2021 New York Comic Con: What to expect at this year’s event

Antony Starr and Erin Moriarty in “The Boys” (Courtesy of Amazon Prime Video)

October 4, 2021

by Carla Hay

The 16th annual New York Comic Con takes place October 7 to October 10, 2021, in New York City. For the first time, New York Comic Con will be a hybrid event, where people can attend in person or virtually. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, New York Comic Con was cancelled as an in-person event in 2020 and instead presented as a scaled-down virtual-only event. Before the pandemic, New York Comic Con attracted about 250,000 people per year since 2017, according to ReedPOP, the company that produces the event. The first New York Comic Con took place in 2006.

In 2021, New York Comic Con’s main hub remains the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, New York Comic Con in 2021 has less activities, panels and locations than in previous years. For example, in 2019, New York Comic Con took place at several other locations in New York City, including Hammerstein Ballroom, the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, the New York Public Library, the Way Station (in Brooklyn) and AMC 34th Street. Anime Fest (an offshoot of Anime Expo that was presented in conjunction with New York Comic Con in 2018 and 2019) will not take place at New York Comic Con in 2021.

The COVID-19 pandemic has also resulted in new safety requirements for New York Comic Con. All attendees ages 12 and up must show proof of vaccination. Attendees younger than age 12 must be accompanied by a fully vaccinated guardian and provide proof of either a negative rapid antigen COVID-19 test taken within six hours of entry to each day of the event,  or a negative lab PCR COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of entry of each day of the event.

Checkpoints have been set up at or near the Javits Center for attendees to obtain wristbands indicating that people have shown proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. No one can be admitted into New York Comic Con without these wristbands. The checkpoint locations and open hours can be found here. All attendees must wear a face covering at all times while inside a New York Comic Con building, except when eating or drinking.

TV shows continue to dominate the most high-profile panels and activities. New York Comic Con in 2021 has the following TV shows with in-person panel showcases: Amazon Prime Video’s  superhero series “The Boys” on October 8; USA Network’s and Syfy’s horror series”Chucky” on October 8; Starz’s fantasy drama series “Outlander” on October 9; Paramount+’s sci-fi series “Star Trek: Discovery” on October 9;  FX’s sci-fi series “Y: The Last Man” on October 9; and FX’s vampire horror comedy series “What We Do in the Shadows” on October 10.

There are very few feature films that have panels at New York Comic Con this year. The movie panel that is expected to get the biggest crowd is Columbia Pictures’ “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” on October 8, featuring in-person appearances by director Jason Reitman, producer Ivan Reitman (who directed the first two “Ghostbusters” movies) and members of the “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” cast. Amazon Prime Video’s 2021 installment of its “Welcome to the Blumhouse” movie anthology horor series has a virtual-only panel on October 7. Funimation will have two in-person movie panels featuring the English-language voice cast members: “My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission” on October 8 and “Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train” on October 10.

In addition, New York Comic Con will have one-on-one Q&As that each spotlight a different actor: William Shatner (“Star Trek”) on October 7; George Takei (“Star Trek”) on October 8; and David Harbour (“Stranger Things,” “Black Widow”) on October 9. Meanwhile, in a virtual-only, pre-recorded Q&A on October 8, “Game of Thrones” alum Emilia Clarke discusses her comic book writing debut, “M.O.M.: Mother of Madness.”

Broadway stars are represented on several panels. “The Big Broadway Nerd Panel” will feature panelists such as Anthony Rapp (“Rent”) and James M. Iglehart (“Aladdin”) on October 8. Other Broadway-related panels include “The Broadway Bard Party” on October 9; “E-Ticket to Broadway” Podcast LIVE at Comic Con!” on October 9; “#BroadwayToHollywood: A New Age of Musicals” on October 10; and “Broadway’s A.J. Holmes: Creating One-Man Musical Yeah, But Not Right Now” on October 10.

