Just got the e-mail that four day passes to this year's New York Comic Con go on sale tomorrow, January 3rd!
Last year we went for the first time and had a blast. However, the CBN crew did encounter a few issues that we think need a fixin'.
Here are our top five improvements the NYCC needs to have!
1. The IGN Theater was a big gigantic massive CLUSTERF***! - Saturday saw all the big movie panels held one right after the other. What the NYCC did was, herd people into this gigantic frickin' room -- and wait. There were literally thousands and thousands of people. Some were waiting for The Walking Dead Panel, some for Ghost Rider and a majority for The Avengers. Okay, everyone was waiting for The Avengers. But the kicker was - if you made it into one panel, you got to stay for ALL OF THEM. Obviously, fanboys and girls who got in for TWD weren't going anywhere and stayed put for The Avengers. However, the NYCC still let people line up outside. So what ended up happening was, people wasted their whole frickin' Saturday waiting to get in, and got zip. Me? No way in heck was I waiting, but two of our guys did wait for five hours or so to no avail. The DOC sent over the following:
"The biggest problem is they never came out and told us we wouldn't be getting in. The place was filled to capacity and they never told us, so we could check something else out. Then people started chanting, 'Bull Shit,' and knocking over the barricades."
Solution: Better communication from the NYCC and/or give out tickets for the event. If the tickets get sold on EBay or whatever, so be it. It's better than having thousands and thousands of not only disappointed people - but pissed off ones! And really, the NYCC people had to know the place was filled to capacity. Which leads me to improvement #2!
2. Security - as in hardly any! Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying the NYCC is dangerous or anything like that, but on two occasions there easily could have been riots! If a majority of comic/pulp culture fans weren't so -- shall we say say nice -- the stuff would have hit the fan! And it almost did! The first was with the previous mentioned The Avengers Panel. I can't blame them, people were pissed! When folks realized they weren't getting in, all hell just about broke loose.
The second was with the My Cup O'Joe Panel. People were lined up outside in a less than an orderly manner. When the doors opened, everybody just rushed to get in! I think there was one guy trying to calm everybody down, but that was wishful thinking. Some sort of security did make its way over eventually, and things even got physical, but it was still chaos.
The only time I saw real security was when the NYPD showed up at the 1821 Comics Booth because of Stan "The Man" Lee! They threatened to shut it down because the crowd was so large!
Solution: More Security Guards and roped off lines for the large panels. Hey, they could even dress as Storm Troopers to keep with the theme!
3. Wi-Fi - For me, this was frustrating as hell! It was nearly impossible to update Cosmic Book News from the NYCC. They did have a press room and all, but the Wi-Fi -- sucked! I'm not talking about the NYCC provided Wi-Fi either (which I was told is just as horrible at the tune of a hundred bucks), I used my own (Verizon), but I couldn't get anything through. Had to wait until I got back to my hotel, but by that time I was mostly too tired to update.
Solution: Not sure what can be done with this many people attempting to all get online at the same time via their phones/cpu's. Not sure if it is a Cell Tower issue or Cell Company issue, but having reliable internet service would make my trip to the NYCC more worthwhile. Really, I was better off staying home and covering everything from there.
4. Press - I think the NYCC gave a press pass out to just about everybody and their mom's blog. Not really a big deal, and not like we're CNN, but people were better off waiting in the regular line to get in. Really, the press line stretched a mile long, and by the time I got in, I saw regular ticket go'ers already in having a good time. Looking back, the Press Pass isn't really a big deal as it doesn't bring with it any real benefits or perks. You don't get ahead of the lines or any exclusives. However, with the Press Pass does come one "benefit." Benefit in quotes because it is hardy one at all! You got access to a "press only" room. There were a couple rooms with large round tables, where you could work on whatever or even conduct interviews. However, by the time Sunday hit - you couldn't even walk in! Not sure what happened, but the place reeked of garbage. This is inexcusable if you ask me. It also seemed as if the power outlets were set on "low," as it took forever to recharge your phone or laptop.
Solution: The gang and I have come up with the solution to upgrade our tickets to VIP to get ahead of the lines. Regarding the Press Room, let's get some air in there and some deodorizers!
5. Gaming Area Needs The Power! There are a couple problems with the NYCC's Gaming Area. First, they were all shoved into a corner at the Con. As the Gaming displays all had large Flat Screens showing off their stuff - the people lined up to watch! This caused a congestion problem, and it was difficult to maneuver around everyone. Second, the gaming area lost power more than a few times! While not a big issue for me, CBN's own resident gamer, Lawrence Napoli, was quite upset. See Capcom's Epic Fail for more.
Solution: Give these gamers more room and more power!
On top of that, the entire Marvel booth was centered on The Avengers movie. What they did was throw out t-shirts and posters to fans. This was a clusterf*** in its own right, and made it almost impossible to converse with any of the creators who were signing. Furthermore, it seemed as if the Marvel signing areas were closed more than they were open. Plus, the area was overly dark and gloomy.
I will give credit to Marvel for their panels though, simply the best at the Con.
Kudos to DC and Image comics as they had these bright, well lit, vibrant booths - just like comics are! Go figure! You could chat with whomever you wished - and DC gave out a whole hell of a lot more freebies!
However, DC does need work on their panels. The couple I attended were outright boring and/or filled with no news. Guys! It's the NYCC!
So there ya have it. Our top 5 or so picks to improve the NYCC! We'll definitely be attending next year as we had an awesome experience! Speaking of, now on to writing the top list of what we liked!