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SDCC, WonderCon Coverage


Monday, 20 June 2016 15:02 Jennifer Devore
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San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC, San Diego Convention Center 21 July - 24 July, 2016) is only one month away and few are more excited than Yours Truly, (Miss Hannah Hart) and my fave con-cohort and shutterbug, Dr. Lucy. Naturally, with all those hot and geeky bodies smooshed in such a tight space, naturally the mind wanders to ... security at the San Diego Convention Center. Good news, kittens! You'd be hard-pressed to find a safer spot in San Diego County the third week of July.

Because of all those bodies, the mind-boggling array of fantasy-weaponry and, let's face it, current events, I wanted the lowdown on just how safe and secure the geek masses will be; so I asked. (Always ask, kids. It rarely hurts to ask for what you really want.)

Natch, as is all too sage, no security operation is going to spoon-feed the pubic all the details on what they do, how, when and where they do it. Comic-Con International (CCI) is no exception. What I did get was a satisfying, official statement from Mr. David Glanzer, Chief Communications and Strategy Officer (CCSO) for Comic-Con International. (Did you know Comic-Con has its very own, on-site, police command center? Makes me feel better!)

 

Security is of paramount importance to Comic-Con. And while we don’t discuss specifics of security at Comic-Con, we have a great relationship and work very closely with the San Diego Police Department and other law enforcement officials. This has resulted in routine discussions throughout the year on various aspects of safety and security. We also have an onsite Police Command Post at the convention center during our event.

Additionally, we make a point of having a great many hired security staff, so many in fact, that, oftentimes, we hire security firms from San Diego and other cities. This has necessitated bringing on a security management company to interface with the many different security agencies hired during Comic-Con.

-Comic-Con International

 

Thank you, Mr. Glanzer! Straight from the unicorn's mouth. It certainly assuages most of my concerns. Forget not, a great deal of security is in our hands, as attendees: following proper weapons-check, keeping hands to ourselves and just basic good manners. Need a refresher? My SDCC2014 post, "Boobs Are Not Bunnies", will help.

 

 

 

Abysinnia, kids!

 

Check back here, and/or follow me @JennyPopNet @GoodToBeAGeek and Instagram for all the geeky goodness at San Diego Comic-Con, starting Preview Night at the S.D. Convention Ctr. July 20, 2016!

 

 

 
Monday, 21 March 2016 16:03 Jennifer Devore
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Just four days to check-in at the Omni Los Angeles, kittens! Dr. Lucy and Yours Truly are headed north and changing hotels for the weekend so we can cover all the geeky, gooey goodness of WonderCon 2016 (March 25 - 27, L.A. ConvCtr) just for you, fair reader! Playing under the bright lights of Hollywood (well, H-town adjacent), especially after the Con doors close, brings a splash of glamour to this year's WC that, as much as we love The O.C. (Psst, don't call it that.), Anaheim just cannot provide.

Previous years have found the pre-SDCC crowd playing D&D and Magic the Gathering tourneys, or cosplaying and masquerading in grand fashion at WonderCon Anaheim (WCA). WCA was fab fun, as it was housed in the Anaheim Convention Ctr, just across the street from our Disneyland. What beats a night at Disneyland, after the Con? Nothing. You could still go this year! It is, after all, only about thirty miles down the road. Of course, if Disney admission (currently $119/day, March 21st - 31st) isn't factored into your budget, with the exception of Downtown Disney (no admission fee) and a string of restaurants at Anaheim Gardenwalk, there was, and still is, little else to do within walking distance of the Anaheim convention center.

For this geek girl, just being near the House of Mouse, the manicured lawns and immaculate beaches of Orange County makes me swoon; but even the geekiest of pure geekage on the Con circuit, sometimes, need a little more hip and a little more grit. L.A. can proffer both. Sure the traffic sucks, the parking bites (ex: $48/dy at Omni Los Angeles) and the prices for everything make Disney Dollars seem like Indian rupees, but no matter all that. Like that fun, albeit obnoxious, pal who drinks too much, is always too loud and never offers to chip in, L.A. is worth the effort and the drive ... occasionally.

Might I digress with a brief history of WC, fair reader?

What an excellent idea, Miss Hannah!

