It seems like every year, Comic-Con takes over both San Diego and the Internet in general for five days. All the movie studios, television studios, and comic book publishers bring out the big guns to impress fans with what’s next for their favorite properties. Sometimes they even announce something new!

So it can be hard to remember things weren’t always like this. Back in the early years of Comic-Con, there were no giant Hall H panels, no press lines, no celebrities ducking in and out of the labyrinth of hallways. Back in 1970, the very first official San Diego Comic-Con was held at the U.S. Grant Hotel and boasted 300 attendees. The convention wouldn’t settle into its current location until 1990 and would gradually turn into a pop culture phenomenon.

But all growth explosions have to end eventually. In the video above (and below) Donna Dickens and Jill Pantozzi discuss the muted feel of this year’s Comic-Con and if it signals the end of an SDCC era.

Mom. Wife. Geek. Gamer. Feminist. Writer. Sarcastic. Succinct. Donna has been writing snark for the Internet in one form or another for almost a decade. She has a lot of opinions, mostly on science-fiction, fantasy, feminism, and Sailor Moon. Follow her on Twitter (@MildlyAmused) for more of all these things.