Virus-proof, stripped Comic-Con opens Friday after 2-year COVID break

Hundreds pack Harbor Drive Pedestrian Bridge at a pre-COVID Comic-Con. Photo by Chris Stone

Superheroes will not be the only ones wearing masks in downtown San Diego this weekend.

After a two-year absence, Comic-Con International returns to San Diego on Friday to entertain, inform and tempt pop culture fans worldwide.

But this will not be the Comic-Con you remember. This is the Comic-Con Special Edition, a stripped-down three-day event held over a holiday weekend to curb crowds during an ongoing pandemic that has forced online versions of the last two conventions.

The Comic-Con organizers said they wanted to hold a personal event, but make it safe. So it meant fewer days, less scope and a return to the intimate gathering that longtime participants happily remember.

And that means participants will be asked to show evidence of vaccination or recent negative COVID-19 tests. They must also wear masks or face clothing regardless of vaccination status.

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