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Comic-Con 2009: The Star Wars Panel

by Angel Cohn July 27, 2009 5:07 pm
Comic-Con 2009: The <I>Star Wars</I> Panel

So G4 made a big deal this weekend about the fact that they were airing a panel from the San Diego Comic-Con on TV. It was a landmark event. Or something. I mean, in theory it's cool for us poor schmucks who don't get a chance to go to Comic-Con, but maybe this panel wasn't the one to start with. I get why they did it -- the mega-Star Wars franchise has been a part of Comic-Con since the '70s -- but now that there aren't any Star Wars movies coming out, they're pretty boring. I had the (dis)pleasure of sitting through one at the New York Comic-Con, and it had about 10 minutes of entertainment (in the form of the Robot Chicken guys) and 50 minutes of snooze-inducing content (everything else). That didn't bode well for this two-hour special.

The folks at G4 did their best with it... mostly. They started out for the first 30 minutes or so talking about why this special is such a big deal, showing the history of Star Wars at Comic-Con, and then showing all the people dressed up walking around on the floor. It was interesting to see the nostalgic footage and to hear the Star Wars stars talk about how much this has meant to them. My big complaint here was that they had Kristin Adams walking around talking to the nerds. She clearly has little knowledge of the geek world and seemed surprised by all the nerdy details that most casual Star Wars fans actually already knew.

At some point they start showing the actual panel, which was hosted by Attack of the Show's Olivia Munn and Kevin Pereira, dressed up in costumes. Kevin was a mullet-wearing fake brother of Luke Skywalker (a.k.a. Doug). Olivia wore a sluttier version of Leia's white New Hope dress, complete with buns. They tried to make the panel a little bit more light and fun, but the actual content of new Star Wars material isn't that exciting. Anthony Daniels (C3PO) talked about a Star Wars concert that's going to be touring.around, which he's hosting. He showed a clip and gave very few details, but promised it would be awesome. Then some Lucasfilm guy talked about some forthcoming video games. Fine, whatever. I kind of tuned out, but it sounds like they are re-releasing the old games, but now you can be a Sith. Big deal.

The one funnyish highlight came during the Q&A (which had questions submitted via video). After some joking around about lackluster answers, there was a pre-taped video where avid Star Wars enthusiast Seth Green puts on a fake beard and steals George Lucas' glasses (he's sleeping on a chair behind him) and pretends to be George. It's mildly amusing. Then George wakes up and grabs the glasses, the next video question comes from Seth and is about George's luxurious locks and how he keeps them so shiny. Silly and immature, but it was livelier than what followed.

So much talk about Clone Wars that it makes me want to cry. I don't hate the Clone Wars cartoon, I just don't find it all that compelling. I liked the original one that Lucasfilm had very little to do with, but this new one I could live without. And since most of the chatter for the last half of the panel has to do with upcoming episodes, the vocal cast, and even has a reading of the episodes, I was bored to tears. So long. So glad I wasn't in that stuffy, and likely smelly/sweaty room.

That was pretty much it. A few closing remarks and they were done. I think next year, unless there's a huge Star Wars announcement (and having some guy tease about where the Celebration fest will be without actually revealing anything doesn't count), this might not be the panel to air on TV. Instead, I'd have love to seen the Alice in Wonderland panel where Johnny Depp showed up, or the Chuck panel that featured a performance by Jeffster! or the Torchwood panel where John Barrowman sang and made lots of provocative comments. That sounds like fun. This was not really. Kind of a let-down for something that could have been really cool.

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