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Comic-Con Comeback | Will Duncan

My sophomore year self (I’m now a senior) eagerly set a phone alarm for the one day a year that Comic-Con tickets are on sale. I bought three tickets, but little did I know that I wouldn’t get the chance to use them until three years later. With the restrictions of COVID-19 the convention has been postponed the last two summers, however, this summer if all goes according to plan, Comic-Con should take place from July 21st to the 24th.

Comic-Con is easily San Diego’s biggest summertime attraction, and with the absence of it, tourism around that portion of the year has greatly decreased. For the second year in a row, local businesses have suffered from this lack of tourism. The many people that travel from outside of San Diego just for Comic-Con generate thousands of dollars in tourism revenue. Comic-Con is an international-level event and without it, the money spent on housing, food, flights, and shopping is lost into the abyss. The typical pop-up shops which sell all sorts of collectibles from plushies to vintage posters are nowhere to be found these past years. Hopefully, with this coming convention, we will see the re-emergence of these shops as well as tourism, a revival of normalcy before the pandemic.

For some, Comic-Con is the one chance a year they can dress up as an anime character and nobody can say anything about it; to hardcore cosplayers, Comic-Con is one of the most important events in their whole year. Luckily for them, there have been some special edition conferences hosted here during last Thanksgiving break. These conventions, though much smaller than the usual, offered diehard Con-ers a few days to carry out their traditions. Comic-Con offers a safe space for cosplayers to express themselves and also form a community.

For the rest of us that are not cosplayers, Comic-Con offers a way to meet our favorite actors and story creators. At previous Comic-Cons, there have been early releases of TV shows, as well as the pilot episodes. Comic-Con also gives participants early access to some of Hollywood’s most notable film companies like Marvel. At the last Comic-Con, they revealed who is going to be the next Spider-Man, Tom Holland. I am personally excited for the Marvel panels concerning, “Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness,” as it will be coming out a few months before the conference will take place. Aside from early access to films and upcoming projects, Comic-Con also hosts free portfolio consultations. I remember even seeing a human crane machine to win mystery boxes containing Funko Pops. With the wide array of activities that Comic-Con has to offer, it is an opportunity that every San Diegan should take part in.

Overall, Comic-Con offers visitors a unique experience to understand the world of comics as well as other animations and stories. Whether that be through cosplaying or just simply showing up, anyone can enjoy the wonder of Comic-Con.

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