28 Things To Do and See at Comic-Con That Aren't Movie, TV or Comics Panels

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Well, we've spent the past week giving you detailed previews about what to expect from this year's San Diego Comic Con when it comes to films, television, comics, and various exclusives, but now it's time to take a step back and look at everything else this show has to offer...as written by a man who admittedly has never been to any incarnation of Comic Con before.

But now that I've had an insane load of various panels, programs and events dumped into my lap to look at, it actually did get to me thinking that as a first-timer of sorts, what could the behemoth that is SDCC offer that tickles my fancy the most? Where would I go there, assuming I also had infinite money and could be in two places or more at the same time? Well, let's take a look and find out, and maybe highlight some places all of you had best check out as well...

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The Strain SPOILER Thread - Dead Girl Walking

Monday, July 21, 2014 at 8:00 am

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Okay, so is EVERY episode going to end with creepy dead girl, then not get back to her until the final minutes of the subsequent episode?

Are y'all still watching this? Worth talking about each week? Let me know below.

By Toutatis! First Look at the Making of the New Asterix CG Feature

Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 6:00 pm

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There's no dialogue on this video, so you don't need to be a French speaker to appreciate it. And since many of you came out of the woodwork as Asterix fans the last time I mentioned this movie, I figured you'd like to see this early look at the pre-viz for Julius Caesar, as well as some scenes that look fully rendered involving his plans for that one small village that still holds out against the invaders.

By Belenos, if this doesn't get any kind of release stateside, I say we dose up on "magic potion" (Red Bull should do it) and drop a few menhirs on those responsible. But I'll try not to be too dogmatix about it.

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Tags: Asterix

The Complete Story of Star Wars Episode IV, All in Haiku

Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 4:55 pm
A drumroll begins
The Fox fanfare starts playing
The logo appears
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In 200 or so of these, author Craig W. Chenery, known primarily for his scholarly studies of zombie movies, tells the entire tale in the Japanese poetry style. Although it's a hybrid version of sorts..
Han Solo shoots first
Greedo does not fire a shot
That would be silly...

[snip]

Once he was a man
CGI changed him a lot
Han stepped on his tail
Also he misspells some names like "Dr. Evizan" and "Wuhrer." But the overall achievement is impressive enough that I'll let that slide. You?

h/t Liam Chapman

Ask Luke's Mother-in-Law: Desert Radio, Mean Maleficent and Pirate Kitten

Thursday, July 17, 2014 at 10:00 am

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A veteran of the LAPD, widow of a Green Beret and self-described crazy cat lady, Luke's Mother-in-Law fears no questions. Ask her anything in the comments section - no issue is too big, too trivial or too weird for her to tackle, but if you get out of line, she will let you know!

All questions and answers are real.

Hello, hello from the vortex of Joshua Tree. This week I attended the 25th anniversay of our local radio station, Z107.7, which is locally owned by Gary and Cindy. They started here in the basin 25 yrs ago. Not many locally owned stations are still around, but little old Joshua Tree has one; they always comment that they are located in a strip mall next to the biggest drug dealer in town: the local family owned pharmacy. Yep, we even have one of those here...next to the local pizza and Indian food restaurant. Z107.7 has been in operation as long as I have lived in the desert. Julia was even a guest DJ when she was in elementary school. Anyway, here is to another 25 yrs of great broadcasting. If you are ever in Joshua Tree stop by and see this treasure.

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The 18 Coolest Exclusives to Snag at San Diego Comic-Con 2014

Wednesday, July 16, 2014 at 6:00 am

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Gentile Giant

If you're a business, you don't go to San Diego Comic-Con without an exclusive. For us fans, well, it might be unusual if we come home without an exclusive. At the biggest pop-culture event in the United States, exclusive can mean a lot of things: toys, comics, clothing, even beer. Some of these items will be available after the convention, maybe months later. Others come in fairly large runs, so you might have decent odds of scoring one. Others come in editions of 250 or less. If you really want one of those, you're going to have to make standing in line a priority. Your best course of action might be to pick out some alternate souvenirs.

With a week to go before the convention, many companies have already announced what they're bringing to San Diego. Still, there could be a few more surprises over the coming days (look for a new one to be revealed on this very site at 10 a.m. today). Below are a few of the standouts - technically, more than 18 - arranged by franchise. Whether your jam is Alien or Hello Kitty, there's likely something for you at San Diego Comic-Con.

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We're Really Trying This Again? Another Orson Scott Card Book-to-Movie

Tuesday, July 15, 2014 at 3:30 pm

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Thom Allen

This time it's his short story "Unaccompanied Sonata," in which a boy is raised to be a musical composer without being allowed to hear any other music. But when he does happen to hear the music of Bach, at the age of 30, he is barred from finishing his composition or ever making music again.

As is often the case with OSC, the apparently unintended irony is thick. How hard it must be, indeed, to have to hide from anything that might stimulate you the wrong way...and then once you find it, to be forced to repress your true self forever.

Still, I thought it had been pretty well established that working with the anti-gay Card is commercial poison. If you can't make a megahit out of his most acclaimed novel, is it really worth it for one without even the name value?

Incidentally, if you're wondering why Card doesn't get the same kind of counter-support that, say, the Duck Dynasty guys do, it's an unmentioned but simple factor - Card's a Mormon, and not all Christian activist groups are down with that.

Guillermo del Toro's The Strain SPOILER Thread

Monday, July 14, 2014 at 8:00 am

This is an experiment. We may not do this every week, depending on the response.

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For now, this appears to be a modern take on the Dracula tale. How do you like it thus far?

Geek Apparel of the Week: Rocket Raccoon Invades Your Favorite Wolf Moon T-Shirt

Friday, July 11, 2014 at 10:00 am

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James Gunn's sense of humor appears to have rubbed off on the licensors for Guardians of the Galaxy, but even if the movie and the comic behind it had never existed, one-upping the uber-manly and iconic Three Wolf Moon shirt by adding raccoons with guns was clearly an inevitability. For maximum effect, if someone asks you about the shirt, don't even tell them it's a character from comics and movies. Just be all redneck Sam Jackson, and tell them you like motherfucking raccoons with big motherfucking guns. Because who doesn't?

Okay, homeowners trying to keep their trashcans upright. You got me on that one. But who ELSE?

(Bonus GAOTW: Topless Roboteer Brando Lars did a pretty snazzy and unlikely mash-up tee featuring Game of Thrones and...well, you should really see for yourself)

President Snow Is Appropriately Whitewashed in New Hunger Games: Mockingjay Poster & Clip

Wednesday, July 9, 2014 at 9:43 am

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For a fascist dictator, I'd say Snow has a few issues with his propaganda - he seems to be taking the Hitler notion of a pure white race to absurd, grotesque extremes. I mean, even racists don't want to look like they've literally been dipped in white chocolate, right?

His new TV ad's a little better. Only the outfits are white, even on the soldiers - all the better to show off the inevitable blood splatter, I suppose. In theory. Because PG-13 movies don't have blood splatter. Just...just look.

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