Comic-Con 2018 was huge and over the top, with more extreme experiences than I’d seen in the decade since I first started attending SDCC. It was the first year I didn’t feel like I missed anything major and, dare I say, the first year I felt a little bored.
I wouldn’t say I felt calmer this year, but 2018 did feel slower and more chill than before with no major news or announcements coming until Saturday during the Warner Bros. panel. There was no big, crazy reveal Wednesday during preview night, no major stunners Thursday (though seeingwas wonderful), and Friday passed with little to get excited about.
I swear it’s not that I’ve grown bored with
. This year produced my two favorite activations *ever* and that was no small feat: and Amazon Prime Video’s took participants to Yemen.
DC brought a ton of info to San Diego, too, including details on, and tidbits about new DC Extended Universe films that excited even this fan.
But this summer, the absence of a Saturday night
took SDCC off this year, and that was a letdown. Especially considering that point to the final GoT season premiering in spring 2019, the show could very well end its run before Comic-Con 2019.
At the opening ofin April, Disney set a record of 117 days for the fastest gross to $1 billion, according to Box Office Mojo. With that milestone and with numerous financial records for both and , it came as a shock to many that the studio would forgo San Diego this year, especially with some before next year’s SDCC.
Without the Disney-owned studio, and arguably without Disney itself, Warner Bros. and DC crushed most of the weekend’s news. By now I’m willing to bet you’ve either heard about DC’s new streaming service, watched at least one trailer for, , or the , or witnessed .
But what other news do you recall from San Diego this year?, the firing of Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn, didn’t even come out of Comic-Con.
Yes, DC was easily the winner of the weekend, but we knew that going in, didn’t we?
Which is exactly what left little to the imagination.
Why 2019 will be different
Next year will be a complete reversal. For starters, it will be the 50th anniversary of Comic-Con. If that’s not a reason for Disney, Marvel and HBO to reappear, nothing is.
Remember what I said before aboutbefore next year’s SDCC? Truth is, even if it does, there’s just no way HBO won’t show up in 2019. With the news coming that it will premiere in the “first half of 2019,” and that just one spin-off is moving forward, I think there’s very little chance we won’t see HBO in SoCal next year. Here’s how we could see the powerhouse series:
- Thank-you/goodbye panel: Cast and creators thanking fans with “special footage” and loads of love.
- Special-edition panel: First looks at the features of a “coming soon” mega-edition Blu-ray of the final season, or even a boxed set of the series.
- The unveiling of the spin-offs: Trailers and special footage from at least the first of the , as well as panels with the cast(s).
As for Disney, it’ll be hot off Toy Story 4 (currently scheduled for June 2019), and looking forward to the live-actionstarring everyone’s favorite action star, . The studio could also bring trailers or glimpses of its live-action slate of films, like Mulan or Maleficent 2.
Finally, there’s the opening ofplanned for next summer at both of Disney’s US parks, leaving it with the easiest option of showing off a sizzle reel from the opening, and perhaps using the opportunity to tease the end of an era, ahead of arriving in December 2019.
It will be the‘s 11th year, and right smack at the beginning of Phase 4, there’s little question the powerhouse will come be back to San Diego next year. There are so many ways for it to arrive:
- Farewell to the Avengers: We’re all pretty sure the . Given all the rumors about the next movie, it would be a treat for fans to give those handing off the Avengers title a chance to say goodbye.
- The Avengers are dead. Long live the Avengers: Panel with the new stars and an easy flip-side to the first suggestion.
- Future of the MCU: We can’t be sure the Avengers will continue in any incarnation past next year’s (still untitled, in case you forgot) . But we can be sure the MCU will continue, with three films already planned each year from 2020 through 2022, including , sequels for and , and a .
- : Seriously, Marvel could just have a single Black Panther panel, whether survives or not, and it would be *packed* — especially if he doesn’t survive and we get a chance to see Shuri step up.
- Women of Marvel: Very few people would be angry if Marvel finally went all in on inclusivity and used its panel time to announce every female superhero getting her own film, from Black Widow to Ms. Marvel to She-Hulk.
All in all, Comic-Con 2018 was a bit disappointing, with predictable moves from Warner Bros. and DC. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t fun, but I’m obviously already looking forward to Comic-Con’s golden anniversary next year.
See you there!
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This piece was originally published July 24, and has been updated with new Game of Thrones info.