Comic-Con International is upon us. The year’s biggest event in fan culture is taking place this weekend in San Diego, and that means tons of new movie and television reveals, plenty of new toys, comics, collectables, and costumes of every type.
Genre TV is big this year: we’re expecting new trailers for Stranger Things’ second season, Netflix’s The Defenders, not to mention news from films like Justice League, Ready Player One, and quite a bit more.
Follow along for all of the trailers, updates, and pictures from San Diego.
Aug 16, 2017
One of the highlights of last month’s San Diego Comic-Con was HBO’s Westworld: The Experience. The half-hour attraction gave small groups of guests the opportunity to visit the offices of Delos, Inc., the fictional company behind the Westworld theme park. The experience included a one-on-one, in-person evaluation with a company psychologist, interactions with a number of actors playing “hosts” — Westworld’s sentient android entertainers — and a chance to hang out in a recreation of the show’s Mariposa Saloon. The event served 500 guests over three days, and it was an unquestionable hit. Fans waited in line overnight just for a chance to step inside.Read Article >
With theme parks like Disney’s Star Wars land on the horizon, immersive entertainment is increasingly moving closer to the mainstream. A project like the Westworld experience — one constructed around detailed set design and personalized interactions with live actors — serves as a bite-sized introduction, letting fans get used to the idea of being the leads in their own customized stories. But the team behind the project says the lesson of Comic-Con wasn’t just that immersive entertainment is becoming an increasingly effective tool in film and TV marketing. It’s that these kinds of experiences are a natural fit for the style of TV being created today, and could one day become tightly integrated parts of the shows themselves.
Jul 27, 2017
If you ever miss one of the huge Comic-Cons, it’s always worth checking out the music videos from filmmaking duo Sneaky Zebra. They attended San Diego Comic-Con last week, and put together a catchy video that captures the essence of what attracts people to cosplaying.Read Article >
Sneaky Zebra has attended San Diego and other big conventions in past years, and they’ve captured a wide range of the costumers showing off their recent creations and their favorite poses, set to “The Wild Life” by Outasight. The costumes on display include characters from Archer, Rick & Morty, Doctor Strange, Westworld, Wonder Woman, and more, as well as all types of mashups of different stories and characters.
Jul 26, 2017
The Stranger Things and Ready Player One trailers are the best and worst of nostalgia-driven marketing
At the 2017 San Diego Comic-Con, audiences got their first look at two highly anticipated geek-culture properties. Stranger Things, Netflix’s ode to Steven Spielberg and Stephen King, got a second season trailer exploring the show’s expanding mythos, set to the iconic sounds of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” And Spielberg himself took to Comic-Con’s Hall H stage to reveal a teaser for Ready Player One, his adaptation of Ernest Cline’s best-selling pop-culture treasure-hunt adventure.Read Article >
At first glance, they were perfect pieces of marketing for the Comic-Con crowds, both relying on the nostalgic pull that serves as the foundation for so much modern fandom. Stranger Things’ imagery of kids wearing Ghostbusters costumes, set to Vincent Price’s “Thriller” voiceover, seemed right in line with Ready Player One’s parade of DeLorean car chases, Freddy Krueger cameos, and Iron Giant reveals. But sit with both teasers for a while, and it quickly becomes clear that they aren’t the same thing at all. If there’s a right way and a wrong way to use nostalgia, these two trailers exemplify the opposing ends of the spectrum — raising the question of whether the makers of the Ready Player One adaptation even understand why the book worked in the first place.
Jul 26, 2017
Last year, one of the Star Wars Expanded Universe’s biggest fan-favorite characters, Grand Admiral Thrawn, was given new life. He appeared in the third season of Star Wars Rebels and was featured in his own novel. Last week at San Diego Comic-Con, Marvel Comics announced that the character would be the focus of a new comic miniseries.Read Article >
The comic will adapt Thrawn by Timothy Zahn, which detailed the origins of the character, tracking how he rose through the ranks of the Imperial Navy. The comic will also include some additional material. This new series will be written by Jody Houser, who adapted Rogue One for Marvel, and illustrated by Luke Ross, who’s worked on comics such as Spider-Man and Captain America. The series will be released in February 2018.
