Monday, July 23, 2018

Comic-Con 2018 Review

San Diego Comic Con, the Mecca of geek pop culture, has come and gone.  So what fruits has it wrought this year.  Below are some of the big events and my thoughts.


It seems to me, especially sitting at home, that the biggest thing to look forward to are the trailers.  Interestingly there were no Marvel trailers this year, particularly for the upcoming Captain Marvel, which is supposed to be the lynchpin for Phase IV. 

Below are some of the trailers (some you'll have to hit the link to see them on YouTube.

I loved this trailer!  I was a huge fan of the Geoff Johns/Gary Frank reboot of the character from a few years ago, and this movie appears to be following that story fairly closely.  Zachary Levi has been someone I've liked since Chuck.  In this trailer he uses all of his comedic and action skills to bring the character to life.  This movie looks like it could be an amazing amount of fun.

I think Jason Mamoa has an incredible amount of charisma and will carry this movie.  I was so excited to see Black Manta come to life and not look silly, but terrifying.  I particularly loved the shot of Aquaman and Mera diving into the water to lure the Trench.  Again, this movies appears heavily based on Geoff Johns' run on his comic, which is a good thing. 

-Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindewald
This one looks better than the first one.  I think I'm beginning to see the story arc that Rowling is setting for this series.  I think she's setting parallels between the old wizarding war and the World Wars.  I'll be interested to see how it plays out.

-Godzilla: King of Monsters
Not being the biggest Godzilla fan, this trailer didn't hit me emotionally the way it does for many.  I like that you can see a lot more Godzilla in this trailer than in the last movie.  I also enjoy seeing famous monsters like Mothra.  But I'm looking forward to the next one after this, Godzilla vs. King Kong, more.

I will admit that the trailer looks good and the casting is strong.  But something tells me that no matter how dynamic the trailer is, we are going to get a typical Shyamalan film with its glacial pace and it's long, lingering, self-indulgent scenes.  We'll see.


While this is a TV show, not a movie, it drew a strong, mostly negative reaction from the fanbase.  The design looks better than in the leaked photos.  But the darkness of the characters, particularly Dick Grayson, is concerning.  Geoff Johns is one of the writer/producers, so he has earned enough trust from me to at least give this series a shot.

-I haven't had a lot of time to catch up on all of the panels from the convention, but here are the standouts so far.

-Grindewald Appears
A few years ago, Tom Hiddleston appeared at a Marvel panel in full Loki character.  Johnny Depp has now done the same as Grindewald for the upcoming movie set in the Harry Potter universe.  From what I understand, it was incredibly exciting for everyone in Hall H to see.

-Wonder Woman 1984
They showed a scene from the movie but they have not released it online.  From what I understand, it was in a mall from the '80's.  Wonder Woman's costume is brighter, more in line with the Linda Carter version while maintaining the same design from the last movie.  There was an action sequence in which she uses her lasso to save some girls and then she runs at super speed.  I am a big fan of the first movie and I hope this one lives up to the last.


-James Gunn Fired
This isn't comic-con news per se, but it did coincide with the event.  James Gunn has been fired from Guardians of the Galaxy vol 3 due to mounting online pressure because of some of his behavior online in the past.  I will write more extensively about this later, but it sent shockwaves through the geek community with everyone expressing a wide range of opinions.

-Batman Hush Animated Movie
DC announced that it was going to do an animated movie based on the Hush storyline.  This ranks up there with many readers along with The Long Halloween.  I'll be curious to see if the animated movie can capture the spirit of the book.


-Star Wars: Clone Wars Returns
I only caught a little bit of this show when it was on, but it seems to be universally loved by fans who were heartbroken that it was cut short.  So now Disney is bringing it back to tie up loose ends.  The reaction all around has been overwhelmingly positive.

-Supergirl Adds Transsexual
Scarlett Johansson recently received a backlash from activists when she was going to play a transsexual in an upcoming movie.  The activists were upset because she isn't a transexual herself.  So Supergirl is avoiding that minefield by hiring a transexual actor to play a transexual character.  This is in keeping with the shows on-the-nose allegory and heavy-handed politics.


-Eisner Awards
These are the Oscars of Comic Books.  And once again almost nothing I read won.  However, for the first time the Eisners and I are in sync with the best writer of the year: Tom King.  And his penciller for Mister Miracle, Mitch Gerards, also won.  Also Watchmen penciller Dave Gibbons won an honorary award.  That was nice.  Other than that, I could care less about any of the winners.
-Three Jokers

-SHAZAM Series
Geoff Johns is returning to do a series based on his mini-series from a few years ago.  This is exciting because he set up a lot of interesting storylines that have yet to be explored.

-Grant Morrison's Green Lantern
This reminds me of the pitch that Neil Gaiman had for this title: Hal Jordan-Space Cop.  This would focus less on epic war across the universe and would be more like a police proceedural.  The critically acclaimed Morrison is often to strange for me.  And I am nervous about the idea that he wants to take Hal down a path of moral ambiguity.  That is not in keeping with the character.

-The Three Jokers
This is another dangling Geoff Johns storyline that has been left unresolved for years.  I don't know how you can resolve the Joker's mysterious past in a satisfying way, but I again trust Johns to do something amazing.

-DC Streaming
This covers movies, TV, and comics.  DC is attempting to launch a streaming service with exclusive content to movies and TV shows as well digital comic books.  The price point is $7.99/month or $74.99 for the year.  That sounds like a pretty good deal for huge DC fans like me, so I am seriously considering it.

So, was there anything I missed?

What was your favorite part of Comic Con?

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