Tony's California Adventure: Preview Night - A Night of Mayhem, Madness, and Giant Hellicarriers

Greetings everyone. It's 7:58 local time as I'm posting this look into Preview Night the following day due to major exhaustion from the human tidal wave known as the preview night crowd. Before, Preview Night was an optional activity for folks who purchased 4-day badges and wanted to scour the floor early to see the booths and visit vendors. Now, Preview Night has become one of the bigger days of the show due to the exclusive giveaways that different companies are handing out. 

Remember my key phrase from yesterday that Comic Con is a sensory overload? This was a sensory assault. 

Bodies weren't crammed together between the 0100 to 1900 booths, but it became very dangerous territory after the 2000 area. The 2000 to 5000 range of booths contains toy companies, movie studios, video game studios and poor artists' alley, who I'm going to have to visit by traveling around the floor instead of going through it.

But! Enough about the madness that ensued. What did I see in the short three hours I was of the floor? The answer - a lot. A lot, a lot, a lot. 

My night started by heading to the DC Booth so I could get a wristband for Geoff Johns and Jime Lee's signing later that night. I immediately found a line for Bill Willingham and Mark Buckingham. While signing my copies of Fairest #1, I chatted with Bill about next year's Fablescon. He told me that after learning about how difficult it was to get passes for SDCC this year, he decided to get Fablescon organized since there is always a fantastic turnout for this con's Fables panel each year. 

After wrapping up with the Fables team, I headed for the section of booths that featured Cliff Chiang, Becky Cloonan, Rafael Albuquerque, Fabiola Moon, Gabriel Ba, and Jill Thompson. I chatted with Rafael for a quick second as he was being overwhelmed by the demand for his limited prints that he was selling. I was able to chat with Jill Thompson for a few minutes while purchasing and having her sign a copy of her book, Scary Godmother. I asked about the prices for her original artwork, she told me that full pages were $1,000, I eeked, and she laughed. Good times. 

Immediately after walking away from the artist booths, I received a call from my sister, Amy, to head towards the WB Studios booth because, OMG, they were handing out chalk bat window stickers for The Dark Knight Rises. I figured that it was going to be crazy, and sure enough, after walking past the Marvel booth, I hit a huge wave of people who were purchasing the Hasbro Con exclusive toys. I eventually made it to the WB booth, but of course, I missed out. I was able to check out the side of the booth that featured The Hobbit, and it was literally just like walking through the halls of Rivendell, though, I'm sure that someone will correct me once seeing the pictures of the booth and end up telling me it's based on the dwarves keeps.

I decided to wrap up my day by hitting the Sideshow Toys booth to take pictures and then get some final autographs at the DC Booth. I hopped in line for Francis Manapul and picked up a few autographs on some Flash and Green Lantern comics. I told Francis that I've been enjoying the Rogues having superpowers now and that the story of how they received was going to be told in upcoming annual. I told him that I was looking forward to that and he said that he was too, because they were going to have powers either way, even if he didn't tells the story of how they got them. Scoop!

Finally, I was able to get everything I brought for Geoff Johns and Jim Lee to sign. Due to the length of their line, I was able to get in a quick "Hey! Love Aquaman!" and "Thanks man!" from Geoff. Jim was a signing machine and was doing what he could to interact with folks outside of his signings before and after. I figured that my night was over when I looked over to the Veritgo signing to see Scott Snyder making a surprise appearance with Rafael. I took over what Batman and American Vampire books I had on me and got those signed. Scott recognized me as the guy who won the Constantine trench coat from last year and we ended up chatting for a few minutes about his upcoming Joker story in Batman. (editor's note: Scott Snyder has, perhaps, the best memory for people that I've ever encountered at a convention. He regularly remembers me after meeting me at the 2010 c2e2 and Tony even brought me up to Scott which prompted a demand that I attend NYCC because he misses me. So he even remembered me when I wasn't there. Super cool guy. - Scott Samson)

And that was my Preview Night. I'm getting ready to head down to the convention to experience Day One, but before I go, make sure to check the Review section of the site where I will try to post any panel recaps and news announcements that I see.

To be continued...