Comic-con is a fascinating study in fandom. People’s devotion to writers, artists, producers, actors, fx specialists and costume designers is staggering. But a few blocks away there was a different kind of fandom in action at the Dodge Dart Live in It to Win It Challenge. Contestants Ian Morris, Christie Ripley and Trent Brookshier had friends and family lined up just like any Comic-Con fandom, cheering them on throughout their ordeal. It also turns out that they had a huge part in determining the winner of the gorgeous red Dart they’ve been calling home for the past 67 hours. In addition to the many silly field-day-like challenges they had to complete — like today’s in which they saw who could fill a bucket with the most hand-squeezed OJ into a bucket in three minutes — 10 percent of their total points came from getting their friends to text votes. That’s how newlywed Trent finally snatched victory away from Ian.
“I have an amazing support system here,” he told us of his self-proclaimed “wolf pack.” Other than winning a car, Trent said he was taking home an unexpected life lesson. “I actually think I learned a few things, like how to stay focused in life. … These two were playing mind games,” he said, good naturedly indicating his opponents.
It seemed like there were no hard feelings, though. Just after the winner was announced all three dirty, exhausted car-dwellers, plus dropout Kat, were heading out to celebrate among the regular Comic-Con crowd. With their own fans in tow, of course.