Comic-Con 2014: 10 Must-See Comic Panels From the Final 2 Days

A look at the comic panel schedule for the Saturday and Sunday of this year's San Diego Comic-Con.
A look at the comic panel schedule for the Saturday and Sunday of this year's San Diego Comic-Con.

There’s no getting around it—Saturday and Sunday at Comic-Con are the best of times and worst of times, with Saturday in particular so packed with panels that promise a lot of fun that there’s no chance to see them all. Sunday is a little bit quieter, but has a couple of surprises in store, as you’ll see below. In the meantime, here are some more suggestions of comic-based panels that you really shouldn’t miss if you’re at the show.

CBLDF: Banned Comics!
One of a number of panels about comic book censorship today—also recommended is the earlier CBLDF: Tales from the Code-True Stories of Censorship panel, which features creators talk about the days of the Comics Code Authority—this panel brings together the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund’s Charles Brownstein, creators Jeff Smith and Gene Yang and more to talk about this year’s Banned Books Week and the censorship that comics face today. (1:00pm – 2:00pm, Room 30CDE)

STORY Comic-Con 2014: 10 Must-See Comic Panels From the First 2 Days

Strong Female Characters
Former Comic Buyers’ Guide editor Maggie Thompson leads this discussion about well-written, realistic women in comic books, joined by an all-star line-up including Colleen Coover and Paul Tobin, creators of the wonderful Bandette, Saga’s Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples and Harley Quinn’s Amanda Connor and Jimmy Palmiotti. (3:00pm – 4:00pm, Room 7AB)

60 Years Ago: Comics on Trial
A break from the norm, perhaps, as L.A.-based Captured Aural Phantasy Theater read excerpts from some of the offending stories and transcripts of the April 1954 Senate hearings attacking comics led by Frederic Wertham ahead of a discussion of the impact those hearings had on the industry and art form. (6:00pm – 7:00pm, Room 9)

Comics & Pop Music!
The crossovers between two American art forms of the 20th century are explored in this panel, which features not only Alex Segura (writer of Archie Meets KISS) and The Fifth Beatle writer Vivek Tiwary (as well as other creators and editors), but also Marky Ramone. No, really. (7:00pm – 8:00pm, Room 28DE)

Fight Club: From Page to Screen and Beyond
In case Marky Ramone wasn’t enough of an unlikely guest for Comic-Con, don’t worry; here’s Chuck Palahniuk (as well as David Fincher and others) talking about the journey of Fight Club, which is more than likely going to touch on the long-awaited graphic novel sequel, written by Palahniuk himself. (7:00pm – 8:00pm, Room 25ABC)

Saturday also sees the annual Comic-Con Masquerade in Ballroom 20, for those who want to see the latest cosplay trends (It starts at 8:30pm), and a non-comics panel worth noting: 11:00am’s Temple of Art brings together a whole host of amazing talent including Dave McKean, Bill Sienkiewicz, Grant Morrison, Kent Williams and many more to discuss an ongoing cross-media project. It’s in Room 25ABC and, given the pedigree of those involved, just may be the most interesting panel of the entire show.

Kids Draw: A Comics Live Drawing Panel/Monsterpalooza with Oni Press and Friends!
Two panels with a similar focus for what’s traditionally “kids day” at the show, with artists including Kelley Jones, Dave Roman (Kids Draw) and Zander Cannon (Monsterpalooza) taking kids’ suggestions and bringing them to life on stage as quickly as they can draw. (Kids Draw 10:00am – 11:00am, Room 30CDE; Monsterpalooza 11:00am – 12:00pm, Room 32AB)

All-Ages Comics Have Arrived
Creators of all-ages comics—ones that attempt to live up to that title, and not just entertain kids—including Dave Roman, Gene Yang and Mouse Guard creator David Petersen talk about the current state of that market in this round-table discussion led by BOOM! Studios’ editor Shannon Watters. (1:00pm – 2:00pm, Room 24ABC)

Dynamite 10th Anniversary Panel Featuring Quentin Tarantino as He Comes to Dynamite! The Sequel to Django Unchained-Django Meets Zorro
Firstly, yes; that’s really the full title of the panel. Secondly, I don’t think I need to add anything to that title, do I? Dynamite founder Nick Barrucci and editor Joseph Rybandt sit down with the creative team of Django/Zorro: Matt Wagner, Reginald Hudlin and, of course, Quentin Tarantino himself. (2:15pm – 3:15pm, Room 6BCF)

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Fictionalized Nonfiction: The Art of Combining Fact and Fiction
Publishers Weekly’s Heidi MacDonald talks to cartoonists who work in the memoir/autobio field (including Gilbert Hernandez, Mini Pond and David Lansky, who worked on The Carter Family: Don’t Forget This Song) about how they turn fact into comic books, and the complications of that process. (3:00pm – 4:00pm, Room 32AB)

First Second in Conversation
Four of the most interesting and exciting cartoonists out there right now—Faith Erin Hicks, Lucy Knisley, Paul Pope and Gene Yang— finish up the show by sitting around and talking about their work. If you’re not already thinking about the crush at the airport trying to get home, this would be a great way to close out the week. (3:30pm – 4:30pm, Room 26AB)