Well then ... Like many a restless adventurer, in 2013 WonderCon packed her Tokidoki luggage and left her longtime, NorCal home (since the 1980s) of San Francisco's Moscone Center. With her home being in a long-term refurbishment phase, a SoCal sojourn, near Big Sis San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC), seemed in order. However, once WC experienced the fun, sun and pristine beauty of Orange County, not to mention being neighbour to Disneyland, she decided she wanted to stay down south a teensy bit longer. One day, after noticing how popular she was, L.A. came a-wooing and, by 2014 WonderCon, a.k.a. SDCC's little sister, was seriously considering a move to the real action: Hollywood! (Or, Hollywood-adjacent.) After some long, thoughtful walks on those immaculate Orange County beaches, usually below the Ritz-Carlton in Monarch Beach, she came to a decision. Why not?! Being just a short drive up the 5 (but with an ugly, evil stretch of a bumpy, crowded freeway, compared to the beauteous, virtuous stretch of smooth, wide lanes in Orange County's jurisdiction), WC packed her Tokidoki bags once again and hit the road.

Cut to: WonderCon 2016, the the bosom of Downtown L.A. (*choking* But, sir, there's nothing to do downtown *choking released*. If you get that reference, you're definitely my target demo.)

New digs (L.A. ConvCtr), for this year anyway, mean new, après-Con adventures. Kittens, you are now within walking, or Uber, distance of all manner of entertainment: from the ultra hip (L.A. Live, like Dwntwn Disney, but with the volume on 11; Corkbar, wine tasting w/o the stuffed shirts; Mayan Nightclub, dance dance!), to the moderately historic (Millennium Biltmore Hotel, once home to the Academy Awards; Chateau Marmont, wear your best vintage and keep eye for Johnny Depp; Hollywood Hotel Roosevelt, first home of the Academy Awards).

No matter which path you wander when you leave the LACC, you can surely find fun when the Con doors close. Venture, explore, get lost, dress up, make new friends, or new fiends, spend too much money and play tourist, especially if you're a local. Did I mention dress up, and not just in costume?

Listen, you don't have to look like a dork going to a small town prom, but put some effort into it. Wear jeans if you like, but sport some quality footwear, do your nails and shine your locks. L.A. may be cas, but it's not your WalMart brand of casual. Vintage, for men and women, works with everything and gives you a bit of Old Hollywood glam. Buy something unique and geeky at the Con, then work it that night with stilettos, vintage jewelry or your best fedora. Funk it up, kids! You don't have to try too hard, but for Jebus' sake, try. To paraphrase comedian Sebastian Maniscalco, "I'm uncomfortable you're so comfortable. Aren't you embarrassed?"

Above all, fellow geeks, be safe, keep your phone charged (one can actually find plugs at WC easily, unlike at SDCC), please don't drink and drive (so many Ubers, Lyfts, taxis and sober friends available!) be kind and be smart. Cons are for comics, not for consequences.

For regular updates and tips (parking, new RFID-badge scans, weapons/prop checks, program schedules, exhibit hall maps, hotel shuttles, public trans, weather, etc.) from the good folks at Comic-Con Int'l, use the handy-dandy WonderCon App! While your phone's out, share your adventures and pix with us on Twitter @JennyPopNet @GoodToBeAGeek and @Eslilay, using #wondercon and #wc2016! (BTW, if you see Marvel's Agent Carter, in true, late-1940s vintage, it might just be Moi. Be nice and say, Hi, Hannah Hart! Nice dress! Nice chapeau! Nice to meet you!)

 

Abyssinia on the Con Floor!


 
Monday, 14 March 2016 14:09 Jennifer Devore
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So, kids, it's me, Miss Hannah Hart, ghostdame of The Del. By now you know my backstory very well and, clearly, I am here to stay in this dishy, dizzy burg by the sea. Why would I ever leave my glorious San Diego and my fab Hotel del Coronado?

Aside: The Hotel Del is under new ownership, BTW! Let's see if the new Patron appreciates all the kippy gratis adverts and bon mots Yours Truly, and our Dr. Lucy, proffer to The Del. Feel free to send your cheerful postcards to Miss Hannah Hart, ghostdame of The Del at 1500 Orange Ave, Coronado, CA 92118! Let the new owners know how much you love The Del, San Diego, Hannah Hart, ghostdame, Dr. Lucy and her pet, Onslow the Ghostly Octopus!

Anyhoo, even if I wasn't a full-time haunt at one of America's grandest Victorian hotels, I would never dream of floating north, unless it was all the way to Monterey. Bloody Marys on Cannery Row with John Steinbeck? Yes, please! Well, hard to believe, two San Diego icons have been flirting with plans to float: San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC) and the San Diego Chargers (a football team) have been looking northward.

