The Comic-Con At Home Panels You Don’t Want to Miss
Comic-Con is right around the corner, but this year, things are happening in a completely new way. No one is planning their trip to San Diego or feverishly finishing an elaborate cosplay, because the event isn’t happening in person. This year marks the first-ever Comic-Con At Home, a virtual experience that brings everything you love about the mulit-day event right to your computer screen. The best part? Comic-Con At Home is completely free, and there’s no limit to the amount of people in each panel. Comic-Con International released the full schedule to next week’s festivities on their website, and not gonna lie, it’s pretty overwhelming. With over 350 panels over the course of five days, which should you prioritize? That’s why we’ve hand-selected the best panels that you won’t want to miss.
The links below will take you directly to the YouTube pages for each panel. (And remember: These times are Pacific, not Eastern.) You can explore the full Comic-Con At Home schedule here.
Wednesday, July 22:
History is a story told by the victors: until it's not. The story landscape is changing. There is more space in the narrative world for stories both by and about people with diverse experiences. Join our lively panel debate to see how that re-storying is emerging; in academic institutions, in live performance, in digital experiences, and in a proliferation of creative tools that empower people to tell their stories.
HBO's Watchmen put forth the idea that “masks make one cruel.” On college campuses, many people, both students and non-students have taken up virtual masks to make statements and take actions that would not be acceptable if done in public. Zoom bombing, doxing, and anonymous threats have caused much dismay, particularly as campuses move to remote learning due to COVID-19. Come hear what educators have to say about the power of masks and how Watchmen and other comics show us a path towards heroism or villainy. Dr. Kalenda Eaton (University of Oklahoma), Dr. David Surratt (University of Oklahoma), Hailey Lopez (UC Berkeley), Robert Hypes (Phoenix Creative Collective), and Alfred Day (UC Berkeley).
Vanessa Gempis (manager at Pauline Foster Teen Center, San Diego Public Library), Bijan Nowroozian (youth services librarian, San Diego Public Library), and Melissa Giffen (youth services librarian, San Diego Public Library) discuss how they approach creating effective and engaging programs for youth of different age groups. From planning the program, to promotion and communication, managing staff, and post-program reflection--the panel has tips and tricks to share for every size program. Panelists will also share some of their favorite fandom programs and what they've learned about virtual programs during the pandemic.
At the request of Will Eisner, a librarian has been a member of the Eisner Awards jury since 2005. When Jackie Estrada, Administrator for the Eisner Awards, invited Kat Kan to be that first librarian jury member, the awards began to take on a new kind of energy. Since that day, the influence of the awards has grown beyond the traditional comics community and now resonates with traditional publishers, academic institutions, and throughout the library world. Join in on the conversation as these ground-breaking librarians talk about their experience as members of the Eisner juries over the years. Moderated by John Shableski (2009 Jury) this session features five Eisner Librarian jurors: Kat Kan (2005), Karen Green (2011), Jason Poole (2016), Dawn Rutherford (2017), and Traci Glass (2019).
Are you a high school student with dreams of becoming a graphic novelist? Are you a high school teacher with dreams of creating a graphic novel with your class? Spirit Skies is a graphic novel written and illustrated exclusively by high school students! Not only did we dream it, we DID it! The panel will discuss the impact of Covid-19 on cross cultural artistic exchange, how technology has made this project easier and more dynamic! The student panel of writers and illustrators - including a Guna native from Panama who wrote the sequel from the tropical point of view- will be on the panel, featuring never-before-seen art, and a sneak peek at the next volume in the Spirit Skies story! The panel will take you on an exploratory journey - through the eyes of a Hummingbird! Spirit Skies is not just an adventure written by high school students - it is a lesson in environmental stewardship. With the lesson that we are all interconnected, all you have to do is go outside and you will be interacting with wildlife. It could be a hummingbird coming from Panama or Alaska!
Thursday, July 23:
10AM: Star Trek Universe Virtual Panel
Star Trek broke barriers when it first premiered more than 50 years ago, inspiring people of all walks of life by championing cultural diversity, scientific advancement, and the exploration of new frontiers. Today, this legacy carries on through the Star Trek series on CBS All Access, where Starfleet and new characters alike take on exciting missions and explore uncharted areas of the universe while keeping true to the ideals of “Star Trek” that society needs now more than ever. Join us as we virtually bring together the casts and producers from Star Trek: Discovery, new animated series Star Trek: Lower Decks and Star Trek: Picard.
