San Diego Comic Con 2018 or How I Spent My Vacation 2018
Summer is here, and in late July San Diego rolls out the red carpet for celebrities and vendors of all genres of fantasy and entertainment. Comic Con dropped in on this beautiful city the weekend of July 18th-22nd. Besides comics, games, and movie comic tie-ins from the monolith that is now Disney/Marvel and Star Trek/Star Wars, other points of interest were going down with Amazon’s launch of a new digital medium streaming all forms of entertainment including X-box and Sony Playstation. A very eventful weekend, and we here at Home Magazine were on the frontline of this media extravaganza.
Thursday, Day 1, Bob and I went to the San Diego Convention Center to scope out the scene. Comic Con began in San Diego and has spread to other cities around the nation. Hence, a Chicago Comic Con, a Boston Comic Con and there are comic cons in other, more smaller cities like Des Moines, Iowa or Omaha, Nebraska.
The sure scale of the event was massive. We arrive at the event center to pick up our press passes and go into the event center. Several comic book related merchandise was for sale, t-shirts, comics old and new, POP toys, and action figures.
Speaking of action figures, Mego, the creator of 1960’s, 70’s, and 80’s themed twelve inch figures, is making a comeback with a new lineup of celebrity figures with the launch of football Hall of Famer, former Jets and Los Angeles Rams Quarterback and actor, “Broadway” Joe Namath. We here at Home Magazine got an exclusive interview with the legendary Joe Namath, and Mego CEO Marty Abrams. Check it our on our Facebook page at Homeland Magazine Press Pass.
After running around that afternoon at the Convention Center, we then headed south on I-15 to check out punk/new wave millennial sensations Paramore and Foster the People. We arrive to witness Foster the People performing and closing their set. The band from LA performed their hit “Pumped up Kicks.” The band is very New Wave with a definite 80’s vibe to their sound.
Paramore came on next led by Hailey Williams infectious vocals. During their inception they were primarily a punk band with songs like “Misery Business”, “The Only Exception”, and “Still into You”. Now playing songs from their new album, like the hit “Hard Times” from the new album After Laughter. The artist Sting once said during an interview on Morning Edition about his album with Shaggy, “I think surprise is always the most important arm in music. You don’t want to go with people’s expectations, you always want to surprise them. If I am not surprised, I will go somewhere else.” With the type of music that Paramore is performing which is pop/punk, most bands of that genre each album sounds the same. This band did a 360 fusing elements of 80’s pop and new wave and creating an original sound. Poppy and fun may describe that performance. After the show off to our domiciles to rest and get ready to interview Hall of Famer Joe Namath.
We arrive at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront around 7:00 AM to conduct our interview. We wait and wait, and while Bob was getting the gear together, a cab pulled up and out steps a guy with a navy blue blazer. I thought, “That looks like Joe Namath!” And it was! We conducted the interview in a very casual setting at the Hilton. Joe was so personable, and very easy to talk to. CEO, Marty Abrams of Metco Toys explained why they are making a push with these toys. “It makes sense, the generation of the late 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s are now older and nostalgic for the action figures they grew up with.” Then Marty and Joe bust out a Joe Namath action figure rocking the mink coat like he did in the 70’s. The interview was fantastic and Joe and Marty are great guys. But wait, there’s more! After this fantastic interview, we hit the streets of San Diego to see what’s up outside of the 2018 Comic-con trade show.
Riding around the San Diego Gaslamp District in Bird Scooters, we found a company called SyFy, as they were conducting their big promotional event. SyFy is an entertainment distributor created for the fans, by the fans, and they were giving bus tours on a double decker karaoke buses! Let’s get this party going! SyFy had people fill out their names, along with a song request, and had people come up one at a time to sing their favorite tunes as they drove atop a bus through the streets of San Diego. James Corden of the Late, Late Show, eat your heart out! This was like Car Pool Karaoke, but on a bus! Moreover, we all got free swag of a toy, snap bracelet and a t-shirt as a free give from SyFy, and if you sang you got a special bonus gift. I know this because I was chosen to perform the Eagles hit “Take it Easy”! I didn’t do a bad job either, but whatever you do, don’t watch it on our Facebook page! Everybody was signing along, and a lady even complimented me after the bus stopped. That was a first for my singing! We finished the bus ride around noon.
But wait, there’s more.
Shortly after the SyFy Karoke Bus, we were escorted VIP style in the massive Amazon Fire exhibit. We walk you through this tour on our Facebook page. In his exhibit, Amazon makes a huge play into the media/entertainment market. With the advent of companies like Youtube and Netflix, traditional cable and media outlets are falling by the wayside. Not just an online seller of books, music, and other forms of entertainment, Amazon has jumped into the streaming television format competing against Hulu and Netflix. The big push this year was for Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan character which is packed with action and suspense. Amazon is trying to make it easier to stream all of your programs and other entertainment needs into one simple package by using the Amazon Fire Stick. To make things even more suductive, Amazon invited us to and special VIP after party at the exhibit that night, hosted by Amazon.
Saturday was perhaps the best day at Comic-con, as Homeland Magazine brought in infamous public figure and celebrity, San Diego’s own, Channel 4 Anchorman, Ron Burgandy, to host the event. Ron showed up to Comic-con in classic San Diego style, on an electric scooter, and proceeded to pluck cos-players from the massive crowd to get their take on this annual spectical. With his wind blown hair, and a glass of Scotch in his hand, Ron Burgundy interviewed the likes of legendary wrestler El Santo, Superman and Captain America, Woody from Toy Story and a heated encounter with Deadpool, just to name a few. When you put the two characters of Ron Burgandy with the emboldened mouth of Deadpool, well things can get a little intense. Fun times were had by all, and this trip to San Diego will go down as one of the best vacations that I have had in a very long time.
Stay Classy San Diego!
Written by Brian Webb and Bob Dietrich
Photography by Brian Webb and Bob Dietrich