Author Topic: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?  (Read 2189 times)

Offline Vapors

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Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« on: June 26, 2022, 10:49:03 PM »
Hey all!

I'm looking forward to this year's Comic Con. I missed out attending the Special Edition and while I did check out a few panels on the online versions the past 2 years, it just didn't feel the same. So I'm feeling like my normal self when we get close to the con like in past years, which would be excited. But I can't help but have this nagging feeling like things feel "muted." I am constantly checking this forum along with SDCC Unofficial blog and other online places about news for this year's con, but it just feels like things are not as hyped as in prior in-person years.

Guess I feel this way for a number of reasons, but a few things I feel like this con will be like:

1. I feel like there will be less people inside the con but not a ton less. But how many people are going to be there? Like I'm surprised there wasn't another online sale like in past years. Did we all really roll over the pass from the canceled year in 2020? It also feels like they have started the badge auctions a lot later than normal as well. (Like in 2019, I see in the forums the auctions started back in April, they just started this week which is late June). I guess I can see there being less folks in the center, but not a ton less than the reported 130,000 that's been capped the last few years.

2. While I'm not a big exclusives person, I still manage to pick up a few things here or there if they aren't totally inconvenient to obtain. This year, feels like a lot of the normal players either have fewer items to showcase or none at all. I notice Hasbro and Mattel, two really big exclusive providers for the con in past years, haven't shown anything yet. By this point in normal years, they usually have already started rolling out some early items. Funko, I saw, showcased a ton of stuff like they normally do, but from what I could tell, none of it is really "SDCC" exclusive though. This makes me think a lot of exhibitors will keep exclusives low this year.

3. Different interactions with artists this year. I already know a few of my favorite comic artists I follow will be exhibiting/tabling this year, but a good chunk of them have indicated that they will handle in-person interactions differently such as plastic barriers between them and the fans. Limiting touching of products they bring. One has even flat out said they will no longer do hand shakes/high fives like in past years to limit physical contact. There also seems to be a higher emphasis on pre-booking commissions to limit in-person contact. It's a shame but this is something that seems to be a running theme I am picking up among artists that I follow.

4. Fewer offsite things to do at this year's con. Feels like a lot of offsites will either be paid or they are really keeping things close to the vest this year. But again, like the exclusives, feels like fewer announcements have been made than in past normal years. I do wonder if more recent real world considerations like inflation, higher labor costs and higher gas/transport costs are the main culprits for why there are fewer offsite events we seem to be having this year. Maybe more will be announced this week and next.

5. Lastly, I think there will be fewer "big" studio showcases. This isn't going to be a new thing as already a few studios were already reducing their footprint at the con. I'm glad folks got confirmation for the Marvel panel as that always seems like a highlight for a lot of folks, but what about the rest of Disney/Lucasfilms/Fox? Will DC/Warners be there? Or Sony? Or Lionsgate? Those studios skipped out on Comic Con back in 2019. So this isn't a Covid era consideration, this was something already happening. Anyways, fewer big studios where folks camp in Hall H all day, gave way to more folks rotating in and out back in 2019. I was able to check out a Hall H panel last year because of that. I think that will be something that continues for 2022's version.

Anyways, I don't want to make this a downer of a thread. I'm going to go this year and, like in past year's, I'm going to have a great amount of fun. I think you have to actively work to NOT have fun at a Comic Con. But it's going to be different and I feel like the vibe going into this year is much different than in past years. I'm just curious if anyone's got feelings if this will be a different type of con and what your expectations will be going in this year since, for a lot of us, this is the first normal Comic Con back in almost three years.

Offline Mel

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2022, 11:49:10 PM »
Well, I most big studios probably started planning and working on their booths, offsites and exclusives at least a year in advance. With the past two cancelled and no guarantee of 2022, they probably did not want to sink a whole life of planning and development into it until it seemed certain.

All that in mind, it makes sense things won't be as robust as we are used to and might not have as much PR going. What I've seen is more than expected though.

