SAN DIEGO— San Diego Comic-Con International kicked off its highly anticipated Preview Night with the Warner Bros. “Special Sneak Peek Pilot Screenings” in Ballroom 20. In previous years, the pilot screenings debuted several memorable series like “Lost,” “Heroes,” “Fringe,” and “The Vampire Diaries.” This time around proves no exception. We at Blast were in attendance, and got a look into some of the thrilling new shows you can expect this year.
“666 Park Avenue” (ABC) tells the story of a struggling couple whose lives change when they become co-managers of The Drake, a luxurious apartment complex. While their luck seems to be turning around, they soon find out that all is not quite right with The Drake’s current residents: disturbing accidents and eerie events transpire throughout the episode. Based on Gabriella Pierce’s novel series of the same name, this screen interpretation is darker in tone, delving into mystery as it progressively sheds light on the building’s shadowy past. A highlight of this show is definitely its casting: Terry O’Quinn (“Lost”) and Vanessa Williams (“Ugly Betty”) play Gavin and Olivia Doran, the power couple owners of The Drake who don’t take “no” for an answer. Their chemistry plays well off of Dave Annable (“Brothers and Sisters”) and Rachael Taylor (“Charlie’s Angels”), the unsuspecting couple.
Comic Con attendees can watch the pilot and Q&A panel on Friday, July 13 between 12:45 – 1:45 p.m. in room 6BCF.
“Arrow” (TheCW) is another superhero show to find its home in TheCW, and this time it follows the rise of Oliver Queen into the popular DC Comics hero Green Arrow. TheCW’s network describes the series:
“After a violent shipwreck, billionaire playboy Oliver Queen was missing and presumed dead for five years before being discovered alive on a remote island in the Pacific. When he returns home to Starling City, his devoted mother Moira, much-beloved sister Thea, and best friend Tommy welcome him home, but they sense Oliver has been changed by his ordeal on the island. While Oliver hides the truth about the man he’s become, he desperately wants to make amends for the actions he took as the boy he was.”
The series stars Stephen Amell (“Hung”) as Oliver Queen, Colin Donnell (“Pan Am”) as Tommy Merlyn, Katie Cassidy (“Melrose Place”) as Laurel. It also features David Ramsey (“Dexter”) as John Diggle and Willa Holland (“Gossip Girl”) as Thea Queen, with Susanna Thompson (“Once and Again”) as Moira Queen and Paul Blackthorne (“The Dresden Files”) as Detective Quentin Lance.
It is a wonderfully balanced cast with great onscreen chemistry. The relationships simply feel real, particularly the friendship between Tommy and Oliver.
The show has a good premise, and the impressive production and soundtrack really give life to the world of Starling. As a result, however,the numerous voiceovers giving scenes context are almost unnecessary, and can be distracting.
Comic Con attendees can watch the pilot and Q&A panel today between 3:00 -4:00 p.m. in Ballroom 20.