Gallons Of Nerd Sweat: A Run-Down of Comic-Con 2014

Comic Con

The chorus of squeals, grunts, and shouts are now subsiding in the beautiful city of sunny San Diego as 2014’s Comic-Con draws to a close. Again, we’ve been blasted with another great showing of things to come and new levels of patience will be needed by fans everywhere as a result of all of the content teased. Of course, not many are able to brave the infamously musky halls of the convention, so allow me to act as your guide to the “hits” that were shown this year.

Note: stay away from any attendees carrying a body pillow.

1. Marvel Showed us Some Things

On Saturday, Marvel did what they’ve done best these last ten years at Comic-Con–assert their dominance, that is.

Kevin Feige was seen spitting in Jim Lee's eyes.

Kevin Feige was seen spitting in Jim Lee’s eyes.

At Marvel Studios’ Hall H presentation we were graced with the presence of nearly a dozen beautiful actors–also known as the cast of The Avengers — before sweet samples of movie info were lovingly delivered to the attendees. James Spader discussed his experience playing the big-bad Ultron, Paul Bettany gave tiny bits of info about his portrayal of Vision, and Elizabeth Olsen prompted 20th Century Fox to ready themselves for a legal blitzkrieg after she referred to the Scarlet Witch as a “mutant”.

Which, she is–but… legal things.

But most interesting of the things Marvel teased the fans with at the convention was a short look at Age of Ultron and an idea of Marvel’s approach to the Scott Derrickson-directed Doctor Strange.

/Film‘s Germain Lussier posted a great summary of the footage:

We start on a city scape and the whole team is assembled in Avengers tower. They’re all hanging out. Drinking beer, joking, and Hawkeye tells Thor the whole no-one-can-grab-the hammer thing is “a circus side show.” He disagrees and Stark tries to pick it up. “If I lift it do I get to rule Asgard?” he asks. Yes, Thor says. He fails on a first attempt. “I’ll be right back.” He puts on the Iron Man glove. No dice. He and Rhodie try, both in their Iron Man gloves. Nope. Hawkeye fails. Banner tries and really exerts himself. Everyone gives him a look. Next up is Cap and he budges it which really gets Thor worried. However, having all failed Thor says he has a simple theory “You’re all not worthy.”  Just then a huge screeching sound. “You’re all not worthy.” Enter a brutally broken, almost zombie like metal being. It’s Ultron. “How could you be worthy? You are all killers. You want to protect the world but you don’t want it to change. There’s only one path to peace… your extinction.” Just then a bunch of other robots fly in and we get the Marvel Studios logo. Ultron continues in voice over with a bunch of other images. “I had a vision … the whole world screaming for mercy.” People running away, escaping. “Everyone tangled in strings.” Banner all sickly looking on a place. “Strinnnngs.” Massive battle scenes, Hawkeye and others helping people evacuate. Banner in the snow, then a random hospital, Scarlet Witch on a bus, Thor smashing a tank. Then Tony Stark “It’s the end,” he says. “The end of the path I started us on.” Widow adds, “Nothing lasts forever.” We then see a screaming Hulk and the massive Hulk Buster armor. Black Widow on the Harley Davidson, Quicksilver running around, Andy Serkis as a human (!?!), more explosions, Iron Man flying by what looks like a prison and shooting some soldiers. Hulk throws a car at the Hulkbuster and then punches him through it. A quick shot of Widow and Hulk almost touching hands. The whole time, a song has been playing about strings. It’s very eerie and morbid. Finally, we get a fully realized, metallic, 8 foot Ultron. Referencing his statement “There are no strings on me” as his clenching fist turns into the circle around the “A” of “Avengers: Age of Ultron.” The title card. Then, after that, we see Cap’s shild broken, Tony Stark looking down at it, the camera pulls back and we literally see every member of the team laying on the ground in tatters on what may or not be Thanos’ tomb. They look dead. Wow. The footage is simply breathtaking. This is a wholly different, much bigger Avengers movie than we’re used to seeing. But don’t worry friends, I don’t think the Avengers die. That’s likely just a vision that Scarlet Witch makes Tony Stark see.

