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Patrick Stewart in ‘Picard’ Image Credit: Supplied

San Diego Comic-Con, the annual convention that sees thousands of geeks and nerds and everyone in between attend, kicks off this weekend. Celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, the pop culture event — a bellwether for upcoming comics, movies and TV shows — promises to be all kinds of special. Here are eight panels we especially have our eyes peeled out for:

‘Dark Crystal: Age Of Resistance’

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Netflix will bring an exclusive first look at the highly-anticipated new series ‘Dark Crystal: Age Of Resistance’ with cast and crew in attendance on Thursday (July 18). Based on Jim Henson’s critically-acclaimed 1982 fantasy film, the new series will use a combination of puppetry and modern visual effects to tell the story. Mark Hamill, Awkwafina, Caitriona Balfe, Natalie Dormer, Taron Egerton, Lena Headey, and Helena Bonham Carter are all set to star in the series.

Superheroes with a twist: ‘The Boys’

The Boys
The Boys Image Credit: Supplied

On Friday (July 19), executive producers Seth Rogen and Eric Kripke, along with series stars Karl Urban, Jack Quaid, Antony Starr, Erin Moriarty, Jessie T Usher, Laz Alonso, Chace Crawford, Tomer Capon, Karen Fukuhara, and Elisabeth Shue, will offer a behind the scenes look at their upcoming series. Based on The New York Times best-selling comic by Garth Ennis and Darick Robertson, ‘The Boys’ is an irreverent take on what happens when superheroes, who are as popular as celebrities, abuse their superpowers rather than use them for good.

The ‘Game of Thrones’ reunion

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Fans are still scratching their heads over the inclusion of this panel. The show’s done and dusted and has been analysed from every angle possible over the last couple of months since the show’s divisive final season aired. Perhaps they’d like to apologise about just how terrible the final season was? Whatever the reason, it’ll be interesting to see just what the stars have to say about their decade-long journey with the HBO fantasy series. Actors Isaac Hempstead Wright (Bran Stark), Maisie Williams (Arya Stark), Jacob Anderson (Grey Worm), John Bradley (Samwell Tarly), Nikolaj Coster-Waldau (Jaime Lannister), and others are expected to attend the panel taking place on Friday (July 19).

Sarah Connors returns in ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’

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Three sequels and a TV show later, we’re yet to see the likes of ‘Terminator: Judgement Day’, arguably the best movie in the ‘Terminator’ franchise. But things are looking promising for the upcoming sequel, ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’, especially because it features Linda Hamilton’s iconic character Sarah Connors in a big way. The return of the character who memorably destroyed Cyberdene at the end of ‘Judgement Day’ throws up many questions, and we’re hoping Paramount’s Thursday (July 18) morning panel, featuring cast members Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger, will answer some of them and throw some light on how this movie fits into the franchise.

First look at Henry Cavill in ‘The Witcher’

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Polish writer Andrzej Sapkowski’s multimedia franchise ‘The Witcher’ is one of Netflix’s most series, not least because Superman actor Henry Cavill is set to play its lead character, Geralt of Rivia. From wearing a red cape and saving lives to wielding a sword and hunting monsters, a panel on Friday (July 19) will reveal more details about Cavill’s transformation into this fan-favourite character.

Gotham’s newest superhero: Batwoman

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Set to debut on October 6, Ruby Rose’s turn as Gotham’s new caped crusader Batwoman in the eponymous series is highly anticipated. Apart from a panel featuring the cast of the CW show, lucky fans at San Diego will also get to watch the pilot episode on Saturday (July 20).

Beam up with ‘Star Trek’

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More than 50 years after the first episode of ‘Star Trek: The Original Series’ aired, the world of ‘Star Trek’ is living long and prospering like no one’s business. The Enter the Star Trek Universe panel on Saturday (July 20) is set to feature not only the ongoing show ‘Star Trek: Discovery’ but also the upcoming series ‘Star Trek: Picard’, featuring Patrick Stewart in his iconic role as Starfleet’s Jean-Luc Picard, and the upcoming comedy animated series ‘Star Trek: Lower Decks’.

Marvel Studios reveals Phase Four

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And finally, the piece de resistance. Marvel skipped Comic-Con in 2018, but it’s returning this year on Saturday (July 20) with a 90-minute panel to bring fans a taste of things to come. Marvel President Kevin Feige is expected to be laying the groundwork for Marvel’s phase four, which could literally mean anything. But if we have to guess, we’d lay our money on some footage from the upcoming Disney+ movie ‘Black Widow’, a look at the new superhero team ‘The Eternals’, or even some new information about ‘Shang-Chi’.