Comic Con 2014: Five things we'd like to see

Allie Shaughnessy, who is dressed as Mystique, during the 2014 Comic-Con International Convention...

Allie Shaughnessy, who is dressed as Mystique, during the 2014 Comic-Con International Convention in San Diego, California July 24, 2014. REUTERS/Sandy Huffaker

Steve Tilley, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 4:42 PM ET

Forget for a moment that the annual San Diego Comic-Con has grown from a geeky grassroots celebration of comic books to a giant corporate behemoth tied to movie studios’ marketing agendas. Even with the slick trappings and massive lines, this is still the place where coolest news in the world of genre entertainment gets revealed first.

The Comic-Con schedule of announcements and panels has been set in stone for some time, but every year there are some unexpected, unannounced surprises in store. As the con gets underway in earnest Friday, here are five things we hope to see.

Something Star Wars

Director J. J. Abrams has released dribs and drabs of information about Star Wars: Episode VII through tweets and web videos, including a recent clip that revealed a full-scale X-wing fighter model. But is it too soon to hope for something a little more concrete and cinematic? Maybe, given the movie has only been shooting for a couple of months. But it wouldn’t be too hard to whip up a short trailer with, say, a brief glimpse of Tatooine or somesuch. Whether Disney would debut such a teaser now remains to be seen, but it would be awfully awesome.

Big gaming news

While the annual Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles is where most big video game news gets announced, Comic-Con is increasingly becoming the source for significant game-related reveals, especially for titles that tie in with comic book or genre film fare. We’ve already seen lots of the upcoming (and awesome-looking) Batman: Arkham Knight, but it would be great to get more concrete information on, say, the next made-in-Canada Mass Effect game.

Batfleck in motion

We’ve seen that still image of Ben Affleck in the batsuit for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and the actual cowl and cape are on display on the Comic-Con convention show floor. But we’ve yet to see a colour, moving image of the full Batfleck costume. At Comic-Con, Warner Bros. will be heavily promoting Mad Max: Fury Road and Peter Jackson’s final film in the unnecessarily long Hobbit trilogy, but is a reveal of the new Batman costume too much to hope for?

Marvel mysteries

Before San Diego Comic-Con even kicked off, Disney-owned Marvel Entertainment unveiled new posters for the upcoming Avengers: Age of Ultron and Ant-Man (expect trailers for one or both), and both Disney and Sony began staking out release dates throughout the rest of the decade for their Marvel movies. But we gotta get more than dates, right? Maybe a Doctor Strange teaser, or a Sinister Six reveal that shows what the sextet of villains will look like. Something sexy, please!

A big surprise

Everything from Batman v. Superman to the cast of The Avengers to the (ultimately disappointing) Tron sequel has been unveiled first at Comic-Con, often leading to shaky YouTube videos drowned out by a legion of screaming fans. These genuine surprises are usually the coolest things to happen at the con, precisely because they’re so unexpected.

In an age where studios are pegging their franchise film releases five years in advance, it would be fantastic to have an announcement that comes straight out of left field – a beloved sci-fi novel being adapted to a film, or a superhero movie that nobody saw coming, or a crossover that makes giddy geeks swoon with excitement. Surprise us, San Diego. If such a thing is still possible.

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