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Star Wars Convention

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

I just came back from four days of massive lines, adults fighting over toys, more lines, Wookiees, lightsabers poking me in intimate places and too many "aren't you a little short for a stormtrooper?" jokes than one can handle.

And I loved every single second of it.

I was able to attend Star Wars Celebration VII, the biggest Star Wars convention on the planet and not only did I get front row seats to some of the biggest franchise reveals of the last decade, but I learned a lot about fan conventions and the people that populate them.

Full disclosure: I love Star Wars, but it's not my be all, end all film series. That would be Indiana Jones. So when I say I'm a Star Wars fan, I don't mean I can construct a Death Star model from memory. I just mean I've seen the movies more times than I can count and Han Solo is my dream man, right after Dr. Henry Jones Jr.

Anyway, here's what I learned this past weekend:

1. There is no substitute for being there

Star Wars Convention

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

That lesson applies to the live stream feature this year, which pissed off a lot of fans at the convention. People were waiting in line overnight to see J.J. Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy talk about The Force Awakens, and conventions are supposed to be special only for the fans in attendance. These devoted crowds want to say they saw that trailer first, and they just live streamed the panel? Yeah, people were very miffed.

But even though millions and millions of people saw the trailer at the same time as we did, they didn't get to see it on the jumbo screen, surrounded by thousands and thousands of fans screaming and cheering. The sound of the X-wings flying made your bones rattle, and just when you thought your goosebumps couldn't get any bigger, Han Solo and Chewie showed up. I basically saw this:

Star Wars GIFs

And did this:

Star Wars GIFs

Yeah, I cried. I'm not afraid to admit that. It was magical.

2. No touch-ie unless you ask-ie!

A photo posted by Jenna Mullins (@jbomb11) on

The Force just got real. 

3. The mantra of the convention: "What's this line for?"

A photo posted by Jenna Mullins (@jbomb11) on

So, like most conventions, Celebration had exclusive items that you can only get on the floor, which means everyone needed them. Not only was the floor packed with people just browsing the booths, but there were lines snaked every which way full of people waiting for the Hallmark ornament exclusives, the Lego set exclusives, the official Celebration store to get official Celebration merchandise, and the dreaded Funko exclusives. To find the end of the line you wanted, you had to try and maneuver the mob of people and then ask someone: "What's this line for?" And then you prayed you were in the right spot.

Star Wars celebration GIF

The Funko line apparently became the joke of the floor, because it was the definitely the longest line and based on what people told me, it had the least amount of organization. According to angry patrons, noy only did they sell out insanely fast, but they sold out to people who would just put them on sale at their own booths at a crazy price increase. Poor souls waiting in line like normal folk were mostly s--t out of luck. Hallmark, on the other hand, was a machine. They gave out buttons to people in line, so no one could sneak in and purchase the ornaments without waiting in line and they had people monitoring the line the whole way around the booth. The checkout was an assembly line and people were in an out with their exclusive toys in 30 seconds flat. 

So if you want any of the exclusive toys at the next convention you attend, go in and expect to be disappointed. Or expect to pay a 400% markup at a booth who got to the items first.

4. The cosplay game was on point

Star Wars Convention

Allen J. Schaben/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Especially when you consider that these people were head to toe in heavy costumes in the hot Anaheim sun or pressed up against thousands of Star Wars fan at all times. Huge props to the Vaders, the stormtroopers and the men who dressed up as Princess Leia in the gold bikini. You're the real heroes.

5. Jesus does not approve of Star Wars conventions

Star Wars Celebration

Jenna Mullins

Unfortunately, these people failed to understand that Star Wars fans consider these movies a religion, so their lectures fell on deaf ears.

6. Everyone is very optimistic about The Force Awakens

Star Wars Celebration

Jenna Mullins

Star Wars fans had their hearts shattered when the prequels came in like a disappointing fart on our childhoods, but after seeing the panel with the cast and after walking through the exhibit of new costumes and props from Episode VII, I felt the giddiness in the air for The Force Awakens. Fans are pumped for December.

7. Always assume there is a line

Star Wars Convention

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

My boyfriend and I attended what we thought was a really obscure panel about how World War II and Star Wars were both connected, and we figured there wouldn't be a huge demand for that kind of thing. Nope, there was indeed a line (albeit a fairly short one) for it, so it's safe to always assume that everything you want to see will have at least a 20 minute line.

8. BB-8 will be the breakout star of The Force Awakens

Star Wars Convention

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for Disney

Fans went nuts for that little droid.

9. Star Wars fans are hella nice, even when we're all sweating and standing for hours on end

A video posted by Jenna Mullins (@jbomb11) on

The up side of waiting in line for those damn Funko exclusives or whatever you waited in line for was commiserating with fellow nerds. You became friends with the people around you because your frustration, leg pain and excitement for the next film bonded you for life the 70 minutes you stood in line together. 

10. J.J. Abrams can get it

Star Wars Convention

Albert L. Ortega/Getty Images

Still sexy, even though making one of the most highly-anticipated films of the year probably drained the life from his soul.

11. I'd go again

Star Wars Celebration

Jenna Mullins

The Force was with me all weekend, so I give this convention a 10/10. Would put up with mouth-breathers, my shirt sticking to my sweaty back and crazed adults yelling at the squeaky-voiced teenagers running the convention doors again.

Star Wars Trailer GIFs

Disney/YouTube