San Diego Comic-Con draws more than 150,000 attendees from all over the world, but that’s just a drop in the bucket of all the people who want to go. Not many actually can swing it. Attending is a costly endeavor. This year, a four-day pass was $185 (prices have gone up just about every year for the past five) and demand is so high that the chances of actually getting one are slim. Downtown hotels double their rates. Then, there’s airfare, the cost of dining out and taking time off work.
Even if you weren’t able to attend, there are other ways to participate in some of the fun. Read on for some ideas on how to get in on the action.
Nerd HQ Livestream
This is the fifth year that actor Zachary Levi and business partner David Coleman of geek clothing and lifestyle web site The Nerd Machine are hosting Nerd HQ. Nerd HQ is “the little off-site event that could.”
Last year, the future of Nerd HQ was thrown into doubt. After his Broadway show, First Date, ended, Levi was between jobs and revealed to fans that some of the cost of financing Nerd HQ had come out of his own pocket—a situation that couldn’t happen again. Levi and company turned to Kickstarter to help fund 2014’s Nerd HQ—a move that some criticized.
For 2015, though, it looks like things are solidly back on track. Nerd HQ has partnered with companies like IGN, AMD and Loot Crate to host on this year’s activities. Those include the celebrity panels that will run concurrently with SDCC Thursday, July 9 through Sunday, July 10. As always, all money raised from panel ticket sales goes to Operation Smile.
(Levi is possibly over-employed now, too, as the host of the game show Geeks Who Drink on SyFy, a voiceover role in Tangled the animated series reprising his character, Flynn Rider, and a major part on Heroes: Reborn. You just can't hold a good man down.)
Everyone can watch the panels online starting at 10 a.m. each day. Thanks to IGN, the panels will be livestreamed at both ign.com and thenerdmachine.com. After the panels have aired, they will also be posted to You Tube on The Nerd Machine channel. (Give them a little time to make that happen.) To stay up-to-date on all the goings-on, follow @thenerdmachine and @ign or their Facebook pages.
Nerd HQ isn’t the only thing IGN is livestreaming. They’re doing a general San Diego Comic-Con show, too, which will include the latest pop culture news and celebrity interviews. It runs from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Visit their SDCC page for the latest.
The late night talk show host is presenting his TBS show, Conan, from San Diego’s East Village during Comic-Con. Thousands of fans applied for a lottery to be present at the live tapings. Guests include Elijah Wood, Chris Hardwick, the casts of Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2, Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead and more. Visit O’Brien’s web site for more information and the schedule.
The celebrity-driven magazine's web site is promising its own Comic-Con livestream. The best way to see what they’re currently up to is visit their special Comic-Con page during the course of the convention. There are already several articles posted.
SDCC Blogger Twitter Feeds
One of the best ways to keep up with SDCC is through the Twitter feeds of some longtime specialists. That includes Tony Kim (@crazy4comicon), the SDCC Unofficial Blog (@sd_comic_con), Outside Comic-Con (@outsidecomiccon), When Nerds Attack (@SDCCnerdsattack), Englishman SDCC (@englishmansdcc), Parks And Cons (@parksandcons) and, of course, the official Comic-Con feed (@comic_con).
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Got your heart set on an SDCC Exclusive product but can’t make it to San Diego to get it? Well, it may cost you a premium, but the truth is that after the convention, a lot of those exclusives end up for sale at Ebay. (Viva capitalism!) Also, some retailers end up with leftover product that they sell at their own web sites. Check out the list here and let the quest begin!
Nerdist and Geek & Sundry
Über-nerd interest sites Nerdist Industries (anchored by Chris Hardwick) and Geek & Sundry (whose notable celebrities include Felicia Day and Wil Wheaton) will be posting San Diego Comic-Con news à la minute and are well worth keeping up with.
Even if you can’t be at San Diego Comic-Con, follow these streams of information and the news about all-things-pop-culture will be coming at you faster than speeding bullets.