I skipped Friday Five last week because COMIC-CON. There was no way I was going to be able to sit down and slap together a post during that whirlwind. So this week I’m featuring my five favorite things about San Diego Comic-Con 2016! (Don’t worry, I’ll also do a full recap soon.)

1.¬†Stephen Amell & Friends Conversation for a Cause at Zachary Levi’s Nerd HQ: these intimate panels are incredibly hard to get tickets to because there are only¬†200 seats and they literally sell out within seconds (no joke!). I managed to snag two tickets to this panel for my friend and I, and it was so much fucking fun! Arrow star-slash-salmon-ladder-aficionado Stephen Amell brought surprise guests Emily Bett Rickards, Cody Rhodes, Arthur Darvill, and the delightful John Barrowman (whom I had seen walking to the convention center earlier in the day). The whole panel was a riot, but the absolute highlight was when Barrowman appeared onstage in hot pink high heels and dared Stephen to walk across the stage while wearing a leopard-print pair of heels. Tears. Of. Laughter.¬†Watch the whole panel here.


2.¬†Sloth Mask: there’s an SDCC¬†exhibitor¬†called Prop Store that displays¬†some truly excellent film props every year. This time around I literally exclaimed¬†“OH MY GOD” when I entered their booth and spotted this Sloth mask from my all-time favorite movie, The Goonies. ¬†You can’t really see the price tag in this photo, but they’re auctioning it off for about $45,000-$60,000. WORTH IT.


3.¬†Silicon Valley Panel: despite having just aired its third season, this year¬†somehow marked the first time¬†this¬†HBO comedy made a Comic-Con appearance. I was worried we would have trouble getting into this panel, but it was shockingly easy. The audience was basically treated to a free top notch improv show, with Thomas Middleditch, Kumail Nanjiani, and Zach Woods letting the jokes¬†fly fast and furious. There was so much talk about buckets of horse semen. The laughter was nonstop to the point that I almost didn’t miss T.J. Miller and Martin Starr, both off shooting big budget films. Also, The Jacket made an appearance. (I saw two separate guys on the show floor wearing it as a costume as well).

Amanda Crews, Zach Woods, The Jacket

4.¬†Preacher Panel at Camp Conival: 2016 marked the third¬†year of Nerdist’s and Geek & Sundry’s joint SDCC offsite effort at Petco Park, but this was the first year that¬†I attended. A few days before we headed to San Diego I checked out the Camp Conival¬†schedule and was surprised to find that they were offering¬†a pretty impressive¬†schedule of free panels. So my friend and I checked it out on Thursday and we managed to see five short panels in a row, my favorite of which was Preacher! Joseph Gilgun was a definite highlight; he looked like he was having a great time. Also awesome? Ruth Negga’s cat print pants!

Joseph Gilgun (Cassidy), Graham McTavish (“The Cowboy”), Ruth Negga (Tulip), Camp Conival moderator

5. San Diego Sunset: I know, this isn’t nerdy at all, but one of the pleasures of going to Comic-Con is enjoying beautiful San Diego. On Wednesday night we went to Altitude Sky Lounge‚ÄĒa rooftop bar on the 22nd floor of the Marriott Gaslamp Quarter‚ÄĒfor food and drinks, and we were treated to this incredible sunset and view. Bonus: later in the evening we¬†also got to¬†see the fireworks show for the¬†Star Trek Beyond premiere!