Jul 24, 2017
Travelers leaving San Diego Comic-Con on United Airlines got an unwelcome surprise this weekend, when United said that comic books were banned in checked luggage. United claimed this was a TSA-mandated rule for all airlines operating out of San Diego — only to have the TSA publicly refute United’s claim on Twitter.Read Article >
As The Consumerist reported yesterday, United posted a notice telling “Comic-Con attendees [to] remove all books from checked bags.” When people complained on Twitter, United confirmed the news. “The restriction on checking comic books applies to all airlines operating out of San Diego this weekend and is set by the TSA,” a spokesperson wrote. From there, things got even weirder: it told one confused attendee that only comic books were banned in checked baggage, while regular books were “A-OK.” But then, the TSA categorically denied this rule’s existence, saying that all books were fine in both checked and carry-on baggage.
Another year of San Diego Comic-Con is now in the books, and it brought everything you’d expect from a four-day celebration of geek culture. There were costumes, announcements, and incredible new trailers; there were exciting immersive experiences, and authors blending the worlds of film and gaming.Read Article >
It was a lot to take in. So as we say goodbye and make our way home, we’re taking a brief look back. Here are our favorite things from the 2017 San Diego Comic-Con International.
Peter Capaldi is on his way out as the Twelfth Doctor, but he has one more adventure before his inevitable regeneration. At Comic-Con today, BBC unveiled the trailer for this year’s upcoming Christmas special. The Twelfth Doctor will meet the First Doctor (Game of Thrones alum David Bradley), and the pair will try to fix time itself — with a little help from the Doctor’s newest companion, Bill (Pearl Mackie).Read Article >
Today’s Comic-Con panel was a chance for fans to say goodbye to Capaldi, who’s served as the Doctor for the last three seasons. Leaving with him is showrunner Steven Moffat, who’s handing the reins off to Broadchurch showrunner Chris Chibnall. All this paves the way for Jodie Whittaker to come aboard as the Thirteenth Doctor, the first woman to fill the role in the show’s storied history.
During Warner Bros.’s Hall H panel at San Diego Comic-Con yesterday, the studio confirmed that the upcoming The Flash movie is still on track, even though the movie has yet land a director. But one thing stuck out: the movie will apparently be known as Flashpoint.Read Article >
The title alone should be a shock. The 2011 Flashpoint event has risen to iconic status in only six years because it took a deeply personal Flash story and used it to rewrite the entire DC comics universe, taking Flash to an alternate universe where the Justice League doesn’t exist and the world’s heroes are on the brink of war.
When Star Wars Battlefront II hits stores in November, it will present the Star Wars universe in a way that’s seldom seen: from the viewpoint of the Empire’s soldiers, who are fighting against the characters we usually root for. Next week, the game will get a prequel in Christie Golden’s Inferno Squad, which will unveil the origins of the game’s characters, and set after the events of Rogue One and A New Hope.Read Article >
Del Rey Books published a special San Diego Comic-Con edition of the novel this week, and Golden was on hand to sign copies and meet fans. I sat down with her to talk about how she tackled writing Inferno Squad, working with the video game designers, and why the lead character, Iden Versio, brings a new level of complexity to the Star Wars Universe.
Jul 23, 2017
San Diego Comic-Con is wrapping up, and it’s been a crazy week of news from across the entertainment industry. But in recent years, the show has become just as much about the big trailer reveals for upcoming blockbusters as it has been about panels for fans and, you know, actual comic books.Read Article >
Just in case you managed to lose track of a couple of the biggest announcements, we’ve rounded up all the biggest and best trailers from Comic-Con in one place for your viewing convenience. Dive on in below:
On the first day of San Diego Comic-Con, director David Ayer took the stage before the massive crowd at Hall H. A year prior, he’d been there to promote Suicide Squad for Warner Bros., but this time he was discussing a different project: the $100 million fantasy-action film Bright. “What’s up, Hall H?” he shouted into the microphone. “This is the house of Netflix! This is Netflix right now, we’re here to represent Netflix!”Read Article >
Adam Savage loves space suits. When I interviewed him in March, he spoke about how safety equipment appealed to him, whether it was firefighter gear, the protective armor that bomb disposal personnels wear, or space suits of the fictional variety.Read Article >
For the last several years, Savage would attend San Diego Comic-Con dressed up in a costume that hides his identity, something he calls Adam Incognito. This year, one of the costumes he suited up in was one used in the production of Alien: Covenant.
