It’s hard to believe, but San Diego Comic-Con is only two weeks away! As the convention looms closer, we’re slowly learning more and more about what we can expect from this year’s convention, and the anticipation is high. We know for sure some things are happening, while others right now we can only speculate about potentially seeing. There’s a lot to look forward to, though, even as we all wait for more confirmations and announcements as the convention draws nearer.
Here are nine things in particular I just can’t wait to see at the year's big industry carnival.
Upcoming TV series
One of the best parts of Comic-Con is the chance to get an early look at, and learn more about, some of the upcoming TV pilots. Of course, the Warner Bros. TV Preview Night event on Wednesday provides the best opportunity to binge on some exclusive premiere episodes. The pilots for CW’s Archie Comics-inspired Riverdale and NBC’s DC Comics sitcom Powerless will both be shown that night, and are probably the most highly-anticipated shows of the bunch, though ABC’s Time After Time, CW’s Frequency, and TBS’ People of Earth will also premiere at the event. In addition to preview night, though, you’ll be able to learn more about these new shows and others through their various panels over the course of the convention. Some of the others I can’t wait to learn more about that will have panels of their own are Marvel’s Luke Cage and Starz’s American Gods. I wouldn’t be surprised if attendees were given some glimpses of footage at these panels, especially Luke Cage, in addition to more information about each series.
World premiere of Star Trek Beyond
Wednesday’s preview night is kicking off the Con with a big event as Star Trek Beyond hosts its world premiere at Embarcadero Marina Park. It will apparently be the “first-ever outdoor IMAX premiere event” and a limited number of fans will get the chance to attend. In addition to seeing the film, those fans will also get to see director Justin Lin along with some other crew and cast members as well as a live performance of the movie’s score by the San Diego symphony orchestra! It’s sure to be a huge event and who knows what else might be in store there for those who attend? It’s certainly something fans of the franchise are going to want to look into!
Game of Thrones panel
Are you still reeling from the epic Game of Thrones Season 6 finale? I am, and waiting for the next season is going to be hard. Luckily, at Comic-Con, we can look forward to HBO’s rather full panel for the series in Hall H on Friday! According to the official announcement, we can expect actors John Bradley, Sophie Turner, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Liam Cunningham, Nathalie Emmanuel, Kristian Nairn, Iwan Rheon, Conleth Hill, and Faye Marsay along with director Miguel Sapochnik and executive producers David Benioff and D.B. Weiss at the panel. There’s no doubt the group will discuss a lot of the big moments and revelations from last season. Hopefully, the group won’t just look back, but will look forward, too. They’ll probably tease us a bit about what’s to come now that the end game for the series has started. Here’s hoping we receive some hints about the final seasons!
Wonder Woman's 75th anniversary
This year, one of DC Comics’ most iconic superheroes, Wonder Woman, celebrates her 75th anniversary and it will be exciting to see how the milestone will be recognized in the halls of Comic-Con. In the past, for Batman and Superman, DC has done a number of things at the convention to mark the occasion, and it appears they’re continuing that with Wonder Woman. DC will host a panel all about the character in honor of her 75th, and will feature displays at their booth of items like costumes, including Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman costume from Batman v Superman and Lynda Carter’s from the 1970s TV show. In addition to these things, there will also apparently be graffiti-art pieces inspired by the hero, and fans will be able to take photos with a life-size invisible jet! With Wonder Woman gracing the cover of the convention’s souvenir book too, hopefully there will be even more ways DC will celebrate the superhero's anniversary there.
As with upcoming TV shows, Comic-Con is also a great place to find out more about future films. It will be interesting to see what we learn from appearances made by quite a few movies this year. There are a lot of possibilities for what we might see, though not many firm announced confirmations yet. Right now, it seems like Marvel will be prominent at the convention, with teases from both the directors of Doctor Strange and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 on Twitter leaning towards the idea that they’ll have panels. If they do, I wouldn’t be surprised if cast and crew are present and show fans some sneak peeks of the forthcoming films. Maybe we’ll even see something from or receive an announcement about one of the other upcoming Marvel films on the company’s schedule. As for DC, it seems like Suicide Squad will definitely be present in a significant way but will they have a panel? Since it’s being released not long after the Con, maybe DC will focus panels instead on a highly anticipated film like Wonder Woman which will be released next summer. It wouldn’t be out of the realm of possibility to also expect something from other movies set for release within the year, like Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. If they do appear, new footage and other revelations would certainly fill their presentations! We’ll just have to wait and see.
“Animaniacs Live!” panel
Rob Paulsen, Tress MacNeille, and Jess Harnell will be together again on an Animaniacs panel Sunday afternoon that is surely something not to be missed! These voice actors brought to life Yakko, Wakko, and Dot, and now they’re going to be performing some songs from the cartoon for a comic-con audience. They'll be joined by one of the series’ songwriters, Randy Rogel. Maybe it’s my nostalgia talking but how can anyone resist the chance to see this totally insaney event where you can relive some amazing tunes from the show?
Will Eisner Comic Industry Awards
There’s an impressive list of nominees for the 28th annual Eisner Awards, which honor the best in comic books. This year’s list of nominees includes a notable range of material and individuals. I’m most thrilled to see that a total of 49 women received 61 nominations and are present in 27 of the 30 categories this year. With so many great nominees, it will be interesting to see who wins when the awards are given out on July 22.
It’s hard to imagine that, if Star Wars shows up, they will top what they did last year. With Star Wars Celebration taking place in London so close to the convention, Disney might make all their interesting reveals at that event. However I’m hoping the franchise does at least make some sort of appearance. If we do get a panel, it will surely focus on Rogue One. We might see a repeat of information debuted at Celebration, but I’d like to think if they do make the trip to San Diego they’ll have waited to share a few surprises with us. Who knows? We might even receive some hints about next year’s Star Wars: Episode VIII.
Every year, amazing exclusive items are announced for Comic-Con, and I can’t wait to see what this year has in store for collectors and non-collectors, alike. Already a number of fun items have been revealed. Funko has released eight waves of exclusives so far, including a number of Pop! figures like Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ BB-8 giving a thumbs up and a cowboy Deadpool. Hasbro will be offering a Black Series Obi-Wan Kenobi action figure that comes with two lightsabers and a small holographic Princess Leia on a table while a gold finished U.S.S. Enterprise-A will be available from Diamond Select Toys for Star Trek’s 50th anniversary. These are just some of the exclusives we’ve learned about so far and there will surely be more for attendees to look forward to released within these next two weeks before the convention!