Super 7 and Disney ultimates

Super 7 and Disney

San Diego Comic Con at Home Should Not be a Yearly Event

The ongoing pandemic caused for San Diego Comic Con to switch to virtual this year. When this was announced, many fans were curious to see how this would be pulled off. I was also one of them to think that way too since I cover San Diego Comic Con every year. As the online event finished last weekend, I have gathered all of my opinions to why this would not work every year and also, why some aspects of this year’s event should be carried over to future comic cons.

One thing I have to get out of the way, is that Comic Con International has tried their best putting together the good content that was shown last week. From The Walking Dead, Bill and Ted Face the Music, The New Mutants, Motherland: Fort Salem, and even panels with upcoming Marvel and DC comics, there was a lot to digest with those panels. But that is where the first problem arised. There were way too many panels being shown at either the same time, or at different times on different channels outside of the official San Diego Comic Con channel. I feel that all of the panels should have been on one channel from the start, to the finish of the day. It is however, nice that you can watch them at your own home. But the experience of being in those panel rooms with nearly a few thousand fans cheering at every announcement and exclusive footage cannot be stripped away and it is severly missed. Yes sure, some of the big announcements that happened on the virtual panels were exciting to hear and witness, but it is also lacking the energy that we all feel in person. What I would suggest for next year, is for a hybrid version of this. That way, the ones who cannot attend the panel, can watch it either at home, or on their screen.

But there is another issue to tackle with that too since many big studios premiere sneak peaks to the live audience exclusively. How would it work for those studios to premiere that exclusive to the fans in attendance while people are watching it at home knowing that select footage cannot be filmed? Believe me when I say this because I was at the screening of IT: Chapter II at SDCC in 2019 and there were security guards at that theater watching everyone like a hawk since you could not record footage. And the studios would most likely not stream that same footage too. It is just something to think about since that kind of content is exclusive to the fans and press in attendance. But going back to the panels, it was understanding why many of the big studios did not want to showcase any material for this year’s event due to the pandemic. But the marketing aspect of SDCC at Home was abysmal. Only fans of comic con knew that this was taking place, but not the general public. I know many people that did not even know that San Diego Comic Con was happening as a virtual event this year until a few days later. And some did not know until the panels showed up as a recommendation on YouTube. I know that comic con sells itself, but there should have been more effort to market this event to every fandom. Speaking of effort, Most of the panels took place on zoom and there were a lot of technical difficulties that I noticed. But I wish that a few of them would have been live because whether if you like fan interraction at the panels with live questions or not, they are important. The feeling is not the same when panel hosts have to read tweets and Instagram comments as questions since we cannot assume that everyone that goes to comic con, has social media. That is why their only opportunity for the most part, is when the talent is on stage when you get your opportunity to ask your question. You would think that these panels that were pre-recorded, would have been edited very well. But no, that was not the case on most of the panels.

SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA – JULY 21: KJ Apa, Lili Reinhart, and Cole Sprouse speak at the “Riverdale” Special Video Presentation and Q&A during 2019 Comic-Con International at San Diego Convention Center on July 21, 2019 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

Another thing I wanted to bring up, is that it is named “comic con” for a reason and it did not feel like that since the virtual panels were more talked about than the virtual convention itself. I personally, not only go to these conventions to cover it, I also spend time at the artist alley, the gaming area, and the cosplay area. Everything that makes a comic con should have been happening last weekend, but the talk of the panels diminished that. Sure, there were links to check out the vendors, but there was barely any mention of any of them at all outside of a few tweets. I think that there should have been more on a spotlight on the comic creators and vendors too.

And finally, I have to bring this up because this was a big problem starting from Wednesday night, until the final day. Funko went virtual for the first time during comic con weekend. Normally, you would have to enter a lottery for your chance to buy a Funko exclusive and if you do not win the lottery, then you will have to go to the retailers that have the shared exclusives. Since there was no lottery, everyone had the chance to buy their Funko Pops. But seconds after the stores online opened, many of them were already sold out as confused buyers questioned how this even happened.

