I’m afraid I’m over SDCC. This year, it just seemed like more trouble than it was worth — more people, longer lines, more fighting to move to get anywhere, in or out of the con — for very little payoff. It felt like almost nothing on the floor was new, at least movie and TV-wise; honestly, even the booths were in the same place, so it felt like I had just time warped from 2011’s SDCC. Like last year, the major comic movies were nowhere to be seen — nothing for The Dark Knight Rises (which opens this Friday!), nothing for Man of Steel, one lone disturbingly flesh-colored Iron Man armor for Iron Man 3, and nothing for all the other Marvel movies (RDJ’s entrance to Hall H for the Iron Man 3 panel, while awesome, doesn’t count [thanks to Jamey B. for the tip]). And unlike last year, there was even less sneak peek footage released to the masses who couldn’t wait 8+ hours in line to get into Hall H. Here’s footage I know was shown that we can’t see:
? Iron Man 3
? Man of Steel
? The Hobbit
? Edgar Wright’s Ant-Man test footage
? Guillermo del Toro giant robot movie Pacific Rim
? The new American Godzilla remake
? Doctor Who season 7
I’ll be on the lookout for whenever the studios decide to grace the millions of fans who couldn’t get into Hall H with its promotional material; obviously if you guys see it pop up online I’d appreciate the tip.
Look, I wouldn’t want to dissuade anyone from going to SDCC, especially for the first time. It is nerd mecca and a totally insane, unique experience, and one every nerd should get to have. But there is a limit, I think, to how much SDCC can impress you, and after six or so SDCCs, I think I’ve hit my limit. Oh, I enjoyed seeing my industry friends, and I enjoyed taking part in the Voltron Force panel (I especially enjoyed watching the lovely ladies of Team Unicorn play with Voltron Lion toys and making them fight — it was sublime), and I’m grateful to everyone who stopped by my last-minute, very impromptu TR meet-up. But for me, at least, the con itself was much more hassle than it was fun, and I’d say the studios lack of any real comic movie goodness — the stuff that’s driving the entire industry right now — is a large part of the reason why. Come on, guys. There were more than 100,000 nerds at SDCC, and millions more watching footage on TV and checking out the news online. Is it too much to ask for something cool we can all enjoy?
Robert Bricken is one of the original co-founders of the site formerly known as Topless Robot, and its first editor-in-chief, serving from 2008-12. He brought the site to prominence with “nerd news, humor and self-loathing” as its motto, raising it from total internet obscurity to a readership in the millions, with help from his savage “FAQ” movie reviews and Fan Fiction Fridays. Under his tenure Topless Robot was covered by Gawker, Wired, Defamer, New York magazine, ABC News, and others, and his articles have been praised by Roger Ebert, Avengers actor Clark Gregg, comedian and The Daily Show correspondent John Hodgman, the stars of Mystery Science Theater 3000 and Rifftrax, and others. He is currently the managing editor of io9.com. Despite decades as both an amateur and professional nerd, he continues to be completely unprepared for either the zombie apocalypse or the robot uprising.