Sounds intense, right? Very reiminiscent of Mewtwo’s ambitions in the film Pokemon:The Movie, which is a great sign.

(But really–it sounds so cool.)

As for Doctor Strange, his greatness Sir Feige gave an idea of how they’ll blend the craziness of Doctor Strange into the psudeo-science based world of the Marvel Cinematic universe, over at We Got This Covered:

Doctor Strange is a classic Marvel origin story, because he’s got one of the best origins ever. And it is our opportunity to take a left turn into the supernatural. Now, what is the definition of “supernatural”? It varies. We like the idea of playing with alternate dimensions. [Doctor] Strange, in a very [Steve] Ditko, crazy astro-trip way, traveling through dimensions and traveling through other realms is something we think is very cool. And playing with perceptions of reality. I just watched the Neil deGrasse Tyson Cosmos series, which is amazing, and which may as well be an acid trip. It may as well be Doc Strange! It is a mind-bending [series], all based in physics and based in quantum mechanics, and we’re going to play a lot with the notion of that as an explanation for how the sorcerers do what they do. 

So essentially, they’re going to focus on the weird abstract corners of our universe. I’m down. Especially if Joaquin Phoenix is our tour guide.

Aside from that, Marvel confirmed that Guardians of the Galaxy 2 is in the development (and it will be written and directed by Guardians of the Galaxy captain, James Gunn) while also confirming that the frequently-troubled Ant-Man is still on track.

2. DC Showed us Some Things

In terms of DC cinematic offerings, the focus was on one major film — Batman V. Superman: Dawn of JusticeDirector Zack Snyder showed up for a few minutes on Saturday and graced the comic-con crowds with two very exciting reveals. First was a great snippet of teaser footage wherein a very DKR-Inspired battle armor-adorned Batman powers the batsignal–shining his emblem through the rain drenched skies of Gotham. The signal shines on an intimidating figure hovering in the night sky. It’s Superman. And he doesn’t look happy–as emphasized by his broiling, heated eyes. Then, the footage cuts to black.

I’ll give you a couple of minutes to trash your room in excitement.

You back? Your computer still functioning? Great!

Now, I will be the first to admit that Snyder isn’t the best film-maker. However, if the guy has a definite strength anywhere–it’s making things visually pleasing and shit-your-pants epic. And with reports of Argo scribe Chris Terrio’s script being highly satisfying it seems that this movie has a chance to be a great jump-start to DC’s cinematic universe.

Oh, and Snyder released the first look at Wonder Woman!

The only image that can unite feminists and fanboys.

The only image with the power to unite feminists and fanboys.

3. Television Showed us Some Things

Here’s a spot where Marvel is a bit more even in terms of content. Marvel gave fans a look into all the new Marvel shows to look forward to, including Season 2 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (which promises to be especially interesting after the events of The Winter Soldier), Agent Carter, and a new Guardians of the Galaxy cartoon!

Sounds like Marvel will finally have the 70-90 year old crowd covered with Agent Carter!

Because she's old.

Because she’s old.

Meanwhile, DC showed what they’ve got in store for three of their upcoming shows: Constantine, Season 3 of Arrow, and GOTHAM. The premiere episode for Constantine that was debuted received a bit of a mixed reception, unfortunately. However, early buzz of the Commissioner Gordon-centric GOTHAM seems to be fairly positive–making that series one to watch, and Season 3 of Arrow seems to have an interesting line-up with both Arsenal/Speedy and Ra’s Al Ghul on the way!

Also, bows and arrows!

In a loosley-related news, DC Animation has announced another direct-to-video feature-length animated movie…which will be directed by DC Animation god Bruce Timm!!!

"Yeah, I pretty much made your childhood. But what do you kids remember? Fuckin' Pokemon..."

AKA: The guy responsible for at least half of the great cartoons of your childhood.

