While throngs of exhausted fans crowded the San Diego convention center last week, the battle for the hearts and minds of geeks not actually able to make it to Comic Con 2015 was waged in social media. With the convention now concluded, Twitter has released analytics identifying which of the major film and television properties got the most juice on the microblogging platform, and the results are somewhat surprising.
A staggering 2.9 million tweets were generated by the annual event. That’s a lot of digital hot air about some very, very successful franchises. And going into the weekend’s big TV and film panels, conventional wisdom held that Star Wars or Warner Bros.’ various superhero movies would have people talking the most. But demonstrating the changing face of geekdom in a way few things could, it was fangirls, not fanboys, who drove the discussion throughout the week.
Jennifer Lawrence’s final outing as Katnis Everdeen ruled Twitter over the weekend, as Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 panel was the most talked about Comic Con panel on twitter. It handily shoved Warner Bros.’ Batman v. Superman panel into second place. Meanwhile, ABC’s Once Upon A Time was the move tweeted about TV series during Comic Con, with the CW’s Arrow coming in right after.
Here are the most tweeted about films, TV shows and celebrities during Comic Con, according to Twitter:
Most Tweeted-about movies:
1) Mockingjay Part 2 (@TheHungerGames)
2) Batman vs. Superman (@BatmanvSuperman)
3) Star Wars (@starwars)
4) Suicide Squad
5) Justice League
Most Tweeted-about TV shows:
1) Once Upon a Time (@OnceABC)
2) Arrow (@CW_Arrow)
3) Supernatural (@cw_spn)
4) Teen Wolf (@MTVteenwolf)
5) The Vampire Diaries (@cwtvd)
Most Tweeted-about celebrities:
1) Jennifer Lawrence
2) Jared Padalecki (@jarpad)
3) Jensen Ackles (@JensenAckles)
4) Misha Collins (@mishacollins)
5) Dylan Sprayberry (@DSprayberry)
Lucasfilm’s relatively tepid standing on social media is on the surface somewhat surprising. There is after all an unmistakable fever pitch building around Star Wars: The Force Awakens. But that buzz was built by two excellent trailers, and by the return of Star Wars Celebration back in April. Yes, the Comic Con panel was the first assemblage of the full lead cast, including a now-recovered Harrison Ford, a few small new nuggets of information about the film were revealed, and the panel ended with a surprise concert in the nearby San Diego Amphitheater. But very little that hasn’t already been revealed elsewhere was divulged.
Further, Star Wars: The Force Awakens remains something of an unknown quantity; it hardly needs to be noted here that though the prequel trilogy made a ton of money, the films are not fondly remembered. Despite incredible enthusiasm for the return to the galaxy far, far away, many die hard fans continue to take a wait and see attitude. Meanwhile, The Hunger Games franchise concludes with Mockingjay Part 2, a reason for rapid and broad discussion if ever there was one.
Timing may have mattered somewhat – The Hunger Games panel happened at noon on Thursday, giving it a 48 hour head start over Batman v. Superman when it comes to online discussion. But the Star Wars panel happened at 5 PM Friday, yet never managed to benefit from the timing advantage over Warner Bros.
Perhaps the most interesting thing about these rankings is that they utterly buck the notion of nerdom as a boy’s club. For decades, the popular conception of the average San Diego Comic Con attendee has been the fanboy, or at least a kind of platonic ideal of what a fanboy is. But in the last decade, women and girls who also go crazy for comics, games, fantasy and science fiction have increasingly made themselves known. That a film series and a television show which both skew heavily to female viewers dominated online discussion says volumes about how far along that process has come.