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A look back at EGX 2022

I’ve been going to EGX for many years now and last year was a lot to improve on but I let them off cause of the global panini (covid-19) which affected a lot of things. If I’m honest, I quite liked last year as there was plenty of space to move and my anxiety wasn’t too triggered but the amount of space available to walk through was due to a lot of games developers not being there. 

That being said, this year, again held at London Excel Centre, I expected a much bigger event with all the trimmings that previous years prior to the global panini, with all explosion and excitement that this event deserves. What EGX delivered this year was a mixed bag for me. 

I always feel like I should make a disclaimer when I talk about EGX that I’m not really a gamer, don’t get me wrong, I do play games when I can. In fact, my nephew and I always play video games, playing games such as Mario Kart, Bomberman, and Mario Party, and I last big triple-A game I played was Cyberpunk 2077 on Google Stadia. 

What I expect to see at these events are all the big up-and-coming games on display from all the gaming studios such as Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo, etc. I know this event isn’t a Mecca for cosplayers to descend to show off their cosplay but usually, a good mix of cosplay can be seen and usually a good warm-up for the next event on my calendar, MCM London. 

My initial impression when I arrived was that the crowds have returned, I immediately whipped a mask on my face. At the front of the entrance was the indie games section which was good to get people to look at these games before queuing up for the triple-A games and major studios…well, I say that there were hardly any stands which to me were the big games you want to try out. You can feel that absent from these studios not being there. I did see a Nintendo stand which prior could play their games, but games that are already out to purchase. There wasn’t even a Virgin Media stand in which they usually showcase a game, for example, last year they were promoting Fall Guy and had a travelator that people could have a try going up on. 

I don’t like to wait to play games, so decided to go on games that had short wait times or immediately could start playing. I spent most of my gameplay playing as many VR games and boy I want to get one for myself. I even saw a monitor which protected a 3d image without needing glasses, blown away by that technology. 

Regarding the cosplay, as mentioned before, there weren’t many to be found as Thursday and Friday are still work days and many people either decided to come at the weekend where the cosplay competition was held or weren’t able to get the time off work. It was nice to walk around an event and at the stands as I hardly get to do that when at comic con events as I’m taking photos. I did take photos of cosplayers, it was great to see such a variety of cosplays who wanted to show off at this event, and can’t wait to upload them for everyone to see.

The ultimate question is, would I be coming back to this event next year? I think I will but I probably won’t go from Thursday to Saturday but for two days Friday and Saturday. Though I’m not a gamer, I can see why a few people who I spoke to were disappointed at this year’s event. Though it was a huge improvement from EGX 2021, EGX 2023 can easily better itself. This is an event I can see its value and why people do go and I hope it continues to bring people to the event. 

