If you didn't get a badge this year, there are a few things you can do to still participate in Comic-Con fever. If you're local, you can come down and enjoy all of the promotional events and attractions in the area. If you want exclusives, a large number of them are going on sale in August (which begs the question of how exclusive they really are, but whatever.) And now businesses are spotting a marketing opportunity in SDCC branding.
One of these is Barnes & Noble. They're holding a weeks-long "Get Pop Cultured" promotion that will focus on nerdy movies, games, toys, graphic novels and music from 18 July - 10 August.
- You can enter a sweepstakes for a chance to win a $1K gift card, a Warner Bros studio tour and other prizes. Just go to the NOOK counter at your local store.
- Preview Weekend is 18-20 July; you'll get sneak peeks at new titles, posters, sample chapters, digital downloads, and there will be more contests.
- Get Pop-Cultured Costume Contest is on Saturday, 19 July; you can come to the store and cosplay as your favorite character, post photos with the hashtag #getpopcultured and possibly win prizes; you also get coupons for showing up at the store in costume.
- DC Comics Spectacular runs from 23-27 July and will have "fun activities, special giveaways and a 5-day offer on all DC graphic novels." Remember that 23 July is Batman Day, which will be celebrated in comic shops everywhere; they're celebrating here too with free comic books, special editions, bookmarks, buttons and contests. I feel like we really need an entire Batman Week.
- Comic Convention Collectibles will slightly overlap those dates and offer you the chance to buy some of the SDCC exclusives. FUNKO is involved, so that tells you what's available.
- Frozen Friday: Cool Off with Olaf! will be 1 August. "Frozen Friday" sounds like a happy hour drink to me, but no, it's a sing-along and storytime event with crafts, sand castle building and other activities all centering on Frozen. I can't even imagine how popular this will be.
- Marvel Day is 2 August, with giveaways and prizes celebrating the release of Guardians of the Galaxy.
- James Patterson Day is 3 August - again with giveaways, prizes and a 1-day special offer on his books and audios. Presumably this includes all of his "co-authored" books.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Ninja Training Academy Event is the week of 4 August, with crafts and ninja training.
- Page & Screen Weekend is 9-10 August is all about a smattered of nerdy & pop culture work, from Walking Dead to Doctor Who to the Hobbit to The Fault In Our Stars.
- And of course, there will be signings and celebrities sprinkled throughout, including Chris Colfer, Deborah Harkness, Christopher Paolini, Jim Starlin, Sherrilyn Kenyon, James Dashner, John Scalzi, Alyssa Milano, Buzz Aldrin, James Patterson, Malcolm Gladwell and more. And Grumpy Cat, who I didn't realize made personal appearances. Maybe he'll be beamed in.