Nerdapalooza: 5 Geeky Events to Look Forward to in 2010

Categories: Geek Beat

We're done with resolutions to eat healthfully and quit our vices. This year we're resolving to reconnect with our nerdolicious self -- basically to let our geek flag fly. And it looks like we won't be alone. 2010 is shaping up to be the year of the geek, with scores of filmmakers, software companies, sci-fi cons and game developers clamoring for our attention. 

Here are just a few of the geeky happenings we're looking forward to experiencing in 2010.  

5. Free Comic Book Day (May 1)

Free. Comic. Books. Those three little words should be enough to lure any adult who remembers huddling under a tent of blankets after "lights out" reading back issues of Superman or X-Men at Camp Whatamayahoochee (not that we're admitting anything, mind you).

The deal: Initiated in 2002, Free Comic Book Day started as a way to help small indie shops and comic publishers attract new customers. Every year a couple dozen publishers sign up to sell select books to stores at cost, which the stores give away on FCBD in early May.

The lowdown: You're not gonna land a copy of Marvel Zombies or Blackest Night, but this year's titles include a cool Iron Man/Thor pairing, War of the Supermen and Fearless Dawn.  Not every comic book store participates (and most won't let you hog every title) but Samurai Comics, Atomic Comics and a few other locals usually get in on the action.

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Your TV could soon look like this.
2. Sony's 3-D Television (Late 2010)

We may not have flying cars or hoverboards and no one's landed on Jupiter last we heard, but our televisions at least kick millennial ass. The base technology's nothing new -- our parents

were taking in 3D flicks in the '50s -- but Sony's 3D-capable Bravia TV is the first specially equipped to handle 3D programming. There's even a dedicated 3D Channel planned in 2011.

The bad news? You'll likely have to wait till the end of the year to get one -- and despite all our technological advances, they still haven't figured out how to bypass those dorky 3D glasses.

3. Release of Star Wars: The Old Republic (Unknown, possibly November)

When it comes to video games, there's not much new under the sun in 2010. Sure, there are a few new titles like the sandbox-style Ride to Hell and souped-up racer Blur headed to market, but most of what we're spotted so far on the new release lists are sequels, prequels and games based on existing movies, TV shows or comic books.

On our must-play list are Final Fantasy XIII and the new Castlevania, but our friends are urging us to join the ranks of Star Wars: The Old Republic, a MMORPG that's guaranteed to suck away hours of life we could be spending with our boyfriends/girlfriends/cats.

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Meet comic book authors like John Layman at this year's PCC.
It works like most other MMORPG's: You register online, design a Sith or Jedi character and start your journey through the Star Wars universe. The cool thing about TOR is that it continues the storyline from the previous Knights of the Republic games (some 3,000 years before the flicks) and is heavy on plot -- something we didn't get with the games based on Episodes I-III.    

2. ComicCon 2010 (May 27-30)

No, we're not talking about the mother of all comic book conventions, i.e. the famed San Diego Comic-Con. We love SDCC, but what we don't love is the thousands upon thousands of sweaty, tired fans crammed on top of one another, the gargantuan lines or the big-name corporations pimping TV shows we don't care about. 

We're happy with our much smaller and more accessible Phoenix ComicCon, which draws decent celebs and tons of indie comic book artists like Chew's John Layman. This year's PCC, scheduled to be held at the Phoenix Hyatt Regency, is hosting Star Trek: Next Gen's Levar Burton and Wil Wheaton, Smallville's John Schneider and Dr. Horrible leading lady Felicia Day (a bonus for the Whedon-ites in town). Sweet!  

1. Clash of the Titans (March 26)

Is it just us, or is Hollywood catering to sci-fi and fantasy geeks this year? Forget weepy dramas and irritating chick flicks (When in Rome...shudder). 2010's lineup is already dominated by films like Percy Jackson & The Olympians, Iron Man 2, Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland, The Sorcerer's Apprentice and The Last Airbender

Toss in the next movies in the Twilight and Harry Potter franchises, plus revisits of Tron and Clash of the Titans and you have one geek-friendly year. We love the campy original COTT, which we watched on endlessly on USA Up All Night, but we admit we're looking forward to the (hopefully) decent acting and awesome special effects this version promises.  

Honorable Mentions: The International Horror & Sci-Fi Film Festival, LepreCon, Caprica (Battlestar Galactica prequel) TV series premiere, The Official Twilight Fan Convention and the real Nerdapalooza concert, which is sadly 1,800 miles away in Orlando, Florida.

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