It got worse when buyers already had their selections in the cart to checkout and when they did, the “sold out” icon appeared. This went on to the next day as the buyers had to wait at least an hour or two, to even attempt to buy their item. And at the retailers, many retailers had to put a limit to how many of the same item you can purchase. Those signs went up at some of the retailers after the fact since there were a number of people buying multiple copies of the same Funko Pop. The CEO of Funko even had to make an apology for everyone that is having a bad experience.

I can hope that next year, San Diego Comic Con (And even other comic cons across the world) can return in full swing and better than ever. I appreciated what we got this year, but I know for sure that everyone felt it in their hearts that comic con has been affected by the pandemic. I also wonder if and when things get back to normal next year, how much could they limit the crowd due to social distancing. The entire experience of San Diego Comic Con cannot be duplicated, or bitten down to size infront of a screen because it is more than a convention, it is a week long event that thousands of fans love to attend each year.

Follow me on Instagram and Twitter @julianexcalibur for more content. Contact me at julian@alternativemindz.com

The Walking Dead and Fear The Walking Dead San Diego Comic Con at Home Panels Recap

This year’s edition of San Diego Comic Con had to be canceled due to the current pandemic. Not only that was canceled, The Walking Dead had to delay the airdate of the season finale, delay the premiere of World Beyond, and halt the filming of Fear The Walking Dead. What was supposed to be 42 straight weeks of content of The Walking Dead universe, turned upside down due to the pandemic. But luckily, fans got a chance to see the panels of all three shows in the comfort of their own homes as San Diego Comic Con went virtual for the first time in it’s 50 year history. Today, I will give my recap and thoughts of the two panels as I will also make a seperate article of The Walking Dead: World Beyond panel.

FEAR THE WALKING DEAD

Showrunners and executive producers Andrew Chambliss and Ian Goldberg, and cast members Lennie James, Alycia Debnam-Carey, Colman Domingo, all were on the panel today to talk about the first half of the sixth season. The panel was broken into two groups as Chris Hardwhick said that at the start of the panel. Also, the premiere of the sixth season will be on Sunday October 11th, 2020. They then begin to talk about the season 5 finale as Chris brought up the memories of the last ten minutes of the episode. We were then given a new trailer of the sixth season. as well. Andrew talked about Morgan’s fate. Ian also clarified that something is going on with Morgan since he is seen with red eyes in the trailer. Lennie then talked about shooting those scenes with Colby Minifie (Virginia) and praised her work as a villian since he believes that she is very unerving. Lennie also teased that Virginia runs more than one group and that we will see that during the sixth season.

Scott Gimple also teased that we will see more dimensions to Virginia this season. Colman talked about the current state of Strand and what can we expect from him. Then, the conversation shifted to Alycia as she feels that Alicia does not trust anyone but Strand at the moment since she has known him the longest. Colman also believes that Strand should be trusted as he made a promise to Madison to keep her safe. Andrew talked about how the shutdown affected the filming process and he stated that they were halfway finished with the first half and that the entire season has been written already. He did also say that when it is safe, they will begin filming the back half of the sixth season.

The conversation then lead to Morgan’s bond with Grace as a fan asked if Lennie would see Morgan in love with Grace. Lennie feels that Morgan is still locked down to his wife, but he could open up to Grace. But Lennie is interested to see how their bond will develop. Isabelle, who is part of CRM was brought up and Scott Gimple said that there will be more story with her and that there is a chance that we will see more of her on the show. Ian was then asked about his mindset going into season six and Ian said that Virginia is in control of everyone and how it will affect all of the characters. He also said that they all will be tested in ways that they have not before and how they will fit in Virginia’s world, and how will they react under these circumstances. The episodes will be an anthology structure and this season will be darker than the previous seasons.

Colman talked about the episode he directed as he stated that it featured a number of actors on the show as he sounded very excited about the episode he directed. Lennie James also directed an episode for the first time and Lennie loved the experience. Lennie also said that he meet the crew, riggers, and costume designers and was also given a fantastic episode to direct. The morning of the first episode he directed, Lennie said that he had a fun text exchange between himself and Colman. He also praised the crew that supported him and is not sure if he will ever direct again, but would be open to doing it again. The last important bit is the conversation is Scott Gimple was asked if there was a time jump during season 6 and he said that not only that there will be one, there will be multiple time jumps during the season. Also, Ian could not comment if that musical episode would happen on this season.

