Thursday, August 15, 2013

Pictures from the 2013 Comic-Con International, part 3 (Adult Swim Fun House, MTV2's Party in the Park & Nerd HQ!)

Thursday was, apparently, party day at Comic-Con!  And I've got the pictures to prove it.  Don't believe me?  Well...I don't know what else I can do besides post these pictures with corresponding commentary.  Really, that's the best I can offer.  I'm a pretty trustworthy guy.  Let's get to it!

Adult Swim had a great off-site setup that featured no less than a walk-in fun house, which they had been advertising leading up to the show.  It ran from Thursday through Saturday, but as it was on my "must do" list, I lined up as soon as I was able to on Thursday afternoon to see just what the attraction had to offer.

San Diego has a pretty temperate climate, all around, but there were still some hot days to be had, compounded by the fact that this particular area was situated right atop a parking lot.  Lines were long all week and the sun blazed down, but we still ended up spending several hours taking in everything that Adult Swim offered.  While in line, the real-life Carl from Aqua Teen Hunger Force (they had a contest a while back, and this guy is still doin' it) came around, posed for pictures and sweat a lot in our general vicinity.  He was out in force for most of the time the fun house was open.

Here's the side of the fun house, which looked like a giant bouncy castle, but was actually based around a series of rafters on the inside.

Someone also had to put this darn thing on and walk around.  Dedication!

After passing through the check-in point, you got to pick out a free t-shirt and have a design heat-pressed onto it while you waited!  I picked up, of course, the Venture Bros. design, which looks pretty spiffy.

Master Shake was even there!  But where's he going?

Oh, he's off to the ATHF room, where I got my picture shouting at the television.

Crawling through the television brought me to this terrifying room, where I sat next to a grown man dressed as a baby in diapers.  He looked at me and said "Da da."  Guess again, dude.

Here's another pretty surreal room.  A room lit up all red with a giant Easter Bunny and a neon sign proclaiming "this is it".  Interesting.

The Humping Robot from Robot Chicken also made it!  This was one of the exit rooms, and you had to crawl though the dryer to leave.  Adult Swim really put on a good show and their fun house lived up to my expectations.  I picked up a lot of free swag at the event and had a great time.

Later in the evening, after the convention center was closed, everyone made their way to Petco Park for MTV2's "Party in the Park".  I didn't know what to expect, except that there was free food and drinks to be had.  That's all I needed to hear.

This, too, exceeded my expectations, as there were events galore, from a Ferris wheel to a live band to a signing with the cast of "Teen Wolf" (imagine my surprise when neither Michael J. Fox NOR Jason Bateman showed up!) to a fireworks show around 10:00.  There were literally thousands of people at this party and everyone seemed to be having a good time.  And did I mention the free food?  I got a hamburger, chips, cotton candy and two Sprites for absolutely zero money.  Quite a deal!

This is a view from the Ferris wheel into Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres.  It's a big stadium, especially when compared to PNC Park, but it's very nicely designed and still manages some of that cozy atmosphere that a ballpark should have.  I wonder if any home runs ever make it out this far.

Here's the line for "Teen Wolf".  The folks in line got placards that the cast signed, which I'm sure was a nice souvenir for someone who has watched more than zero minutes of the show.

Easily the weirdest attraction at the party, under this dome was a "headphone party", where people got headphones and listened to music and waved light sticks around.  It looked pretty goofy from the outside, all these people bouncing around with no audible noise.

After leaving the MTV2 party, we took a short stroll around to another entrance of the stadium, this year's home to Zachary Levi's Nerd HQ.  On the schedule for Thursday night at Nerd HQ was a big dance party, open to one and all.

Verizon was a big sponsor at the convention this year, and they brought out this full-size Iron Man armor, which looked like it could have been straight from the movie.  Maybe it was!

There was a whole concourse with video games, including a whole bunch of classic cabinet arcade games, all running on free play.  Adjacent to these 30-year-old games was a state-of-the-art virtual reality game, and the guy in the above picture shows.  He's wearing the helmet and is standing in a cage that tracks his movements, and he's holding a giant gun that's in use in the game.  There were monitors to his left and right that showed what was going on in the game he was playing.  It was all very impressive, and I left feeling that the future was just a little bit closer than it had been the day before.

Aaaaaand the Fiat display.  Okay.

This incredible lithograph was on display for all to see, featuring a blazing space battle with all of this year's guests taking part in the bloody spectacle.  That's Firefly's Nathan Fillion waving the Nerd HQ flag.  It was a thing to behold, and the picture doesn't do it justice.  Nerd HQ, in its third year as an offsite attraction, is really pioneering the "outside Comic-Con" exhibits.  In a few years, the outside events are going to be greater in number and in scope, but I think that Nerd HQ is always going to be leading the way.  It was a really fantastic setup and was very well managed.

The dance floor was packed most of the night (as long as I was there, anyway), with Zach Levi and his friends hanging out and having a good time with the several hundred guests in attendance.  Like all of them, I'm sure, I had a great time.  The MTV2 party was a lot of fun and it had a nice atmosphere, but nothing compares to Nerd HQ.

We're only through with Thursday night's pictures at this point - lots more to come, and soon!  Hooray for Comic-Con!

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