Yes, We Have A Reporter On The Inside!
I’m very happy that some of our readers got to attend the San Diego Comic-Con 2010, which is more than I can say about me! Our friend and frequent commenter Jan was gracious enough to give us an insider’s report.
Since the videos of the panel are readily available on YouTube, it seems silly to discuss the topics in this recap. Perhaps addressing some of the issues would be more relevant.
The introduction of Linda Hamilton as Mama B, as well as the search of her as a Season 4 theme, broadens the range of opportunities. Sarah Lancaster has already said that finding Ellie’s mother may not be a positive thing for Ellie. Chuck seems to be dealing with it as much as a Mission from his Dad as a need to reconnect with his mother. Fedak and Schwartz also mentioned how it will affect the Chuck/Sarah relationship. Obviously, there are more questions than answers. But the selection of Linda Hamilton, with her reputation as a kick-ass heroine, certainly changes the dynamic. Whether she is good or bad, or interested in being found by her children will shade the movement through Season 4.
The one constant that was discussed and joked about is Chuck and Sarah being together as a couple. When the moderator asked both Zac and Yvonne how the on screen relationship might affect their off screen working relationship, it was Josh Gomez, who was positioned between Zac and Yvonne, who set the mood. Before either could reply, he joked that the one certainty from Season 3 is to not to get in the middle of “you two” Chuck and Sarah…then he ducked out of the way so as not to be hit. Comic relief, yes. Reality for most fans, also yes. Fedak emphasized that Chuck and Sarah are together and will continue together as a couple. Schwartz muddied up the idea by adding that they may not always be happy, but we will always be happy they are together. Every couple has issues. Chuck and Sarah are bound to have issues as well. It seemed as if Fedak’s comment was genuine…and Schwartz’s was designed to keep angst alive.
The interaction between Zac and Yvonne during the same question was fun. How their relationship has evolved. He brought up the first date, in the Mexican restaurant, “The love’s always been there.” “I was such a Nerd.” “I don’t think it’s changed that much, do you?” Yvonne answered in her memorable Australian “Nooo.” Lots of smiles.
The moderator commented that Sarah got to smile more in the last few episodes than in the previous three seasons. “I was finally excited to be apart of the happy stuff and some of the comic moments of the show. I loved it. Hopefully there’s going to be more of that this season, I hope. Please.” Fedak answered, “there’s no problem with that.”
Perhaps the most distressing part of the presentation was the complete lack of questions from the audience. Time expired. Zac said it best: “you’ve got to be kidding.”
The audience was clearly upset. After the season we just lived through, I’m sure many of the fans wanted answers from the producers. That didn’t happen.
It was great to see Zac and Josh, as well as Schwartz and Fedak, talking the show up at every opportunity. Publicity for the show has been horrible. Without effective publicity, this show will not make it. Since the original buzz for the show started at Comic Con in 2007, it would seem a logical spot to start winning back lost viewers. To that end, the stars and producers did their part to rebuild their fan base…certainly to help repair the damage that caused the ratings drop-off.
Of course, Comic Con is also safe territory for Chuck. The real test will be in September. One strong positive was a comment made by “Capt. Awesome” about the tone of the show. He said they recognized that Season 3 was dark and that the outlook for Season 4 was a return to the fun. Certainly, more of a balance between comedy and drama would be nice.
As an aside, Comic Con is an amazing experience. The shear size of the event is significant. The dedication of these attendees is astounding. Waiting in lines for three hours or more to see the panels, or to get the autographs is the norm. As someone well older than twenty, it’s also very draining.
One fun experience for me happened Friday morning, when my daughter and I were standing in line to see the Stargate Universe panel. As we were being let into the event, I read the badge of another person in this long line: Daniel Feinberg of HitFix.com. I introduced myself and told him that I was one of his readers. He thanked me for my support. As we moved forward in the line, I saw him again and commented that it was odd for an editor to be waiting in line for two hours to get into a panel. He said that standing in line was part of the Comic Con experience. He could have gotten a press pass to bypass the line, but he wanted to experience what the fans experience.
We attended a Chuck event on Friday night. It was a great chance to meet Chuck fans from all over the world. I spoke with a lady from France and another from New Zealand. I met a lady from the nbc boards. Zac, Josh Gomez, Ryan, Sarah Lancaster, Big Mike and Jeffster attended, briefly. It was fun to be a part of such a Chuck-centric event. The stars were gracious. Zac thanked the fans for their continued support. My daughter got an autograph from him personalized for me, which was pretty kewl.
While my major focus was Chuck, there were many other interesting aspects of Comic Con. That Helen Miren attended the event for the upcoming movie, Red, was pretty cool. Walking in the Gas Light district and running into members of the Psych and White Collar cast on the street was fun.
Comic Con was an amazing experience. It was great meeting most of the Chuck cast. It was wonderful seeing the dedication of fans to all the movies, TV shows, comics & graphic novels. Young and old, in street clothes and costumes, the fans are incredible…and being a part of the experience was truly memorable.