San Diego Comic-Con 2021 At-Home begins today–Preview and Planning Guide (and lots of watch parties)

   sdcc 2021 attendee

In-person cancellations have not kept every event this summer from canceling entirely.  One of those is typically one of the summer’s biggest events, San Diego Comic-Con.  As with last year’s Comic-Con At Home, events for SDCC 2021 are proceeding this week, once again providing a rare opportunity for fans of all things pop culture a chance to sit through the kinds of panels you might see were you to attend in person in any regular year–without standing overnight in lines.  You can even grab a lanyard off the rack, print your own badge (for you and your pets), cosplay with your family, and load the panels up on as big of a screen as you have.  Check out some suggestions for building your own fun convention week experience with SDCC 2021 below.

The first step is checking out the daily panel scheduling here.  Thursday is a short day so you have plenty of time to plan for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday events.  Just like any other year, you select the panels you want to attend, with the bonus that you can watch any and all whether or not they overlap.  The first is already posted from last night: a presentation somewhat slicker than what you’d see at a live panel, a look at Snake Eyes: Origins (and each panel and presentation is available at the above link even after its scheduled time slot).

This year you’ll see a lot more of the typical guests not doing panels this year (alas, no Marvel movies casts but unlike last year there will be a Doctor Who cast event) and many more events that look like panels but are actually “watch parties” available via Scener, including Star Wars movies, Labyrinth, Willow, Little Shop of Horrors, Scott Pilgrim vs the World, Lupin the 3rd: Castle of Cagliostro, Superman (1978), Quigley Down Under, The Rocketeer, Creepshow, Captain America: The First Avenger, The Maltese Falcon, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow, Princess Mononoke, The Shadow, Hail! Caesar!, The Goonies, Ella Enchanted, the pilot episodes for the original Wonder Woman and Star Trek, and Netflix’s Enola Holmes, among others.

2021 SDCC pet badge

Like last year you can bring your dog, cat, bird, rabbit, horse, etc. this year, too, and you can print off badges for them and yourself.  Here are some highlights:

Stan Sakai and the Usagi ChroniclesAn early look at Samurai Rabbit: The Usagi Chronicles, with creator/writer/artist Stan Sakai (Usagi Yojimbo) joining the cast and creators of the new Netflix animated series based on the comic books.

Doctor Who The annual (except for last year!) panel will feature showrunner Chris Chibnall, the Thirteenth Doctor Jodie Whittaker, Mandip Gill, new Doctor Who cast member John Bishop and a surprise guest as they share exclusive content from the upcoming season.

Vampirella: 50 Years and Counting and Dynamite: All the Big Reveals.  Current Vampirella creators discuss the series today, and Dynamite unveils some coming attractions, including Army of Darkness: 1979, the return of Jennifer Blood, and James Bond: Himeros.

WETA Workshop Find live collectible reveals through the weekend via WETA’s Facebook page.

Abrams Books is hosting panels on Dune, including the status of its novels, graphic novels, and comics, a Garbage Pail Kids panel with R.L. Stine, co-creators of Run: Book One (reviewed here) will talk about the late Congressman John Lewis and their new graphic novel, our pal Sal Abbinanti hosts Alex Ross discussing his New York mural and the book The Alex Ross Marvel Comics Poster Book (reviewed here), plus lots more, including promotions and contests at the SDCC Online Exhibit Hall.

Titan Books is hosting panels featuring crime author Max Allan Collins, a discussion of the new book Black Panther: Tales of Wakanda, and a talk with Charles Vess about The Art of Neil Gaiman and Charles Vess’ Stardust with more content available via the SDCC Online Exhibit Hall.

And, finally, don’t forget to watch the 2021 Eisner Awards ceremony, always on Comic-Con Friday night and available to watch online here.

And, of course, there is much more than we’re highlighting here.  Go through the programming agenda and select what appeals to you.  You can buy SDCC swag like T-shirts and mugs here.

Need to enhance your experience even more?  Take time off work (if you’re still working in-person at an office).  Go all-out and print off all the room and access signs SDCC made available here especially for SDCC@Home, and every hour play loudly the audio notice recordings posted here.  Walk a treadmill for an hour then search all over the house another hour to find a bottle of water, and pay your spouse $10 for it.  Tap your badge at every room before entering.  Unfortunately you can’t replicate walking across the street from the San Diego Convention Center for lunch and eating some good fried fish and chips at Tin Fish or another great restaurant in the Gaslamp Quarter District (or maybe you can–get that cookbook out and go for it, or check out the SDCC recipes posted here).

Stay at home, wear your masks if you’re out, stay safe, and sit back and enjoy this year’s San Diego Comic-Con 2021 at home.

C.J. Bunce / Editor / borg

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