Nasa / Space

The 10 lamest things to do at Comic-Con

When you attend a geeky conference, don't act like a jerk. Edmond Woychowsky offers nine more tips about what not to do at a Comic-Con.

There are so many cool things to do at a Comic-Con, including get autographs, go shopping, see new movie trailers, and dress up for the Masquerade. At Comic-Con 2010, you can essentially pack at least two weeks' worth of geek activities into one long weekend. You can also do some pretty lame things.

Whether you're attending Comic-Con 2010 in San Diego, CA, or you're planning to go to a Comic-Con in the future, here are things not to do while you're at the event (my list is in no particular order):

  1. Accost the stars when they're going about their own business. Yes, even they like to shop for goodies, so let them.
  2. Heckle the panel speaker. The actor may have shot your favorite character in the back or done something else equally horrendous, but, fellow geeks, keep in mind it's fiction.
  3. Ignore the Masquerade's no weapons policy. Not only can someone get hurt, but it's also a good way to find oneself a guest of the city of San Diego (or whichever city you're in for that particular event).
  4. Expect the artists, actors, or writers to remember you from last year. They may have met thousands of people during that time; so unless you went to school together or are a relative, odds are, they don't remember you. (Caveat: If they're selling something and you make a major purchase, your odds will be a lot better next year.)
  5. Do an impression of an actor to his or her face. You don't want to be that fan.
  6. Annoy the other attendees. Nobody cares if you hate Death Note or InuYasha -- everyone is entitled to their likes and dislikes.
  7. Forget that it's a family event. Tone down the fracking language, people -- there are younglings about.
  8. Stack the deck in card-based games. Now that I think about it, I know a comic book shop where that's a good way to be banned for life.
  9. Forget basic door-holding etiquette. You should always hold the door for the person behind you, especially because you never know who it might be. Fortunately my mother raised me right, which meant that Walter Koenig got a chance to laugh at the dumb expression on my face as I held the door.
  10. Be a jerk. Comic-Con is supposed to be fun, so lighten up and enjoy it!

Most of these rules apply to pretty much any geek convention. For more Comic-Con tips, read TV.com's Survival Guide.

So what would you add to this list? I'd love to hear about lame things you've seen people do at conventions, or perhaps something you did at a con that you now regret. Share your stories in the discussion.

For coverage of Comic-Con 2010 in San Diego, visit these CBS Interactive sites: TV.com, GameSpot, and CBS News.

Comic-Con photo galleries on TechRepublic

Sign up for the Geekend newsletter

TechRepublic's Geekend newsletter, delivered each Friday, features off-topic chatter about all things geeky, including science fiction, movies, gaming, books, space, gadgets, and more. Automatically subscribe today!

26 comments
GSG
GSG

trying to stab him in the eye with a pen becuase he's sitting to close to you. Luckily, the guy missed the eye, but he was carted off to jail.

techrepublic
techrepublic

Yeah I met and had breakfast with Walter Koenig, his wife Judy and their daughter quite a few years ago at a local con weekend. Nice people.

rcannon
rcannon

First with Jim Lee and then Greg Horn. I feel so ashamed.

MikeBytes
MikeBytes

Take a look at this list. COMMON SENSE would tell you to observe these very basic rules of courtesy. What are the people who think breeding is parenting teaching their children today? Thanks for the good list though, I guess.

Dr_Zinj
Dr_Zinj

His character was much more interesting than Pavel Chekov. Of course he's a much more experienced actor than he was back in the '60s.

seanferd
seanferd

11. Protest the convention with "God Hates You" (and other slogans I will not repeat here) signs. This might be a special case of number 10, though.

NexS
NexS

Number 5 - Hilarious. Yes, you're right, that fan is the one chased out by a pack of "Number 3"s (No weapon policy ignoramuses). Edit: Sorry Jaqui, I forgot to add the tags...

