San Diego Comic-Con is scarcely days away at this point, and we couldn’t be more excited. Even now the tens of thousands of attendees are secretly poring over their options rather than completing whatever work stands between them and four glorious days at one of the largest cultural events of the year.
Whether you fancy getting into the hottest panels, hunting down the most exclusive merchandise or cutting a rug at the most outrageous party, the con will provide. With that in mind we’ve rounded up some highlights from the impending festivities. (Full details for each entry available at the linked Comic-Con schedule listing.)
Wednesday – Preview Night
Special Sneak Peek Pilot Screenings
Preview nighters can head over to Ballroom 20 for special sneak peek screenings of four hotly anticipated television series. This year’s crop includes “Almost Human”, “The Tomorrow People”, “The 100” and “The Originals”.
DC Entertainment: All Access
Calling all DC fans! This panel will get you up close and personal with DC’s top talent to find out what they have up their sleeves.
Ghost Ghirls: A Behind-the-Scenes Paranormal Experience with Jack Black
Hang out with Jack Black and get all of the details on his quirky, upcoming web series “Ghost Ghirls”, which follows two best friends attempting to navigate life as professional ghostbusters.
The Sidekick: Premiere Screening and Q&A
Join the cast and crew of “The Sidekick” for a premiere screening of this “offbeat story of career sidekick Max McCabe.When Max begins to lose his youthful zip and is unceremoniously fired by his superhero boss, he finds himself cast adrift in a world that seems to have no use for an aging professional buddy.”
Naturally, Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter, David Zayas and James Remar will be in attendance, so who will the surprise guests be? Raise your hand if you’re hoping for John Lithgow. “After eight amazing seasons, it’s time to say goodbye to America’s Favorite Serial Killer. Join the cast, writers/executive producers, and surprise guest stars who are too big to mention, for a final farewell panel that even Hall H can’t contain!”
USA Network’s Psych
Here’s hoping the “Psych” crew can deliver the first worthwhile musical episode since “Once More With Feeling”. “For the fifth year running, cable TV’s most beloved fake psychic detective series is bringing its signature brand of humor, pop culture nostalgia and delicious flavor to Comic-Con. Fans will get a unique, interactive peek behind the pineapple as the show’s creative team discuss ‘Psych’s’ long-anticipated musical episode and upcoming season, share exclusive video content, and take audience questions galore.”
Ode to Nerds
Hang out with authors galore, but mostly go because Chuck Palahniuk will be there alongside Cory Doctorow, Patrick Rothfuss, Austin Grossman, D. C. Pierson, and Robyn Schneider.
It seems quite elementary to suppose that Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman could make guest appearances here too. “Steven Moffat (co-creator, executive producer and writer), Mark Gatiss (co-creator, executive producer and writer), and Sue Vertue (producer) discuss the latest adventures of Sherlock Holmes and his long-suffering faithful friend, Dr. John Watson. Coming to PBS Masterpiece during the 2013-14 season.”
Inside The Big Bang Theory Writers’ Room
“Discussing the creative process for the first time, the hit show’s executive producers and writers take the stage for a lively discussion.” The teaser for this panel hints at “more than a few surprises”, we like surprises like Sheldon likes trains.
Veronica Mars Special Video Presentation and Q&A
Thanks to incredible fans who made the movie possible in the first place, this special presentation will feature Kristen Bell and other cast members discussing the upcoming movie. For those who just can’t wait for the movie to hit the big screen, there will also be some exclusive footage to tide you over.
Kick-Ass 2 and Riddick
Universal Pictures is showing off some of its latest and greatest from “Riddick” and “Kick-Ass 2”. Get pumped to see Vin Diesel and Dave Bautista on the panel representing “Riddick”. So far, there isn’t a lot of info out there about who will be from “Kick-Ass 2”, but it’s pretty certain it won’t be Jim Carrey. So far the event has 2,745 people who say they will be attending this panel, so be sure to check into this one early.
Thief: What’s Yours Is Mine
The “Thief” franchise began way back in 1998 with the very first game, “Thief: The Dark Project”. The fourth game, simply titled ‘Thief”, will be out in 2014. Go deep inside the newest installment with the game director and narrative director as they explain how they created their hero and his universe. Be sure to stick around to check out the gameplay as well.
BBC America’s Orphan Black
The critically-acclaimed first season of BBC America’s “Orphan Black” focuses on the repercussions of cloning. The show premiered at WonderCon in March and it has already been given the green light for a second season. Listen to the cast and creators discuss the smart series.
Dark Horse: Joss Whedon
Joss Whedon is the reigning king of geekdom. He has long had legions of devoted followers (Whedonites), but the glorious gauntlet that he threw with “The Avengers” and his current creative role in all things Marvel have allowed him to ascend to higher heights than ever before. The panel description pretty much sums up why this is awesome: “Here’s your chance to find out what he has in store next, and get exclusive insight into “Buffy the Vampire Slayer”, “Serenity”, and much more!”
Making Roger Rabbit: 25th Anniversary
Celebrate 25 years of “Who Framed Roger Rabbit” by joining a panel of animators as well as Roger Rabbit’s voice actor Charles Fleischer. Check out exclusive tricks and clips from the making of this classic film.
