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Weekend Preview: Comic-Con

Comic-Con, Gam3rcon, And Zombies, Oh My!

Comic-Con officially kicked off this morning with panels on the last Twilight movie and the TV show "Psych." KPBS arts reporter Beth Accomando was down at the San Diego Convention Center for the first day of the pop culture celebration. (Video by Katie Euphrat)

Comic-Con weekend is chock-full of fun festivities for anyone and everyone.


Let the festivities begin! Comic-Con International 2012 began yesterday and runs through Sunday. Ticket, or no ticket, there is plenty of fun to be had in the convention center or around town.

For those who couldn’t get a ticket this year, some of your many options include…

Gam3rcon is a convention in downtown San Diego that, according to its website, “celebrates all things gaming” and is running the same dates as Comic-Con, July 11-15. This convention offers games, panel discussions, art exhibitions, theatre performances, and rooftop parties at the 10th Avenue Theatre in downtown San Diego. Gam3rcon’s festivities don’t start until noon each day, so attendees can stay up late enjoying the San Diego nightlife and/or the convention’s rooftop parties. Highlights include the Video Game Arena, featuring free play and tournaments, the rooftop comedy night, featuring Andre Meadows & Friends, MC'd by Eliza Jane Schneider, and G33k Theatre’s showings of “Gam3rs: The Play” (Jul 11, 3 pm; Jul 12, 7 pm; Jul 14, 7 pm – Free with any Gam3rcon membership), “Spider Baby: The Musical” (July 12th, 10pm; July 14th, 10pm; July 15th, 7pm - $10 for Gam3rCon attendees and $20 for general public, which includes a day pass to Gam3rCon), and "I Wish My Life Was An RPG” (Jul 13, 7:30 pm). All events have limited seating. Seats may be reserved for “Spider Baby” at 619-900-4492.

For those interested in comic art there are many choices including, “Unmasked! Comic Art in San Diego Revealed” an exhibit of art by San Diego area comic artists (Jul 7 – 31, Tue – Sat 12 -7, Sun 12 -5, Cost: Free, Where: Artlab Studios, 3536 Adams Ave).

“Darkness and Light: Art Inspired by Heroes & Villains, Hope & Heroism,” features some of today’s top contemporary artists and showcases a collection of original artwork inspired by DC Comics’ Justice League characters paired with real world photography that depicts the everyday heroes fighting hunger in Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya (Jul 9 – 15, Cost: Free, Where: Michael J. Wolf Fine Arts 363 Fifth Avenue Suite 102).

“TR!CKSTER SYMPOSIA” is a series of critically-acclaimed workshop gatherings that focus on process, theory, and technique in storytelling across a variety of media. In addition to the Symposia, there is animation and live-action short film screenings, signings, drawing events, rooftop terrace with full restaurant menu, DJs, and live music. (Jul 11, 3 pm – 1 am; Jul 12 – 14, 11 am – 1 am, Cost: Free, but there is a $40 fee for individual symposia, Where: WINE STEALS/PROPER, 795 J. Street).

Two free events that stand out as a good time are the screening of "FDR: American Badass,” a comedy version of history akin to the more serious “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Slayer”: (Jul 13, 10 pm, Cost: Free RSVP Here, Where: Gaslamp Stadium 15 Pacific Theatres, 701 Fifth Avenue) and the ”Inept International Film Adaptation Showcase,” which Highlights “attempts by foreign film markets to cash in on major Hollywood film and comic-books that, more often than not, fail miserably. Think Turkish Star Wars, Indian Superman” (Jul 14, 8 pm, Cost: Free ($5 suggested donation), popcorn and refreshments on hand, Where: Space 4 Art, 325 15th Street). (Event will be overbooked. First come, first served.)

For fans of the undead/walking dead or those suffering from the affliction, there are two events that fit right in your zombie wheelhouse.

The “San Diego Zombie Walk,” a march for undead rights, stages a walk through the Gaslamp in protest of discrimination against the undead. Of course this event happens on Friday the 13th and begins at 5:30 pm (Cost: Free (Come in zombie costume/makeup, bring protest sign), Where: Walk starts at 4th and Broadway (do not arrive before 4:30 pm). 300 marchers will win tickets to the Con of the Dead Party taking place that same evening.

“The Walking Dead Escape: Live the Apocalypse.” Become a survivor and try to make your way through a walking dead infestation of Petco Park, or be a spectator of this zombie apocalypse. (July 12, 6pm-9pm; July 13, 1pm-9pm; July 14, 11am-6pm, Cost: Survivors: $75/Spectators: $15, Where: Petco Park, 100 Park Boulevard).

Special thanks to Susan Myrland and to James Hay of ConDor for their help researching what’s hot in San Diego, during the Comic-Con extravaganza. And to all those that join the adventure this weekend – enjoy!

Video by Katie Euphrat

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