Comic Con 2015: 10 Things Fans Need To Know

Published on July 13, 2015. Updated July 24, 2015

While it may have once been just about comic books, over the years San Diego Comic Con has become the go-to destination for everything pop culture. From movies to TV to video games, Comic Con has grown by leaps and bounds with all of the industry’s biggest names on-hand for a number of big buzzy reveals. The 2015 edition of the annual event didn’t disappoint as fans were hit with a massive amount of new information tied to a number of Hollywood’s small screen standouts. Here’s a look at the most important things we learned over the four day gathering that will directly impact what you watch this fall and beyond.

Bonus: The Big Bang Theory’s Writers Room Sounds Awesome

When your series is the most-watched comedy on TV it probably goes without saying your writer’s room is going to be light and fun. This weekend’s panel featuring the writers of the Emmy winning series just confirmed that notion, as series creator (and comedic genius) Chuck Lorre was joined by his team on stage for a panel moderated by Kunal Nayyar (a.k.a. Raj) and eventually surprise guest Mayim Bialik.

The highlights included a bunch of behind the scenes stories including how a real-life gift to Lorre inspired an episode (hint: it involved a drone) and how a real-life argument between the writers about a long-discussed Back To The Future potential plot-hole re-appeared as a conversation between Sheldon (Jim Parsons),  Leonard (Johnny Galecki) and Howard (Simon Helberg). The panel also touched on the infamous “first pilot” that CBS had reworked into the retooled version that made the air and introduced Helberg and Nayyar and Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting. The less said about that one the better though, as it’s hard to fathom a show without that trio being a part of the mix.

Michael Ansell / ©CBS /courtesy Everett Collection

Bonus #2: HBO’s Westworld Is Going To Be Dark

HBO’s Westworld is going to be the network’s next big “it” series, but it was oddly absent from the Comic-Con lineup…so imagine the surprise when it crashed the party in a unexpected way. Executive producer Jonathan Nolan during his Person of Interest panel shocked the crowd by showing the first footage from the upcoming series. While the footage will remain off-line for now, the network released a series of images to tease fans and they paint a vivid picture.

The series, which revolves a theme park full of robots that slowly begin to take over against their overseers, has assembled a stunning cast fronted by film legend Anthony Hopkins, which has led to increased buzz. Based on the 1973 film from Jurassic Park creator Michael Crichton, the project is expected to debut in early 2016 and, based on this weekend’s reveals, it will fuel viewer’s interest every step of the way.

Source: HBO

10. The Muppets New Series Sounds Awesome

Did you ever think you’d see the day when The Muppets had a Comic-Con panel?

In what had to have been one of the most bizarre (and yet still awesome) moments of this year’s Con, the cast of ABC’s upcoming comedy series The Muppets held court during the Saturday session and shared a few details about the upcoming reboot. We already knew the series would go Office -style and take viewers inside the world of the Muppets when they weren’t on air, but seeing the new details it makes it seem even more exciting. The series will revolve around a new talk show hosted by Miss Piggy that airs right after Jimmy Kimmel Live! on ABC (naturally).

Kermit is the executive producer; Gonzo’s the head writer; Fozzie’s her on-air sidekick; Scooter is the talent coordinator; Bobo is the stage manager; Sam The Eagle is the head of broadcast standard; and the Swedish Chef (of course) runs crafts service. Meanwhile, Rowlf owns the tavern across the street where the gang goes to relax and much to chagrin of Miss Piggy, Kemit’s new girlfriend Denise (also a pig) is the head of marketing for the network. Three words: We are in.

Source: Business Insider

9. The Simpsons Are Still NOT Getting A Divorce

If you’re one of the seemingly endless number of people who actually thought Homer and Marge were really going to call it quits (for more than 10 minutes), the series’ creative team wants you to know you can relax. A central theme of the show’s panel was the show’s title family will not be splitting apart anytime soon, though the entire cast of HBO’s Girls will be voicing characters in the much talked about season premiere.

Other things learned in the panel include the news that this upcoming season will also see guest spots by Kate McKinnon, Stephen Merchant, Michael York, as well as the in-series debut of The Simpsons Movie fan favorite Spider-Pig (aka Harry Plopper for true die hards). Producers also revealed that this year’s Halloween edition, in addition to seeing the return of Sideshow Bob, will include a opening coach gag by Ren & Stimpy’s John Kricfalusi.

©20th Century Fox Film Corp. All rights reserved./courtesy Everett Collection

8. The Flash Is Adding Earth 2 and Jay Garrick

In case you thought the addition of the time-stream to season, one of The CW’s The Flash, was confusing just wait as here comes Earth-2. Plus producers are also eventually going to add Kid Flash, Wally West and Jay Garrick, who was the first character to be Flash in the comics and has never been represented before on a live-action TV series.

While we are going to have to wait to see who is casted to portray Kid Flash and Wally West, producers revealed Masters of Sex star Teddy Sears will bringing Garrick to the small screen. In addition, CW mainstay Shantel VanSanten has been signed to play Patty Spivot, Joe West’s (Jesse L. Martin) new partner that will serve as a romantic foil for Barry Allen (Grant Gustin). Producers also revealed that both The Flash and Arrow will use their early episodes to help serve as a introduction to the launch of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow in 2016.

How’s that for the ultimate prequel?

(Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)

7. Things Are Going to Get Even More Batty in Gotham

At the end of season one, Gotham’s mob war came to an explosive end as both sides suffered causalities resulting in The Penguin (Robin Lord Taylor) emerging on top. Yet if James Gordon (Ben McKenzie) thought Oswald Cobblepot was going to be his only rogue to keep an eye on he’d be dead wrong as The Joker’s back and he’s just as crazy as before.