AMC’s The Walking Dead
Join the cast, executive producers and special effects makeup supervisor for a Q&A panel about the incredible third season of “The Walking Dead”. Consider it a large version of ‘The Talking Dead”, as the panel will be moderated by Chris Hardwick.This will be a panel to see. So far on the SDCC website, 3,428 people have indicated they’d like to be in this audience.
Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on ABC
Most of the fun of this panel will be finding out just who the surprise guests are. So Marvel’s head of TV and Joss Whedon are slated to be in attendance to reveal details about the live-action TV series coming to ABC.
Game of Thrones Panel and Q&A Session
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to hear Peter Dinklage be snarky in person! Look to hear from the actors who bring your favorite characters to life, like Emilia Clarke (Daenerys Targaryen), Kit Harington (Jon Snow), Richard Madden (Robb Stark, RIP) and Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister).
Snoopy: A Retrospective
Join the conversation on the world’s most versatile adventure dog. Snoopy has been a pilot, novelist, astronaut and just a dramatic dog in the “Peanuts” series. This look back on the pup will feature commentary by Nat Gertler and Lex Fajardo.
Marvel : Cup O’ Joe
If you’ve got any questions about anything Marvel, this is the place to get some answers. Marvel’s chief creative officer Joe Quesada will be on hand to give you all the info you need. Plus be sure to stick around for info on ‘Guardians of the Galaxy”.
Sony & Screen Gems
Attending this particular showing will earn you an exclusive look at “Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2”, “Mortal Instruments: The City of Bones”, “ RoboCop” and “The Amazing Spider-Man 2”. The combined casts will almost be too much talent for one room.
Archer: Screening and Q&A
Check out the making of the snarky animated series, “Archer”. Hang out with the incredible cast and executive directors to learn more about ISIS’s best and worst spies.
Friday will be a day full of H. Jon Benjamin. Though his biggest following is probably from “Archer”, “Bob’s Burger’s” is H. Jon Benjamin’s baby. Be sure to attend this screening and Q&A to catch hilarious moments from the entire cast.
Warner Bros. Pictures and Legendary Pictures Preview Their Upcoming Lineups
Warner Bros. will be showing off various films during this time period including “300: Rise of an Empire”, “Godzilla”, “Seventh Son”, “Gravity” and “The LEGO Movie”. Even though we’ve already had some info on “300”, it’s definitely the main reason to attend. After waiting six years for more from Queen Gorgo, we want as much info as we can get as fast as we can get it. Rumor has it that George Clooney and Sandra Bullock may make surprise appearances in support of “Gravity”. If so, it would be the first appearance at SDCC for both mega-stars.
How I Met Your Mother panel
So Ted’s finally met ‘your’ mother! What does that even mean? Is it really her though? But, like, her? These answers might be given by the incredible cast, who are at Comic-Con for the very first time.
Pinky and the Brain 20th Anniversary Voice Reunion
While Comic-Con is known as the best place to be for the latest geek updates, it’s also a place to celebrate all successes, new and old. The original voice actors for Pinky and Brain will join the director to send you on a long road of nostalgia. Who knows, maybe attendees will all decide to launch a Kickstarter to bring it back. Get in on the ground floor!
The final season will pick back up on August 11. But before you start down that dark road to the end, attend this panel with the cast of “Breaking Bad” to see how they are handling the final season of AMC’s hit show and what shooting has been like this time around.
Buffy the Musical Once More with Feeling
Close out Comic-Con with an audience participation-heavy event. Help a cast recreate one of the best episodes of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” with a musical twist.
Ongoing special events
All Hail Vikings: An Interactive Experience
7/18-7/20, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.,
“The activation includes miniature Vikings “ships” that visitors can race on actual water, a Photo-Op area for keepsakes, and Lagertha-inspired shield maidens who will greet visitors. The waterway is located across the street from the Convention Center at 450 Second Ave. at Island Avenue.”
Ubisoft Pirate Ship, The Jackdaw
7/19-7/20, 10 a.m. – 7p.m.
“Docked at the 5th Avenue Landing behind the San Diego Convention Center, the ship’s three expansive levels will be open to the public on July 19 and 20 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. On board, attendees will experience a new single-player demo and get hands-on time with the multiplayer and Game Lab. Legendary artist Todd McFarlane will be on the Jackdaw on July 19 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. and July 20 from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. signing an exclusive Assassin’s Creed poster and showing off the new McFarlane Toys’ Assassin’s Creed figure line and resin statue. Fans can also receive inflatable cutlass swords, art booklets from Titan, prizes and more. Also located on the Jackdaw will be a live weapon demonstration from noted pirate weapon historian Mike Loades.”
Machinima Entertainment Lounge
“Located at the world famous Fluxx Club in Downtown San Diego (500 4th Ave), the lounge will include a massive gaming station, sponsored by Ubisoft, where fans will have the exclusive opportunity to play the highly anticipated Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell Blacklist. In addition to the gaming station, there will also be a cosplay photo booth, zombie make-up station, social media and charging stations, and so much more. The lounge will be open on Thursday from 11am – 6pm, Friday from 10am – 6pm, and Saturday from 10am – 5pm. Find a member of the Machinima street team in downtown San Diego and on the show floor to get a Machinima mask with additional info and directions.”
Additional reporting by Kelsey Waananen.