As the annual Consumer Electronics Show grows away from its humble roots as, you know, a consumer electronics show, its focus increasingly turns to things altogether unrelated to technology – like celebrities!
Last year I recall spending three hours chasing down Justin Bieber with my telephoto lens – he made a brief, grumpy appearance promoting some entirely forgettable robotics company that I have since entirely forgotten. This year, the celeb safari is back on. Here’s who is showing up to CES this year and why you should – or shouldn’t – care.
Get your bingo cards ready. No really… why not make a bingo card? Fill one up, find me and I’ll buy you a shot. (Just don’t blame me for knowing more about smartphones than pop culture – this is who I think these people are, anyway.)
This year’s “CES Celebrity Ambassador,” you might know Felicia day from the World of Warcraft spoof web series The Guild, or just from being generally cool and having preternaturally perfect skin. She tends to appear at every geek-adjacent event known to man, and we imagine that she’ll spend most of the week in a cocktail lounge in an ivory tower somewhere in the South Hall. She’s the CES celeb bingo equivalent of a doubleword score.
The Next Generation of Innovators Keynote / 11am-12pm, Tuesday, January 8, LVH Theater
This dude is from The Black Eyed Peas and has the cojones to downstyle his name like an Apple product. He’s A+ in my book.
Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson
SMS Audio (LVCC, South Hall 1, #20206) / 3pm, Wednesday, January 9
Isn’t this guy blatantly sexist and homophobic? Surprise! He’s at CES 2013 representing SMS Audio, a brand that I will now ardently choose to not give a shit about.
Pioneer Electronics (USA) Inc. (LVCC, North Hall Booth #1101) / 12-1pm and 1:30-2:30pm, Tuesday, January 8
The Blink 182 dude? Really? Don’t make me make the “what’s my age again” joke.
Haier America (LVCC, Central Hall, #10939)
I have zero idea who this woman is, but apparently she was dubbed the “Scallop Queen” on season 10 of Hell’s Kitchen, which is the best title I’ve ever heard of. All hail the bivalve queen!
I Fight Dragons
Bém Wireless / 7pm, Wednesday, January 9, Luxor, Flight Lounge
This is probably an indie band. Okay, yeah, I looked it up and it is definitely an indie band. I hated them at first based on their name alone, but apparently they are into the chiptune retro video game sound thing, so now I’m totally into it.
LL Cool J
CNET (LVCC, South Hall 3, CNET Booth) / 4:30pm, Tuesday, January 8
This guy is kind of actually famous! All these years and he never changed his name to something more pretentious or with fewer vowels – props to you, Mr. J.
House of Marley (LVCC, Central Hall, #10544) / 11am-3pm, Tuesday, January 8 – Thursday, January 9
Bob Marley’s son is here every year with his crazy bamboo headphones and a big smile on his face. He’s a super nice guy and he’ll take a picture with you and you can almost pretend you met the “real” Marley instead of Lauryn Hill’s ex boyfriend.
Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi
Zeikos/iHip (LVCC, South Hall 1, #21142) / 1-3pm, Wednesday, January 9
SOUL Electronics (Venetian Tower, #31-234) / 9am, Thursday, January 10
Isn’t this that sanctimonious football player guy who never actually gets to play? We geeks come to these events to get away from you people. Whatever.
Chris “Ludacris” Bridges
SOUL Electronics / 10pm, Thursday, January 10, TAO Nightclub
Rapper turned actor Ludacris seems like a nice dude. I count this as a real celeb.
Dr. Sanjay Gupta
Digital Health Summitt (LVCC, North Hall, Room N250) / 10-10:50am, Thursday, January 10
Maybe Dr. Oz can tell you what that weird growth is on your foot. If not, try Sanjay Gupta.
Gibson Guitar Corp. (LVCC, CES Central Plaza, CP-30)
We all know that the obnoxious comedian Carrot Top is just hanging out here in Vegas anyway. I don’t know what he brings to Gibson’s brand, but now that CES celebs are like trading cards, you might as well collect ’em all.
Panasonic (LVCC, Central Hall, Booth #9406) / 2:30pm, Wednesday, January 9
Okay, Danny DeVito is actually kind of awesome. If he’s anything like his character on It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, I’d like to commit a misdemeanor or drink stale beer with him.
JVC Americas Corp. (LVCC, North Hall, Booth #1810) / 11am and 2pm, Wednesday, January 9
A pitcher for the World Series Champion San Francisco Giants. Who let all these athletes in here?!
Private Event, Parnassus Group / 5:30-7:30pm, Thursday, January 10, Cili’s at Bali Hai
Singer directed the first two X-Men movies, which were awesome. But I’m still mad that he bailed on the trilogy to make a Superman movie. If you see him, ask him about that.
Want to track down even more weirdo celebs? Check out the full list.