Couldn't make it to Comic-Con International: San Diego 2014 last weekend? That's OK, Newsarama's got you covered! If you followed our coverage of the show's events, you know that some major stuff took place. <p>While there was far too much to capture in a single article, here are ten of the weekend's BIGGEST comic related moments, all organized in one countdown, for your convenience!
<p>With preview screenings starting just before Comic-Con, Marvel Studios's latest film Guardians of the Galaxy was riding high on a wave of stellar reviews throughout the weekend. <p>But the Guardians' presence wasn't limited to positive buzz, with GotG-centric merch, maquettes, and big content reveals for Disney Infinity 2.0, Marvel Heroes, and Avengers Alliance making Marvel's first cosmic foray positively ubiquitous in San Diego this year. <p>And, oh yeah, how about the sequel being announced before the first film even hit theaters? That's right, at the end of the Hall H panel, James Gunn and Chris Pratt announced that <b>Guardians of the Galaxy 2</b> is greenlit and coming out July 28, 2017. You're welcome, indeed.
<p>Star Wars may be poised for an even bigger year next con season, but the newly invigorated franchise didn't exactly slouch at SDCC '14, even without any big Episode VII news. <p>The premiere of Star Wars: Rebels marked the official start of the Star Wars Disney era, with the subsequent panel promising comedy, action, and some pivotal lightsaber duels as the principle cast professed their love for Star Wars, and their gratitude at being a part of the sci-fi epic's next chapter. <p>Meanwhile, Marvel announced a slate of new titles, having reclaimed the Star Wars comic license for the first time in decades, with new content from A-List artists such as Adi Granov, John Cassaday, and Terry Dodson, to say nothing of the stellar writers.
<p>Adam West is one of the kings of Comic-Con, and he certainly took pleasure in surveying his kingdom this weekend. Hot on the heels of the newly-announced details for the upcoming release of the entirety of Batman '66 on DVD and Blu-Ray, West was in full force at the show, with some feeling as though he took Stan Lee's place as SDCC's elder statesman. <p>West walked the floor, hobnobbing with fans and receiving them for signings and meet'n'greets. He also made a number of surprise panel appearances, most notably showing up to announce a special Batman '66 level in the new Lego Batman game.
<p>The casts and crews of Arrow, Flash, Constantine, and Gotham all assembled in one <i>massive</i> panel, leading to one of the most crowded stages in recent SDCC memory. Of course, it wasn't just the assembly of panelists that was huge, with big announcements from each show taking place. <p>Most notably, Arrow showcased the long-rumored debut of Arsenal, complete with a Red Arrow inspired look, as well as an announcement that Ra's al Ghul will be a major presence in the hit show's next season.
<p>Batman rang in his 75th birthday in style, assembling some of the caped crusader's top creators to get real and raw about their love for the character, their work, and Batman's next 75 years with several panels covering animation, video games, TV, movies, and of course comics. <p>Denny O'Neil, Neal Adams, Frank Miller, Jim Lee, Grant Morrison, Scott Snyder, and Geoff Johns all joined the anniversary panel for comics, comprising, perhaps, the most essential collection of Batman creators ever assembled on one dais, with each creator revealing, with surprising candor, the roots of their interest in Batman, and their view of his importance to fans and comics. <p>Seriously, <a href=http://www.newsarama.com/21675-sdcc-2014-batman-75-legends-of-the-dark-knight-frank-miller-scott-snyder-more-live.html>read the panel recap</a> and try not to drool, we dare you.
<p>Fans have known for some time that Paul Rudd and Michael Douglas were on board for Ant-Man, playing Scott Lang and Hank Pym, respectively, and IMDB has listed Evangeline Lilly and Corey Stoll as principle cast members for a while now, but it wasn't until SDCC '14 that the film's major roles were finally revealed. <p>The Marvel Studios panel showcased Lilly's role as Hope Van Dyne, the daughter of Hank Pym (aka Red Queen to those who followed A-Next!), and Stoll's role as the villain of the piece, Darren Cross, who will go by Yellowjacket in his villainous alter-ego.
<p>What a time to be alive, when a largely conceptual comic about one dog's quest for pizza can hit it big as the number one single issue of 2013. Of course, it doesn't hurt that Matt Fraction and David Aja's story about Clint Barton's pal Arrow was as heartfelt as it was innovative and visually stunning. <p>In a year when the Eisners highlighted some truly deserving comics and creators - including Sex Criminals winning Best New Series, Saga taking home Best Continuing Series, colorist Jordie Bellaire recognized in a banner year, and a first time win for Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez - Pizza Dog stood out as a unique, almost surprising effort from a mainstream publisher.
<p>The biggest event of SDCC's preview night, this year's Image Expo was rife with major announcements regarding new series, new creators, and news about their ongoing books. <p>Publisher Eric Stephenson came out with typically strong language regarding the nature of mainstream comics, pledging Image's ongoing commitment to quality comics that break the mold before moving on to announce some major new talent in the Image stable. <p>Perhaps the biggest announcement, alongside new content from creators like Dustin Nguyen and Jeff Lemire, was the critically-accliamed team of Warren Ellis, Declan Shalvie, and Jordie Bellaire moving from Moon Knight to a creator-owned book at Image.
<p>News of Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron has been coming fast and furious these days, but the undeniable fervor for Earth's Mightiest Heroes hit its peak at SDCC '14's Marvel Studios panel when the first footage from the film was finally showcased. <p>Alongside humorous, heart-warming footage of the gang hanging out, trying to lift Thor's hammer, came pulse-pounding, thrilling snippets of Hulk vs. Iron Man - complete with Hulkbuster upgrade, Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch in action for the first time, Black Widow and Hulk sharing a moment, and of course, a climactic moment where the Avengers lay beaten, Cap's shield in pieces, and Tony Stark in a state of shock and horror, at Ultron's feet. <p>The footage received possibly the biggest reaction of the weekend, with fans on their feet and going absolutely wild. <p>And right after? Marvel Studios gave the biggest tease yet that Thanos is the big bad for Avengers 3, with voice of the character Josh Brolin walking out on stage wearing the signature Infinity Gauntlet. Yes, Marvel Studios, we're listening.
<p>What could possibly be bigger than the sequel to one of the top grossing films of all time? Well, perhaps one of the most anticipated comic film moments ever. That's right - this weekend, fans finally caught a glimpse of the Man of Steel and the Dark Knight together in live-action film for the first time, as well as their first introduction to DC's "trinity," as Ben Affleck, Henry Cavill, and Gal Gadot united onstage for the first time. <p>In a six minute stretch of their two-hour panel, Warner Bros. managed to make bigger waves than anything else that happened at SDCC '14 (social media chatter for this outpaced even Marvel’s mega moments) - even if just barely. Showcasing a brief clip of Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice that showed Batman in armor that closely resembled his anti-Superman suit from the Dark Knight Return, while Superman approached from the sky, his eyes flashing with heat vision. <p>Of course, that's not all the big news that came from these six perfect minutes. Warner Bros. finally debuted the first promo shot of Dawn of Justice's Wonder Woman, revealing a warlike, slightly armored look that brought strong reactions from fans both at the show, and online.