5 Things you Need To Do At COMIC-CON This Year

July 16, 2013
Source: Chelsea Lauren/Stringer-Getty Images

Attend a panel

Look, we know it's tough to get into some of the bigger panels. The lines are long and the wait can be tedious. It hardly seems worth all the trouble, and it's easy to convince yourself that you're somehow too cool for panels. Hogwash! Panels are fun, informative, and give you the opportunity to take part in some special moments. Plus, not all panels are crowded affairs. Some of the best, most fascinating stuff are the hidden gems that you find among the multitude of conference rooms filled throughout the weekend. Do yourself a favor and hit one of them. You won't regret it.

Wear a costume

We know that all that cool cosplay is easier than it looks, so we're not saying you have to wear a costume. It's not a big deal if you can't or won't get one done in time, but wearing so much as a rudimentary mask can help you feel like you're a part of something bigger.

Going to Comic-Con without wearing a costume at some point is sort of like celebrating Halloween without a costume. Sure, there’s still fun and candy, but it’d be a lot more fun if you went all in. Plus, strangers will react better to you, especially when you show up at their house unannounced.

Visit Nerd HQ

Nerd HQ is back in San Diego, but this year it's at a new location - Petco Park, the home of the San Diego Padres. It’s a haven for Comic-Con attendees and even those who may not have been able to get a badge (re: most of us), with a focus on gaming and cutting edge tech.

There are also a ton of events, autograph signings, surprise guests, and a lot more. Oh, and hey, did we mention you don't need a badge to see panels? Nerd HQ has lined up some great ones for I, Frankenstein, Sherlock, 300: Rise of an Empire, Kick-Ass 2, Doctor Who, and more. And they have talks with the likes of Joss Whedon, Evangeline Lilly, and many more. These panels are cheap, accessible, and fan-friendly. Plus, it's run by Spike and All Access pal and friend to all nerds, Zac Levi.

What more could you want? How about a “Serenity” viewing party in the park with Nathan Fillion and Alan Tudyk? Best of all, all proceeds raised from this and all the other Conversations for a Cause go towards @OperationSmile, so you’ll be doing some good with that good time you’re having.

Meet a comic creator

Comic-Con’s become the biggest pop culture event of the Summer, but it’s still all about the comics. It’s right there in the name, after all.

This year’s lineup is a who’s who of the past, present, and future, including but not limited to Sergio Aragonés, Brian Michael Bendis, Gerry Conway, Paul Dini, Dan Jurgens, Sam Kieth, Paul Levitz, Jim Lee, George Pérez, Louise Simonson, and a lot more. It’s a rare opportunity to meet your favorite creators, writers, and artists and let them know just how much you appreciate their work.


It can all be a little overwhelming. So many creators, so many celebrities, so many movies, so many screenings, so many panels, and…just…so many! The best thing you can do is relax. As we saw last week when the full schedule was released, a lot of the most anticipated events and panels occur at the same time. Unless you have telescopic vision and are there specifically to see one artist, writer, actor, or filmmaker, there’s absolutely no way you’ll get to see everything you want to see. Once you’ve accepted that, you can breathe and have a good time.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg. We could go on all day, but we’re sure you haven’t finished making all your travel arrangements. You probably haven’t even started packing yet, because you always leave everything to the last minute.

So go! Get ready, have fun, and we’ll see you at Comic-Con.

Just like the Con itself, Spike’s Comic-Con All Access is back for another year with coverage from the floor and our studio all weekend long. Plus, you won’t want to miss our one hour special next Monday at 11pm. We’ll have guests from all over Hollywood, the comics world, sports, you name it!

In the meantime, you can whet your appetite with a new episode of All Access Weekly featuring Zac Levi and a preview of Comic-Con. The video’s below.