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Top 10 Things I’m Looking Forward to at New York Comic Con 2015

On Saturday and Sunday of New York Comic Con, the stakes get higher and the lines get longer as big studios, like Marvel, WB, and 20th Century Fox, bring out their movie and TV stars to sign autographs and appear on panels about their upcoming blockbusters and fall TV hits. You can catch the pilot of Fox’s Lucifer and CBS’ Supergirl based on the DC Comics properties, or decided to kick old school with several reunions of shows and movies, including Clueless, All That, and two masterpieces of nerdy TV that made my list.

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6. Go to the Justice League Reunion (Friday 2 PM Empire Stage 1-E)

For a certain generation, the versions of Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and Justice League designed by Bruce Timm and written by Paul Dini, the late Dwayne McDuffie, and others are the definitive ones. For over a decade, they infused heart, humor, and a touch of darkness (especially in Batman: The Animated Series) into these iconic characters and even showcased more obscure heroes and villains, like Booster Gold, Solomon Gundy, Huntress, and The Question in episodes that paid homage to great creators like Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, and Gardner Fox while having beautifully choreographed action. (I ship Question and Huntress by the way.)

At New York Comic Con, the voice actors who brought these characters to life will reconvene joined by Andrea Romano, who has been the cast director on many acclaimed cartoons, including Avatar: The Last Airbender, Boondocks, and Nickelodeon’s current TMNT show. The panel will include Kevin Conroy (Batman), George Newbern (Superman), Susan Eisenberg (Wonder Woman), Phil LaMarr (Green Lantern), Carl Lumbly (Martian Manhunter), and Maria Canals-Barrera (Hawkgirl). They’ll be answering questions, reminiscing about being a part of the DC Animated Universe, and performing a live table read. I can’t wait to completely geek out when Conroy does his Batman voice.

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7. Hang with Archie and the Gang (Friday 4:15-5:15 PM Room 1A05)

Over the past two years, Archie has experienced a creative renaissance under the leadership of chief creative officer Roberto Aguirre-Sicasa (who also writes what is arguably their flagship title Afterlife with Archie), publisher Jon Goldwater, and editor-in-chief Victor Gorelick. They have branched into genres like horror and superheroes with the Dark Circle imprint and revamped and redesigned Archie Andrews himself with the all-star creative team of writer Mark Waid and Saga artist Fiona Staples.

I am looking forward to the Archie Forever panel because I want to learn more about how these creators and executives continued to make characters, like freaking Jughead Jones, as entertaining and relevant as they were when my mom and grandma read them. Also, it is also the only panel that Chip Zdarsky, the court jester of comicdom and the writer of Howard the Duck will appear on to chat about Jughead, hamburgers, and maybe more. Also, I’m hoping they’ll announce a Josie and the Pussycats comic, but will probably be disappointed and stick to watching the 2001 film.

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3. Fly at the Firefly Reunion (Saturday 11:30 AM Main Stage 1-D)

If you are Facebook friends with me, you know I identify as a Browncoat politically. (I am actually registered to vote Independent in Virginia so this works in a weird way.) If you follow me on Twitter, you know that, “I aim to misbehave” from Serenity, the 2005 film continuation of the Firefly TV show is my life quote. And if you’re not familiar with Firefly, it’s a sci-fi Western created by Joss Whedon (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) that aired for one perfect season in 2002 about a ragtag crew of former military vets, an amoral bounty hunter, a cheerful mechanic, a dinosaur obsessed pilot, a preacher with a mysterious past, and a brother and sister, who are fugitives from justice. They bounce around this used future world looking for work while avoid the clutches of the Alliance, the cannibalistic Reavers, and random criminals. It’s a fun fourteen episode show with plenty of humor, nuanced characterization, and hijinks. (The second episode is a train heist!)

And at the Firefly Reunion panel, Browncoats of all ages will swarm to the largest panel room at New York Comic Con to hear three crew members of Serenity regale the crowd with stories of the good ol’ days and possibly some news about the upcoming Firefly MMO. Nathan Fillion (Malcolm Reynolds), Gina Torres (Zoe Washburne), and Jewel Staite (Kaylee) will be present at the panel, and it’ll be fun for me to finally see the stars of my favorite TV show of all time in the flesh.

Marvel's Jessica Jones

2. Check Out the Marvel Netflix Panel (Saturday 5 PM Main Stage 1-D)

Even if all the panelists haven’t been revealed, the Marvel Netflix panel is probably the highlight of New York Comic Con as the cast, writers, and producers of Daredevil and the upcoming Jessica Jones show promote their second and first seasons respectively just a stone’s throw away from Hell’s Kitchen itself. Netflix’s Daredevil channeled the work of creators, like Frank Miller and Brian Michael Bendis, and was a hybrid crime saga/origin story as the lawyer by day, vigilante by night Daredevil (Charlie Cox) fought and bled to save his home from Kingpin (Vincent D’Onofrio). The show was Marvel Studios’ darkest endeavor to date and featured kinetic action choreography and a great performance from D’Onofrio as Kingpin, who rivals Loki as the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s greatest villain.

However, the main focus of this panel will be Jessica Jones, a Netflix original series set to premiere on November 20. There have been a few teasers so far with Jessica Jones showing her superhuman strength, but less than superheroic attitude in smashing her alarm clock. The TV show is based on the Marvel MAX series Alias written by Brian Michael Bendis with art from Michael Gaydos, and it followed the life of superhero turned private eye Jessica Jones as she solved cases and conspiracies involving various Marvel heroes, swore like a sailor and drank too much, and dealt with the ramifications of being raped by the Purple Man, who will be played by David Tennant in the TV show. Hopefully, I will get to see a trailer for the show and possibly a pilot episode, and that it retains the gritty humanity and dark humor of Bendis and Gaydos’ original comic.

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1. Party at one of way too many after parties (Various)

This alone could be its own article as they are a wide variety of New York Comic Con after parties from comic book creators like Charles Soule fronting their own rock bands to the Comixology party in Times Square that features an open bar and live podcast and the Image Comics party, which is set at a bowling alley in Times Square and has a lot of cool creators, like Kieron Gillen, Steve Orlando, Amy Reeder, and Brian K. Vaughan as guests. It is adjacent to yet another after party sponsored by Sonicboombox with drink specials, arcade games, and giant dance floors. There’s also a Wolverine themed burlesque show, a cruise down the Hudson River sponsored by Adult Swim, and much more. Definitely, be responsible and enjoy your time during and after New York Comic Con!

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