Philip Solomon, voice of Craig, and Lucia Cunningham, voice of Craig's little sister Jessica, from the Emmy-nominated series Craig of the Creek host the annual Cartoon Network Studios First Look virtual panel . . . it's like they are at the Trading Tree, but instead of handing out Choco Rolls they're dishing out special announcements and exclusive clips from Apple & Onion, Ben 10 vs. The Universe: The Movie, Craig of the Creek, Mao Mao, Heroes of Pure Heart, Victor and Valentino, and We Bare Bears The Movie. See you there! (Please note, attendees are responsible for bringing their own Choco Roll.) #ad
Jamie Chung (Once Upon A Time), Jamie Clayton (Roswell: New Mexico), Wilson Cruz (Star Trek: Discovery), Tatiana Maslany (Perry Mason), Anthony Rapp (Star Trek: Discovery), J. August Richards (Council of Dads), Harry Shum, Jr. (Shadowhunters), Brian Michael Smith (9-1-1: Lone Star) discuss the past, present, and future of representation of LGBTQ characters on television in a Q&A session moderated by Jim Halterman (TV Guide magazine).
More heroines are being represented in the media, but are they well-rounded characters or bland beings going from point A to point B without any distinct traits or personalities? Why might writers shy away from writing women as fully-developed people? Here to discuss everyone's favorite female/nonbinary characters of the past decade, and what we can learn from them, are women dangerous in their own right: Charlie Jane Anders (author of Victories Greater Than Death, co-host of Our Opinions Are Correct podcast), Tamara Brooks (writer for DC Universe, host of Tales from the Tapes podcast), Dani Fernandez (host of Nerdificent podcast, writer for Girls on the Bus), Hanh Nguyen (Salon's Senior Culture Editor, Television Critics Association board member), Diya Mishra (writer for Masters of the Universe: Revelation), and moderator Katrina Hill (author of Action Movie Freak, 100 Greatest Graphic Novels).
Erik Adams (The A.V. Club) leads a discussion with MST3K creator Joel Hodgson and former cast members Bill Corbett (Crow T. Robot #2) and J. Elvis Weinstein (Tom Servo #1) as they engage in some good old-fashioned Q&A.
Friday, July 24:
10AM: Charlize Theron: Evolution of a Badass - An Action Hero Career Retrospective
Actress and producer Charlize Theron reflects on portraying over two decades of action heroes, from Æon Flux to The Old Guard's Andromache, Mad Max: Fury Road's Furiosa to Atomic Blonde's Lorraine Broughton. In a lengthy retrospective Q&A moderated by IGN's Terri Schwartz, Theron discusses the evolution of the modern female action hero, the roles that inspired her and what drives her to constantly push her limits with fight training.
10AM: DC@Home Day One
Whether its Batman's final showdown with The Joker, Wonder Woman taking on new adventures, or the Man of Steel taking facing threats from Metropolis and across the cosmos, DC is the place to be for the best storytellers lending their talents to the World's Greatest Super Heroes! Don't miss your chance to hear first-hand from these comic book legends in the making as they give you the inside scoop on what's in store for Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman and other DC heroes and villains!DC talent to appear: Vita Ayala, Morgan Beem, Brian Michael Bendis, Kelly Sue DeConnick, Grace Ellis, Mitch Gerads, Clayton Henry, Mikel Janin, Tom King, Jim Lee, Ryan Sook, Maggie Stiefvater, Mariko Tamaki, Tom Taylor, Ram V, and Brittney Williams.
Marvel editor-in-chief C.B. Cebulski breaks down all the latest and greatest coming from the House of Ideas with some of Marvel's most epic creators! Tom Brevoort, Al Ewing, and Dan Slott will dive into the cosmic calamity coming to Earth's Mightiest Heroes in the pages of Empyre! An army is gathering in the latest X-Men crossover event, X of Swords, and Jordan White, Tini Howard, and Gerry Duggan have all the juicy details! Nick Lowe, Nick Spencer, and Mark Bagley will discuss the landmark Amazing Spider-Man #850 ushering in the return of the Green Goblin! Plus Nick Lowe rejoins the panel to discuss the return of the classic Marvel character, Werewolf by Night, with creators Taboo and Ben Jackendoff! Be there, True Believers!
12PM: AMC’s Fear the Walking Dead
Fear the Walking Dead will present a panel for the series' upcoming sixth season, premiering later this year. Moderated by Chris Hardwick, the panel will feature TWDU chief content officer Scott M. Gimple, showrunners and executive producers Andrew Chambliss and Ian Goldberg, and cast members Lennie James, Alycia Debnam-Carey, Colman Domingo, Danay Garcia, Karen David, Jenna Elfman, and Rubén Blades. Season six of Fear the Walking Dead explores what has become of the unlikely family once united by a mission to help those in need. After being torn apart by Virginia (Colby Minifie) and her Pioneers, the group is now dispersed across her far-reaching settlements. Morgan's (James) last message at the end of season five implored the group to "Just Live" and this season we'll see what that means to each of them. Some will find the stability and opportunity within Virginia's communities to be intriguing, some will sink into darkness, while others will fight back against what has been forced upon them. Life behind Virginia's walls will test each and every one of them in different ways, forcing them to define who they are in this new world.
