Friday, July 24, 2009
I waited in my first long line of Comic-Con, 2009 for the Showtime drama "Dexter." I was told the line was one of the longest of the day, and for a stretch, it didn't look like I was going to get in.
When you're waiting in a line for over an hour with hundreds and hundreds of people - think about that for a minute, there were over a thousand people in this line, I'm sure of it– you start to get a little irrational about your goal.
Anxiety swept through the line, as comments bounced back and forth. "Are we going to get in?" "No way, we might as well give up." "But if the panel before empties enough, we may make it." An irrational mindset took hold of me. I began to really worry about getting in. It became, like, really important! I had carefully selected a handful of panels for my entire Comic-Con experience and this was one of them. My internal scream screamed "I HAVE TO SEE DEXTER!!!!"
I somehow got a hold of myself. I started a mantra that involved the California budget and the state's future and funding for public schools. I tried to ground myself. I considered sharing my one foot in reality with the two women behind me, who were clearly traumatized, but they were from Louisiana and probably could give a hoot about California.
I remembered that I hadn't eaten all day and if I didn't get in, I could get food, maybe even chocolate. And then suddenly, the line started to move. Slowly, sluggishly, it moved. And as we moved, I looked outside the window where the long line snaked in the sun and I could see the envy in the eyes of my line mates. I locked eyes with one man who had one of those big Dexter bags that are everywhere this Con. His mouth parted in disbelief that the line was moving; his eyes pained as he realized his portion of the line was dead still and the distance between us might as well have been miles.
Out of nowhere, a Con security guy in a red shirt started yelling at me, "Move, move, move!" As he waved me on, I could tell he was relishing his power. I looked back at the guy outside who was now full on facing the window, looking despondent. We connected again, and the look in his eyes said, "you are one of the lucky ones."
I felt terrible, but the scary, puffed-up security guy was still yelling at me. Practically running now as the line rushed forward, I was suddenly swept into the total darkness of Ballroom 20. Huge screens hung from the ceiling playing footage from Dexter, Season 4. Crowds whooped when cast addition John Lithgow entered the frame. I squeezed into one of the remaining seats in the middle of an aisle, to the great annoyance of some mean people in costumes, and reminded myself that there are plenty of Comic-Con panels ahead. That guy will surely be one of the lucky ones over the next four days.
I forgot about the state budget for an hour (ok, to be honest, I forgot about it for, like, the next four hours) and immersed myself in the story of a sympathetic serial killer. Just another day at Comic-Con.
More on the Dexter panel coming soon!