A Welcome Return: Rounding Up This Year’s Big Comic-Con Moments

Comic-Con International returned to San Diego in all its glory this past week for another four and a half days full of mind-blowing announcements, spectacular trailers and sneak peeks, insightful and surprising panels, and cosplay that could have been ripped straight from a comic book. It was a much-needed reminder of the power of fandom, making a strong case that after two years of uncertainty and stress, what we needed more than anything else was a big dose of the collective excitement that comes from our love of these worlds and characters. Honestly, after a weekend spent among some of the best fans on the planet, we feel like we can fly.

Hopefully, you feel the same way (and not because you’re new to living on a planet with a yellow sun). If you don’t…well, we can only assume it’s because you missed out on everything that went down this weekend. Sadly, we’re unable to turn back time so you can experience Comic-Con from the beginning, but we’ve done the next best thing. Below, you’ll find the biggest DC news to break at Comic-Con in the world of film, TV, animation, games and comics.
 

Black Adam Heads to the Big Screen

If you’re a DC fan at Comic-Con, you know even before the schedule is released that your Saturday morning is spoken for. That’s the day that Warner Bros. heads to Hall H for a look at their biggest upcoming films. The presentation is always breathtaking, and usually includes quite a few of your favorite superheroes and villains. This year, the whole thing was kicked off by a guy who’s a bit of both—Black Adam.

Dwayne Johnson showed off his always spectacular mic skills as he introduced cast members from the film and gave us a new promo for the October release.

Not to be outdone, the Hall H presentation also included the highly anticipated return of Captain Sparklefingers himself, Shazam! Zachary Levi took the stage along with Asher Angel, Jack Dylan Grazer, Lucy Liu and director David F. Sandberg to give us our first look at Shazam! Fury of the Gods, the sequel to the 2016 blockbuster that introduced movie fans to the boy-turned-fully-grown-superhero. Along with discussing the December film, the Fury of the Gods team debuted the movie’s very first trailer.

The response in Hall H was…well, electrifying.
 

Endless Excitement

It’s been thirty years since The Sandman, the iconic fantasy series that helped put both Neil Gaiman and Vertigo on the map, made its memorable debut and since then, fans have all been wondering the same thing: when will The Sandman finally make its way to the screen?

The answer is soon. Very, very soon.

Netflix’s massive adaptation of Gaiman’s comic debuts in less than two weeks—on August 5th. However, until this weekend, we hadn’t yet seen a full trailer. That changed on Saturday when the cast of the highly anticipated new series debuted the show’s trailer in front of a packed Hall H. The two-minute sneak peek offered glimpses of some of the comic’s most memorable moments brought to life, including Morpheus’ capture by Roderick Burgess, his early confrontation with Lucifer, John Dee’s visit to an all-night diner and plenty of Boyd Holbrook’s evil Corinthian.

Netflix also released some new photos and art from the series, which you can find on their Netflix Geeked social accounts.
 

Lots of Knights, Lots of Fights

Gamers know that it’s been way too long since the last time DC gave them reason to pick up their controllers, but that’s changing this year in a big way with the release of not just one massive new console game, but two.

On Thursday, Comic-Con attendees were taken behind-the-scenes into the making of Gotham Knights, the new open-world action RPG that’s set in a Gotham City where the Dark Knight has died. Gamers will have their choice of playing as either Nightwing, Red Hood, Batgirl or Robin, who must take to the streets to keep the city they’ve sworn to protect safe while uncovering what happened to their mentor. Along with plenty of stories told by actors America Young (Batgirl) and Christopher Sean (Nightwing), we were also treated to the latest character trailer from the game, which focused on Gotham Knights’ clearly Burnside-inspired Batgirl.

But the streets of Gotham don’t hold a monopoly on over-the-top combat, and on Saturday, the heroes of the DC Universe showed they were ready to fight to defend the likes of the Batcave along with…uh…Scooby-Doo’s Haunted Mansion and…Jake and Finn’s Tree Fort from Adventure Time…? Is that right?

Yes, it is thanks to MultiVersus, the new, free-to-play platform fighter that features a wide mix of beloved characters from some of your favorite Warner Bros. properties. MultiVersus allows you to fight as Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman or Harley Quinn, but also Bugs Bunny, Shaggy, Tom and Jerry, Steven Universe, Arya Stark and—just announced at SDCC—Rick and Morty and Space Jam’s Lebron James. The panel discussion included actors Matthew Lillard and Tara Strong, who voice Shaggy and Harley Quinn in the game respectively, and also debuted a new showdown video featuring their two characters.

Ready to get in the virtual ring? You’re in luck! MultiVersus’ Open Beta launches tomorrow.
 

Another Year of Animated Action

Of the gajillion reasons why Comic-Con is a must for DC fans, one of the best is that it’s just about the only place you can catch one of Warner Bros. Home Entertainment’s popular DC animated movies on a big screen surrounded by an audience of fans. Friday night brought with it the World Premiere of Green Lantern: Beware My Power, the latest movie set in DC’s current animated universe and the first DC movie to be centered around John Stewart. After the screening, audience members enjoyed a rollicking panel discussion featuring the stars, director and screenwriters of the film that also included a major announcement—the four new DC animated movies that will be released next year.

And those films?