Captain Marvel isn’t due out in theaters until March 2019, but Marvel was quick to give the film its due during the studio’s Hall H panel at Comic-Con last night. One of the key details revealed during the presentation was that the movie will be a period piece set in the 1990s, a timeframe that will set it apart from most of the other films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.Read Article >
It’s something of a strange move on its face, especially since one would expect to see Captain Marvel (Brie Larson) joining up with a new class of Avengers. But if the aim is to establish her as a powerful force to be reckoned with in her own right, it might just make sense.
Walking around at San Diego Comic-Con, the booth for a small publisher known as Sunday Press stands out in the quieter half of the convention. Standing amidst retailers hawking bagged rarities and boxes of superhero comics, the books on display are distinctive: they’re massive — almost two feet to a side — and they bear names like Dick Tracy: Colorful Cases of the 1930s, White Boy in Skull Valley, Society Is Nix, Gleeful Anarchy at the Dawn of the American Comic Strip, and others. The outfit is run by Peter Maresca, a comic collector-turned publisher who describes himself as a “discount archivist,” and who has earned recognition from the broader comic community for his efforts producing amazingly beautiful restorations of the comics that kicked off the entire industry.Read Article >
As con-goers pass by the booth, Maresca talks to the one or two who stop by, providing a detailed history lesson behind some of the books on display. He explains that he has been collecting classic comics since he was in his 20s, acquiring complete runs of some of the stories, including a strip called Little Nemo in Slumberland, illustrated by Winsor McCay. That strip debuted in 1905 in the New York Herald, and it’s been held up as an influential story by numerous creators, including Maurice Sendak, Alan Moore, and Neil Gaiman.
Thor: Ragnarok is looking like the roadtrip movie of the fall, and Marvel definitely delivered at Comic-Con today. In the movie’s latest trailer, Thor starts out saying he’s been on a “journey of self-discover.” He’s been reunited with Bruce Banner, who vanished after the events of Avengers: Age of Ultron, and the two are out to defeat Hela (Cate Blanchett), who’s bent on destroying Asgard.Read Article >
Directed by What We Do In the Shadows director Taika Waititi, Thor: Ragnarok has been stunning fans for months thanks to its surprising sense of humor and quirky characters. (To say nothing of how great Jeff Goldblum and Cate Blanchett look as the Grandmaster and Hela, respectively.) Seeing the good guys going on an interstellar adventure to stop the goddess of death herself looks like it’ll be quite the sight to behold.
Marvel Studios finally took the stage at San Diego Comic-Con today, and president Kevin Feige started things off my talking about the sequel Ant-Man and The Wasp. The standout news was several casting additions: both Michelle Pfeiffer and Laurence Fishburne will be joining the cast.Read Article >
Pfeiffer be playing the character Janet van Dyne, the wife of inventor Hank Pym, who was played by Michael Douglas in the original film. Van Dyne is an essential character in Marvel lore. She was the original person to take on the moniker of The Wasp, who appeared in a brief flashback sequence in the 2015 film. But in the comics she was even more integral as a founding member of The Avengers themselves. Pfeiffer herself is no stranger to comics adaptation either, famously playing Catwoman and Selina Kyle in Tim Burton’s Batman Returns.
Jul 23, 2017
Westworld’s Season 2 trailer was just shown today by HBO at Hall H at San Diego Comic-Con, and the host uprising has finally come. The spot starts with a player piano starting up and Bernard Lowe (Jeffrey Wright) staring at the body of a dead tiger, all while “I Gotta Be Me” by Sammy Davis Jr. cheerfully plays on in the background. Soon after, we see Maeve (Thandie Newton) looking calmly over a scene of carnage, and Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood) on horseback, aiming a gun at partygoers. The Man in the Black’s face is splattered by blood and he smiles slowly.Read Article >
Westworld won’t return until 2018 and a specific date has not been announced yet. Thanks to how ambitious the production is and where creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy want to take their story, the second season will take some time before it debuts. In an interview with Variety, Nolan said, “It’s an ambitious project, and HBO has encouraged us to take the time and resources that we need to work on each stage of that.”
Today at San Diego Comic Con, Netflix premiered a new trailer for it’s highly anticipated second season of its supernatural show Stranger Things. And from what we’ve seen, there’s plenty more ‘80s nostalgia. But the Upside-Down — and the monsters within it — is coming for Will Byers and everyone he loves.Read Article >
We got our first glimpse of season 2 back in February during the Super Bowl. That brief teaser showed that the show was still mining the 1980s for nostalgic purposes, promising to turn the world upside-down, along with some bigger, stranger monsters.