The 2021 Harvey Awards Hall of Fame ceremony will be livestreamed during New York Comic Con on October  8. The recipients are manga artist Rumiko Takahashi (“Urusei Yatsura,” “Inuyasha”), horror illustrator Bernie Wrightson (“Swamp Thing”), painter and cover artist Jeffrey Catherine Jones, award-winning comic book artist Barry Windsor-Smith (“Conan the Barbarian,” “Weapon X”), and Michael Kaluta (“The Shadow,” “Starstruck”).

And, of course, there will be plenty of panels, exhibits and previews for comic books, video games, fantasy novels and other pop-culture attractions. It wouldn’t be a Comic Con without cosplaying and merchandise sales. The Cosplay Central area returns in a new location: on Level 1 in Room 1A02 (right across from Artist Alley) at the Javits Center. While at Cosplay Central, cosplayers can mingle, pose for photos, use the dressing rooms and attend panel discussions. New York Comic Con also has an enormous amount of merchandise for sale for numerous types of entertainment.


Several stars from movies and TV shows will have individual autograph sessions and/or photo opportunities with fans, for a fee. All celebrities are offering autographs and photos, unless otherwise noted. Prices will vary, according to the celebrity. Participants include:

  • John Cena (“The Suicide Squad,” “Peacemaker,” “F9”) on October 9.
  • Wes Chatham (“The Expanse”) on October 8  and October 9.
  • Hayden Christensen (“Star Wars: Attack of the Clones,” “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith”) on October 9 and October 10.
  • Chace Crawford (“The Boys”) on October 8 and October 9.
  • Karen Fukahara (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • David Harbour (“Stranger Things,” “Black Widow”) on October 9 and October 10.
  • Mary McDonnell (“Battlestar Galactica”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9.
  • Erin Moriarty (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • Kate Mulgrew (“Star Trek: Voyager,” “Star Trek: Prodigy”) on October 9.
  • Edward James Olmos (“Battlestar Galactica”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9.
  • Jack Quaid (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • William Shatner (“Star Trek”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9. (Autographs only.)
  • Jurnee Smollett (“Lovecraft Country,” “Birds of Prey”) on October 9.
  • Antony Starr (“The Boys”) on October 8, October 9 and October 10.
  • Steven Strait (“The Expanse”) on October 8 and October 9.
  • George Takei (“Star Trek”) on October 7, October 8 and October 9.
  • Janet Varney (“The Legend of Korra”) on October 8.


(All panel descriptions are courtesy of New York Comic Con.)

Virtual = Panelists will not appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

In Person = Panelists will appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

“Welcome to Earth”

October 7, 2021, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

See the planet as you’ve never witnessed it before with “Welcome to Earth,” the new, awe-inspiring Disney+ original series from National Geographic and starring Will Smith. Meet the Explorers that guide Will through an intimate journey as he travels to the ends of the Earth to observe the strangest, most unusual, and dangerous spectacles the planet has to offer. Learn directly from the Explorers what it takes to unlock some of nature’s most well kept secrets.

“Among the Stars

October 7, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

“Among the Stars” is a six-part Disney+ original series with fly-on-the-wall access into the world of NASA. With cameras stationed on both Earth and the International Space Station, the series follows NASA astronaut Captain Chris Cassidy for one last mission to repair the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS) which aims to reveal the origins of the universe. Hear directly from the Astronauts and scientists who take on space missions and the challenges they face every day!

“The World According to Jeff Goldblum”

October 7, 2021, 2:15 PM – 3:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Jeff Goldblum is back, and he’s as curious as ever. For season two of the Disney+ original series, premiering on Disney+ Day November 12, Jeff uncovers the surprising secrets and passionate people behind a whole new host of topics, including magic and illusions. Jeff finds out just how magic has shaped the world we live in. Join Jeff along with legendary Magicians Penn & Teller as well as Street Magician Erik Blackwell to go behind the curtain of the mysterious world of MAGIC.