The second half of the group was Ruben Blades, Karen David, Danay Garcia, Jenna Elfman while Scott Gimple, Ian, and Andrew stayed. Danay talked about what can we expect from Luciana during this season. She also talked about the process of putting on the oil makeup when they were filming at the oilfield. Funny line from Karen David as she said that if you get a zit on the show, they celebrate. The Living Dead would also be the name if there was a band. Karen also talked about her reaction to Grace being pregnant as she feels that she has done a lot for Morgan before she found out. She wonders of Grace will be alive to see her child’s first birthday due to the nature of the apoclapse.

Jenna brought up an interesting point as June and John are seperated again. Jenna believes that they will have faith to see eachother again and that June is strong enough to not let Virginia break her at all. Chris brings up the status of Dwight and Sherry and Ian told him that he cannot say much about these two. He also said that he and Andrew were fans of Dwight and that he is a much different person now than he was when he was with The Saviors. Scott Gimple stated that there will be new characters coming in season six and one of them, will be Virginia’s sister named Dakota. Gimple also said that we will see a whole other side of Virginia too because of Dakota. Ruban said that he really misses being on the set because of the daily contact, and talking with everyone. He also misses Skidmark. The last few minutes were dedicated to a few fan questions and the funniest one, is if Lucianna would replace her wounded arm like Merle did and Danay said that she would replace it with a gun.

THE WALKING DEAD

Just like Fear The Walking Dead, this panel was split in two groups. The announcement of the airdate of the season finale has been revealed as it will air on October 4th, 2020. We were also shown a sneak peak of the Finale. The panel opens as Angela Kang, Scott Gimple, Norman Reedus, Melissa McBride, Khary Payton, Greg Nicotero and Ross Marquand are the first group. Angela talked about beta being driven by the mass amount of walkers and Nicotero talked about how excited he was directing the episode along with the fact that the horde is closing in on the group. Norman Reedus talked about Daryl’s arc of the season and how Michonne’s departure, Alpha, Judith, and Carol has affected him. Norman was asked if Daryl would want a rematch with Beta and he said that Beta is way too tall for a rematch. Even Khary said that people do not realize how tall he is. Melissa talked about Carol’s state of mind as Carol has had a journey during this season that also negativity affected her friendship with everyone during this season. She also said that Carol’s conversation with Kelly also really helped too and that her relationship with Daryl has not been good towards the end of this season.

Khary Payton talked about Ezekiel’s current health as he feels that Ezekiel thinks that his time is coming up due to the cancer that is in him. Khary also said that the cancer may give him hope since it has not stopped him from moving forward. Then, we get to Ross Marquand as he talked about Aaron and Alden meeting the masked character too and how it reminded him of when the group first meet Michonne. Ross also wants Aaron to find a new love interest in the future. Melissa McBride said that she was excited working with Jeffrey Dean Morgan for the first time. Greg Nicotero talked about the process of creating that cancer lump for Ezekiel and I thought that it was interesting to see and hear how he did it. This part of the panel ends as it was announced that six additional episodes after the finale will air (that is part of season 10) sometime in 2021.

The panel then switched to the second group as Lauren Cohan, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Josh McDermitt, Seth Gilliam, and Paola Lourazo as Lauren first talked about Maggie returning to The Walking Dead. Lauren also said that it felt like she has never really left at all. Angela Kang then talked about the dynamic of Negan and Maggie since Maggie thought that Negan was still in the jail. It was funny to hear that Jeffrey Dean Morgan say that Negan saved a lot of her friends. Jeffrey Dean Morgan was asked how would he feel if he seen Hershel Jr. and Morgan said that Maggie might see a different side of Negan since Negan also has a bond with Judith.

