Just a Couple of Quick Facts About San Diego Comic-con

  1. The first Comic-Con was held in 1970.
  2. Jack Kirby - creator of the Fantastic Four, Hulk, Thor, etc. - was a guest of honor at the first Comic-Con. He received a lifetime achievement award, and gave a speech that is kind of unbelievably prescient.
    Jack said that the convention was a small event, but would grow each year until thousands of people attended. He said that the characters and stories they were talking about in 1970 would come to dominate the movies and TV of the future. As a result, Hollywood would come to Comic-Con, transforming it into the entertainment industry's premier showcase for new product. I wish I could find a link to the speech online, because it's extraordinary how visionary Jack was!
  3. My first-ever trip to California was attending Comic-Con in 1992.
  4. In the early 90s, about half of what was being sold at Comic-Con was porn.
    ESPECIALLY bootleg tapes of Traci Lords' underage porn - it was everywhere, right out in the open. By the mid-90s, the porn-to-comics ratio was MORE than half of what was being sold. Eventually, Comic-Con cracked down, which was a smart move. It allowed Comic-Con to become a mainstream event and not some awful, mutant, "CES in Vegas"-style thing.
  5. My last trip to Comic-Con was in the early 2000s.
    I hadn't been for five years or so and decided to just hop in the car and check it out. I couldn't believe what a madhouse the place had become! It was so crowded that you couldn't walk down the aisles and look through boxes of old comics anymore, which was all the fun. Of course, now it's just a completely different animal. I mean, my AGENT goes there!
  6. I have a recurring dream - maybe once a year - that I'm going through a box of old comics at a Comic-Con-style event.
    And in the dream, each comic I flip past has some imaginary character on the cover, in some surreal, dream-logic scenario. I love these dreams and always wake up desperately trying to remember the characters, but they slip away.
  7. Comic-Con used to have a dance party!
    It was on Saturday nights. We called it the Nerd Ball. Do they still do this? If they do, it's probably got an actual DJ and is incredible and packed with gorgeous, fit people and lasers. In the 90s, it was a bad PA system playing Jesus Jones' "Right Here, Right Now" and a table with Fritos. And it was beautiful!