, and others have grown (really grown), and still more have been introduced, but one thing is clear San Diego Comic-Con has come to mean a lot to many people. It's still the greatest party on the planet -- so let your geek flag fly!