“Battlestar Galactica Retrospective”

October 7, 2021, 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM (In person)

Main Stage 1D Hall

The stars of the iconic show are coming to New York Comic Con! Join Edward James Olmos (Commander William Adama) and Mary McDonnell (President Laura Roslin) as they recount their journey aboard the Battlestar Galactica and answer questions from fans. Cylons and Humans are both welcome. So Say We All!

“Blade Runner: Black Lotus”

October 7, 2021, 6:45 – 7:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Explore the intricate approach to writing the dystopian future with the producers and directors of “Blade Runner: Black Lotus” with futurist, Maurice Conti, who shares his take on how the Blade Runner world stacks up against our future.

“The Legend of Vox Machina”

October 8, 2021, 11 AM – 12 PM (Virtual)

Main Stage 1D Hall

“The Legend of Vox Machina” is an animated fantasy-adventure series for adults that follows Vox Machina, a band of misfits with a fondness for boozing and brawling. In a desperate attempt to pay off their mounting bar tab, these unlikely heroes end up on a quest to save the realm of Exandria from dark magical forces. From a sinister necromancer to a powerful curse, the group confronts a variety of obstacles that not only test their skills, but also the strength of their bond. Join the entire cast of Critical Role as they discuss the process of adapting a role-playing game (RPG) campaign into a series for Amazon Prime Video, as well as share a special sneak peek of footage from the series. Please note, this panel is recommended for mature audiences and contains content not suitable for younger audiences.


October 8, 2021, 1:00 PM – 2:15 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Everyone’s favorite killer doll is coming to television! Join us for the world premiere of the first episode of the new series “Chucky,” ahead of its October 12 debut on USA and Syfy, followed by an exclusive conversation between creator and showrunner Don Mancini and franchise icon Jennifer Tilly (Tiffany Valentine). Get ready to play!

“I Know What You Did Last Summer”

October 8, 2021, 4:30 PM – 5:30 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

Written and executive produced by Sara Goodman, “I Know What You Did Last Summer” is based on Lois Duncan’s 1973 novel, which was also the basis of the iconic 1997 film. One year after the fatal car accident that haunted their graduation night, a group of teenagers find themselves bound together by a dark secret and stalked by a brutal killer. As they try to piece together who’s after them, they reveal the dark side of their seemingly perfect town—and themselves. Everyone is hiding something, and uncovering the wrong secret could be deadly. Join the series cast and creator as they discuss what fans can most look forward to when the series premieres Friday, October 15, exclusively on Amazon Prime Video. Please note, this panel is recommended for mature audiences and contains content not suitable for younger audiences.

“The Boys”

October 8, 2021, 4:45 PM – 5:45 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Join Karen Fukuhara, Erin Moriarty, Jack Quaid and Antony Starr as they look back on their favorite moments from the first two seasons of “The Boys.”


October 8, 2021, 5:15 PM – 6:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

“Evil” is a psychological mystery that examines the origins of evil along the dividing line between science and religion. The series focuses on a skeptical female psychologist who joins a priest-in-training and contractor as they investigate the Church’s backlog of unexplained mysteries, including supposed miracles, demonic possessions and hauntings. Their job is to assess if there’s a logical explanation or if something truly supernatural is at work. The second season brings evil closer to home. Kristen struggles with her darker nature, while David suffers temptation as he gets closer to his ordination. Meanwhile Ben is visited by night terrors that prey on his greatest fears. Please join series stars Katja Herbers, Mike Colter, Aasif Mandvi, Michael Emerson, Christine Lahti and Kurt Fuller, along with co-creators and executive producers Robert King and Michelle King for a panel discussion about the second season. “Evil” airs Sundays on Paramount+.


October 9, 2021, 11 AM – 12 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Travel through the stones of Craigh na Dun and go back in time with the cast and executive producers of “Outlander” as they take on New York Comic Con in support of the sixth season, premiering early 2022.