The unfortunate news also came as it was announced that season 11 will be delayed to 2021. Then Seth Gilliam talked about Gabriel and how different he is now compared to then since he is the leader of the counsel. He also reacted to Carol letting Negan out of the jail. Josh was asked what Eugene sees different with Stephanie that he has not seen with Rosita. Josh joked that he has not actually seen her yet, but then Seth asked Josh about their connection and Josh ran down their connection and their bond. He also thinks that Rosita and Eugene are good as friends, and that Eugene and Stephanie are building a foundation. Paola was aked about her reaction to the community’s highly praised reception of The Princess. Paola also said that she would love to see Princess interract with Negan since both of the characters are very similar. She also said that her favorite character is Carol.

Angela then talked about the way some scenes were filmed and how challenging it was. It was funny to hear Jeffrey Dean Morgan to respond to the question about getting a new weapon and calling it “Rick” as Morgan believes that Negan has moved passed on from it. Jeffrey Dean Morgan also stated that the scene from the comics of Lucille being broken will not happen on the show.

Scott Gimple said that he would create a pre-apoclapse spinoff with Glenn as he misses working with Steven Yuen and that it would be very funny. Angela then talked about the huge diverse cast of The Walking Dead which also includes the people that work behind the scenes. She also praised Greg Nicotero for his work on this episode and teased The Commonwealth group as well as she hypes up the season finale. The panel ends as Chris gives the dates of The Walking Dead season 10 finale, World Beyond’s airdate, and Talking Dead right after both episodes.

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The Walking Dead Season 10 Finale Airdate Has Finally Been Revealed

Paola Lazaro as Princess- The Walking Dead _ Season 10, Episode 15 – Photo Credit: Jace Downs/AMC

Earlier this year, the season 10 finale of The Walking Dead has been delayed until the end of the year due to the current pandemic. It was supposed to air alongside of the debut of The Walking Dead: World Beyond but that has also been delayed too. The pandemic prevented the post-production of the episode to be finished in time of the premiere of the episode. Fans have waited for months for any news of the airdate and today, we finally got an answer.

During the San Diego Comic Con at Home panel of The Walking Dead, showrunner Angela Kang revealed the airdate of the season finale titled “A Certain Doom.” The episode will air on October 4th, 2020. This is much sooner than we thought and it is great news that we will see the current season conclude. Angela Kang and the rest of the cast that was on that panel gave a few details about the episode and we even got a sneak preview of the episode as well along with what can we look forward to on the next season when they start filming season 11.

Also during the Fear The Walking Dead panel, the premiere date has been revealed as it will premiere on October 11th, 2020. In addition, six additional episodes of Season 10 will also air in early 2021!

Are you excited for the airdate of the final episode? Follow me on Instagram and Twitter @julianexcalibur for more content. Contact me at julian@alternativemindz.com

Casting News: Margot Bingham to Join The Walking Dead on Season 11 to Play as Stephanie

Margot Bingham has joined The Walking Dead as she will play as Stephanie from the comic book series. Although only her voice was heard during the tenth season, she will make her on screen debut on the next season of The Walking Dead. Stephanie is a key member of the large community The Commonwealth in the comic book series and it is because of her, Eugene (Josh McDermitt) lead a few members of the group to The Commonwealth. 

Once at The Commonwealth in the comic book series, Stephanie and Eugene build a bond and eventually they become a couple. It will be interesting to see if the television series will follow the same story that was adapted from the source material. With Margot Bingham on the cast, she can bring new life to the character and flesh out her backstory more as well. The Walking Dead has done this with major and minor characters that did not have a backstory. The most recent example was back in season 9 when Alpha (Samantha Morton) got her own backstory so the same could happen for Stephanie.

Margot is also best known for her work and appearances on Blue Bloods, New Amsterdam, and most recently, Spike Lee’s She’s Gotta Have It. 

The Walking Dead will also have a panel during San Diego Comic Con at Home this Friday afternoon at 1:00pm PT/4:00pm EST as it will be hosted by Talking Dead’s Chris Hardwick and will feature Scott M. Gimple, Showrunner Angela Kang, Greg Nicotero, and cast members Norman Reedus, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Melissa McBride, Josh McDermitt, Ross Marquand, Paola Lazaro, and Lauren Cohan who is returning to the series. The panel will be streamed on the official Comic Con YouTube Channel.

Follow me on Instagram and Twitter @julianexcalibur for more content. Contact me at julian@alternativemindz.com