Until January 2016, the Chargers were already gone in their mind - Fiigmo, I believe military folk call it - headed to new digs in L.A., to be built, and shared, in concert with the Oakland Raiders. After months of Chargers-owner Dean Spanos toying with fans and city officials, like a girlfriend keeping you around in case Mr. Better doesn't work out, he made an L.A. bid. Sadly for him, Mr. Better sent him and his dirty-weekend bag packing after a meeting of NFL owners in NYC nixed his dreams of the City of Angels. Now, the NFL suits have given Spanos and his team until January 2017 to make nicey-nice with their longtime girlfreind, San Diego: fifty-five years of holding hands on the beach. San Diego is a very popular girl, as she and Comic-Con have also been holding hands on the beach for quite a while, too: forty-five years.

Quick history lesson, kids: Just as Gene Simmons, Peter Criss and Paul Stanley met Ace Frehley and formed KISS via an ad in the back of The Village Voice, so Richard Alf, a local, S.D. high school geek, met Sheldon Dorf via an ad in the back of Marvel Comics and formed Comic-Con. (Geek factoids: pre-KISS, Simmons sold comic books for extra money; his iconic eye makeup is modeled on the wings of comic book character Black Bolt. Hey, the Chargers are nicknamed the Bolts. See how life ties together, kids?)

So, Alf and Dorf first sold comic books out of Mother and Father Alf's S.D. garage; then, in 1970, organized the very first comic convention in the area, originally known as San Diego's Golden State Comic-Con at the U.S. Grant Hotel. To this day, every year, the Grant is a highly coveted hotel reservation, and one of the official SDCC hotels, for the truest of Con devotees. Read the whole history, as told by Moi, here, kids!

But, Hannah, the fair reader inquires, why no brief history of the Chargers?

Because I don't care. My blog, my choice. Visit ESPN if you're interested.

Even so, apropos to our convention interests, as of February 2016, after Spanos' NFL spanking, the Chargers and America's Finest City have been working the room, hard, wooing each other all over again, not to mention locals, investors and taxpayers to bless construction of a grand, new stadium-convention center annex. Together, it would be a state-of-the-art, waterfront, dining/shopping/entertainment/sports-center. As it stands, the Chargers announced in late-February they would "pursue a downtown multi-use stadium project in conjunction with an expansion of the center, rejecting a proposal by city and county officials to locate a new playing facility in Mission Valley".

Miss Hannah, the fair reader now wonders, why would I, a Starfleet Academy badge-holding dork care where a bunch of jocks play their sports ball games?

Excellent query, fair reader! You care because with this push for a new, Spongebob Fancypants stadium, there could come a shinier, bigger San Diego Convention Center which could keep our beloved San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC) in town well past the current, solidified date of 2018 and give us so much more elbow room on the con-floor!

"We are very happy to call San Diego our home for another two years,'' Comic-Con spokesman David Glanzer said in July of 2015.   "I will be honest, it was touch-and-go for a while."

Yes, if you haven't been paying attention, kittens, SDCC has been pondering a move for some time: sort of like dating you, but keeping an eye on your always-beach-ready roommate. The consideration to switch has been primarily due to space. Like Gal Gadot (Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice) and her restyled-Wonder Woman, molded-leather bustier, there is, technically, enough room to cover all main components; but there's a lot of overflow. As long as the hooks and buckles don't pop we're okay. Take a deep breath and we might have a problem. The tensile strength of San Diego Convention Center's hooks and buckles are being tested, which is why we now have what San Diego mayor Kevin Faulconer calls the Comic-Con Campus: a network of adjacent hotels and City property for said-overflow.

S.D. Comic-Con 2016 is estimated to affect regional-impact with $140million: including attendance of 130K congoers spending $82.8million directly related to the Con, as well as 62,922 hotel rooms, all according to the San Diego Convention Center 2016 Forecast. That's a lot of peanuts, Jumbo! The next biggest economic contributor is Society for Neuroscience convention, with 32K attendees which, oddly still generates nearly $110million in regional-impact. You know those neuroscientists are buying a G&T or two at The Del's Sunset Bar! I certainly am!

All in all, tourism officials say if the City can keep a contiguous, convention floor-space, as opposed to the current Comic-Con spread, they should be able to attract not only larger trade shows currently passing up San Diego, but, more specific to our needs, keep Comic-Con in San Diego, just as it has been since 1970.