  • Legion of Super-Heroes
  • Batman: The Doom that Came to Gotham
  • RWBY x Justice League
  • Justice League: Warworld

While details on the four movies remain pretty slim at this point, we do know a few things. Legion of Super-Heroes will be the first time we’ll see an animated project focused fully on the Legion of Super-Heroes since the animated series ended in 2008. In the film, Supergirl finds she needs a few lessons as she acclimates to Earth…and Superman looks to the heroes of the Legion to get it done.

Batman: The Doom that Came to Gotham is inspired by the 2000-2001 Elseworlds miniseries written by Mike Mignola and Richard Pace and illustrated by Troy Nixey. (If you haven’t read that one, you should. It’s wild and packed with Lovecraftian imagery, as Mignola is well-known for.)

Justice Society x RWBY promises to be just that—a crossover between DC and the Rooster Teeth animated series RWBY. (Comic readers know that this isn’t the first time the characters have met.) Meanwhile, little is known about Justice League: Warworld, but you know every time you have Warworld factoring in the story, the stakes are going to be huge.
 

Crisis Returns to Comics

Of course, we can’t forget comics, and DC’s publishing arm was well represented with no less than seven comics-focused panels. From a deep dive into the current slate of Bat-comics, to a conversation between DC’s two bestselling Toms—that would be King and Taylor—to a 30th Anniversary celebration for WildStorm, there was something for just about every comic reader out there…including, hopefully, a few brand-new ones.

You can find detailed breakdowns of some of these panels right here on DCComics.com, so we’ll just hit the big highlights here. On Thursday, writer Joshua Williamson surprised a full room of congoers with the announcement that Dark Crisis actually has a longer title than we’d previously revealed—Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths. With its storyline that draws heavily from the classic Marv Wolfman and George Pérez event, Dark Crisis on Infinite Earths has brought back the infinite worlds that the original miniseries seemed to eliminate. What does that mean for the DC Universe going forward? For answers, you’ll have to read the rest of the series!

Also on Thursday, Tom King announced a new noir-tinged miniseries with Phil Hester set deep in the DCU’s past, Gotham City: Year One. Promising to shed light on how the once shining metropolis gave way to a dark decay that persists to this day, Gotham City: Year One will add to the city’s mythos, helping to build a foundation from which all manner of stories could sprout in the future, and with King’s character-driven approach to narrative and Hester’s stylish visuals, you know it’s one you won’t want to miss.

Modern day Gotham certainly didn’t want for exciting announcements either. During Friday’s Gotham panel, Batman Group Editor Ben Abernathy was joined by some of the writers and artists bringing the Dark Knight’s world to life, who helped him announce a flurry of new titles. Getting a particularly excited response from the crowd was Catwoman writer Tini Howard’s announcement that she’ll be bringing breakout character Punchline back for an all-new miniseries, Punchline: The Gotham Game, which she’ll be co-writing with her husband, writer Blake Howard, and featuring art by Gleb Melnikov. In addition, Matthew Rosenberg and Carmine di Giandomenico will be continuing the Clown Prince of Crime’s twisted journey in the new ongoing series The Joker: The Man Who Stopped Laughing. Ed Brisson and John Timms’ Batman Incorporated will bring back the international Bat-team, picking up where this year’s “Abyss” storyline left off. And finally, John Ridley and Stefano Raffaele will give us an unflinching look at Renee Montoya and her compatriots in the Gotham City Police Department in G.C.P.D.: The Blue Wall. For more information on all of these, click here.

DC also showed comics’ ability to deeply enhance and further explore other mediums with three surprising announcements. Batman: Gotham Knights – Gilded City is a six-issue limited series written by Evan Narcisse and drawn by Abel that will serve as the official prequel to the upcoming Gotham Knights game. It’s in Gilded City that we’ll meet the story’s Batman, as he embarks on what will prove to be his final case before his mysterious death. Look for the first issue to drop on the same day as the game—October 25.

Actor Paul Dano—who freaked us all out in The Batman—will return to the chilling role in a much different way with The Riddler: Year One, a six-issue DC Black Label limited series set in the continuity of the film that’s written by Dano with art by Steven Subic. The Riddler: Year One will explore how Dano’s Edward Nashton got to the point where we find him in the film—as a costume-clad serial killer ready to destroy an entire city.

Finally, Jim Lee delighted fans of Milestone Comics when he announced and debuted the trailer for Milestone Generations, an all-new feature length documentary that will tell the story of the trailblazing imprint’s history and how its return couldn’t come at a better time. Milestone Generations is narrated by Method Man and will be available to stream on HBO Max starting this Friday, July 29.


Whew! That’s a lot! And we didn’t even get into Friday night’s side-splitting Harley Quinn season three advance screening (but don’t you dare miss the season premiere this week), Todd McFarlane and Greg Capullo’s announcement that they’re teaming up for Batman/Spawn or any of the spectacular DC cosplay meetups that took place each day on the convention center’s grand staircase. In short, there’s so much that happens at San Diego Comic-Con each year that it’s impossible to fit it all in one roundup. So, be sure to check out our news section and the DC Community for more, and make your plans now to join us at Comic-Con in 2023. Because if there’s one other thing we know about SDCC, it’s that while this year’s show may have just ended, next year’s will be here before you know it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s