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I’ve been going to EGX for many years now and last year was a lot to improve on but I let them off cause of the global panini (covid-19) which affected a lot of things. If I’m honest, I quite liked last year as there was plenty of space to move and my anxiety wasn’t too triggered but the amount of space available to walk through was due to a lot of games developers not being there.  That being said, this year, again held at London Excel Centre, I expected a much bigger event with all the trimmings that previous years prior to the global panini, with all explosion and excitement that this event deserves. What EGX delivered this year was a mixed bag for me.  I always feel like I should make a disclaimer when I talk about EGX that I’m not really a gamer, don’t get me wrong, I do play games when I can. In fact, my nephew and I always play video games, playing games such as Mario Kart, Bomberman, and Mario Party, and I last big triple-A game I played was Cyberpunk 2077 on Google Stadia.  What I expect to see at these events are all the big up-and-coming games on display from all the gaming studios such as Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo, etc. I know this event isn’t a Mecca for cosplayers to descend to show off their cosplay but usually, a good mix of cosplay can be seen and usually a good warm-up for the next event on my calendar, MCM London.  My initial impression when I arrived was that the crowds have returned, I immediately whipped a mask on my face. At the front of the entrance was the indie games section which was good to get people to look at these games before queuing up for the triple-A games and major studios…well, I say that there were hardly any stands which to me were the big games you want to try out. You can feel that absent from these studios not being there. I did see a Nintendo stand which prior could play their games, but games that are already out to purchase. There wasn’t even a Virgin Media stand in which they usually showcase a game, for example, last year they were promoting Fall Guy and had a travelator that people could have a try going up on.  I don’t like to wait to play games, so decided to go on games that had short wait times or immediately could start playing. I spent most of my gameplay playing as many VR games and boy I want to get one for myself. I even saw a monitor which protected a 3d image without needing glasses, blown away by that technology.  Regarding the cosplay, as mentioned before, there weren’t many to be found as Thursday and Friday are still work days and many people either decided to come at the weekend where the cosplay competition was held or weren’t able to get the time off work. It was nice to walk around an event and at the stands as I hardly get to do that when at comic con events as I’m taking photos. I did take photos of cosplayers, it was great to see such a variety of cosplays who wanted to show off at this event, and can’t wait to upload them for everyone to see. The ultimate question is, would I be coming back to this event next year? I think I will but I probably won’t go from Thursday to Saturday but for two days Friday and Saturday. Though I’m not a gamer, I can see why a few people who I spoke to were disappointed at this year’s event. Though it was a huge improvement from EGX 2021, EGX 2023 can easily better itself. This is an event I can see its value and why people do go and I hope it continues to bring people to the event.  For more cosplay photos, visit our Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook page Twitter Instagram Facebook WordPress Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
This may be an event you haven’t heard of—the first setup in 2018 was held in the Netherlands at one of their Centre Parcs near Eindhoven. It is advertised as a cosplay holiday where you can get photos taken inside a swimming pool area as well as taking photos in the surrounding area of the park. I’ve been to all three editions of this event (*small intermission for the pandemic) and I have to say it’s probably one of my favourite events to attend. It’s so different from anything I’ve been to both in the UK and around the world. In a typical expo event, you are surrounded by concrete walls, it’s full of people, rows of stalls to buy things, artificial lights, areas not suited for photography, etc. Viencon is just so different, we take over Centre Parcs, there are so many areas to take photos, there is a small area of stall shops for people to buy things, as always there are panels for people to attend including a Beer tasting session, but the main attraction is the swimming pool sessions. We get exclusive time in the swimming pools where cosplayers and photographers shoot their cosplays in various areas of the swimming pool area, we had time both in the evening but also for the first time this year, we had a session in the morning to shoot photos which made photos looks so bright and sunny. I think another great point of this event is that you can just treat the event as a holiday, you don’t have to do everything, you don’t have to attend everything. You can choose to take as many or as few photos as you want. You can just have a holiday and enjoy the company of people as I saw this year. There is such a mix of cultures, from the UK and around Europe as well as people from the local country. With the event put on hold during the pandemic, the 2-year break just made coming to this event so much better, you can see the organisers are always looking to improve the event, with extended pool time, adding lights to an exclusive tree line area as well as to the bridge. I am already looking to attend the event in 2023 between the dates of 25th-27th August. If what you have seen has made you interested in visiting this event, please do head to their website for more details. I’ve included a few photos which I took over the weekend. More photos will be edited and uploaded to both this website as well as to my social media pages. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Food And Cosplay Photography (@foodandcosplay) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Food And Cosplay Photography (@foodandcosplay) View this post on Instagram A post shared by Food And Cosplay Photography (@foodandcosplay) Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