 

Abysinnia, kids!

Check back here and Follow me @JennyPopNet for full coverage of not only San Diego Comic-Con (S.D. Convention Ctr. July 21 – 24, 2016), but WonderCon (L.A. Convention Ctr. March 25 – 27, 2016)!

Hannah’s other fave places to haunt online?

Goodtobeageek.com (writing under the nom de plume, Miss Hannah Hart, ghostdame of The Del

JennyPop.net jenniferdevore.blogspot.com amazon.com/author/jenniferdevore

 

 
Wednesday, 29 July 2015 00:00 Jennifer Devore
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Okay, kittens. Comic-Con is now truly a fait accompli. The turquoise nail polish has finally been removed, my Lucy Van Pelt dress has been laundered and tucked away neatly in the costume trunk, and my official SDCC 2015 Souvenir Book with has been shelved in the office with all previous years' publications.

For those whom attend, the memories of San Diego Comic-Con (SDCC), or any Con, never truly fade. Even as years pass, and, perhaps, specifics get cataloged into the wrong Con, the people, adventures, and costumes, never leave our mushy, grey databases. For those whom don't attend, or for those free moments you have and wish to relive it all, I present to you Dr. Lucy's Famous Con Slideshow!

 

For more of Dr. Lucy's magical Canon, including past Comic-Cons, WonderCons, Renaissance Faires and even some kick-ass surf-and-skate pix, visit her Flickr page at Twisted Pair Photography.

For more of Moi, Miss Hannah Hart ghostdame of The Del (a.k.a. authoress Jennifer Susannah Devore) please, visit me here:

@JennyPopNet


jenniferdevore.blogspot.com amazon.com/author/jenniferdevore

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Monday, 20 July 2015 00:00 Jennifer Devore
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Cheers, kittens! Miss Hannah Hart here. Rested and refreshed after one pip of a week at San Diego Comic-Con 2015 (SDCC) with my cohort Dr. Lucy and her trusty, steampunk-driven Canon EOS. Now, a little bluebird at SyFy told me Comic-Con "was a lot less packed and crazy this year". From my end, as a Con floor-worm, I say, "Nay! It was a lot more packed and crazy this year!" Fret not though, dear reader! Dr. Lucy and I endured it all, just for you, and this year, sharpened our focus on what matters most: the artist.

Regardless of what some insiders claim, we mere floor-worms find, year over year, SDCC gets bigger and bigger, creeping incrementally beyond the Convention Center and Gaslamp parameters: what San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer calls the Comic-Con Campus. Like a pair of small Lululemons on a big girl, it keeps expanding until the seams are ready to split and pretty soon all you can see are wide swaths of fleshy bits and strained thread.

As the popularity of SDCC (S.D. Convention Center 9 - 12, 2015) grows, it remains, especially amongst the uninitiated, a circus, a freakshow, a curiosity to be ogled: like a strip club in the Bible Belt.

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Meet Miss JennyPop

Jennifer Susannah Devore

Jenny Pop is the acclaimed Author of the Savannah of Williamsburg series of books and The Darlings of Orange County. In addition, Jen is a prolific consumer of media and pop culture. Never leaving the house without her journal and fave Waterman pen, an old-fashioned, analog book (usually Hunter S. Thompson) and a fresh coat of lipstick, she is constantly on the hunt for fun, espresso, animation  and comics of any kind and always ready for an impromptu day at Disneyland.  JennyPop.net is a natural extension of  Jen's World; so, spend some time visiting. You'll have fun, she promises!

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Meet Miss Hannah

Hannah Hart, ghost dame of the Hotel del Coronado

Hannah Hart, ghost dame of the Hotel del Coronado

So, here's the low down, all you Joes and Janes ... I'm Hannah Hart, dead girl. Don't fret, it's actually a sweet dish being dead. Having perished in 1934 in a terrifically vicious accessories incident with actress Ida Lupino, I reside where I died: San Diego's gorgeous Hotel del Coronado. It ain't a bad gig at all, really! Great weather, swanky guests (not to mention a few fellow ghosties), amazing amenities, my own private turret overlooking the sea and all the java juice and giggle water I can handle; plus, these bartenders know how to make a Planter's Punch like nobody's business! See, I've been waiting for this Internet thing forever ... now, instead of slamming doors and moving lamps, I get to wag my tongue all I like at goodtobeageek.com

Abyssinia, kids!