Ed Woychowsky
Ed Woychowsky

A mind like a steel trap, whatever gets in gets mangled. I assume everyone is the same as me, so I have low expectations.

learn4ever
learn4ever

This seems to be a recurring issue. I think this is another difference between geeks (shower regularly) and NERDS (bad hygiene).

seanferd
seanferd

Harlan Ellison's The City on the Edge of Forever, which is the original screenplay with a lot of stories and commentary added in, has a forward for Koenig that was awesome. Too bad he didn't get too many good roles in film. He was just the punching bag on Star Trek for far too long, as well as the bearer of the rather poor "re-written history" joke that was given to the Klingons to carry later on. (E.g., Shakespeare, one of our greatest Russian/Klingon playwrights.) Moontrap was hilarious, but not a particularly good film. I probably never would have watched it at all if Walter Koenig hadn't been cast.

awgiedawgie
awgiedawgie

Or rather, let's not be that specific. As revolting as the great (ha!) Rev. Phelps is, he doesn't deserve his own spot in the list of what not to do (unless it's directed solely at him, and simply says, "Don't show up"). He does deserve his own spot somewhere, but I won't mention here just where his spot lies (hint: there's lots of engraved granite involved). Referring to Comic-Con as something along the lines of an idol worshipping ritual is positively absurd. Apparently he just doesn't have any fond memories of childhood. I mean, what kid didn't dream of being their favourite super-hero (or villain)? Or taking a crack at outwitting Wile E. Coyote? Or charming Snow White (or the handsome Prince)? And what grown-up doesn't enjoy watching their favourite cartoons to feel young again? I almost feel sorry for the good reverend - but not quite.

NexS
NexS

I'll have add to the number 5... You know those very special fans who dress up as their favourite characters. Yes, those people do a costumed impression in front of the creator/actor. Makes me want to murder.

mr_bandit
mr_bandit

Having been to (and worked) many Worldcons, Westercons, and many regional cons, the basic survival rules are: 1. get 6 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period (that means staying up no more than 18..20 hours...) 2. Have a good shower after you wake up. 3. One good hot sit-down meal per day. Oh - and don't be a jerk. Pros appreciate being treated professionally.

Ed Woychowsky
Ed Woychowsky

I'd be wearing a brown robe carrying a sign that says; "Landru, guide us!" What sign would you be carrying?

seanferd
seanferd

I hadn't seen that article yet. Lots of close-up shots there. :^0

Dr_Zinj
Dr_Zinj

I kind of like Obi Wan's comment when thinking about the WBC; you know, the one about Mos Eisley Spaceport? "You will never find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy." WBC makes Mel Gibson look like the poster child for peace and tolerance. They are to Christianity as fundamentalist muslim fanatics are to Islam. As for WBC's protests at funerals of deceased military members; their intentions border on attempted sabotage and treason. Frankly, I don't know of a better means of counter protesting them than for gays and lesbians to form up across the street from them and hug and kiss each other all day while shouting "We Love You!"

StomsAz
StomsAz

Personal hygiene counts. For the love of all that is holy, take a friggn shower and use some deodorant before entering the crowd.

seanferd
seanferd

:^0 In the case of the WBC, I believe something like, "Jesus is very disappointed with your fear and hate" would work for me. I'd need more time to come up with something more targeted, clever, and geeky for something more "con" related. I suppose it may make a difference as to whether I wanted more to express a message to the WBC, or to amuse the con-goers with a reference they would get. It may also depend on how broadly insulting I feel like being at the moment. (Thor has a hammer...) Can you tell that I'm not much for slogans as a method to express a thought fully? "Kill all humans" is great, but just a bit generic, and pretty much requires the Bender costume. :D

kjshark
kjshark

They claim to be anti - homosexual, but all they do is think about gays all day, every day ! It sounds like they're a little closeted, if you ask me.

seanferd
seanferd

Yes, they are well-know for disrupting military funerals, much to the consternation of other cliques of the religious right. That kind of behavior should carry a mandatory sentence of being whacked across the nose with a rolled-up newspaper 30 times (first offense).

learn4ever
learn4ever

Why do adults need to be told/reminded about this?!?

marie.kennedy
marie.kennedy

Oh, my. Been there, smelled that. Should be number 1.