My name is Doc, and I go by Tasogarecos on social media. I’ve been attending MCM London for 12 years now, and have attended multiple other conventions through the years as well. MCM London is a 3-day convention, running Friday to Sunday, located at the Excel in London, on the Isle of Dogs. It is run by Reedpop, who also run and organise many other events in the U.K. and abroad. A small history lesson: Reedpop took over just before the COVID-19 Pandemic started, in October 2019. As Douglas Adams once said: “This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move,” but more on that later. I attended MCM for all three days, staying in London to attend – not a cheap process but for a cosplayer, the most simple. The May weekend ticket price was £65; a reduction from the £85 of October 2021. Ticket prices are something I will come to later, as they are a bone of contention in the community right now! MCM follows a generic convention format – halls with sellers big and small and their wares, activities to engage you, a main stage for panels and smaller stages for more intimate discussions and panels, and more food than you could eat in a week. There is, of course, an emphasis on cosplay and it’s associated fandoms, but there’s often other things going on to engage a wide audience. Given COVID-19 is still a threat, of course, and worldwide we are still seeing spiraling cases. MCM, weeks before May’s event, rescinded their mask mandate and suggested it should be personal choice and that they wouldn’t police people. In general, this wasn’t met favourably – a sentiment I agree with. Masks, testing, hand hygiene and making space all add towards keeping others safe and it felt like MCM had dismissed this outright despite the community’s concerns. I would say 10% of attendees wore masks inside on average during the time I observed over the three days. Space is a critical part of the U.K.’s response to COVID-19, and MCM in October 2021 took this very literally. The con halls were laid out in such a way that a minimum of 5 or 6 people could have walked abreast through the aisles without issue – this led to most people naturally adopting a one way system and giving each other, and the stall holders, ample space for safety. In addition, masks were a requirement throughout unless you were exempt or eating and drinking. This was all thoroughly forgotten in May 2022. There was seemingly even less space inside to move around, no hope whatsoever of socially distancing, and, of course, no mask requirement. Now looking back, it’s unsurprising how many people contracted COVID-19 under these circumstances. Not aiding this was the overselling of tickets on the Saturday – many people who attend for just one day get a Saturday ticket; the Masquerade finals are that day, it gives those working time to recover on Sunday and children an opportunity to decompress. It was also the hottest day of the weekend, so many people attended – so much so that it was practically impossible to access the inside of the halls. Even pre-COVID, I had never seen MCM so packed as it was on that Saturday, and it made a lot of people very uncomfortable, to the point that some cut their day short because it was so unpleasant to be inside on the one day they chose to attend. That being said, the Excel Centre had had some upgrades over lockdown – air-conditioning throughout (though unappreciable on Saturday…) and free water stations, so free water was available consistently. This was an excellent thing, as we experienced high temperatures all weekend and many people utilised these facilities. Security was hit and miss. I experienced a number of very polite, kind and happy security and Excel Centre staff, from the security team checking bags to the ladies working in the cloakroom – though I would add a caution that the team checking bags were less than thorough on some occasions. I acknowledge that these were not universal experiences, and just a few minutes of scrolling on Twitter would show complaints about rude, dismissive staff, particularly in the outside space. Having volunteered at large events before, it’s easy to say simply that these security staff were hot, tired and bored, giving up their weekend to work when they could have been at home enjoying themselves, but if you’re being paid, good service that doesn’t make your clients feel dismissed or insulted is expected. There was a distinct lack of consistency within the rules, too – some staff would allow you to walk through one space, then an hour later a different member of staff would not allow it. From a safety point of view, this is dangerous – ingress and egress should always be consistently available or unavailable, and this should not be personal choice or whim of individual staff members. Once inside, there were a number of booths that were new to MCM this year.  