Motherboard traveled from Brooklyn to the crowded island of Manhattan for the annual New York Comic Con, where more than 100,000 people gathered to gape at zany costumes, games and gadgets. This year’s vibes were positively twisted. We went searching for wizards, the Monarch, booth babes, storm troopers and Spike from Buffy the Vampire Slayer.
What we actually found was more of a mishmash of awkward children pretending to be adults, Glee freaks, wandering droids, “Bronies,” lots and lots (and lots) of creeps and (spoiler alert) an amazing pulled pork sandwich. Check out some photos we snapped while we were there if you’ve never seen a tattoo of a zombie-themed recreation of Star Wars or two ninjas making out.
Enjoy the trailer above and stay tuned to Motherboard for when this glittery, kind of inappropriate soiree into the dark corners of Comic Con airs this Wednesday, November 2nd.
Internally and externally monitoring yourself is something we should all attempt, but rarely do.
I would not describe myself as a paranoid person, especially regarding the internet. I discuss drugs and sex at length on Gchat, have shamelessly used the word “score” in texts to many of my friends and have determinedly scoured the web “researching” amputee prostitutes. I am long past worried if Google knows or cares if I am a deviant.
My fears have been placated because they haven’t physically manifested themselves into my daily life. My “real life” fears typically have to do with: money (or lack thereof), the possibility that a rat is living in my closet and that my autistic roommate drank an entire gallon of my milk in one day. Dude, how is that even possible?
The whole “monitoring oneself” thing came up recently when I was working at a party, and was given a headset to communicate(read: act like a secret service operative). At first I was into it. Who doesn’t like to say “copy,” “roger” and other such jargon associated with radio communication?
But then rationality set in. I quickly realized that each time I thought about saying something I had to censor myself and wonder if anyone was listening.
Part of the worry is unfounded—I had to press a button on the headset to activate the microphone. But weirdly enough, my heart was racing faster and faster with every hour that I wore the device. For every judgment, complaint and backhanded remark I made there was a microphone capable of picking it all up and sending it out to too many people who wouldn’t take kindly to my witticisms.
This all had me realizing how increasingly negative I’d become.
Non-mic’ed complaining, however, has been normalized. Off-the-record communication is acceptable in my generation. We commiserate by complaining. It’s a unifying force. But how did some measly microphone have me so mentally unhinged? All my first-world gadgets and social networks are all distinct microphones in their own right that duly record my every thought, hookup and drug deal. So how was this piece of plastic any different? It shouldn’t haven’t been, and yet it was.
Now, I know I am not alone in my fascination with the “hot mic” phenomenon. Throughout modern history, countless people have ruined their marriages, reputations and careers—hell, their entire lives—by simply forgetting that they were wearing a microphone.
Just ask Michael Duvall. This guy forgot he was mic’d when blabbing on about spanking and sleeping with a female lobbyist, all unbeknownst to his wife and congressional colleagues. He resigned a mere fifteen hours after the story broke.
Or Christian Bale. Remember his venomous on-set effenheimers thrown at the director of photography of Terminator Salvation? The English psycho lost credibility after an audio clip of his fucking explosion went viral.
And what about the Rev. Jesse Jackson? He must’ve been pretty embarrassed after a hot mic had the world knowing that the Civil Rights figure wanted to cut Barack Obama’s balls off.
My favorite mic mishap has got to be President Ronald Reagan addressing his fellow Americans one night at the height of the Cold War: “I’m pleased to tell you today that I’ve signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. We begin bombing in five minutes.” His comment was supposed to have been a soundcheck, but accidentally went live.
Do I still judge? Complain? Dish out back-handed remarks? Of course I do. But at least now I think twice about it. Thanks, technology!