Cameron Monaghan (of Showtime’s Shameless) made a special appearance at the Con in character as the psychopathic villain to ask Gordon “would you say you have a high pain threshold?” He was then swarmed by Comic Con security as the crowd erupted. Gotham producers also warned audiences to expect more surprises for season two as this year’s theme is “the rise of the villains.” If only a certain future superhero had found a place to call his secret lair….oh wait, he did.

Photo by Okauchi/REX Shutterstock

6. Arrow Goes Darhk With Neal McDonough

It was a wild third season with Ra’s Ah Ghul making life difficult for Oliver Queen (Stephen Amell) and company, but just because the Demon’s done doesn’t mean life will get easier for the residents of Starling City.

For one, Queen has to return to his hometown after ditching it in the finale, but assuming he does he won’t have a warm welcome awaiting him as Damien Darhk will be waiting. Played by go-to villain Neal McDonough (who also moonlights in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Dum Dum Dugan), Darhk is an adversary of Ghul who is described as mysterious and sophisticated with his own group of dangerous followers. The role is being aged up from the comics where the character is a twentysomething tech whiz but, as we’ve learned from three seasons of Arrow, the producers clearly know what they are doing…and given the first look they gave audiences at Ollie’s new costume fans can rest assured they are in for another cool season.

Prashant Gupta / © FX Network / Courtesy: Everett Collection

5. Supergirl’s Premiere Night On CBS Will Be Geek-tacular

If you really look at CBS’ schedule, one of the only logical places for the network to put its new superhero series Supergirl was alongside the smart-geek series Scorpion and, until Thursday Night Football is over, the relocated The Big Bang Theory. While that will be a very short window, it’s going to result in one massive night for ratings.

During Comic-Con, it was revealed the network will air a special 90 minute episode of last season’s breakout hit Scorpion immediately following the first episode of Supergirl to help make the night an event…and to lead into Supergirl the network will air a new episode of Big Bang. Given the insane reaction to the full pilot, which was screened for fans at the show, these three programs airing together for the first (and potentially only time) could send the ratings into overdrive.

Oh and it was also revealed KISS frontman Gene Simmons will be appearing on Scorpion’s season premiere…that should be fun to watch.

(CBS/Warner Bros. Entertainment via AP)

4. Once Upon A Time Gets Brave

Going into the Con, everyone believed Once Upon A Time’s big news would revolve around the casting of its newest characters Merlin, Guinevere and King Arthur. While that did happen, and the trio will be played by Elliot Knight, Liam Garrigan and Joana Metrass, that wasn’t the only news.

Keeping with Comic-Con tradition of revealing new characters during its panel, the show’s producers revealed Disney’s Merida (of Brave fame) will also be venturing to Storybrooke in season five. Amy Manson who fans know from Being Human will pick up the character’s iconic bow and arrow, but for now that’s all the show will reveal about her entrance. Meanwhile it was also noted that when the show returns in the spring for the second half of its season following its now traditional winter break, it will do so with its 100th episode. Congrats to the whole Once team on that milestone as it has been a fun ride to watch.

Photo by David Fisher / Rex Features

3. Legends of Tomorrow Looks Legendary

Without a doubt, the buzziest superhero series of the new season looks to be The CW’s DC’s Legends of Tomorrow. Following the success of The Flash, it was never a question if The CW would look to re-team with their DC friends but more when it would happen.

After months of rumors about the ultimate DC Comics team up that involved The Atom (Brandon Routh), Firestorm (Victor Garber), Captain Cold (Wentworth Miller), Heatwave (Dominic Purcell) and White Canary (Caity Lotz), it was revealed the group would indeed be united but by none other Rip Hunter (Arthur Darville). For non-comic fans, that’s a lot of information to take in, but simply put, it means there’s a lot of big name in play and, based on the new trailer released to the public, this weekend it is going to be epic. We are completely impressed.

2. Morgan and Rick Are Going To Clash On The Walking Dead…Or Are They?

The Walking Dead producers love to edit their teasers to make things seem more probable than they really are…case in point their new Comic-Con trailer, which shows what happens after Morgan (Lennie James) is re-united with Rick (Andrew Lincoln).

While the entire trailer looks to be pointing to a confrontation between to the two friends, series executive producer Scott M. Gimple (who fans remember wrote the powerful “Clear” episode that first reunited the two men a few years ago) said “we sometimes play with the truth in trailer.” Either way, with the peaceful town of Alexandria now thrown into panic and a herd of zombies banging on its doors, don’t expect season six to be any easier for the survivors of the zombie apocalypse. Not to mention that creepy group of lone “wolves” are on the prowl and they don’t seem friendly.

1. Fear The Walking Dead Debuts Aug. 23

Just because summer ends in August, doesn’t mean the season won’t be going out without packing a big bite. This weekend fans got the announcement they knew was coming…an air date for the long awaited Walking Dead spin-off/companion series Fear The Walking Dead.

While the title still needs work, the first trailer looks fantastic and upon its August 23rd debut fans will be able to learn more about what really happened during that time Rick Grimes was unconscious. Starring Kim Dickens, Cliff Curtis, Frank Dillane, Alycia Debnam-Carey, Elizabeth Rodriguez and Mercedes Mason (all virtually guaranteed to become as well known as The Walking Dead cast), the series will run for six weeks before giving way to the new season of the original, which will bow on October 11.

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