This spring the TSA started testing searching books as you go through the checkpoint. After all your math textbooks might mean you’re a terrorist.
You might think you’re safe checking copies of 1984 in your luggage. And you probably are. But if you’re flying out of San Diego you’d better not try to check any comics.
People go to Comic-Con and buy comic books. Lots of them. Folks leaving this weekend’s event are showing up at the airport and discovering they’re not allowed to transport their haul in checked luggage.
— Adi Chappo (@adichappo) July 23, 2017
United’s Twitter team confirmed the restriction.
The restriction on checking comic books applies to all airlines operating out of San Diego this weekend and is set by the TSA. ^MD
— United (@united) July 23, 2017
And they apparently went into greater detail via Twitter direct message.
— Amy, on lines @ SDCC (@spooloflies) July 23, 2017
One explanation, from Le Chic Geek may be that “the glossy pages of the comic book show up strangely on the x-ray machine and have to be individually searched. That takes time and it takes staffing.”
TSA doesn’t pay attention to major weather events in the forecast when making staffing decisions so why would they pay attention to major convention events?
Another explanation, I suppose, is that comic books contain characters with super powers which could be a threat to aircraft if left alone in the baggage hold. But flight attendants can use kryptonite in the cabin to fight Superman, and if they can catch Wonder Woman they can bind her bracelets together.
Wolverine comics probably shouldn’t be allowed in the carry on bags, though, because to defeat him you need The Muramasa Blade and the TSA won’t allow that past the security checkpoint.
(HT: Le Chic Geek, Not The Onion)