And Star Wars also made a bit of a splash with the premiere of the Star Wars:Rebels movie that will pave the way for the new television series that will play on Disney XD. You can check out the trailer below:

4. Other Movies Showed us Some Things

Over the last fifteen years, the convention has turned from a display for a specific sub-set of nerds to a show for a more broad range of nerds–which has allowed it to be used as an advertising platform for all sorts of fans. Which means lotsa movies stop by the convention to show us some things.

Christopher Nolan’s Interstellar had a quick panel where the director talked about his goal in making this movie — to get people interested in the ambitions of exploring space again. Meaning he’s aiming to create an epic drama reminiscent of Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. Matthew McConnaughey also spoke a bit about the movie’s plans and his experience on set.

He noted that Nolan has a strict "no bongos" policy.

He noted that Nolan has a strict “no bongos” policy.

They also premiered a new trailer during the panel. Check it out below:

The Wachowski’s newest film, Jupiter Ascending debuted a new extended trailer, showing off more of the sci-fi/fantasy fusion film which promises to be interesting.

Kevin Smith’s newest film, Tusk debuted its first trailer which again shows a movie that will at the very least, be interesting. Smith became inspired to write and create the film after reading a strange personals ad requesting a live-in room mate…who would agree to wear a walrus suit and act like a walrus at all times. Check out his twisted take on the story below:

Mad Max: Fury Road showed some footage as well–which has been receiving a LOT of positive buzz. Tom Hardy takes up the reins in a sequel to the famous films of the 80’s. Check out the newly released trailer below:

Sin City 2: A Dame to Kill For also showed up at Comic-Con with new footage promising more gritty, surreal action. Check out the trailer below:

and video game fans were also left with reason to be excited as the teaser for Duncan Jones’ (of Moon and Source Code fame) Warcraft was released.

What a uh… what a… what a trailer.

5. Video Games Showed us Some Things

With Comic-Con being a haven for geeks of all backgrounds, video games are yet another medium that can be found throughout the halls of the convention. And with that, we have even more announcements for the gaming community.

Disney announced that they will be adding the Guardians of the Galaxy to their very popular figure-based video game, Disney Infinity. Parents, check out the trailer below, and despair at the sight of even more action figures that you’ll have to buy to get your kids to shut up and leave you alone:

Telltale Games also showed up and announced that yes, they are interested in continuing the money train they’ve got going with their Walking Dead series of adventure games–Season 3 is on the way.

Marvel also announced two bits of video game-based news. They will be adding the Guardians of the Galaxy to the Marvel Heroes MMO game (meaning they’re actually available to play as now, if you’ve got the game. (Check them out!)  Also, they’ll be cranking out a game called Marvel: Contest of Champions which as epic as it sounds, will be coming out exclusively for tablets and smartphones. If that smidgen of info hasn’t dulled your interest you can check out the trailer below:

And Traveler’s Tales unveiled their plans for the newest entry in their very successful Lego franchise of games: Lego Batman 3: Beyond Gotham, which will feature all sorts of great DC characters, along with different versions of Batman–including Adam West Batman. Check it out below:

And some less comic-centric games showed a little bit more as well at Comic-Con, including the controversial  Battlefield: Hardline. At the convention, EA announced that the title will be delayed until 2015, while also explaining that the title’s story will be guided by some television heavyweights, while also receiving some acting muscle from stars such as Kelly Hu and Eugene Byrd for the cutscenes. This title will definitely be a curious one to follow.

Monolith Productions showed off their fairly promising game, Shadow of Mordor and unveiled that fan-favorite Gollum will indeed be featured in the game, while also revealing that the protagonists’ guide in the game will be none other than the ring-forger himself. If you’re interested in a game that looks like a fusion of Batman: Arkham City and Assassin’s Creed, check out the trailer below:

Phew, gotta catch my breath. Welp, a lot of shit went down at Comic-Con 2014. At least nobody was stabbed in the eye this year. As always, check in to Nerdglow for more nerdy fan goodness!

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