Thursday, August 11, 2011

Comic-Con Panels - Saturday #SDCC

Too many house guests in a row! It makes for infrequent posting and comment-replying. I'm currently in-between guests so I've got to bang out the Saturday re-cap!!

Next year, I've got to try and write these right after Comic-Con! At least you know my memory has distilled the panels down into the most essential components. I still refuse to re-watch panel videos. It taints the experience. I would compare it to being at a live rock concert and then watching the concert that someone taped on their phone camera from the back.


This panel has been the perfect start to Saturday morning two years in a row. Unfortunately, something else will be in its time slot next year. The last year of Chuck. :-(


I was hoping they would talk about new projects post-Chuck, but then I realized that isn't really in the spirit of the last Chuck panel. Maybe they are still holding on to a shred of hope that they will be renewed after all. It's hard to believe that a show that gets this much attention at Comic-Con every year is being cancelled, but if I look at it critically, it definitely has its flaws. They would have to have some major shake-ups up their sleeves to keep going.


It's possible that the show gets so much Comic-Con attention mostly because of Adam Baldwin. I know lots of people who don't watch Burn Notice go to that panel because of Bruce Campbell. Also, it wouldn't be a Chuck panel if no one brought up Firefly.


Adam Baldwin said that Casey would beat Jayne in a fight, but he made it clear that he only said that because it was a Chuck panel.


Vik Sahay made several jokes about his character not showing up much this last season. He is pretty funny. His character, however, kinda bugs me. Sorry, Vik. If Lester showed the tiniest shred of humanity, that might help. I do like Jeffster, though.


Mark Hamhill will be playing a villain this season. Should be interesting! One of the things I like best about this show is its use of classic sci-fi and spy film stars like Bruce Boxleitner, Linda Hamilton, Scott Bakula, and Timothy Dalton.


"Someone might not survive this season ... and it's going to be big" - Chris Fedak


At the end, the cast was asked if they had anything they wanted to say at their last Comic-Con panel. Zach Levi totally teared up and his voice cracked. Thanks, Zach, for making me cry first thing in the morning.


Chuck was the only panel of the weekend (that I attended) which got a standing ovation at the end. We love you, Chuck, let's go out with a bang this year!

Terra Nova 

As part of this panel, we saw the first hour of the 2-hour pilot/premiere of this show. It has several good things going for it:

1) A dystopian future with a catch phrase that geeks (like me) can put on faux propaganda posters: "A Family is Four."

2) Dinosaurs.

3) Dinosaurs eating people.

4) Jason O'Mara.

5) Jason O'Mara not wearing a shirt.

Intrigued? Did I not mention dinosaurs eating people?

They also assured the audience that the special effects budget won't go out the window after the pilot. There will be lots more dinosaurs eating people in the future.


I really like that Matt Groening gives out free stuff to people who ask questions in his panels and special prizes to those people who were wearing Futurama costumes. Also, Futurama > The Simpsons because all of the Futurama voice actors showed up, and none of the actors from The Simpsons did. I know that they have been on the air for an eternity, but what is the point of having a Comic-Con panel if none of the voice actors show up?


The Futurama live table read was amazing last year. This year, the draw-off between Matt Groening and Peter Avanzino was pretty funny, though. Matt Groening took the quantity over quality approach to drawing. Then he signed his name to Avanzino's drawing at the end.


We also got to see a clip from a future episode riffing on all Japanese forms of film-making. There was Anime, Samurai, Godzilla, terrible dubbing, etc. The best parts were the scenes that showed a Japanese temple like Kinkakuji or the Imperial Palace and the caption was "Washington D.C." or "San Francisco." I'm looking forward to that episode.


Katey Sagal is so beautiful. I love that she comes to these things and that she still does the show even with all her success on Sons of Anarchy. A more cynical person would say that it's not a ton of work for some good money, but I think that the familial energy of the cast has a lot to do with it. Oh man, can you imagine someone else doing Leela? Unthinkable.


John DiMaggio randomly talks in Bender's voice. I love it. I've actually heard he does it in social situations as well. That's the way to impress the ladies. The geeky ladies, anyway.

Family Guy

The only thing that really sticks in my mind about this panel (since Seth MacFarlane did not sing in Stewie's voice this year) was the torture of the sign language interpreter, who was a really good sport.


After they realized that the interpreter would sign anything they said, they started saying really inappropriate things and then watching her try to sign them. She was totally cracking up and I'm pretty sure the deaf members of the audience were completely confused.


Then, after they learned the signs, the actors started making them themselves. I bet that will be a long-time running joke with the cast.

And now I know how to sign things like "donkey penis." Totally worth the price of admission.

Joss Whedon

"Who doesn't like cock?" - Joss Whedon


Joss Whedon gives a good panel. There is a reason that he gets his own panel to just talk about whatever. Well, technically, it was sponsored by Dark Horse, and I was amazed that the audience members didn't ask ANY Avengers questions. Talk about staying on topic! He also stands the entire time which not only makes it really easy to take pictures of him, but it is way more engaging, especially because the Indigo ballroom's air conditioner was apparently not made for 3,000 people.


"I don't know why I think I'm a 14-year-old girl with super powers. I don't look like one, but I can't get past it." - Joss Whedon

One of my favorite parts was when he casually mentioned a certain coupling from the Buffy comics. A girl sitting by me, who obviously hadn't read them, let out a shocked exclamation and looked over at me. I nodded and shrugged and she mimed shooting herself in the head. It was great, and my feelings exactly.

"You all know I want you to suffer. It's like a drug." - Joss Whedon


An audience member asked Joss about writing a gay male character and he said he would love to do it (see the first quote, which is so much better out of context). I would love to see it. Hopefully he will get back to T.V. soon so he can do that. And hopefully that show will not get cancelled.

He confirmed, once again, that Dr. Horrible 2 is in the works, but no word on when it will come out.

The Guild

Felicia Day is the tiniest, most non-threatening person in the world. And everyone on this panel was terrified of her. I have a feeling that she gave some kind of anti-spoiler pre-panel talk and then everyone was too afraid that they were going to give something away to actually say anything. But then we got to watch the first episode of The Guild before it was released and it was awesome.


I think the story of The Guild is kind of amazing, going from shooting on borrowed equipment for no money to a Microsoft/Sprint sponsorship. The pairing of The Guild and xbox live is genius. Plus, it means I get to see the episodes two days early. Felicia Day also went from this occasional guest starring actress (who was totally addicted to online gaming) to geek phenom, a Joss Whedon muse, and series regular on Eureka. Impressive.


Jeff Lewis is seriously hilarious. Those of us who had been at w00tstock gave him a special cheer for his stand-up comedy AS VORK. It was so good. He is a comedic genius.


I've already talked about this on twitter and elsewhere, but I met Sandeep Parikh (Zaboo) on Saturday night. He actually tapped my brother on the arm and asked him where he got his TARDIS-shaped burrito (insert many jokes about the size of the burrito on the inside). We talked about the nerdist podcast and I told him I was a big fan. He is so small. I was wondering how he made Felicia Day look tall considering she is so tiny, too. Now I know. He was also really nice and didn't mind my babbling awkwardness.



  1. "...he casually mentioned a certain coupling from the Buffy comics...I nodded and shrugged and she mimed shooting herself in the head."

    It was Xander and Dawn, wasn't it? :|


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