“All Elite Wrestlng”

October 9, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (In Person)

Main Stage 1D Hall

Join the stars of “All Elite Wrestling” as they take the stage at New York Comic Con once again for a ringside view of their wildly popular wrestling shows airing weekly on TNT. Panelists: Orange Cassidy, Tony Schiavone, Adam Cole, Thunder Rosa, Darby Allin.

“Star Trek: Discovery”

October 9, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

In advance of the season four return of “Star Trek: Discovery” on Paramount+, join cast members Sonequa Martin-Green, Anthony Rapp, Mary Wiseman, Wilson Cruz, David Ajala and Blu Del Barrio and executive producer Michelle Paradise as they tease the upcoming season of the hit series, which finds Captain Burnham and the crew of the U.S.S. Discovery facing a threat unlike any they’ve ever encountered. With Federation and non-Federation worlds alike feeling the impact, they must confront the unknown and work together to ensure a hopeful future for all. Produced by CBS Studios, “Star Trek Discovery” will premiere on Paramount+ on November 18.

“Psych 3: This Is Gus”

October 9, 2021, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

Calling all Psych-Os! Wait for iiiiiiiiiit……the Psych cast is back with an all-new movie! In preparation for a shotgun wedding before the birth of Baby Guster, Shawn and Groomzilla Gus go rogue in an attempt to track down Selene’s estranged husband, as Lassiter grapples with the future of his career. The cast and creators of the Peacock Original, “Psych 3: This Is Gus” reunite to discuss the upcoming film and reveal some exciting news! Moderated by Chancellor Agard.

“The Expanse”

October 9, 2021, 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM (In Person)

Main Stage 1D Hall

Join the main leads: Wes Chatham and Steven Strait of the hit Amazon show “The Expanse,” as they reflect on the series and answer fan questions!


October 9, 2021, 3:30 PM – 4:30 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

“Hanna” follows the journey of an extraordinary young woman as she strives to destroy Utrax, the sinister organization that genetically engineered her and others to be the perfect assassins. In the upcoming third season, Hanna attempts to destroy Utrax with the help of troubled ex-CIA agent Marissa Wiegler. The story crisscrosses Europe and builds to a dramatic climax when Hanna and Marissa discover the true, horrifying scope of the operation as well as who was ultimately behind it all. Join the cast and creators as they preview season 3, coming to Amazon Prime Video this fall.

“One of Us Is Lying”

October 9, 2021, 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

Meet the cast and executive producers of Peacock’s highly-anticipated new original series “One of Us Is Lying.” Based on Karen M. McManus’s New York Times best-selling novel of the same title, this is the story of what happens when five high schoolers walk into detention and only four make it out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide. Join the cast and EPs of the Peacock Original series, Annalisa Cochrane (Addy), Chibuikem Uche (Cooper), Marianly Tejada (Bronwyn), Cooper van Grootel (Nate), and Mark McKenna (Simon), as well as executive producer Erica Saleh and showrunner/executive producer Darío Madrona, to discuss how they brought this fan-favorite book to life. Moderated by Ashley Bellman. ”One of Us Is Lying” starts streaming October 7, exclusively on Peacock.

“The 4400”

October 9, 2021, 5:15 PM – 6:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Based on the original TV series by Scott Peters and Renee Echevarria, 4400 overlooked, undervalued, or otherwise marginalized people who vanished without a trace over the last hundred years are all returned in an instant, having not aged a day and with no memory of what happened to them. Join series stars Brittany Adebumola, Joseph David-Jones, Ireon Roach, TL Thompson, Jaye Ladymore, Derrick A. King, Khailah Johnson, Cory Jeacoma, AMARR, and Autumn Best in a conversation moderated by showrunners Ariana Jackson and Sunil Nayar as they discuss the exciting, reimagined story and what to expect when the series premieres Monday, October 25 on The CW.

