Now that the smoke (of B.O.) has finally cleared from the San Diego Convention Center — where Comic-Con International held its 2017 gathering for fans, reporters, studios and vendors — let’s take stock of all the major trailer reveals for what’s to come. A lot of major movies and television shows put on their best game faces this weekend, including the crowd-pleasing second preview for Thor: Ragnarok to the highly anticipated Stranger Things season two trailer. When compared alongside each other, however, how do these visual teases rank? All of the possible answers to this question are subjective, of course, but we threw caution to the wind and ranked the highlights for you anyway.
Whether or not director David Ayer’s Bright proves to be the blockbuster film Netflix wants (and needs) remains to be seen. Judging by the trailer released in San Diego (and subsequently online), however, all of the comparisons between Ayer’s End of Watch and J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings fantasy novels are beginning to make sense. After all, Smith’s African-American human cop (Daryl Ward) pairing up with Joel Edgerton’s “diversity hire” Orc (Nick Jakoby) isn’t something you’d find in either property. But together? Throw in some fairies, elves and a dangerously magical wand and sure, why not?
9. Star Trek: Discovery
Depending on who you ask, CBS All Access’ gamble on Star Trek: Discovery is either a great idea… or not. The new series has plenty of Star Trek legacies working in front of and behind the camera, though a cagey reveal regarding the show’s timeline (and its Game of Thrones-like willingness to kill off major characters) has tempered some fans’ views ahead of its September 24th premiere. So did the new Comic-Con trailer do anything to abate these concerns? Maybe, maybe not. As with the first teaser, Trekkies had all kinds of opinions about Discovery‘s more reboot-like look.
8. The Walking Dead Season 8
The Walking Dead fans who have stuck with the dreary apocalyptic show’s previous seven seasons will be happy to know that, per the eighth season’s Comic-Con trailer, its characteristically slow pace won’t be speeding up anytime soon. There’s a war on, after all! Rick and his allies from The Hilltop and The Kingdom made their first move against Negan’s Saviors in the season seven finale, so the Lucille-wielding maniac is bound to want revenge for their slight. To drive home the point, the showrunners debuted a lengthy five-minute trailer in San Diego jam-packed with new footage and no spoilers. And a very old Rick.
7. Doctor Who: Twice Upon A Time
Love it or hate it, the next Doctor will be female, and she will be played by Broadchurch and Attack the Block‘s Jodie Whittaker. This is wonderful news for many important reasons, but before 13 makes her grand debut at the end of the upcoming Christmas special, Doctor Who fans still have a Christmas special to contend with. As “The Doctor Falls” confirmed in its final moments, the newly announced Twice Upon a Time will feature a team-up between Peter Capaldi’s 12 and William Hartnell’s First Doctor, as previously played by Harry Potter alum David Bradley in the 2013 TV movie An Adventure in Space and Time.
6. The Defenders
If you thought the first teaser‘s fascination with Nirvana’s “Come As You Are” would disappear in subsequent previews, think again. The Defenders amped up its Kurt Cobain-inspired soundtrack with its action-packed Comic-Con trailer, as well as the first full episode of the miniseries for everyone at Friday’s panel. New footage notwithstanding, much of the trailer’s latest additions focused on the team’s jovial (or lack thereof) dynamics, though not at the expense of highlighting Sigourney Weaver’s mysterious villain Alexandra and her brainwashed lackey Elektra. That, and Jessica Jones’ penchant for public consumption.
5. Westworld Season 2
Aside from a parody short featuring Billy Crystal and an ever-churning rumor mill, very little has been heard about Westworld season two since March. All of a sudden, users noticed a major overhaul on the series’ official website in early July, which was followed weeks later by the show’s Comic-Con panel and brand new teaser in San Diego. If you recall the first season finale‘s final moments, you’ll remember that Ford (Anthony Hopkins) triggered the robo-pocalypse by completing, in a sense, the work Arnold (Jeffrey Wright) began with Dolores (Evan Rachel Wood). According to the teaser, Dolores is now a vengeful murderess.
4. Ready Player One
The first trailer for Steven Spielberg’s highly anticipated Ready Player One adaptation bills Ernest Cline’s novel a “holy grail of pop culture.” Considering the seemingly endless cavalcade of ’80s Easter eggs the trailer nearly drowns its audience in, this title isn’t too far off the mark. Even the opening vista of Wade Watts’ (Tye Sheridan) hometown of Columbus, Ohio feels like it was ripped from the pages (and front cover) of Cline’s book. Yet this teaser offers very little in terms of story, so while the spectacle of the Oasis dominates throughout, those unfamiliar with the source material might be left scratching their heads in the real world.
3. Stranger Things Season 2
Anything having to do with comic books will undoubtedly rule the long weekend at Comic-Con. Yet as the annual gatherings’ clout increases, so too has the net it has cast. Ergo, the new trailer for Stranger Things, the surprise hit show from Netflix whose second season is due to scare the crap out of viewers (and increase calls of justice for Barb) on October 27th. From gorgeously frightening imagery not unlike the writing of horror master H. P. Lovecraft, to its excellent infusion of ’80s pop culture references, the new preview — complete with Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” — won all things TV at con this year.
2. Justice League
Despite the forthcoming arrival of DC and Warner Bros.’ own superheroes gallery on November 17th, many began to worry about Justice League‘s future when director Zack Snyder left the project for personal reasons in May. Avengers director Joss Whedon was brought in to carry Snyder’s torch, but the last-minute shakeup riled DC fandom across the Internet. Looking at the new trailer Justice League dropped at Comic-Con, however, fans likely have nothing to worry about. In fact, compared to the first trailer, the decidedly lighter, Wonder Woman-focused teaser promises a fun superhero movie.
1. Thor: Ragnaraok
Let’s get real — San Diego Comic-Con 2017 was won by a massive, muscular green meanie with immeasurable strength, brash charisma and the vocabulary of a two year old. I’m talking of course about the second trailer for Thor: Ragnarok, the third and final Thor film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. With its Guardians of the Galaxy-inspired look and director Taika Waititi’s characteristic humor, Ragnarok is looking more and more like it may be one of Phase Three’s biggest, and most welcome, surprises. Besides, when you’ve got Cate Blanchett playing Hela the Goddess of Death, what could possibly be bad about that?
BONUS: Avengers: Infinity War
Many, many more trailers and teasers for upcoming movies and television shows were previewed at Comic-Con this year — too many to rank, in fact. Even so, this list wouldn’t be complete without at least one honorable mention for the unreleased Avengers: Inifinity War teaser, which debuted initially at Disney’s D23 Expo in mid July. Uproxx‘s Donna Dickens attended the Marvel panel and live-blogged her thoughts on the preview here, but one thing is clear: Thanos (Josh Brolin) may wind up actually killing some of the Avengers. I mean, the final shot of the teaser is the big bad presumably launching a planet at the heroes courtesy of the Infinity Gauntlet.