19 must-see panels and events at San Diego Comic-Con this year

Gal Gadot at a panel at Comic-Con in San Diego

Look out, nerds. San Diego Comic-Con is right around the corner and there’s a whole lot of awesome things to geek out about at this year’s five-day festival. Aside from the incredible cosplay and the seemingly endless amount of merchandise, there are scores of different panels, workshops and screenings fans can attend over the long weekend.

So, how does one narrow it down to the most unmissable events and still have time to attend the Ewok party (that is no doubt happening somewhere at SDCC)? Obviously, everyone has their own, unique go-to favorites, but there are definitely several panels that have received a certain amount of buzz, and probably deserve a look-see.

Here are 19 picks for the most exciting SDCC events. All event times are Pacific Standard Time.

Wednesday, July 19

Powers Imagery/AP

1. 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Special Sneak Peek Screenings —Warner Bros. (Ballroom 20)

In conjunction with Comic-Con, Warner Bros. Television will be previewing their upcoming shows, including Deception, Krypton and Black Lightning. A new episode of Teen Titans Go! will also debut.

Thursday, July 20

2. 10:15 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Ghostbusters 101: A Ghostbusters Panel of Biblical Proportions! (Room 6DE)

Ghostbusters co-creator Ivan Reitman and the brains behind the Ghostbusters comics will discuss all the magic of the ghoulishness. They will also likely reveal some future plans for the franchise.

3. 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. DreamWorks Voltron: Legendary Defender, a Netflix Original Series (Room 6BCF)

Executive producer Joaquim Dos Santos, co-executive producers Lauren Montgomery, Bex Taylor-Klaus and Tyler Labine will present the first episode of season three of Voltron: Legendary Defender. All those who attend will receive an SDCC exclusive Voltron poster.

4. 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Hasbro: Transformers (Room 25ABC)

Fans will get a first look at the latest toys from the Transformers: Generations Power of the Primes toy line, and hear behind-the-scenes stories about the toys from Transformers: The Last Night.

Charles Sykes/AP

5. 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Spotlight on Gail Simone (Room 8)

Gail Simone, writer of the Batgirl, Deadpool and Wonder Woman comics, will talk about her journey into the world of comics with fans.

6. 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. FXhibition (Hilton San Diego Bayfront, 1 Park Blvd.)

Fans don’t need a badge to get into this all-day, multi-day event outside of SDCC. FX plans to showcase a bunch of interactive experiences inspired by shows like American Horror Story, Legion and Atlanta. And since July 20 is the day AHS creator Ryan Murphy is slated to announce the title of the new season, this is likely to be an unmissable event. This event continues Friday and Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m, respectively.

7. 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. Be Your Own Superhero: Intersectional Feminism in Comics (Room 32AB)

Writers Sam Maggs of Wonder Women and Star Trek: Waypoint, Susana Polo of Polygon, Sarah Kuhn of Heroine Complex, Robbie Thompson of Supernatural and Silk, Christina “Steenz” Stewart of Lion Forge Comics, Cait Brennan of Debutante and Rose Knight of Women Write About Comics will discuss the dent women have made in the comic world thus far, and how far they still have to go to be on even ground with men.

8. 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Battlestar Galactica Reunion (Ballroom 20)

The cast of SyFy’s Battlestar Galactica will come together to reconnect and answer questions from fans.

Friday, July 21

9. 12:15 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. AMC’s The Walking Dead (Hall H)

This panel includes stars of the show Andrew Lincoln, Norman Reedus, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Lauren Cohan, Danai Gurira, Melissa McBride, Lennie James, Chandler Riggs, Seth Gilliam, Alanna Masterson and Khary Payton. Together with showrunner Scott M. Gimple, they’ll present the new trailer for the upcoming season alongside moderator Chris Hardwick.

10. 1:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Game of Thrones Panel and Q&A Session (Hall H)

Spoilers will likely be cleverly averted, but that won’t stop this panel from being a main event. Stars slated to appear include Alfie Allen, Jacob Anderson, John Bradley, Gwendoline Christie, Liam Cunningham, Nathalie Emmanuel, Isaac Hempstead Wright, Conleth Hill and Sophie Turner. Excessive humming of the Game of Thrones theme-song by fans is to be expected.

11. 4:15 p.m. to 5:05 p.m. Bob’s Burgers (Indigo Ballroom, Hilton San Diego Bayfront)

Fans of the hilarious cartoon get to hear what’s next for the series from stars H. Jon Benjamin, Dan Mintz, Eugene Mirman, John Roberts, Kristen Schaal and Larry Murphy.

Saturday, July 22

Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

12. 10 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. ABC’s Once Upon a Time (Ballroom 20)

Several cast members, including at least one newcomer to the show, will join co-creators Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz on a panel moderated by superfan Yvette Nicole Brown, so expect probing questions to be asked.

13. 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Warner Bros. Pictures Presentation (Hall H)

This is a big one. Directors and several major stars of Ready Player One, Justice League and Blade Runner 2049 will be featured throughout this presentation. Those who will be present include Steven Spielberg, Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, Ben Mendelsohn, T.J. Miller, author and co-screenwriter Ernest Cline, co-screenwriter Zak Penn, actors Ryan Gosling, Harrison Ford, Ana de Armas, Sylvia Hoeks, Robin Wright, Lennie James, Mackenzie Davis, writers Hampton Fancher and Michael Green, director Denis Villeneuve, plus Ben Affleck, Gal Gadot, Jason Momoa, Ezra Miller and Ray Fisher. They will likely show exclusive footage of the upcoming films.

14. 1 p.m. to 2:15 p.m. Family Guy and American Dad! (Ballroom 20)

Family Guy cast members including Seth MacFarlane, Alex Borstein, Mike Henry and Jon Viener will introduce a sneak peak of episode 300. Following that, American Dad! cast members Wendy Schaal, Scott Grimes, Rachael MacFarlane and Dee Bradley Baker will chat about season 12.

15. 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Netflix’s Stranger Things (Hall H)

Fans will be the first to see exclusive footage from season two. The cast and creators will also answer questions about what’s in store for the characters.

16. 4:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m. Westworld Panel and Q&A Session (Hall H)

The cast members who’ll be in attendance at the Westworld panel include Ben Barnes, Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Ed Harris, Luke Hemsworth, James Marsden, Thandie Newton, Simon Quarterman, Rodrigo Santoro, Angela Sarafyan, Jimmi Simpson, Tessa Thompson, Evan Rachel Wood, Shannon Woodward and Jeffrey Wright. It’s unclear if there will be any reveals about the upcoming season, but considering the show’s wild success, the discussion should be lively nonetheless.

17. 7:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m Adult Swim’s Rick and Morty event (Petco Park)

Rick and Morty creators Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon are participating in another event that fans don’t need a badge for. Expect something funny and brilliant.

Sunday, July 23

Jason Merritt/Getty Images

18. 10:15 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Marvel’s Spider-Man World Premiere (Room 6A)

Fans will get to be the first to experience Marvel Animation’s newest series, Marvel’s Spider-Man, as well as the debut of Peter Parker’s new voice. This two-part premiere will air later this summer.

19. 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. Doctor Who: BBC America Official Panel (Hall H)

Considering the exciting news about the 13th doctor being a woman, this seems like the place to be on Sunday at Comic-Con. The panel will include Peter Capaldi, Pearl Mackie, Matt Lucas and Michelle Gomez, as well as writer and showrunner Steven Moffat.

Mic has ongoing comics coverage. Follow our main comics hub here.