“Y: The Last Man”

October 9, 2021, 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Based on the best-selling comics from Brian K. Vaughan and Pia Guerra, FX’s highly anticipated adaptation of “Y: The Last Man” traverses a post-apocalyptic world in which a cataclysmic Event kills every mammal with a Y chromosome except for one cisgender man and his pet monkey. The series follows the survivors of this new world as they struggle with their efforts to restore what was lost and the opportunity to build something better. Currently streaming on FX on Hulu, join Executive Producer/Writer/Showrunner Eliza Clark and cast for and advanced screening of Episode 7 and a moderated discussion about how they updated the beloved books and brought them to life.

“The Girl in the Woods”

October 9, 2021, 6:45 PM – 7:45 PM (In Person)

Room 411

Peacock brings NYCC an exclusive first look at “The Girl in the Woods,” a much-anticipated series adaptation of one of the biggest IPs in Crypt TV’s monster universe. Set in the Pacific Northwest, “The Girl in the Woods” follows Carrie’s escape from her mysterious, cult-like colony that guards the world from monsters hidden behind a secret door within the woods. Join executive producers Jack Davis and Darren Brandl (Crypt TV), co-executive producer Jasmine Johnson, and director and co-executive producer Krysten Ritter as they discuss bringing this supernatural story to life and what fans can expect when the Peacock Original YA drama “The Girl in the Woods” premieres Thursday, October 21, exclusively on Peacock.

“The Hot Zone: Anthrax”

October 10, 2021, 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Nat Geo’s “The Hot Zone” anthology series delves into real-life stories of outbreaks and the heroes on the frontlines. Following the dark days of 9/11, America faced a second wave of attacks: the anthrax letters, which targeted journalists and politicians. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the haunting attacks that killed five people and caused panic across the United States. Inspired by true events, “The Hot Zone: Anthrax” is a timely scientific thriller that follows an FBI Special Agent as he tracks down the killer. While many of us can remember the breaking news headlines and widespread fear that arose during this time, there are many layers to this shocking and unbelievable story that have not yet been told. In this panel, go behind-the-scenes of this chilling crime story with co-stars Tony Goldwyn and Daniel Dae Kim, and showrunners Kelly Souders and Brian Peterson.

“Star Trek: Prodigy”

October 10, 2021, 12:45 PM – 2:00 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Join Paramount+, CBS Studios and Nickelodeon for a premiere screening for the whole family of the highly anticipated upcoming “Star Trek” animated kids’ series “Star Trek: Prodigy.” Following the screening, voice cast members Kate Mulgrew, Brett Gray, Rylee Alazraqui and Dee Bradley Baker, producers Kevin Hageman, Dan Hageman and Ben Hibon, and Ramsey Naito, President, Animation & Development, Paramount Animation and Nickelodeon Animation, will take the stage for a moderated panel discussion.

Developed by Emmy® Award-winners Kevin and Dan Hageman (“Trollhunters” and “Ninjago”) the CG-animated series “Star Trek: Prodigy” is the first “Star Trek” series aimed at younger audiences and will follow a motley crew of young aliens who must figure out how to work together while navigating a greater galaxy, in search for a better future. These six young outcasts know nothing about the ship they have commandeered – a first in the history of the Star Trek Franchise – but over the course of their adventures together, they will each be introduced to Starfleet and the ideals it represents. Produced by the Nickelodeon Animation Studio and CBS Studios, “Star Trek: Prodigy” will premiere on Paramount+ on October 28.

“Just Beyond”

October 10, 2021, 12:45 PM – 1:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

Inspired by the writings of R.L. Stine, the Disney+ series “Just Beyond” tells astonishing and thought-provoking stories of a reality just beyond the one we know. In each of the eight unique stories, viewers meet a new cast of characters who must go on a surprising journey of self-discovery in a supernatural world of witches, aliens, ghosts and parallel universes. Join cast Cedric Joe, Megan Stott, Lexi Underwood along with creator and executive producer Seth Grahame-Smith and co-executive producer R.L. Stine for a Q&A moderated by TV Guide Magazine’s Damian Holbrook