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Offline rabbitwarren

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2022, 07:57:28 AM »
Quote
Fewer offsite things to do at this year's con. Feels like a lot of offsites will either be paid or they are really keeping things close to the vest this year. But again, like the exclusives, feels like fewer announcements have been made than in past normal years. I do wonder if more recent real world considerations like inflation, higher labor costs and higher gas/transport costs are the main culprits for why there are fewer offsite events we seem to be having this year. Maybe more will be announced this week and next.

Sustainability issues too.  Companies are under a lot of pressure to say they are green and that gets pushed down to their vendors. 

Offline Old Man Grey

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #3 on: June 27, 2022, 08:38:22 AM »
Based on what I experienced at Turkey Con, Wondercon and SW Celebration I would say your pessimism is warranted. I wonder how many of the smaller vendors will be there or if they even survived.

Offline NCDS

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #4 on: June 27, 2022, 09:44:06 AM »
I am going to get to see all my friends, have a few drinks, see a few panels, and buy stuff I don't need. 

It's going to be fun!
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Offline Michael M

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #5 on: June 27, 2022, 09:44:19 AM »
My only "real" expectation is on hold until they put out the guidelines for Hall H camping...there's no amount of verbiage CCI can put out that'll restrict peeps from following along as it'd relates to distancing and all that.  For me, it wasn't even on my radar until Marvel Studios announced that they're hitting SDCC...so I wait, and will hold judgement until then...


...in the meantime, my mind's on overdrive :D
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Offline Transmute Jun

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #6 on: June 27, 2022, 09:48:31 AM »
It's definitely a hill to climb coming back form the pandemic shutdowns. But I can say that each con I have attended has more and more to offer. While this may be a reduced experience from previous years, it is an important step in coming back, and doesn't necessarily mean that future years will be a lesser experience.

That being said, I agree with Mel that there has been more announced already than I expected, so I am cautiously optimistic.

Offline Jesse O

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #7 on: June 27, 2022, 10:07:34 AM »
What NCDS said. At the last regular Comic-Con, I got to hang with my 11-year-old nephew. We had breakfast with a couple of friends every morning at The Broken Yolk. We saw some cool unexpected panels. We bought some stupid toys (not denigrating stupid toys, btw). We went to the Masquerade. We saw Jerry Beck’s annual “Worst Cartoons” presentation. We hung with some of my favorite small press creators.

This year, I get to hang with my now 14 year old nephew. Our breakfast buddies have already confirmed that they’ll be there. I’m already seeing some fun panels popping up. I know that at least two of my favorite small press stalwarts will be there (Peter & Maria Hoey and Lonnie Millsap).

And I’m going to make an effort to meet some of the kind folks from this wonderful forum.

Whatever else happens, it’ll be icing on the cake.

I’m psyched.

Offline Transmute Jun

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #8 on: June 27, 2022, 10:14:46 AM »
Don't forget your FoCC breakfast buddies on Wednesday morning! ;)

Offline ALF

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #9 on: June 27, 2022, 10:39:18 AM »
I think the barometer is not this year but next year. Like Mel said it takes a year of planning.
If it remains the same this time next year, then I think we all might have witnessed the end of the Golden Age of Comic Con.
Less people, Less studios, Less exclusive and  maybe more comic books again? For me I am also getting up there in age with a family instead single life in college. I might pull the plug after next year if it remains watered down and maybe travel the world instead of roughing it out Comic Con. It’s hard not to reminisce the past.

Offline SDcomics

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #10 on: June 27, 2022, 11:27:55 AM »
Just want to point out real quick that SDCC has always been about more than comics.  It was way back in 1970 that Jack Kirby, a special guest at the first show, suggested to the founders that they make the show about  more than just comics and include all the things that fans like.  Movies, TV, science fiction.  So let it be written, so let it be done.  Oscar winning director Frank Capra was a guest at the first show I attended.  In 1976, Lucasfim sent a team bearing posters and slides to promote a new film called Star Wars.  In 1982 we were packed like sardines in the copper room of the old Convention and Preforming Arts Center to see a preview of Return of the Jedi.

