San Diego Comic Con returned in person after 3 years. This was my first time attending as press, and so I was very excited. After checking in and getting all my wristband and badge, we went to the press preview night for: The Gray Man, the exhibit hall floor and The House of the Dragon.

The Gray Man activation

Netflix brought an activation for its new film ‘The Gray Man’. The premise of the activation was that each participant was an agent-in-training for the Sierra program: an elite group of spies/soldiers tasked with saving the world. We were required to demonstrate three attributes: skill, strength and speed. Each training module consisted of an obstacle to overcome. As we began the training program, we entered the back door of a trolley car.

The Czech trolley car from The Gray Man

For the skill module, the first car had a short puzzle that would permit us to proceed. For the strength module, the second car had us open an emergency lever to allow very heavy trolley car doors. For the final module, speed, we were required to run along the top of the trolley cars and insert a token into a briefcase. As we ran, we were filmed using a clever camera setup on a harness that moved as we ran. After we finished, we got a video of the speed module - cut into the film’s trailer. Very cool.

Paul posing with Sierra agent
Paul posing with a Sierra agent

the Exhibit Hall floor

After the Gray Man activation, we decided to check out the exhibit hall floor. As usual, there was a long line for the exhibit hall floor for preview night. Many of the usual TV-related booths were absent this year, so we only spent about 30 minutes walking around having a look. By the time we arrived, there were already long lines for the Paramount+, Netflix, and HBO Max booths - which each had their own special prizes they were giving out.

The House of the Dragon activation

We also attended the press preview for HBO Max’s House of the Dragon activation. After arriving, we were gathered in front of a large red castle in an outdoor market setting. Around us were market vendors selling spices, weapons and tapestries - all in character. I was amazed when I heard the spice vendor from Dorne doing an accurate Dornish accent from the original Game of Thrones TV show.

An unhappy market vendor
An unhappy market vendor

After entry to the castle, we were lead by a dragonkeeper to choose our own dragon egg which we would carry with us and later place in a volcanic spring to aid in hatching.

Choosing a dragon egg
Choosing a dragon egg

After the egg was hatched and we continued down a dark corridor, we arrived at the Iron Throne where we were able to have photos taken of us sitting upon the throne.

Sitting on the Iron Throne
Sitting on the Iron Throne


All in all, it was a great first day of San Diego Comic Con.