“The Badass Women of ‘The Walking Dead'”

October 10, 2021, 2:00 – 3:00 PM (Virtual)

Room 404/405

We’ve seen the women of The Walking Dead Universe take down massive herds, horrible villains and lead their communities through hardship. This panel will celebrate the evolution of these fierce, strong female leads from every walk of life, starting from when we are first introduced to these characters and how we’ve watched them survive the apocalypse. Join EPs, directors and cast members as they discuss their favorite character storylines, their journeys and the importance of having strong female representation onscreen. Panelists: Alexa Mansour, Aliyah Royale, Angela Kang, Annet Mahendru, Christine Evangelista, Denise Huth, Jenna Elfman, Karen David, Lauren Cohan, Paola Lazaro. Moderator: Yvette Nicole Brown.

“What We Do in the Shadows'”

October 10, 2021, 2:45 – 3:45 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

FX’s Emmy®-nominated vampire comedy “What We Do in the Shadows” returns to New York Comic Con for a live discussion with members of the cast and creative team. Catch a special presentation of an upcoming episode and join special guests in a lively conversation about the series Rolling Stone named “the funniest show on television.” What We Do in the Shadows is a documentary-style look into the daily (or rather, nightly) lives of four vampires who’ve “lived” together for hundreds of years. Seasons 3 currently airs Thursdays at 10pm ET/PT on FX and streams the next day on FX on Hulu.  Don’t miss the chance to attend the Vampiric Council of the Eastern Seaboard of the New World’s first public meeting! BAT!


(All panel descriptions are courtesy of New York Comic Con.)

Virtual = Panelists will not appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

In Person = Panelists will appear in person; panel is available for viewing in person and online.

“Welcome to the Blumhouse”

October 7, 2021, 3:45 PM – 4:45 PM (Virtual)

Room 411

This October, Welcome to the Blumhouse returns exclusively to Amazon Prime Video with the worldwide release of four electrifying new thrillers that plumb the depths of humanity’s deepest and darkest fears: “Bingo Hell” (directed by Gigi Saul Guerrero), “Black as Night” (directed by Maritte Lee Go), “Madres” (directed by Ryan Zaragoza) and “The Manor” (directed by Axelle Carolyn). Join all four directors, with a special introduction by Founder and CEO of Blumhouse Productions Jason Blum, as they discuss the importance of showcasing female and emerging directors while delivering original stories to audiences everywhere. “Bingo Hell” and “Black as Night” premiere October 1, “Madres” and “The Manor” premiere October 8, all on Amazon Prime Video. Panel moderated by Dino-Ray Ramos.

“My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission”

October 8, 2021, 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Your sneak peek into the next chapter of the global anime phenomenon starts here. Presented by Funimation, the panel includes an exclusive preview of My Hero Academia: World Heroes’ Mission. Hear from the dub cast and crew before the movie hits theaters October 29! Panelists: Voice cast members Ryan Colt Levy (Rody), Sarah Roach (Clair Voyance), Lisa Oritz (Burnin), Cristina Vee (Pino), Series and movie ADR Script Writer, Jeramey Kraatz. Moderator: Lauren Moore.

“Ghostbusters: Afterlife”

October 8, 2021, 6:30 PM – 7:30 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Director Jason Reitman and producer Ivan Reitman will be joined by some of the cast of Sony Pictures’ “Ghostbusters: Afterlife” for an in-depth conversation. The panel will cover the highly-anticipated new film and the franchise at-large, one of the most beloved in pop culture history. In addition to insightful conversation the panel will feature never-before-seen clips from the film.

“Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train”

October 9, 2021, 2:30 PM – 3:30 PM (In Person)

Empire Stage

Board the Mugen Train once again! Presented by Funimation, this panel is your deep dive into “Demon Slayer -Kimetsu no Yaiba- The Movie: Mugen Train.” Join the English voices of some of your favorite characters as they discuss everything from heart-wrenching scenes to moments that fans love most.

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