SAN DIEGO — Every year in the heart of San Diego, thousands upon thousands attend the annual San Diego Comic-Con International to celebrate the world of comics and related popular arts and culture.
The four-day event brings together everyone, from everyday people to some of the biggest Hollywood celebrities. Perhaps the more notable kind of people making this once-a-year pilgrimage to the event are the dedicated fans who show their appreciation for their favorite comic/pop culture subjects by dressing up in costume. Like moths to a flame, they are drawn to the mega convention.
People from all over the world attend Comic-Con every year, and a small handful of those people come from the Imperial Valley. For Valleyites, making the trip to San Diego for Comic-Con can be easy and difficult — difficult due to how hard it is to obtain a badge to attend, but easy due to San Diego’s short distance from the Valley.
For Brawley resident Bethany Theuret, her attendance this year was made possible by way of employment at the event itself. However, getting an opportunity to work at the event is not as easy as it may sound, as explained by Theuret.
“You got to know somebody to get a job,” said Theuret. “Someone has to refer you and provide you a link to fill out an application and all that.”
Of course, not everyone can work for Comic-Con. It’s takes a certain type of person for the job, she explained. “What they’re [Comic-Con] usually looking for is people who are kind of into what goes on here at Comic-Con,” said Theuret. “So like a lot of the pop culture stuff; they want to know what you’re interested in and why you want to work.”
“They also want to know your job experience,” added Theuret. “If you have job experience, that’s what determines what job you get.”
When asked if working at Comic-Con would be something she would recommend, her reply was undoubtedly a “yes.” “I would recommend working, especially if you’re trying to get into Comic-Con, because tickets are so hard to buy,” said Theuret. “If you know someone that worked Comic-Con and they’re referring people, I would say go for it.”
“Work for Comic-Con, that way you can actually experience the Con and you get paid to work here,” added Theuret. “How is that not a bonus?”
Another Valley resident who attended San Diego Comic-Con was Teresa Franco of Brawley. Franco, like so many others in attendance, dressed up for the event. This year, Franco attended Comic-Con as Ruby Rose from the show “Ruby.” Franco’s first Comic-Con was in 2008 and with the exception of a six-year hiatus that began the following year, she has been to every Comic-Con since.
“2015 I started coming back and this is my third year continuously,” said Franco.
Franco, along with a multitude of diehard fans, attend the event with an undying love for showing off their clever cosplays (a contraction of the words costume play) and indulging in a variety of activities such as attending panels, meeting new faces, and the ever-so-addicting souvenir shopping.
“I love the environment,” said Franco. “I love being a part of the cosplayer environment and also seeing panels for TV shows that I really enjoy, and meeting new people.”
San Diego Comic-Con International returns next year July 19-22, 2018.