Wow…every year there seems to be a “smaller” panel at San Diego Comic-Con that comes out of nowhere and becomes the one “must-see” panel for me. One year it was a panel about legendary movie poster artist Drew Struzan. Another year it was a panel about the thousands of Atari 2600 E.T. video game cartridges that were buried in the middle of the New Mexico desert and the quest to find out where they were and dig them up. This year, Warner Archive Collection has put together a panel celebrating the Blu-Ray release of the 1980s epic lizard-alien invasion miniseries “V.”
“V” was everything to me from 1983-1985. The original four-hour miniseries is fantastic. So is the six-hour “V:The Final Battle” miniseries that came out a year later. I had my mom buy me a brown jacket because I wanted to look like the main character–TV reporter Mike Donovan (played by The Beastmaster himself–one of my childhood heroes–Marc Singer), When I got confirmed at church in 8th Grade, I chose the confirmation name Martin, not because there is a saint named Martin, but because the leader of the Alien resistance “fifth-column” was named Martin.
So I literally jumped off of my sofa and screamed a bit when I saw the press release in my email stating that this year, in addition to panels on cartoon icons Popeye and The Jetsons, the Warner Archive Collection would be having a panel in San Diego celebrating the original “V” miniseries, and that Marc Singer AND writer/creator Kenneth Johnson (who also is responsible for some of my other childhood faves like The Bionic Woman, The Six Million Dollar Man, The Incredible Hulk, and Alien Nation) would be appearing in addition to possible “surprise guests.”
The panel is on Friday morning from 10-11. The Veronica Mars panel is at noon. Until a few hours ago, that Veronica Mars panel WAS my #1 panel that has been announced so far (the complete official schedule is set to be released this weekend). There is a possibility that there might be a press room for V after the panel, and if that is the case, I will absolutely try to be there even though it will overlap with Veronica Mars–because only The Beastmaster and lizard aliens can take me away from Mars.
Read about the panels below:
Warner Archive Collection covers the past, present and future at 2019 Comic-Con International with a trio of entertaining panels slated for the weekend – a Thursday celebration of Popeye’s 90th Birthday; a Friday revisit to the landmark V: The Original Mini-Series, currently being remastered for Blu-ray; and a spotlight on The Jetsons (for its upcoming newly-remastered-for-Blu-ray release) and the terrific primetime history of Hanna-Barbera.
Talent featured on the Warner Archive Collection panels will include V: The Original Mini-Series star Marc Singer and the franchise’s renowned creator, Kenneth Johnson; respected animation writer Tony Benedict, who scripted every episode of The Jetsons: The Complete Original Series; popular artist Tom Neely, who drew Popeye for IDW; King Features President CJ Kettler; animation historian and author Jerry Beck; and some special surprise guests.
These panels (and confirmed talent thus far) include:
Popeye’s 90th Birthday Party
Thursday, July 18 – 10:15-11:15am
Warner Archive and King Features commemorate one of the biggest stars in American comics/animation history with a landmark panel packed with punches! King Features president CJ Kettler (executive producer of Netflix’s Carmen Sandiego and The Tick), IDW Popeye artist Tom Neely, animation historian and author Jerry Beck, and the Warner Archive Podcast team of D.W. Ferranti and Matthew Patterson offer a grand history of the beloved character, unveil a full slate of new King Features content, exciting merchandise and events for 2019, and give fans a glimpse of newly-remastered footage from upcoming Popeye the Sailor: The 1940s releases. Moderator Gary Miereanu will no doubt be toting cool giveaways for select fans. 6DE
Warner Archive Celebrates V: The Original Mini-Series
Friday, July 19 – 10:00-11:00am
Fifty spaceships, each three miles across, hover ominously above Earth’s major cities. The Visitors that emerge are humanlike in appearance and extend the hand of friendship—or is it? The ground-breaking 1983 V: The Original Mini-Series is a science fiction spectacular that mixes dynamic special effects with cliffhanger thrills . . . and launched an entire television franchise! Come see creator/producer/writer/director Kenneth Johnson (The Incredible Hulk), series star Marc Singer (Beastmaster, Arrow) and some possible surprise guests along with the Warner Archive Podcast team of D.W. Ferranti and Matthew Patterson and moderator Gary Miereanu as they celebrate this landmark mini-series and discuss the newly-remastered Blu-ray presentation of the heralded production coming from Warner Archive later in 2019. 6DE
The Jetsons and Primetime Hanna-Barbera
Saturday, July 20 – 10:00-11:00am
In anticipation of Warner Archive’s release of The Jetsons: The Complete Original Series on Blu-ray this summer, legendary animation writer Tony Benedict (The Flintstones, The Atom Ant Show, The Huckleberry Hound Show), animation historian and author Jerry Beck, the wacky Warner Archive Podcast team of D.W. Ferranti & Matthew Patterson, and some very special surprise panelists will offer a glimpse of remastered footage that’s been restored to its original primetime network form as aired, and they’ll discuss the endearing, landmark animated series . . . as well as several of Hanna-Barbera’s best-loved primetime animated productions. From The Flintstones to Jonny Quest, the room will be filled with animated excitement. And moderator Gary Miereanu will have just the right giveaways to match the fun. 6A