There may be nothing weirder than going to a characteristic panel at New York Comedian Con specializing in a single actor and listening to them discuss… effectively… nothing. From Ewan McGregor evaluating the relative deserves of New York bagels, to David Tennant discussing Shakespeare, to Chris Evans solely spending 20 minutes on stage, most of it taken up with discuss his canine, Dodger, the celebs actually didn’t have a lot to say. Or, extra precisely, they weren’t actually allowed to speak about a lot of something.
Are Followers Bored with Marvel and DC? Superhero Fatigue at NYCC 2023
It’s not simply these people both. The Our Flag Means Demise solid spent a complete hour answering superlative questions, ending up the panel with a freestyle beatbox/rap by star Rhys Darby, by no means as soon as saying the phrases Our Flag Means Demise. The solid of Guardians of the Galaxy performed “would you fairly?” with the moderator. Star Trek did a single screening of subsequent week’s episode of Decrease Decks and didn’t announce any information. At the least for main networks and actors, the panel vibes of New York Comedian Con have been totally off.
It’s not anybody’s fault, actually. That is what occurs when actors aren’t allowed to speak about what they’re engaged on, and studios solely have govt producers and manufacturing designers chatting with the press. These persons are attention-grabbing, they usually have fascinating issues to say about their work, however it’s not who individuals come to NYCC to see, and it’s not what individuals need to examine afterwards.
AMC was the one main studio that was capable of do something important. With a full slate of previews and teasers alongside an early exhibiting of the Daryl Dixon finale and a panel with star-executive producer Norman Reedus, The Strolling Lifeless walked away the winner. Or, shambled, actually. The bar, which was “actors discuss their work,” was fairly low. AMC might need realized that ready for the AMPTP to signal a good contract was a dropping sport, and determined early on to not maintain its breath. The Strolling Lifeless has been part of comedian cons for over a decade. It will have been a disgrace to let company greed break the streak.
However regardless of all of the weirdness, there have been nonetheless some good issues happening outdoors of the large levels. The cosplays have been unimaginable—NYCC appears to like iterations and inventive interpretation, and this 12 months followers turned out. The fan occasions have been additionally nice; I went to a really charming meetup for followers of Izzy Palms and got here away with washi tape, three pins, two short-term tattoos, and having signed a petition to resume as a crew. There was additionally a medium winner: comedian books. Each DC and Marvel made huge bulletins concerning the books and arcs which might be upcoming from their imprints. Regardless of this, even comics had their justifiable share of “what the fuck is occurring?” floating round.
I’m speaking about Tom Hardy. The actor stopped by NYCC on Saturday to advertise Arcbound—the navy sci-fi comedian he co-created alongside Scott Snyder. Arcbound is the primary collection from Arcbound Studios, an organization with sturdy ties to web3, crypto, and digital collectibles, aka NFTs. There was no phrase on how Arcbound will cross over between leisure and digital collectibles, and Arcbound Studio’s web site is equally sparse, with no information, a singular give attention to Arcbound’s characters and plot, and an odd button for “Kickstarter” with no info supplied.
That is the type of information that might usually be overshadowed at NYCC by huge media occasions, trailers, big casts, and premieres. It’s nice that comics and cosplay obtained their probability within the highlight, particularly after how awkward it was at San Diego Comedian-Con, which went on regardless of many actors pulling out on the final minute because of the timing of the SAG-AFTRA strike. However in numerous methods, it actually felt like among the actors and solid panels in all probability shouldn’t have come to NYCC in any respect.
A panel styled like a sport present is type of charming, however can also be completely meritless. It’s not attention-grabbing, it’s simply there to take up time in a schedule. These panels have been, within the least charitable phrases, disrespectful to actors who’re extraordinarily proficient and profitable and would in all probability have fascinating issues to say in the event that they have been simply requested the precise questions. It was additionally demoralizing as a fan to have spent cash to attend a panel the place you’ll hope to get attention-grabbing insights into who these persons are, and as a substitute you’re caught cringing—very like the actors on stage—because the moderator asks “who could be probably to take a selfie with Bigfoot?” as if that’s an actual query individuals ask one another.
The most important difficulty with all these of us on stage was that only a few of them spoke concerning the strike, and solely a pair alluded to the labor motion in indirect phrases. Everybody appeared to understand that they have been strolling a really positive line between what was and was not thought of promotion of struck work, however the full lack of labor dialogue felt odd after months of help. The WGA strikes, which have solely been resolved up to now month, weren’t talked about in any respect. In the end, this combined messaging—are they right here to advertise their work or not? Are they going to speak concerning the strikes or not? Are they going to speak about something newsworthy or attention-grabbing?—produced an odd stress between the viewers and the individuals on stage.
Among the best NYCC panels that I attended wasn’t truly held in any of the principle levels… and even on a stage. Within the again room of the fourth-floor River Pavilion, the Nationwide Affiliation of Voice Actors held a panel dialogue on AI that was insightful and full of non-public experiences. Despite the fact that the panel came about in what was kind of a cafeteria, the subject was attention-grabbing sufficient that each desk was full and folks have been paying shut consideration to what was being stated. At a con the place each different panel gave the impression to be actively, painfully, avoiding speaking concerning the labor actions which might be at the moment ongoing, the NAVA panel was a refreshing dialogue that not solely honored the time and experience of its panelists, however revered the intelligence of the viewers.
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