Notes from the world of comics

Hello readers, I thought that this might be a good way to get you all updated about my San Diego Comic-Con trip before the next issue of The Cord comes out on Wednesday July 27. Seeing as there is no way to fit all of the events and happenings at Comic-Con into the paper, this was the next best thing. Here’s what has been happening over the first day and a half:

Preview – July 20

Preview Night allowed fans to walk the floor of the exhibit hall and get an advance look at the many booths and companies participating in this year’s convention. There was also a chance to view a series of new TV pilots (ranging from the J.J. Abrams produced “Alcatraz”, to the Jim Caviezel/Michael Emerson starring “Person of Interest) but unfortunately, I didn’t have my footing at the convention centre yet, so I missed out. Honestly, I severely underestimated
the sheer magnitude of this convention.

Day 1 – July 21

The morning started in Hall H where the new Twilight film, Breaking Dawn: Part 1 had a panel consisting of the series’ three stars, the film’s director (Bill Condon) and a number of supporting cast. Not only were we treated to the already released trailer, but the 6,000+ fans gathered were also subjected to never before released scenes from the new picture. I had to stifle a laugh because of how utterly ridiculous it looked.

In one scene, Kirsten Stewart and Robert Pattinson enter their honeymoon suite. After an awkward encounter at the bed, Pattinson’s vampire Edward suggests that the two go for a swim. Kristen Stewart’s character, Bella, requests a couple of “human minutes” (not a word of a lie, her words) so she can get herself “ready”. She brushes her teeth, shaves her legs, picks out lingerie — all within a sequence that feels like it was directly pulled from a Sarah Jessica Parker movie.

Then, once Bella finally gathers her courage to go out and meet (meat?) her new husband, she drops her towel at the water and notices that Edward is already out there, sans bathing suit. That is the scene we saw, and I am more excited than ever to watch this train wreck take place. Hilarity.

Next in Hall H was Aardman Animation with their panel for upcoming film projects they have. Exclusive trailers and scenes were shown for two ventures they have in the process, one being next year’s Pirates: Band of Misfits and the other being this holiday season’s Arthur Christmas. Both look quite great indeed.

Pee-wee Herman piggybacked the crowd who was there for the animation panel, discussing his return to the top and his upcoming movie with Judd Apatow. Other than Paul Reubens (his real name) being hilarious, nothing truly noteworthy was exposed during this panel of one.

The final Hall H panel that I stayed for was Film District’s double feature bill. Here, producer/screenwriter Guillermo Del Toro, actor Guy Pearce and director Troy Nixey discussed the upcoming horror project Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark and director Nicolas Winding Refn, actress Carey Mulligan and actor Ron Perlman dove into their new picture Drive, being released later this year.

Despite Refn’s tendency to ramble on, the footage shown for Drive (starring
Ryan Gosling, who was not present) looks to be absolutely fantastic. It has quickly jumped to the top of my “to see” list for this year, and you should definitely keep an eye out. Del Toro was inherently hysterical throughout the panel, dropping f-bombs like it was his job and demonstrating the fun he likes to have with the job that he does.

From here I walked the exhibit floor for a while, choosing to get up from the butt-numbathon that was Hall H. Walking around the thousands of booths in the exhibition room, I encountered cosplayer after cosplayer, as well as gatherings for every sort of popular art you can imagine.

I took in a panel discussion on voice acting entitled “Inside the Voice Actor’s Studio” which featured a leading video game director Chris Borders as well as prominent voice artist Dee Bradley Baker, who I guarantee most if not all of you have heard even if you didn’t know it was him. The two gave insider tips to the industry and provided details on what is needed to become a voice actor.

After this, I tried to get into a discussion about the different types of psychopaths and mental discrepancies of the villains in the Batman universe,
but alas, it was full and I did not make it in. This goes to prove that even something as inane sounding as that, was popular enough to warrant a full house of fans attending the Con. Exhausted after all of that, I decided to call it a day.

Check back to for updates on Wade Thompson’s coverage of Comic-Con. The fully story of the event will be in Wednesday’s issue of The Cord.

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