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SDCC 2012 – Friday Wrap-Up

It was a pretty full day in Ballroom 20 and Hall H, so we decided to run down all the panels in both. Check them out below:

Hall H

Paranorman -Nothing too surprising. Looks like a fun movie and Christopher Mintz-Plasse confirmed Kick-Ass 2 should be filming in the fall. Fans of Coraline, stop-motion animation, or just fun scary movies (think PG-rated Evil Dead) should totally check this one out.

Big Bang Theory – Pretty much what you expect. A fun and funny panel that was mainly just the cast goofing around and keeping the audience entertained. Some plot hints were dropped (Howard will spend a few episodes in space, there’s tough times for Leonard and Penny) but this was just mainly for the fans to enjoy the stars.

Walking Dead – The awesome trailer for the upcoming season has already gone online (watch it below), but the panel was worth it both too see the extend that TWD fandom has grown to, and to get some tantalizing plot hints. Animatronic zombies with bloodier kills on a more epic scale lies ahead this season. AMC is bumping up the action and fans at the panel seemed happy to hear it. Season 3 premieres Oct. 14.

Game of Thrones – Pretty much the whole panel was either spent awkwardly joking around with series author George RR Martin, discussing how great the show is, or announcing new cast members (14 in total!!!). So who joined the show? Here’s a list:

  • Clive Russell (Sherlock Holmes) as Catelyn Stark’s dutiful uncle, Bryndon Tully (“The Blackfish”)
  • Tobias Menzies (Rome) as Catelyn’s brash brother Edmure Tully
  • Mackenzie Crook (BBC’s The Office) as “skinchanging” wildling raider Orell
  • Richard Dormer (Jump)as Beric Dondarrion, leader of outlaw group Brothers Without Banners
  • Nathalie Emannuel (Hollyoakes) as child slave Missandei
  • Kerry Ingram as Stannis Baratheon’s only child, Shireen
  • Tara Fitzgerald (Sirens) as Stannis’ estranged wife, Selyse
  • Paul Kaye (Match Point) as Thoros of Myr, a red priest of the same order as Stannis’ go-to sorceress Melisandre.
  • Thomas Brodie-Sangster (Phineas and Ferb) as Bran Stark’s uniquely gifted friend Jojen Reed, and Ellie Kendrick as his huntress sister Meera
  • Kristofer Hivju (The Thing) as Tormund Giantsbane, chief lieutenant of wildling leader Mance Rayder
  • Philip McGinley (Prometheus) as archer Anguy
  • Anton Lesser (The Hour) as ex-maester Qyburn

Resident Evil: Retribution – Yeah, what you’d expect. The few fans of the series left enjoyed what was shown, but most of Hall H had little interest. Still, if you like the series, word is this is far from a dramatic departure so I’m sure you’ll enjoy this one.

Sony – Total Recall looks better than some feared but still kind of a scifi mishmash rehash. Looper looks like smart but still action-packed true science fiction. Elysium could end up being the biggest surprise of the con. Sure expectations were high (it’s Neill Blomkamp‘s follow up to District 9 and brought Matt Damon to the con for the first time) but no one was really expecting how great this looks. Think District 9 on a Star Wars level scale. But with all the great acting, subtle political messages, and badassery retained.

Ballroom 20

Community – The new show runners kept things civil, the cast were as entertaining as always, and the fans left happy. Sounds pretty successful to me. Smart move on NBC’s part to pretty much just let the cast do their thing with great banter, a funny Q&A, and some plot tidbits (we finally get to meet Jeff’s dad next season).

The Legend of Korra – Again, fans were not left disappointed. Tons of concept art from Book 2: Spirits, including a new main base, the Southern Water Tribe. New characters were introduced, with updated designs for the older ones, and all in all it was clear the show is in good hands. Were people kinda sad the new season isn’t far enough along to have a trailer? Obviously. But there was still tons of cool stuff to see.

Firefly – It’s hard to really recap the panel since it was mainly just fan appreciation with some interesting tidbits and emotional moments thrown in (and wow is emotion hard to convay via recap) but head over to Badass Digest if you want all the gritty details. In short? They pleased the fans, many tears were shed, and the fandom grew even stronger. And no, there’s won’t be another season. Stop asking.

Bones – Emily Deschanel and David Boreanaz brought enough charm to please all the fans. Still, most of the panel was spent explaining how the last season got so jumbled and how the upcoming one will hopefully face a lot less problems. It was low-key but pleasing to fans. For a closer rundown of what was promised for the new season, head to THR.

Arrow – Just like during it’s preview night debut, the pilot episode impressed many skeptics. Those missing Smallville have found their replacement. Those that found it too cheesy might find Arrow has just the improvements they needed. Either way, certainly worth a look when it premieres this fall if you’re a super hero fan.

Powerful Women in Pop Culture / Joss Whedon – Not really news panels. Just interesting discussion. Good for those in the audience, not much missed for people at home.

Breaking Bad – A *trailer* for the new season screened. Everyone loved it. Not surprising. Promises the final season would be dark, intense, and not suck. Again, not the most surprising. But still, attendees appreciated getting one of the best casts and creative teams onstage to discuss the show. Hints about the new season were dropped, but the general impression was just that we’re in for a great ride.

Were you in one of the rooms today? If so, what was your favorite panel? If not, what are you most sad you missed? We want to hear from you!

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