PLANNING V. WINGING IT: No group has yet funded this study, as far as we know, but we'd like to know how many people make for Comic-Con International fully intending to wing it vs. those people who have spent weeks plotting out panel times and artist chats and movie sneak peeks and the shortest, most direct route from their hotel. We have a theory that says you only ever wing it once at Comic-Con, because once you get to the San Diego Convention Center and see the 19,872 things to do and see -- give or take -- you understand that some charts and graphs and diagrams might help you make the most of the the world's most famous pop culture convention. If you're thinking of hitting the 2012 party -- and it is on from Thursday, July 12 through Sunday, July 15, so get thinking seriously -- here are a few to-knows for those hastily constructed charts and graphs.
THIS YEAR'S HIGHLIGHTS: One fan's dream panel is another fan's yawner, but let's just hit a few of the headlines from the 2012 con. A whole mess of artists and cartoonists'll be in the convention center, including Stan Goldberg of Archie Comics and Ben Edlund of "The Tick." There'll be panels talking about creating animated TV series and a "Twilight" fan fiction group ("Twilight" fan fiction being much the buzz, thanks to "Fifty Shades of Grey"). And stars? There will be stars. Two names we scrolled past were Comic-Con regulars Wil Wheaton and Felicia Day. We can't recommend enough choosing your premieres and panels and booth strolling ahead of arriving in San Diego, so pore over each day's schedule here. Oh! And we didn't even talk costumes, did we? You can be a superhero or a fairy or a Storm Trooper or The Joker or some sort of mash-up or none of the above. We'd probably get that outfit going pronto, even before those all-important charts and diagrams.