Camping Plans: This was the day I knew I’d be waaaaaiting. Everything you’ve heard about SDCC’s monstrous lines are all true. But there’s the added twist that SDCC doesn’t clear rooms between panels, which means if you’re there for a 2pm panel in a popular room and you want to guarantee to attend it, it’s best to try to get in line early enough to get in by 1:30 pm. Which means you could end up sitting through a lot of panels that are of no interest to you, and thus means you could be taking up space from someone who might be but got in line after you. It’s why the Twilighters were hated so much.

Despite those drawbacks, I actually like this method versus the room-clearing method that I experienced at Anime Expo a few years back. At AX, I wanted to attend two back to back panels in the same room, but was forced to leave (with everyone else) after the first one and get in the back of the line for the second one, which meant I might not have been able to get in. Too much hassle and just not worth it.

This year, I finally allowed myself to attend the “True Blood” panel and later on “Lost Girl”. I had always avoided TB even though I love that show but I hate spoilers and not having cable/HBO always got in the way of being up to speed on the show by the time of that year’s SDCC. But since Season 5 contained the pairing of my two absolutely fav female characters, this show is my current number one lesbian TV thrill and I said “I’m there!” for this year. Unfortunately, it meant that I would miss other panels focusing on LGBT comics, but that’s just part of the choices to be made at SDCC.

So my plan was to get into the line for the second largest room at SDCC, Ballroom 20, at a bright and early 9 am or so even though the first panel wouldn’t start until 10 and “True Blood” wasn’t scheduled until 3:30p. To pass the time for panels I had no interest in, I came fully prepared with my tablet and food and drinks.

Surprisingly, I got into the room just as the first panel started, the spin off “Once Upon A Time in Wonderland”, which would be followed by “Once Upon A Time.”

There had been a lull a year ago for me TV-wise in that I didn’t have any active shows that I was passionate about. In an experimentation mode, I tried both “Grimm” And “Once…”. The former was just too “guy” for me and the latter was definitely more interesting, being female-centric, interesting concept and great acting and production values. But even though I finished watching the first season of “Once…” I couldn’t shake the feeling that it really wasn’t that captivating to me. Like I was forcing my interest.

And then I discovered “Lost Girl” and that was all I needed to drop the other series.

So as I sat thru both panels, I realized the reason that I lost interest in the franchise was that it was just too heterosexual for me. (As much as SwanQueen is a nice concept, I didn’t need the producers to state that it would never happen for me to already accept that.)

After the “Once” panels, there was the infamous cartoon block of “Simpsons”, “Futurama” (last panel), “Family Guy” and “American Dad”. That was where I spent most of my attention focusing on the audio book in my iPod, Candice DeLong’s memoir “Special Agent: My Life on the Front Lines as a Woman in the FBI”. I was very glad I came prepared to let my mind focus elsewhere in those hours. The only SDCC perk I got out of it was Seth Green appearing in the “Family Guy” panel and since he’s a Buffy alum and name-dropped for the “Husbands: The New Marriage” series, I took some pics of him.

“True Blood”: Since I was also there to get some decent pics, I had managed to change my seats in between breaks so that I was fairly close (with my zoom lens) and centered that any pics I got would turn out pretty well. But at the last possible second, this gargantuan dumbass sat right in my eye-line as well as prop up a video camera on a mono-pod that he propped above his head. I wanted to climb over the seats and beat him with my zoom lens… but I did not.

Otherwise, the panel was awesome! Witty comments and screaming fans of both female and male variety (for both cross and same gender support.) I managed to get some pics for my collection and I know at least one person should post the recording of the panel somewhere on Youtube.

“Lost Girl” Prep and Camping: So after the TB panel, I took a food break and then made my way to the room to stand in another line for the 7pm panel.

I discovered LG quite by accident. I had been browsing in Target when I noticed the DVD release for LG season 2. The cover had an attractive woman (Lauren) giving a longing stare at the central woman (Bo) in a way that triggered my gaydar. I ignored the presence of a man (Dyson) on the cover and decided I needed to check out the series.

Since I was struggling to like “Once…” at the time, LG felt like an “Amen!” moment for me and I became addicted, very willing to forgive its faults for what I got out of it. And yes, I’m a Team Lauren/Doccubus fan; so much that I was very involved in the E! online best couple poll to help them win first place and surprise the shit out of everyone else in the US T.V. industry.

When season 3 launched I started watching it religiously by subscribing to it via iTunes, however, I stopped watching after about episode 4 of the thirteen episode season. Basically at the point where I could feel the LG creative powers would start to break up Lauren/Bo, and I didn’t feel like I needed to watch it unfold as it happened and would just wait to have the entire season be released so I could do a marathon viewing. Unfortunately, with wanting to attend the LG panel and being anti-spoiler, I did spend my evenings in the hotel room leading up to Saturday watching the entire 3rd season, which I managed to finish Friday midnight or so.

