We’d be remiss if we didn’t acknowledge some of the family television which makes an appearance annually at San Diego Comic-Con. And we’re not just talking about the shows that come out for Family Day, because there are plenty of panels beloved by fans young and old sprinkled throughout the four days of SDCC.
So let’s get to our predictions of what family shows we expect to see at this year’s con.
First, the confirmed shows.
A favorite and a yearly staple, the MythBusters crew will be back this year for a Saturday evening panel in room 6BCF.
Cartoon Network’s DC Nation programming block will have it’s own panel on Sunday July 15, also in room 6BCF. No specifics were mentioned, but we expect to hear more about Green Lantern: The Animated Series, Young Justice and the newly announced Teen Titans Go! comedy-action series. We’re wondering if the other new DC series, Beware The Batman, would have it’s own panel due to the popularity of The Dark Knight.
Now for our predictions.
The Hub has quickly become one of our favorite networks on cable, not just because of its retro cartoons like Transformers and G. I. Joe, but also because of its original programming like The Aquabats! Super Show!, Transformers Prime and…cough My Little Pony cough… It’s almost a sure-thing that The Aquabats! will return to talk about their recently-completed freshmen season, judging from the fact they are playing the House of Blues on Saturday, July 14. Based on our experience last year, it was one of the craziest panels we’ve attended in any year, and we recommend you don’t miss it. Also, last year saw multiple Transformers panels at SDCC covering the original series, the toys, and the new Transformers Prime, and we would expect the same again this year. Finally, with Brony fever at an all time high, we wouldn’t be surprised to see a My Little Pony panel, and a packed one at that.
Jeff Loeb hosts an annual Marvel Television panel, and we anticipate it to return again this year to talk about both animated and live action upcoming television shows. On the animated front, the Marvel Universe programming block on Disney XD is about to get interesting with the recent cancellation of Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes – and the announcement of its replacement, Avengers Assemble. We expect to get more information on how the new series will differ from its predecessor at the anticipated panel, along with what will be in store for Ultimate Spider-Man season two.
Continuing with Disney programming, Disney XD introduced two new original programs this summer: The hotly-awaited TRON: Uprising, and the original Motorcity. Both were at the con last year, and it remains to be seen whether they will return for a second season. If they do, we expect an announcement at this year’s SDCC, along with exclusive looks and Q&A for some of its other animated series such as Randy Cunningham: Ninth Grade Ninja, Gravity Falls and Wonder Over Yonder, the latest series from creator Craig McCracken (The Powerpuff Girls).
Nickelodeon should have several fan-favorites returning this year. The Legend of Korra, the follow-up to the popular Avatar: The Last Airbender series, was unveiled at last year’s con, and since its television premiere in the spring has generated substantial buzz with viewers and critics alike. We expect it to return for a panel and Q&A this year. Also expected is the premiere of the upcoming series Monsters vs. Aliens, based on the hit Dreamworks Animation film of the same name. Closing out the Nickelodeon shows we think will return are SpongeBob SquarePants and Yo Gabba Gabba!, which have attracted large all-ages crowds in years past.
Each year, SDCC designates a day as Star Wars day, when the majority of the Star Wars panels – from toys to books to television shows – are scheduled. And every year sees several panels dedicated to the making of Star Wars: The Clone Wars, the popular animated series on Cartoon Network that is headed into its fifth season this fall. With everyone’s favorite Sith Lord Darth Maul now back from the dead and fighting Jedi along side his brother Savage Opress, Star Wars fans haven’t been this excited since Return of the Jedi. We expect any panels dedicated to The Clone Wars to be jam packed.
Sticking with Cartoon Network, we fully anticipate Thundercats and Adventure Time to return to the panel schedule. Adventure Time was hugely popular at the con last year, with a packed panel and hordes of cosplayers dressing up as Finn, Jake, Princess Bubblegum, and The Ice King. The show had a major presence offsite as well, as it took over a pizza restaurant outside the convention center and greeted attendees checking out the surroundings with a Chinese New Year-style parade featuring a giant, inflatable Lady Rainicorn. We’re frightened at the prospect of this year’s parade including a shouting Earl of Lemongrab as the Grand Marshall. One million years dungeon! In addition to the Adventure Time series, there’s also a Nintendo DS/3DS game in the works, as well as an ongoing BOOM! Studios comic, so expect it to see it everywhere you turn, basically.
Of the network’s new shows, another Dreamworks Animation franchise is getting the series treatment in Dreamworks Dragons, based on the popular film How To Train Your Dragon. Lastly, Cartoon Network aired a series based on the LEGO Ninjago toy line, and a mystery LEGO series was announced as a follow-up for 2012. What could it be? We’re guessing it won’t be based on an existing license but rather the new LEGO line Monster Fighters, which would be perfect timing for a fall premiere. We’re also thinking the network is saving the announcement for a SDCC panel this July. Fingers crossed!
In closing with Cartoon Network, we lament that Scooby-Doo Mystery Incorporated, which has been at SDCC for the past two years, is most likely not going to return. A second season was produced but has not yet aired, and the show was left off the network’s fall schedule.
Which family shows do you hope will be at SDCC this year? Which shows did we miss in our predictions? Let us know in the comments!