4PM: Bob's Burgers
The Emmy Award-winning animated FOX series Bob's Burgers invites fans into their homes for a virtual panel with all of the laughs and surprises they generally bring to the Indigo Ballroom. Creator and executive producer Loren Bouchard will break news about the upcoming season, and the always entertaining cast including H. Jon Benjamin, John Roberts, Kristen Schaal, Eugene Mirman, Dan Mintz, and Larry Murphy will have you howling with laughter with never-before-seen footage, followed by a lively panel discussion and fan Q&A.
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Saturday, July 25:
11AM: The Simpsons @ Home
They'll never stop the Simpsons!. . .from appearing at Comic-con; this time on zoom. Join Al Jean, Matt Selman, David Silverman, Carolyn Omine, Mike B. Anderson, and moderator Yeardley Smith. Find out how the show has surmounted social distancing and turbulent times en route to Season 32!
1PM: Guillermo del Toro and Scott Cooper on Antlers and Filmmaking
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What is so great about working as executive producer and director on a Frank Miller/Tom Wheeler project? What is it like to direct Charlize Theron and Kiki Layne in complicated fight scenes? How does working with women above and below the line make a film with Kelvin Harrison Jr, Tracee Ellis Ross, and Dakota Johnson more nuanced and believable? What does a producing director on Queen Sugar do? Find out all this and more, including why supporting women in film is so vital to equality for all, and how fans can make a difference, on this exciting female filmmaker-focused panel. Watch Nisha Ganatra (director: Late Night, The High Note), Lauren Wolkstein (director: Cloak & Dagger, supervising director: Queen Sugar), Gina Prince-Bythewood (writer/director: Love and Basketball, director: The Old Guard), Zetna Fuentes (director: Jessica Jones, executive producer/director: Cursed), and Alison Emilio (director of ReFrame) as they share their experiences and insights. Moderated by Leslie Combemale (creator: Women Rocking Hollywood, freelance writer: AWFJ.org).
3PM: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. - The Stories and Science of Mutants, Androids, Space Travel, and Aliens
For seven seasons Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. has managed to take us on one wild ride after another. The show is coming to an end with season seven, which premiered on May 27, and we are excited to celebrate the show with this panel. It is one thing to explore the amazing, and sometimes scary, abilities of inhumans (mutants), and quite another to take these stories into a matrix-like world, into space and even on a time-traveling adventure. Join the Fleet Science Center and executive producers, writers, and actors from Marvel's immensely popular TV show Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., as they reveal how these stories came to life and discuss with San Diego scientists if they got the science right. Panelists are Jeffrey Bell (Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. showrunner, executive producer, and writer), Andrea Decker (Fleet Science Center, moderator), Dr. Virginia De Sa (professor in the Cognitive Science Department at UC San Diego), Elizabeth Henstridge (actor, Jemma Simmons), Dr. Anila Kanchan Madiraju (research associate at the Salk Institute for Biological Studies), Melissa Miller (scientist and science writer at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography), James Oliver (Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. co-producer and writer), Sharla Oliver (Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. co-producer and writer), Dr. Troy Sandberg (postdoctoral researcher at UC San Diego), Joel Stoffer (actor, Enoch), and Craig Titley (Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. executive producer and writer).
Kevin Smith talks Son-In-Lockdown, unveils a new Funko Pop, and drops the first look at his new film Killroy Was Here. Plus, Kevin chats about a new podcast he created with his daughter, Harley Quinn Smith, and reveals how to get your very own Mooby's Cow Tipper.
Nick Antosca (Channel Zero), Meredith Averill (Locke & Key), Don Mancini (Chucky), Greg Nicotero (Creepshow), and Jami O’Brien (NOS4A2) offer their unique insights on why horror TV is having a moment and what it takes to create the kind of terrifying shows that keep viewers coming back episode after episode. Moderated by screenwriter/educator Tananarive Due (executive producer, Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror). Panel presented by Shudder.
Sunday, July 26:
Explore the power of fan run charity groups to do good in the world and keep their fandoms alive and energized. Lynelle Miliate-Ha and Hanna Lacy (both, California Browncoats) talk to James Riley (contributor, Outside Comic-Con), Marsia Powers (president, Fandom Charities), Dr. Susie HoneyBee Searight (founder, BADASS), Victoria King (founder, Castiel's Angels), and Dean Wilson (west coast leader, Castiel's Angels).
1PM: HBO Max: Looney Tunes Cartoons
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Film & Television composers participate in a Hollywood Squares-like online game show where two film music fan contestants compete to win a soundtrack prize package. Watch as Lorne Balfe (Mission: Impossible - Fallout), Ryan Elder (Rick & Morty), Chris Lennertz (The Boys), Jongnic Bontemps (Call of Duty WWII), and Sonya Belousova & Giona Ostinelli (The Witcher) answer trivia questions on topics like the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and even the Golden Girls. Contestants are Sapphire Toth and Gareth Hughes with hosts Anne Cecere (BMI) and Chandler Poling (White Bear PR).
And there you have it! Put on your best Batman pajamas and tune into Comic-Con at Home from Wednesday July 22 through Sunday July 26.
Gallery — LGBTQ Superheroes In Marvel & DC Comics: