After the Wednesday night debacle with the shuttle bus, we decided to give the trolley a try. It's basically an above ground subway and the cars are shaped like trolleys. Trust me, you haven't lived until you've waited on a trolley platform with a crowd of people dressed like characters from movies and anime.
When we arrived at the Convention Center, the line for registration was....scary. It might be the longest line for anything I have ever seen. Luckily, Rachel and I had gone through the process the night before and Carly had arrived early to try to avoid the ridiculousness. Unfortunately there was some confusion as to how to get into the Convention Center--the Exhibit Hall didn't open until 9 and it didn't seem like they were letting people in before then, but since we had the four day passes we managed to find a volunteer who would let us in.
Since we got into the Con about an hour before any of the programming started, Rachel and I got to the room for our first panel way early. It was called Sci-Fi That Will Change Your Life and was put on by the people over I09.com. Each person on the panel talked about books, movies, comics, or a television show in the science fiction genre that had impacted them during the previous year. But since we got there so early, Rachel and I had time to play some Uno. Or I should say, we had time for Rachel to kick my ass at Uno four times in a row.
After our first panel we had several hours before the next one, so we grabbed a table in the pavilion and ate lunch (ham and cheese sandwich on wheat...assembled from our purchases at Ralph's the previous day). I was able to win back some of my honor by beating Rachel at War and we spent the time just people-watching. If you like people-watching, Comic Con is the place to do it.
After catching up with Selvi and Carly, we headed over to our next panel, Wonder Woman: Female Power Icons in Pop Culture. I was pretty excited about this one since the panelists were Sigourney Weaver, Eliza Dushku, Zoe Saldala, and Elizabeth Mitchell. The write-up of the panel will be on the tv blog soon, but let me just say that everyone came off as intelligent and eloquent, except for Eliza, who was unfortunately kind of dim. She had been a last minute replacement for Kristen Bell (Veronica Mars!), and that made me sad since I love Kristen Bell.
After the Power Icons panel, I ran across the Convention Center to try to join Rachel in line for the Robot Chicken panel, but it was clear we were not going to make it in. Not only was the line stretching down the hall, but it also went outside and around the side of the building. Whoops. So, plan B.
We stood in the long line for the panel on the Evolution of Fantasy (discussing what's the next big fantasy series), but since I was so worried about making it into the Legend of the Seeker panel, I skipped out after 20 minutes and joined the other line. I started talking to a really nice couple from the UK, who had flown all the way from London for the Con, and after about an hour (ugh) made it into the room for Legend of the Seeker (write-up here).
You know, when writing all this out, it seems like we did a lot, but when you're actually there, it feels like you just sit in panels and stand around in line all day. But it is inexplicably exhausting. And it's not over yet! After Legend of the Seeker, I met up with Rachel, Carly, and Selvi (and the three guys we had met at the airport) in Hall H which is the giant room that seats almost 7,000 people.
Most of the big panels were done for the day, but the good news is I was able to walk right in and not have to wait in a 6 hour line like the people who had wanted to see the New Moon and Avatar panels earlier in the day. We saw a preview of a movie called Kick-Ass which looks AWESOME, and then a preview for a Korean movie called Thirst. It's being billed as Twilight for grown-ups, but really it was totally disturbing and weird. Basically a priest gets turned into a vampire and starts sleeping with his best friend's wife and then turns her into a vampire. And then things get really messed up; there were shot of people vomiting blood, sucking blood from each other's feet, etc. They were doing a free screening of it later that evening but after seeing the preview, we decided that it might be a little too disturbing, even for us.
By then, we were starving and were pretty tired so we struck out into the Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego to find dinner. There were a billion people who had the same idea, and it took us forever to cross the street, but after we actually made it out into the city, finding a restaurant was surprisingly easy. You just had to get a couple blocks away from the Convention Center. After a quick stop for ice cream at the Ghiradelli Chocolate store (you gotta have ice cream), we went back to the hotel and basically collapsed.
Coming up tomorrow: I see my favorite author, Neil Gaiman, and see Joss Whedon in person!