The geek shall inherit the earth. Silicon Valley Comic Con is coming back into San Jose for its second annual festival of fandom. After last year’s successful launch, which drew 60,000 attendees, the universe of nerds returns April 21-23.
This year’s science fiction, fantasy and pop culture expo looks to be bigger than last year with a free open-air festival that includes a science fair, a beer and wine garden and food trucks in addition to the usual panels and cosplay. The outdoor events will take place near the Plaza de Cesar Chavez Park while the indoor shenanigans will be held at the City National Civic, South Hall and the California Theater as well as the Convention Center.
Transport yourself deep into the center of a galaxy of geekery at panels such as “Death from the Skies” and “So You Want to be a Jedi,” not to mention the omnipresent eye-popping parade of fans decked out in full regalia. Robots, the nature of space exploration and the urgency of Earth Day are also among the themes on the docket.
Here are seven things you need to know about SVCC.
The Man Behind the Curtain
Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is the wizard behind this operation. The Woz has said that he though the Valley, long a mecca for the nerd herd, deserved a con of its own, so he created one, with some help from his buddy, Marvel icon Stan Lee.
William Shatner, aka Captain Kirk, will be warping into town again. Other celebs will include Buzz Aldrin, John Cusack, the 30th anniversary cast reunion of “Star Trek: The Next Generation” and Steven Yeun (sniff!!) from “The Walking Dead.” The usual suspects will also be on hand from Brent Spiner (Data) and Robert Englund (Freddy) to Nichelle Nichols (Uhura).
Attending a con is never cheap, especially if you need to dry clean that Darth Vader cloak first, am I right? But Wozniak wants to make sure this shindig is accessible so, while the traditional indoor events will require a ticket, the outdoors activities will be free to the public. How’s that for a Jedi mindtrick? It’s the Woz’s way of saying thanks to “San Jose for being such a great home for our show.”
Long Live and Prosper Princess Leia
Let’s have a moment of silence for the late great Carrie Fisher who was supposed to have been a guest at the convention but will instead live on in our hearts forever as the baddest ass princess in all of space and time. P.S., her beloved pooch Garry Fisher reportedly will be on hand.
Costumes and role-playing have long been the cornerstones of any Comic con but SVCC is boldly going into a genre where few have gone before with a cosplay contest for your pooch. How you convince Fido to get gussied up as Jabba the Hut is your business.
Gently used Light Saber?
Take home a piece of screen memorabilia at the second annual ScreenUsed auction. Last year the San Jose based company auctioned off items such as Doc’s Mindreading helmet from “Back to the Future.” This time a Stormtrooper helmet and Darth Vader light saber will go to the highest bidder.
Warp Speed ahead
The Woz is already looking ahead to where SVCC will go from here. Indeed the theme this year is “The Future of Humanity: Where Will We Be in 2075?” As he quips: “Maybe SVCC 2075 will have an area dedicated to flying cars and teleportation devices, and our alien friends will cosplay as humans. Or, maybe we’ll hold a sister event on Mars.” IDIC, baby.
SILICON VALLEY COMIC CON
When: 5-9 p.m. April 21, 10 a.m.-7 p.m April 22, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. April 23
Where: City National Civic, 135 W. San Carlos St., San Jose, outdoor events at Plaza de Cesar Chavez Park, 1 Paseo de San Antonio, San Jose
Tickets: $10-$99; VIP packages $250-$550; outdoor events free; svcomiccon.com