Even if we all can’t go, San Diego Comic Con is every geek’s favorite time of year. With OneOfUs.net’s Brian Salisbury and Chris Cox making the perilous pilgrimage from Austin to the geek’s holy land, I felt it was appropriate to discuss my own thoughts on the con and the possible announcements that my beloved overlords might bear witness to this week.
Marvel Studios Panel
While not every film Marvel has produced has been of quality (I’m looking at you Thor: The Dark World), you can’t deny that they haven’t been enormously successful when it came to developing their cinematic universe. With Guardians of the Galaxy soon to be released in August, and Avengers: Age of Ultron to be released next year, it seems that Marvel is on top of things when it comes to delivering multiple pictures of its spandex clad heroes. That’s why I’m excited to hear the possibility of a few big announcements at the Marvel film panel. Yes, we can expect to see plenty promotional material for Guardians and Avengers 2, and probably a fair share of damage control for the ever-troubled Ant-Man production, but I’m most excited to hear news for some of the rumored films the company has in development.
I’d bet everything I own that a Dr. Strange film will be announced at the panel. Stephen Strange, the Master of the Mystic Arts, has already been named dropped in Captain America: The Winter Soldier and has long been rumored of getting his own feature length film. Strange has always been considered one of Marvel’s tertiary characters. He had a popular run in the 1970s and has frequently been featured in Marvel’s big crossover events, but he’s never really achieved the same level of recognition of Marvel’s A-listers. This is a chance for Marvel to tap into its magic universe and finally give Dr. Strange his due.
Another possible character that I think will finally get his own film announcement will be T’Challa, The Black Panther. Many of those who have been following Avengers: Age of Ultron’s production knows that the movie spent a considerable amount of time filming in South Africa. Could South Africa be filling in for the vibranium enriched country of Wakanda? Personally, I wouldn’t be surprised if it is. A cameo by Black Panther would be an amazing moment in Age of Ultron, but Marvel may already be planning a reveal ahead of that.
Marvel Television Panel
As disappointing as Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. was, my excitement for their multiple Netflix programs hasn’t been diminished. With casting for Daredevil already underway, a few big announcements for Luke Cage, Iron Fist and Jessica Jones seem inevitable.
Marvel certainly needs to let fans know that they’re taking their television plans just as seriously as their cinematic universe. Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D is a bit of sore spot for them. It would certainly alleviate my fears if they’re willing to reveal even more about their planned Netflix shows. Talking about how the programs coincide with the movies will drum up even more hype. A teaser trailer for Daredevil or a picture of Charlie Cox in the costume can probably be expected. Hell, I’d like to see a pic of Matt Murdock laying down the law in a courtroom. As a lifelong Daredevil fan, I’ll take anything they give me. Well, anything but a Daredevil/Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D crossover. Keep that ABC trash as far away from my gritty urban superhero shows as possible please.
Warner Bros. Picture Panel
Warner Bros. will definitely have its hands full when it comes to their big DC film announcements, but outside of their comic book related projects, they have quite a few highly anticipated movies on their hands. Their 2-hour long panel will focus on three of their biggest films, which include Jupiter Ascending, Mad Max: Fury Road, and The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.
Jupiter Ascending is the Wachowski siblings’ latest science-fiction film that follows a young woman (Mila Kunis) who is mysteriously targeted by the Queen of the Universe (I’m not making that up) for assassination.
I can’t say I’m the biggest Wachowski fan, but the ridiculous premise does have my attention.
Mad Max: Fury Road will most likely premiere its first trailer at the panel. The long troubled production sees Tom Hardy taking over as the Australian wastelander and muscle car enthusiast, Max Rockatasnky. As Mad Max fans know, Mel Gibson previously played the character in three movies. Given Gibson’s behavior as of late, a recasting for Max wasn’t surprising.
The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies is the third, and hopefully final, film in the Hobbit series. New footage and a trailer will most likely be shown, but I think neither will be able to raise my interest in the slightest. I love Peter Jackson’s original Lord of the Rings Trilogy, but the decision to turn a 200 page book into three movies has yielded some disappointing results in my opinion. With this latest film focusing on the last few chapters of the book, I expect another painfully long movie with poorly rendered CGI orcs. Here’s to hoping I’m wrong.
DC/Warner Bros. Film Panel
Let me first say that I’m a lifelong DC fan. I love Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash and every goddamn hero lucky enough to be a founding member of the Justice League. I even have an enormous appreciation for under-appreciated characters like J’onn J’onzz and The Question. That’s why it pains me to write that I’m really concerned for the future of DC’s cinematic universe. Every week there seems to be news that either excites of leaves me scratching my head in regards to possible DC movies. I want DC to achieve the same level of success with their characters cinematically that Marvel has done with theirs, but I will forever remain troubled with Zack Snyder and David Goyer’s presence on these productions.
Despite by misgivings for Snyder and Goyer, I’m still looking forward to seeing anything Warner Bros. is willing to present for Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice. Rumors continue to circulate about the film and which DC heroes will be featured in it. Gal Gadot has apparently finished her scenes as Wonder Woman, but recent rumors of possible appearances by Aquaman and Cyborg continue to pop up on the internet. As fun as it is to speculate, some more concrete details about what this movie is turning out to be would not only be appreciated by me, but also my fellow DC fans.
I wouldn’t be shocked if Dwayne Johnson makes an appearance at the panel and announces his secret DC project too. Rumors across the inter-webs continue to say he’s been cast to play either Captain Marvel/Dwayne Johnson or Black Adam. Whoever he ends up playing, an announcement will surely be made soon.
Mass Effect 4 Reveal
Video games have been making attempts to break into San Diego Comic-Con for a number of years now. This year features a number of titles that have caught my eye. Like many gamers, I’m really excited for Sunset Overdrive, Far Cry 4 and Batman: Arkham Knight, but I can’t hide my fanboy glee at the prospect of BioWare revealing new information about Mass Effect 4.
The Mass Effect Trilogy had a profound impact on my life. It featured a thrilling story, unique alien cultures, complicated relationships and superbly written characters. Mass Effect exhibits some of the best world building you’ll find in any medium. It’s because of those things that I’m so excited to learn about any new information about BioWare’s next installment in the Mass Effect series.
Some images and video of the game made a brief appearance at this year’s E3, but not nearly enough to know the direction that BioWare is taking with this newest game. Hints at a greater open world and customization options for players keep being brought up by the games’ developers. I hope BioWare is more forthcoming with details this time around. A trailer and some gameplay footage might be asking for too much, but a die-hard Mass Effect fan can dream, right?