This Crowd Would Be Fantastic if it Weren’t for all the People

July 28th, 2009 by | Tags:

Last weekend was my third Comic-Con and the first one in which I couldn’t get into the panels I wanted to.  David, on the last fourcast, disagreed with my belief that the Con has grown too crowded to be effective, but I met a few people who agreed with me and we all had different theories on why the Con seemed to have reached critical mass and exploded into something unwieldy.

I had heard that Comic-Con had reduced the number of tickets sold, and when I went online to buy my own tickets, I found that the four day passes were almost sold out much earlier than last year.  I thought that would make it easy to get into panels.  Sadly, on Thursday I saw that the Con had gotten so crowded that any tv or movie panels had a two to four hour line and that many of the comics panels had a one hour line.  Even if you were willing to wait, it was often a toss-up as to whether you got to see the panels you wanted to.

My theory is that the early sell-out of tickets meant that the Con had started attracting hardcore fans.  People, like me, who had been there several times before.  Not only would they target panels more specifically, they’d know to get in line early, and when that failed, get in line even earlier.  Not to mention the recent recession might have driven people away from the vendors and up to the panels.

A friend of mine, Graeme McMillan from io9, thought that there were the same amount of tickets sold, but that everyone showed up this time around, instead of the regular percentage of no-shows that any event gets.

And then, of course, there were the outright cynics who thought that the Con would sell tickets to the entire population of the world if it could, and it did, and there was no use acting surprised that things were overcrowded.

Although everyone I met at this Con was wonderful, and I did enjoy seeing writers and editors close up, I feel like maybe I should hold off on San Diego next year.  Granted, I won’t get a chance to get an over-sized Dr. Who bag at another Con, and I won’t see the life-sized lego replicas of Boba Fett, but I’d sacrifice that to get into the panels I want to see without waiting for hours in a line that snakes around the entire building first.

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2 comments to “This Crowd Would Be Fantastic if it Weren’t for all the People”

  1. […] — here’s Spurge’s later, more general take on the show, by the way. — and Esther Inglis-Arkell just thought that the whole thing “seemed to have reached critical mass and exploded into […]

  2. Come to ECCC. It’s a much milder show.