The first annual Silicon Valley Comic Con made its inaugural debut at the San Jose Convention, March 18-20. For the three-day event, comic book and sci-fi fans alike, congregated to the heart of Silicon Valley to have an exciting time attending various panels, special celebrity spotlights, tech talks, gaming, and a plethora of entertainment events.
Silicon Valley is known for its technological innovation and home to the top tech companies in the world. The Valley is also a place of creativity and imagination, so it was fitting that it become home to our version of Comic Con.
The event had endless rows of exhibits and memorabilia for sale, along with—of course—comic books.
Perusing the convention center, it was commonplace to see diehard comic book fans dressed up as their favorite superheroes. R2-D2 was rolling around the floor, exciting Star Wars fans.
Wax statues of various famous people and tech giants like the late Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg were also on display; provided by San Francisco’s own Madame Tussauds Wax Museum.
The Woz (Steve Wozniak, co-founder of Apple, Inc.)—the powerhouse behind the event—was spotted walking around and giving interviews.
Stan Lee (Founder of Marvel Comics) had a signing session, where fans of Marvel could get their favorite comic signed by the legend himself.
Fans also had the opportunity to meet their favorite comic book heroes with the purchase of an autograph or photo. Some of the top names that attended the convention were William Shatner, Michael J. Fox, Lea Thompson, Christopher Lloyd, and Nathan Fillion.
The fan-favorite events were the celebrity spotlights. William Shatner was the opener on day one of the convention. Mr. Shatner came onto the stage with excitement and vigor, and was pleased to see many fans of Star Trek. He joked with the audience, spoke about his love of horses and his charity Ahead with Horses, and took questions from fans. The theme of his talk was about friendship. One of the audience members asked him about his friendship with the late Leonard Nimoy. Mr. Shatner stated that he had an amazing 50-year friendship with him. He also discussed how friends will always have disagreements, but it is a true and deep friendship that lasts a lifetime.
Another special event was the Back-to-the-Future spotlight. This was a rare treat, as Michael J. Fox, Lea Thompson and Christopher Lloyd were available to answer fan questions about their experience making one of the most famous films of the 80s. One fan asked about the progress of technology and if the actors thought if the movie predicted such progress. Mr. Fox stated that “…we already have hoverboards…and I own a pair of self-tying shoelace sneakers [like in the movie]—convenient for someone with Parkinson’s disease.” Another fan—who also has Parkinson’s—asked Mr. Fox about how he deals with the disease. Mr. Fox stated, “Day-by-day. Once I figure out how to deal with one challenge, I move on to the next.”
Nathan Fillion (Firefly, Castle) and Alan Tudyk (Firefly) came together to discuss the popular but brief run of the series Firefly. They also spoke about and promoted Con Man, a web comedy series created by Tudyk. Fans were excited to see the duo back together and in film, and they were not shy to share their disappointed of Firefly having a short-lived run. Fillion and Tudyk felt the same sentiment.
Finally, Steve Wozniak joined Oculus founder Palmer Luckey, on a discussion about the fruition and development of AI (Artificial Intelligence) and VR (Virtual Reality), along with the government’s interest to use it. Upon the heals of the FBI winning a court order that mandates Apple, Inc. to unlock an iPhone used by one of the terrorists of the San Bernardino mass shooting, Wozniak and Luckey both agreed that the government implementing itself in peoples’ lives—even if it is for the supposed “greater good”—still invades users’ privacy.
The three-day event brought in a combined 60,000 fans, making SVCC the largest event to take place at the San Jose Convention Center and the biggest Comic Con in Northern California. If you did not have a chance to attend, make sure to do so next year. SVCC is the optimal platform where pop culture, science and tech unite.
For more information about SVCC, please visit: http://svcomiccon.com/
Review & Photos by Sophia M. Papadopoulos