The Comic-Con trailer for Star Trek: Discovery just landed, and it’s the best look yet at the new series. Here, the Federation is on the verge of a cold war with a resurgent Klingon Empire, and Starfleet Commander Michael Burnham (Sonequa Martin-Green), the first officer aboard the USS Shenzhou, finds herself caught in the middle of the growing conflict.Read Article >
Star Trek: Discovery has long been a troubled production, having to deal with delays and loss of showrunner Bryan Fuller. However, it’s really starting to look like it’s come together in time for its fall debut on CBS. The Klingons look particularly menacing in this outing as the core antagonists. Thought they don’t exactly look like the iconic race from the Next Generation era, Chris Obi (American Gods), who plays Klingon captain T’Kuvma, looks every bit as intimidating as any version of the characters from the past.
At San Diego Comic-Con today, Fox Television released a new trailer for its upcoming space comedy from Seth MacFarlane, The Orville. It shows off plenty of interstellar gags, and comes with a release date: September 10th.Read Article >
This new trailer doesn’t show off much more than the trailer released back in May: MacFarlane stars as the hapless Captain Ed Mercer, who is assigned to command the U.S.S. Orville. MacFarlane is best known for creating Fox’s Family Guy, and the show looks as though it’s aiming for the same level of humor. Hijinks ensue as crew members calm their nerves by drinking while flying, bemoan long working hours, and engage alien enemies.
San Diego Comic-Con International is about a lot of things. It’s about movies, TV shows, comics, books, and the fans that love them all. But this year, it’s also been about hats. Yes, that’s right: the things you put on your head to avoid glare, sunburn, or in this case, to signify your particular brand allegiance.Read Article >
For whatever reason, promotional hats have been a minor trend at this year’s convention. So in the interests of science, I’m doing what needs to be done: evaluating my favorite hats of Comic-Con to determine which one can named the ultimate headwear champion.
Warner Bros.’s Hall H panel at San Diego Comic-Con is pulling out all the stops for the DC Extended Universe. For the latest trailer for Justice League, the world is still in mourning after the death of Superman. Now, it’s up to the newly formed League to face Steppenwolf (Game of Thrones alum Ciarán Hinds) and his armies of Parademons.Read Article >
Justice League is the superhero team-up Warner Bros. has been promising since the inception of the DCEU. After Superman (Henry Cavill) sacrificed himself in the fight against Doomsday in last year’s Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, Batman (Ben Affleck) takes it upon himself to find other superheroes to fight otherworldly threats. That means teaming up with Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot), Aquaman (Jason Momoa), The Flash (Ezra Miller), and Cyborg (Ray Fisher). There’s even a mention of both Kryptonians and the Green Lantern Corp, even though they’re nowhere in sight. Clearly, the heroes have their work cut out for them.
Coming off Wonder Woman’s success at the box office this summer, Warner Bros. has officially confirmed that Wonder Woman 2 is now in the works. Word came via a sizzle reel shown during the studio’s Hall H panel at San Diego Comic-Con.Read Article >
The timing couldn’t be better for a Wonder Woman sequel. The original, which opened just a month ago, is already the third biggest Warner Bros. movie of all time, behind only The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises. The film is also the highest-grossing live action film from a female director, shattering the stereotypes that have kept women from directing blockbusters for years.
Today at San Diego Comic Con, Warner Bros. released the first trailer for its upcoming film Ready Player One, and like the novel it’s based on, it’s loaded down with references to everything geek culture loves.Read Article >
The trailer begins with Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan) describing his life in the Stacks. He’s a part of a generation known as the missing millions, but he and those around him found solace in a virtual world known as OASIS. In that world, it’s possible to meet the Iron Giant and fight Freddy Krueger himself.
Science fiction is always a fan favorite at San Diego Comic-Con, and Blade Runner 2049 is taking advantage with a huge presence here at the convention. The film is expected to make an appearance during the Warner Bros. Hall H panel, but it’s also drawing attention outside of the convention center with something called the Blade Runner 2049 Experience.Read Article >
Housed in a giant tent across the street from the convention center, it’s an installation made up of two parts. The first is a virtual reality experience called Blade Runner 2049: Replicant Pursuit, that puts participants in the role of a Blade Runner chasing a missing replicant. But the second half is a physical journey into the world of the movie — a detailed set featuring a crashed Spinner vehicle, a replica of the White Dragon Noodle Bar, and an assortment of live actors that are ready to help you track down a replicant, or discover if you’re one yourself.