Mark Julian's Most Anticipated SDCC Panels
As a long-time fan of anime, animation, comic books, video games and films these are the San Diego Comic-Con panels I'm anticipating the most. If even a small portion of the many rumors surrounding this year's SDCC prove true, this will be a Con to remember!
That time of year is once again upon us CBM faithful. Tonight is "Preview Night" and tomorrow the festivities begin in earnest. What panels are you looking forward to attending or following online the most? Below, I've highlighted a few that have piqued my interest.
11AM Video Games to Movies: Is the Golden Age Upon Us?
Remember how comic books were once upon a time poised to be "the next big thing?" We'll our time is now but looking at what's next, it's definitely video games. Featuring a group of professionals involved with the adaptations of "Hitman", "Need for Speed", "Dead Space", and "Deus Ex," I'm extremely interested to see what new announcements (if any) will be made at this panel.
1PM Batman: Arkham Origins
There hasn't been a bad entry in the Arkham franchise yet but with RockSteady's departure there are definitely more than a few nervous gamers curious to see what new innovations and tweaks have been included in "Arkham Origins" by WB Games Montreal.
2:30PM Entertainment Weekly's The Visionaries
Directors Marc Webb, Edgar Wright and Alfonso Cuarón discussing the various aspects of filmmaking should interest any geek film fan.
8 PM Robotech Industry Panel
Updates on the latest anime and live-action productions based on Robotech. Hopefully, there will be concrete developments on the live-action front.
12: 15 PM Kick-Ass 2 and Riddick
I'm curious to find out whether "Kick-Ass 2" is as good as it looks and whether "Riddick" is as 'Meh' as it seems thus far. All it takes is one strong or weak Comic-Con performance to swing the momentum pendulum either way.
1PM VIZ Anime Featuring Neon Alley
Mostly interested to see if there will be any live-action announcements for some of the more popular anime series. It's unlikely to occur at this panel but there's still an outside chance. Also interested to learn about what new anime series are coming to the States.
1:35PM AMC's The Walking Dead
I'm still looking for the magic of the first season. Don't get me wrong, Season 2 and Season 3 were both phenomenal television but neither hold a candle to the first season, in my personal opinion. Maybe Season 4 will recapture some of that former glory?
1:45PM Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on ABC
Reactions to the upcomng S.H.I.E.L.D.-centric drama around these parts range from the curious to the super-excited (for the most part). Me? I'm still on the fence, I love Coulson but I'm not 100% sold just yet on some of the supporting cast. Hopefully some of the super powered guest stars are heroes from the published pages of Marvel Comics and not random creations explicitly for the television show.
2:45PM Spotlight on Bruce Timm
There was much "boo hoo-ing" when it was revealed that animation master Bruce Timm was stepping away from the DCAU. But a little birdie told me that he's actually taking a break to recharge his battery and that he's working on a new animated Justice League series in his downtime. Maybe that gets announced here, maybe it doesn't.
2:50 PM Game of Thrones Panel and Q&A Session
I'm curious to hear what the cast and showrunners have to say about Season 4. At this point in the books, some of your favorite characters are regulated to the peripheral as new characters move to the forefront. Will the show follow suit or chart a slightly different course?
3:15 Marvel: Cup O' Joe
There's reportedly going to be a "Guardians of the Galaxy" announcement during this panel. Whether that's film related or the reveal of the rumored animated television program is anyone's guess.
3:30PM Sleepy Hollow
I'll admit, this show has piqued my interest. Alex Kurtzman and Roberto Orc typically bring a higher level of intelligence to their projects.
4:05PM Sony & Screen Gems
I should be more interested in "The Amazing Spider-Man 2" than what I currently am at the moment. Maybe this panel will reveal new details that will melt away some of my skepticism.
5:00PM Archer: Screening and Q&A
This FX animated show is a guilty pleasure of mine. Lana?...Lana?....LANAAA??!!!
5:15PM TV Guide Magazine: Fan Favorites
Some true fan favorite actors and actresses will be on hand at this panel including Clark Gregg and Emily Bett Rickards. Imagine a show centered around these two? The fandom community would implode!
5:30PM DC Comics - The New 52
Trinity War is the big to-do at DC Comics at the moment but it never hurts to find out what's coming down the pipeline.
7:30PM World Premiere of Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox
In addition to the world premiere screening, rumor has it we'll get the announcement of the FULL 2014 DCAU film slate.
8PM Syfy Presents the Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards
Whereas the Harvey Awards generally celebrates the best of mainstream comic books, the Eisner Awards in the last few years has come to honor those doing phenomenal work that may not have the level of exposure that comes with working at DC or Marvel. If you're looking for something new and different to read, you definitely want to check out the list of nominees.
SATURDAY (THE BIG DAY)
10:30AM Marvel Television Presents
In addition to the already airing animated programs, perhaps we'll hear what's currently in development? There's also an outside chance that we'll get some additional developments on the live-action front.
10:45 AM Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures Preview Their Upcoming Lineups
I'm extremely curios about "Godzilla" and the visuals in the first trailer for "Seventh Son" were some of the best I've seen in a fantasy sword and sandals type motion picture. Mildly curious about "Edge of Tomorrow" and the "300" sequel as well.
3:15PM Vertigo: The Sandman 25th Anniversary and Beyond!
I'm on the fence, I love Sandman and I'm not sure what else there is to be told even with Gaiman doing the writing and having the new story set before the events of the original series.
4:15PM 20th Century Fox
Will this panel have any "Fantastic Four" news? Are there any future installments for "X-Men" currently on the table aside from "X-Force?" The rumored "surprise" at this panel has been one of the worst kept secrets in recent memory.
4:15PM Warner Bros. and DC Entertainment: Superman's 75th Anniversary Celebration
Zack Snyder and Henry Cavill will reportedly be in attendance at this panel in lieu of the Legendary/WB panel. Maybe "Man of Steel 2" news gets announced here instead?
4:30PM What's Next at Image Comics
Image is quietly accumulating a talent roster that could soon make a serious run at the big two. Any one (or more) of their upcoming series could be the next "Saga" or "The Walking Dead?"
5:15 PM Arrow Special Video Presentation and Q&A
The showrunners stated they're hopeful to have some Season 2 footage to show at their second SDCC panel for the show to carry them into the October premiere on a wave of fan momentum. Perhaps will get a tease of the villains similar to last year's tease of Deathstroke?
5:45 PM Batman: The Animated Series Turns 21
"Batman: The Animated Series" will always have a special place in my heart. I was just the right age when the series first aired so that interpretation of Batman has become the measuring stick for who the character is supposed to be.
6:00 PM Marvel Studios: Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Sure, Cap and Thor are nice and sure to be a crowed pleaser but what else are you announcing at this year's panel Marvel? Inquiring minds gots to know!
1 PM Beware the Batman Screening and Q&A
It's still too early to tell whether "Beware the Batman" will be one of the notable entries on the long list of DC Comics animated programs (Check out my review of the premiere). Some shows grab you right away and others start off slow, building carefully for a rewarding payoff at the end of a season or arc. It appears that "Beware the Batman" may fall in the latter category.
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