Comic-Con 2010 was packed with moments that were incredibly awesome ... and sometimes downright weird. Here's what we thought were the most mind-blowing or strangest things we saw there.
1. The Avengers assemble!
There were plenty of awesome panels and some amazing film footage shown at Comic-Con, but nothing topped Saturday's grand finale at the Marvel panel. As if a scene from Captain America: The First Avenger and seven glorious minutes from Thor weren't enough, the dream of generations of comic-book fans came true as Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), Thor (Chris Hemsworth), Captain America (Chris Evans), Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) and the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) gathered together on the stage along with writer/director Joss Whedon. The Avengers, assembled at last! They must have heard the crowd roaring even in Asgard.
2. Ryan Reynolds makes a kid's year
"How does it feel to recite the Green Lantern oath?" a young fan gurgled at the mic to Ryan Reynolds on the Green Lantern panel. Reynolds proceeded to say the oath word for word to the stunned boy, whose eyes went as wide as planets (he also got a signed comic book in the bargain). It was the sweetest moment of the weekend, and the kind of thing that makes you feel good to be a fan.
3. Flynn's Arcade open for business
Closed for decades, Flynn's Arcade (from the movie Tron) first re-opened at Comic-Con last year. It was back this year to hype the coming release of Tron: Legacy, and man, was it cool. It wasn't just the authentic '80s video games when you first walked in, or the re-creation of Flynn's workshop in the back. No, deeper in the mazelike building a blinding light led you into the End of the Line nightclub, direct from the ENCOM computer world. All neon and Lucite, the Tron: Legacy trailer blasting from a gigantic video screen, and props from the movie everywhere, Flynn's was the hot spot at this year's show.
4. Han Solo finally comes to Comic-Con
It's hard to believe that legendary actor Harrison Ford has never appeared at Comic-Con. But the notoriously publicity-shy star was finally persuaded by director Jon Favreau to show up for the Cowboys & Aliens panel—brought onstage in handcuffs by the cops, no less (no, it wasn't a takeoff on the stabbing—it was planned as a joke about Ford's reluctance to show). Ford was genuinely moved by the delirious response from the audience, so maybe he'll think about showing up again next year. Plus he was there with Daniel Craig—James Bond and Han Solo (and Indiana Jones) standing side by side! How cool is that?
5. The Walking Dead
One of the most anticipated TV panels at this year's con was for The Walking Dead, AMC's six-part October adaptation of Robert Kirkman's award-winning comic book. Produced for the screen by Frank Darabont (The Mist), the show looks like a zombie fan's dream: gruesome, gritty and terrifying. We can't wait.
6. Even the stars cosplay
Who said actors don't know how to have fun? Will Ferrell was an early hit at the convention on Thursday when he showed up for the morning Megamind panel dressed as the villainous title character (which he voices)—complete with blue skin and giant bulbous head. Not to be outdone, Michael Cera arrived for his Scott Pilgrim presentation in a cheap, shabby Captain America costume—sorry, Michael, but the part's gone to someone else.
7. Edgar Wright leads a pilgrimage
Speaking of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, the riotous panel for this crazy comic-based flick about game-warped youth ended with director Edgar Wright inviting the audience to a screening of the movie—right then. He proceeded to lead hundreds of fans out of Hall H and the convention center and through the streets of downtown San Diego to the theater several blocks away. Wright has always been fan-friendly, but taking a few hundred of your closest friends to the movies (and a free concert by Metric afterwards) is super-cool of him, don't you think?
8. The Shat shows up!
It was Friday night at the con when a certain Starfleet captain showed up to sign autographs before being whisked away to a party on the USS Midway for his new website, MyOuterSpace.com. But being who he is, William Shatner didn't just take a car to the aircraft carrier: no, he flew in style in a helicopter, landing on the flight deck and making as grand an entrance as you could expect. The Shat at Comic-Con! Does it get any better?
9. w00tstock returns!
What is w00tstock? It's an occasional musical celebration of geek culture lovingly put together by Wil Wheaton, Adam Savage and comedy duo Paul and Storm and featuring a rotating cast of performers. Their four-hour-plus show at Comic-Con included numerous songs, an appearance by comic-book writer Matt Fraction, Wheaton's reminiscence of seeing Rocky Horror for the first time and much more. It's an odd, entertaining grab bag of skits, music and chat, all through the loving lens of true geeks.
10. Shyamalan EPIC FAIL
The Comic-Con crowd is usually a benevolent and forgiving one, so you know you're really in trouble when even they give you the heave-ho. That's what happened on Saturday when the words "from the mind of M. Night Shyamalan" appeared during a trailer for the otherwise creepy-looking horror flick Devil. The sight of Shyamalan's name drew a tremendous round of booing from the audience that you didn't need a sixth sense to pick up on: It looks like The Last Airbender was truly the last straw.
11. The Guild wins big
The web series The Guild is one of the Internet's biggest success stories, with this quirky little webcom about a team of MMORPG video gamers getting tens of millions of hits online. So it's no surprise that the show's Comic-Con panel was a huge hit, especially since all the cast members showed up in their avatar outfits. New cast member Wil Wheaton and word of a Guild comic book also drove the fans wild.
12. A pen becomes a deadly weapon
The most dismaying moment of Comic-Con came when a scuffle broke out in Hall H, reportedly between two men who fought over a seat. One guy ended up stabbing the other around the eye with a pen. The cops came and quickly broke it up, but the incident still delayed the schedule by about 30 minutes. It wasn't as calamitous as the initial and frantic Twitter blurts made it to be, but it was still a dark spot in a long and eventful day. Really, guys; we thought we were all friends and fellow geeks here. But the cosplayers' response was kinda funny.
Of course no one can get to everything at Comic-Con (not even us), so we're sure we missed something. Feel free to add your own below, and we'll do this all again for Comic-Con 2011!