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“Wow” is the first thing I have to say about this year’s San Diego Comic-Con. While some sources claim that the annual gathering and celebrity panel showdown did not release anything new and spectacular, I happily dissent and beg to differ! Yes, there were some blunders. Guy Ritchie’s new King Arthur film looks, er, very dude-oriented I’ll say. The Killing Joke cartoon premiere is also less than great for women looking forward to the entry of DC’s Batgirl as a new female cartoon lead. Still, there are more than a few reasons why I’m getting super hype for the year to come in pop culture, as revealed at SDCC.

Right off the bat, the Black Panther series got a huge bump from some fabulous people that BUST loves. When Marvel dropped the news last year that Ta-Nehisi Coates was authoring an 11-issue run of BP, I was already psyched, to say the least. The series has proven massively successful just five issues in and it’s going to get another big boost, announced at SDCC, from Lupita Nyong’o and best-selling author of Bad Feminist, Roxane Gay.

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Lupita is now cast as the Panther’s love interest in the upcoming BP movie, with her character’s identity otherwise still unknown to us. Another amazing actress, Danai Gurira of The Walking Dead, also joined the cast Roxane is authoring the first six issues of a spin-off BP comic titled Black Panther: World of Wakanda, where a new author will be chosen to write each arc, meant to delve into the supporting characters’ lives from Coates Black Panther run. "Awesome" is an understatement.

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But there’s even more feminist news from Marvel! Like, a lot of it. First of all, we’re gonna see some new action figures produced by the company very soon, based on their Netflix hits and new comic runs. Guess who this includes? Jessica Jones and Kamala Khan, AKA Ms. Marvel. Hmm, seems like the perfect time to start collecting the superhero merch I didn’t when I was a kid. Ms. Marvel is also making her television debut, according to Marvel at SDCC, in the new Avengers cartoon, also including the very kickass Jane Foster’s Thor.

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Wait, that’s seriously not all. Marvel, c’mon, you’re stealing the show! Okay, well there’s one last thing that we at BUST are thrilled about from the multimedia giant. Captain Marvel is getting the spotlight, and not as a token female sidekick! That’s right, Brie Larson is cast to play the badass blonde, making her the first female lead for a Marvel feature... ever. I think this is some pretty big news from the supposedly underwhelming SDCC.

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Don’t panic, y’all, there were some other good things to come out of the comic con that weren’t all Marvel’s doing. For example, Rihanna (yeah, I bet you didn’t expect Queen RiRi to pop in!) has been cast as the infamous Marion Crane for the fifth and final season of the hit A&E show, Bates Motel, which she announced via Skype to the SDCC crowds. You remember Marion from the original Psycho, right? The screaming; the shower scene. I have no doubt that Rihanna is going to give the role the twist it needs for the contemporary series.

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To everyone who thinks that comics are a thing of the past at SDCC — hello! The Eisner Awards, comics biggest honor, are held right there in San Diego every year! Part of the good news from the con came from this ceremony as well, with Best New Series going to Paper Girls, a fabulous ‘80s sci-fi series about a crew of young girls fighting off aliens! Awarding a series so focused on female strength, teamwork, and friendship is pretty rad, in my opinion.

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I know, Wonder Woman’s trailer also came out, and yes, it kicks major butt from its promotion, and yes, I'll probably cry joyful tears when I finally get to see the full movie. I just want BUSTies to know that a lot happened at SDCC beyond that major release. You can watch the trailer here, if you haven’t seen it already! Everything from Wonder Woman’s poster to slogan to trailer says to me there’s a new era dawning on the comic universe — maybe one with more female leads?

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There you have it — the best to come out of the San Diego Comic-Con this year. Now, to wait 8 months or a year for all these new releases!

Images via Twitter, Pinterest, Facebook, Image Comics, Marvel.

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Let's talk about queerness, comics, and shutting down systems of oppression. Carbs enthusiast with a lot to say about living femme in this world and staying positive. Contributor to the zine Clitorally and founder of Static zine. Catch me looking for dogs to pet around town.

Twitter/Insta: msundquist7

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