There's always going to be a comic con, folks.  As long as there are people who love this stuff, and I mean truly love it, there will be a comic con.  Will it contract and get smaller?  More than likely.  There are a certain amount of people who attend that just want to wear a costume and post a picture on facebook (Gotta get that all important "like" button pressed).  And there are people who go just to buy exclusives so they can flip them on ebay.  Nothing wrong with that, but those are the ones who will lose interest and fade away.  For them, going to comic con is the trendy and profitable thing to do.  That won't last. 

Me, I go because I love comics, movies, sci-fi and fantasy.  That hasn't changed in over 60 years and I don't think it ever will.  I'll keep going until I just can't physically do it anymore.  I'm betting the majority of you folks feel the same way.  And as long we're around, Comic Con will continue.   

I'm hoping to be there in 2049 for the 80th anniversary.  I'll be 91 years old. 

I wouldn't bet against me.

Offline darqamin

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2022, 11:58:27 AM »
I do want to note that everything has been done later this year, whether it comes to housing lottery, registration of all types including press, etc. So I think there is still time for big off site things and other SDCC related events/items/etc to be announced. I will include a quote here from my press email that indicates the press list is going out on July 1st, so it is possible some of the big emails announcing things are waiting for the first week of July (because as press i have barely got any emails so far which makes sense, most of the press targetted emails have not gone out yet until the press list is finalized)

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Offline chocolateshake

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #12 on: June 27, 2022, 12:12:55 PM »
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Did we all really roll over the pass from the canceled year in 2020? It also feels like they have started the badge auctions a lot later than normal as well. (Like in 2019, I see in the forums the auctions started back in April, they just started this week which is late June). I guess I can see there being less folks in the center, but not a ton less than the reported 130,000 that's been capped the last few years.

They started them as early as possible this year considering everything has been late.  They had to wait for the badge refund period to end, then for all the pros to signup and finally for the all the new volunteers to signup.  Shortly after the second round of volunteer signups ended, they started the badge sales.  They've been making up for it in the sheer number of badges they are dropping at a time.  If I remember right, in 2019 it was more of a dribble.  It was less dense.  There was plenty of time to bid as well as plenty of time between auctions to decide if you wanted to try again and bid more.  This time the auctions are up for a shorter period of time and many are ending so close to one another.  They are also dropping more frequently.  Since yesterday they've added 11 more listings.

I think the volunteer signup is a good indicator of attendance.  Since if every volunteer that signed up for 2020 "rolled over" to 2022 then they wouldn't have had to reopen volunteer registration for new volunteers.  Not only was it open to new volunteers but both the interest list signup and the actual volunteer registration went on for a long time.  So long that I can imagine they didn't hit the target.  It had gone on so long that it was just time to call it.

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4. Fewer offsite things to do at this year's con. Feels like a lot of offsites will either be paid or they are really keeping things close to the vest this year. But again, like the exclusives, feels like fewer announcements have been made than in past normal years. I do wonder if more recent real world considerations like inflation, higher labor costs and higher gas/transport costs are the main culprits for why there are fewer offsite events we seem to be having this year. Maybe more will be announced this week and next.

Offsites have been on the decline for years.  I'm big into offsites.  I spend much more time at the offsites than in the convention center.  Peak offsite happened the year there were all those mini-con offsites like Conival.  Then there were all gone except for Conival for one last year.  But even that was a shadow of it's former self.  My fingers are crossed though.  The company that runs a lot of the offsites at comic-con has said that demand is high this year.

Overall I'm expecting it to be a 80% comic-con in all aspects.  I wouldn't be surprised if there are on site badge sales.  The banner has already been made.  Why not use it?

Offline debster

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #13 on: June 27, 2022, 01:11:59 PM »
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I wouldn't be surprised if there are on site badge sales.  The banner has already been made.  Why not use it?

Ugh, I really wouldn’t want to have to camp out to buy badges again…

Offline Transmute Jun

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Re: Everyone's expectations for this year's SDCC?
« Reply #14 on: June 27, 2022, 01:24:11 PM »
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Ugh, I really wouldn’t want to have to camp out to buy badges again…

I think that the implication was badges for 2022, not badges for 2023.