Since I got into the room around 5:30 and the LG panel didn’t start until 7p, I had to sit thru more panels:

“Revolution”: I know of this series only thru seeing ads on various internet sites, and from what I saw in my half hour for this panel, I do not have any reason for me to watch it, even though it has a couple of actors whose talent I respect. The only quirky thing I got out of the panel was that it had Tracy Spiridakos, of the horror/thriller “Kill For Me” which I know has a couple of lesbian shots in it, so I took pictures of her just for the hell of it even though I haven’t yet seen the movie. Yes, my motives are unrepentantly obvious.

“The Tomorrow People”: The panel mostly consisted of showing the pilot episode of this US version of a classic British show. Lots of pretty people doing scifi things. I was bored.

“Gays in Comics Panel & Mixer”: Ironically, that was happening next door and while the room wasn’t crowded in that I felt I could have left and come back, I didn’t think I would get a good seat the second time around. And as I said earlier, I just wasn’t in the mood to shmooz. Nico attended and gave me his thoughts on the event, which weren’t that surprising.

“Lost Girl”: Thanks to the SDCC website, I knew my favorite actress Zoie “Lauren” Palmer would attend with a couple of other key players. As long as I got good pics of her, I would consider the effort worth it.

As expected, Palmer was witty, charming and beautiful. And totally played to the crowd. I haven’t yet seen my pics, but I’m hoping I got the one where she zipped down the front of her dress as enticement, in response to the crowd being far more for Team Dyson than Team Lauren.

Anna “Bo” Silk was filming scenes for Season 4 and filmed a video greeting for the panel, noting that she was in Lauren’s apartment and wondered outloud that she should snoop around, which Palmer jokingly jumped to her seat in protest, which I don’t think other people caught since the video was still playing and it was dark.

I will admit the actors toying with the audience sign language interpretors was very hilarious.

Not yet sure if I would go to an LG panel next year at the expense of something else, but who knows what will happen in Season 4. Maybe I’ll be obsessed again.

Sunday the Last Day

Since the only panel I wanted to attend was scheduled for the last slot of the day/weekend, I walked around the exhibit hall before then to see if there was anything that I wanted/needed to pick up. The Funimation booth had spare “Lost Girl” mini posters and I picked up a couple. But after walking around with them for two hours, my practical side took over in that I knew I would never put them up at home or work so I took a picture of the poster before dumping them. And while I tried to keep an eye out for men in cross-dress cosplay, I couldn’t find one. And if I found women in guy-wear, I wanted to make sure they had a certain tough/dyke edge to them. I ran into a woman trying to fix her chain-mail vest in the bathroom, but I didn’t wait for her to get her outfit together to get her picture. I’m sure she’ll be around next year.

“End Bullying! Responding to Cruelty in Our Culture”, the SDCC official panel description: Have you or someone you love been a target of bullying? Join this life-changing discussion on how to overcome bullying, and learn strategies to create witnesses and allies out of bystanders. NOH8 makes it’s first-ever Comic-Con appearance, with founders Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley along with Jane Espenson (Once Upon a Time), Brad Bell (Husbands), Chase Masterson (Doctor Who: Big Finish), Bonnie Burton (Girls Against Girls: Why We are Mean to Each Other and How We Can Change), Jenna Busch (entertainment editor, Fan TV), and Ashley Eckstein (Star Wars: The Clone Wars). Special topics include geek bullying, LGBT bullying, cyberbullying, and analyzing how media and entertainment affect attitudes toward bullying and aggression. Moderated by author (and mother of Katie the Star Wars Girl) Carrie Goldman (Harper Collins’ Bullied: What Every Parent, Teacher, and Kid Needs to Know About Ending the Cycle of Fear).

Nico and I attended this panel out of curiousity and support (much more the latter than the former.) It was informative and very well-attended for something scheduled in the final panel slot for the convention weekend. They did a good job of addressing the wide spectrum of bullying and non-acceptance, including anti-effeminate bullying by gay guys. The only area I didn’t think they addressed and should have would have been intra-family bullying, nor were there any panelists of color. But it’s a start, and a very decent one. If they have one next year (which is their plan), I do foresee myself wanting to attend to support it again.

Post SDCC: So my feet and back were sore after four days of being a pack mule. And I over-ate tremendously (hey, it was my vacation). However, not only did I eat large quantities but my eyes always gravitated to the most garlicky meal on the menu, so I was a walking garlic bulb for the entire weekend. But at least I showered every day, so I still smelled better than some other “ripe” people. Though I admit they are my people, I just wouldn’t stand too close to them.