San Diego International Comic-Con 2015 — Day 3

SDCCDay3

SDCC Day 3

No, you’re not imagining it, Spock lives. It would appear that he’s also found the fountain of youth and growth potions. Being well over six feet tall, the spectre of Spock spoke with a voice hauntingly similar to a certain science officer from the Enterprise. He beamed in during the Quick Draw panel and Mark Evanier interviewed him for a few moments. A man of few words, the Vulcan seemed a bit shy in front of the crowd and hesitant to speak his mind. It appeared that he was campaigning for a charity of some sort. A logical thing to do being such a close look alike to a well loved character.

Surround on the Exhibition Floor

Surround on the Exhibition Floor (click for full size)

So, it’s Saturday, day 3, the biggest day of the SDCC— the big panels, the big nigh-impossible to get into hall H events, and the costume masquerade. I’ll be honest, the wife and I are going very slow. So, we didn’t go for anything huge. Every year regardless, there are three panels we never miss. The Quick Draw with Mark Evanier and his artist buddies, and the two cartoon voices panels (also hosted by Mark). Over the years, these panels have never disappointed in terms of energy and humor. This year was no exception.

The Quickdraw did have one major change, Scott Shaw, one of the regular artists who was recovering from ankle surgery, could not attend. Mark dialed him up during the panel and had the crowd wish him well. This year’s artists were Mike Kazaleh (filling in for Scott Shaw), Floyd Norman, and (of course) Sergio Aragones.

The Quickdraw went well, I was able to record a large chunk of it for the folks who have never seen the panel. It was toward the middle that Commander Spock was asked up while the artists were drawing. Just looking at him made you do a double take. The interaction with Mark and Sergio Aragonés is always a big part of the show, and Sergio drawing gags one after another with gunfighter speed.

QuickDraw with Mike Kazaleh, Floyd Norman, and Sergio Aragones

After Quickdraw was cartoon voices, another panel that is always great. Every year it is different as Mark gets 5 or 6 different voice actors to demonstrate their talents. This year’s line-up were: Keone Young, Pat Musick, Eric Bauza, Jessica DiCicco, Phil Morris, and Josh Robert Thompson. Depending on the mix, it can be raucously funny, so much so you have tears. This year was a strong contender with a new script. Personally, I think Mark needs to change the demo script again. This new one seemed too fragmented for me. It was still entertaining, but it had less opportunities for the actors to ad lib.

2015 Cartoon Voice Session


2012 Cartoon Voice Session — One of the best performances

Vader Takes on The Rebel Army Alone (click for full size)

Vader Takes on The Rebel Army Alone (click for full size)

After cartoon voices we saw the Marvel Cup-o-Joe panel with Joe Quesada. Years ago, this panel used to be Joe at the podium solo answering questions from his truly amazing encyclopedic knowledge of Marvel lore. More recently, he moderates while a cast of writers and editors field the audience questions. This year it was all about the Secret Wars and the explosion of different directions that marvel titles are taking. They spent a long time talking up Marvel’s involvement with Star Wars and reinvigorating the lore. The two big projects mentioned were Vader Down, and Lando. The rest of the panel was scattershot across more titles than I could keep track of. Especially with me be off the comics scene for so long. I do find it interesting that while DC is focusing on redefining their mainstay characters, making them more relatable and versatile. Marvel is just throwing in the kitchen sink testing every extreme. I’m not sure if it’s because of Disney that they are taking such risks, but they sure aren’t being cautious. They rightfully acknowledge that it will take some work to reassemble the marvel universe after this shake-up. All the editors all the way up to Joe were cautious at where things would be when the Secret Wars finally came to a close.

Secret Wars Promo Art (Alex Ross) [click full size]

Secret Wars Promo Art (Alex Ross) [click full size]

After a long hiatus away from comic books, the efforts from both Marvel and DC are pulling me back. I think Marvel’s kitchen sink approach may create the most unique narratives in their continuity for many years. I also like DC focusing on the depth of their characters, making them more human, and exploring what makes them heroes.

After Cup-o-Joe we explored the floor, or more correctly, tried to. We steamed around a bit, but even a half-hour in that massive press of humanity is exhausting.

Wish we had the energy to see the masquerade. Just getting the tickets is a trial though, so we’ll pass on it tonight and maybe catch it on the playback.

Tomorrow is the last day. Hope we have the energy to explore more.

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