Continuing the catch up on what’s been happening in my life, on Saturday I went to New York Comic Con! I’m so grateful to my roommate who offered me her 3-day pass for the afternoon while she went to a screening for the New York Film Festival. I was only there for half a day, but Saturday I’ve heard is the busiest day and I still felt like I experienced a lot. It was such a great and new experience for me — I’d love to go back next year, and of course, I’m looking forward to the day when I’m able to go to San Diego Comic Con. Technically, this isn’t my first convention — a year and a half ago, I was at the Texas Music Educators’ Association convention in San Antonio, Texas — but in terms of conventions having to do with popular culture, this was my first “con” (hence the hashtag, #babysfirstcon).
I got into Grand Central around one, walked around in search of The Amazing Spiderman 2 set because I had heard they were reshooting around the area (sadly, to no avail), and ended up walking the 1.5 miles to the Javits Center (it felt so good!), getting there a little before two. I waited at the entrance for my (awesome!!!) roommate for a bit, and when she showed up, I got the pass and went in.
When I walked in the convention center, I had the hugest smile on my face because I knew I was surrounded by really awesome people. There were so many cosplayers and fans and I was so excited. I knew immediately that the first thing I wanted to do was try and catch the last of the Teen Wolf panel, which had already started. After wandering around the lower level of the convention center for a bit, I finally found the hall with ten minutes left of the panel. People had already started lining up for the next panel, so I decided to just stick around and watch on the big screen they had. At least I could say that I was next to the room (in the same building) that (my loves) Dylan O’Brien and Linden Ashby were in.
The sound wasn’t great so I couldn’t hear many of the questions (although I heard the word headcanon and I think they discussed Stiles’ mom) and I missed the clips, but it was still awesome to see Dylan and Linden and Jeff. Sort of.
When Teen Wolf finished, I decided to go upstairs to walk the convention floor.
Since I hadn’t really eaten much that day except for toast and jam and a free slider that I got from a food truck promoting a video game that I found on the way to the Javits Center, I was a little lightheaded walking around the floor for the first time. It was kind of overwhelming, especially since there were so many people. Despite all this though, I loved the atmosphere. There were so many good cosplayers and cool booths! Most of them were for comics and there were some for costumes. Mattel, Marvel, Capcom, and Gundam had booths. Hallmark even had a booth that was really cute — they were selling Star Wars, superhero, and other popular culture ornaments. It was crazy.
It was a lot to take in, so I wandered aimlessly for a bit, trying to take everything in, which was a little difficult in my dazed state. I ended up meeting up with my friend and her friend and we walked around, past the different publishers that were there as well. There were a lot — Simon and Schuster, HarperCollins, Disney Hyperion, etc — since young adult fiction has become ever-so-popular and the basis for a lot of films. Some were giving out free books, but the lines were really long and we didn’t have time to wait.
My friend knew she wanted some art, so we walked down to Artist Alley — a separate area from the floor with all of the comic artists. Her friend had to go catch a panel, so she left.
Again, we sort of wandered as she tried to look for art she wanted. If I had the money I would have loved to help these people out because all of them are incredibly talented. Of course, why else would they be there? There was one booth that sold really cute laminated cards, including Sailor Moon ones that I really wanted. While we were down in the alley though, we happened to run into another friend of ours and she joined us.
Eventually, someone had a panel, so we went downstairs to the halls again and split up. I went to go check on the Marvel Agents of SHIELD panel, but the line was long and I hadn’t really been keeping up with the show, so my other friend and I left for the floor once more. I ended up passing by the autographing and photos area for some of the (really important) guests (or I guess the ones that you had to pay to meet).
When we reached the floor, we made the decision to just walk the whole floor for the rest of the afternoon, starting on one end and walking around to the other. We saw a lot of booths — many retailers that were selling fandom merchandise including patches, decals, shirts, etc. So much Doctor Who, Avatar the Last Airbender, Pokemon, and anime. Somehow, we ended up in the anime corner section of the floor, which was kind of interesting…and weird. There, we saw a lot of cute Japanese-inspired merchandise. Quite honestly, if I had the money to spend, I probably would have blown it all at Comic Con.
As we were browsing the shops for our specific interests, looking for free swag, and just wandering around, I ran into a few more cool cosplayers.
I also saw a cute Spiderman/Peter Parker who looked like a version of Peter Parker that you might imagine if he were not being played by Andrew Garfield (who I still consider the perfect incarnation of Peter Parker — but maybe I’m biased). It was one of the highlights of my day.
Walking the floor, we passed by all the gaming stations and took a photo for charity at the Nerd Machine/Nerd HQ booth. Madam Tussaud’s was there to promote their Avengers exhibit and I got a photo with wax figures of Nick Fury and Captain America. I was attracted to a booth for a publisher — First Second — that had published a copy of Feynman, a comic book version of Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Feynman (a book I read for my first-year studies last year on physicists). As we were browsing, they happened to be giving away free copies of the comic book, The Cute Girl Network, that the authors were signing and drawing in. I know I keep saying it, but it was just really fun to see everything because everywhere you turned, there was something new.
By the time we finished waiting in line for our books, that day’s con was coming to an end. The floor closed at seven and we needed to make a couple last minute purchases, so we did that. I got this awesome shirt that I’m wearing today by Teeturtle (I actually just want to be the poster child for this brand)!!! I’m obsessed with their designs.
In our last minute shopping, we passed by this cool booth called “Westeros”, which had jewelry and clothing inspired by Game of Thrones that my friend vowed to revisit the next day. Other cool cosplays that I saw around the convention center that I wasn’t able to take a picture of included a really good Tenth Doctor (from Doctor Who); Ariel, Eric, and Ursula from The Little Mermaid; Sailor soldiers (from Sailor Moon) with stormtrooper masks; a Mary Poppins; and a Deadpool dressed as a pimp. There were also some pretty intense weapons and really cool costumes that I definitely wish I could have pulled off. Now I’m inspired to go learn how to sew and cosplay!
By the end of the day, I was so tired and my feet hurt terribly but the whole experience was so worth it. I know there were things that I wanted to do and didn’t have a chance to, but I’m still so happy that I even had this chance to go to this event because it was so unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before. I think for my first con, it was an incredible experience. It was definitely a little overwhelming at first but I loved it and I will keep saying I loved it until the day I die. I’m actually afraid to go to San Diego Comic Con for fear of falling absolutely in love with it and falling into a deep depression afterwards. Seriously, today I’m missing my comic con experience like crazy. I wish every day were like it and I wish I could go to more conventions!
A big thank you once again to my roommate (Rebecca I know you’ll probably read this) because without her, none of this would have happened. Another thank you to my friends for sticking around with me for my first ‘con experience. See you next year, New York Comic Con (hopefully!!!)!!!!