Firstly, there was Genshin Impact, the smash hit mobile game everyone is playing (or so it seems). The booth was host to a wealth of famous cosplayers such as Cospoxia and Sakuflorr, and offered free goodies and the opportunity to buy official Genshin merchandise. It didn’t live up to the hype; the goodies were no more than a few postcards in a promotional bag (after a 2+ hour queue!), and the merch had sold out by lunchtime on Saturday. However, the cosplayers were wonderful, kind and polite, and it was fun to see the life-size cutouts and play the game with some built teams, if that was your choice. For me, this was a let down, as I had hoped for a better planned booth from a tech giant like Hoyoverse, but I know many people who really enjoyed it. Halo’s booth was more targeted towards people who already played rather than enticing in newbies, and advertising for their new television series with exclusive sneak preview screenings for fans in small cinema rooms and provided promotional materials for them to take home. This experience offered tickets, to avoid the queueing chaos of the Genshin booth, which I thought was very sensible. Lastly, Paramount Pictures had a booth promoting their latest films and releases. They were offering the usual promotional flyers and photo opportunities with cut-outs, backdrops and a prop or two. The artist alley was amazing; I always admire the work that everyone puts into their stalls and stands, but this year blew the others out of the water. There was a designated artist’s alley, but there were also artists dotted in amongst the independent traders – which was a surprisingly nice experience for the casual con-goer like myself, it felt like each aisle of the convention hall was different and unique. Long ago, in the Before Times, MCM was a paragon of bootleg merch and overbearing sellers, but this was different this time. The traders, selling everything from retro video games to custom dog tags to anime and gaming merchandise, and there was an excellent variety. I know it was expensive for anyone to sell and trade at MCM, but the sellers and their teams were lovely and it felt well organised – despite the smaller aisles compared to October. My biggest grievance is with the outdoor Fringe stage. As a performer myself, freedom of expression is a vital lifeline to good health and finding yourself, but there were numerous occasions where the Fringe stage was almost breaking laws with how loud it was! It was near impossible to stand in the outside area of MCM, by the trees or on the stairs and have a sensible conversation with someone sat with you. My feedback to MCM is to reconsider the volume of the acts; the acts themselves were wonderful and everyone seemed to have a good time watching. I said I’d return to my favourite Douglas Adams quote, and I will discuss that a bit here. Many people wish that Reedpop hadn’t taken over MCM, as the prices have skyrocketed since and the apparent value for money has decreased. I can’t argue with the former – my first MCM Priority Sunday ticket was £15, and for May MCM that same ticket is £29.50 – a 65% rise in 11 years, and not really in line with inflation – but the latter, I think, remains to be seen.  Reedpop have taken our suggestions and requests into account between October 2021 and May 2022, and though I disagree with their COVID policies, the event itself ran well. Many of the overall gripes were with the Excel security; however, the criticism about how over-packed Saturday had been must stand. Reedpop themselves have admitted that they oversold tickets, and it is my hope that they critically look at this action and the feedback from the attendees to continue to make MCM a better and better event. I would also add a note of disappointment to this overall positive tale regarding Reedpop (not sponsored, I should add!). Reedpop decided to release the October London MCM Tickets while May was going on, and in addition, they have bumped the price back up to it’s October 2021 level of £85 – when you add in shipping for physical tickets, that makes it a cool £91 for 3 days. Reedpop, in my humble opinion, need to give people value for money with these kinds of prices: better security, rewards for buying a Weekend ticket instead of general daily tickets, more activities, something to encourage their customer base to continue to engage with them. The allure of a Central London big anime con will dim if the prices continue to rise with little or no payoff for the audience. Overall for me, MCM was a positive experience. Cons have always, and will always, be an excuse to cosplay and see my friends – I don’t tend to spend hours inside playing game demos, queuing for panels or participating in activities unless they align with my friends and my cosplay choices, though I know many who do. There is numerous, valid criticism of both Reedpop and the Excel staff that has come out of MCM London May 2022, and I hope to see change in the future events held both in London and Birmingham going forward in response to this criticism. If you’re reading this and considering attending, my advice is to DO IT! Cons are a wonderful experience, fantastic opportunities to meet new people and celebrities, and try new things, and reading about them online isn’t the same experience at all! Disclaimer: All images and videos used, do not belong to FnC and belong to their respective owners. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
This was the first comic con event of the year for me and boy this event was fun. I will have to admit when I first got to the venue and saw the hall and how big it was I was a little surprised as some of you know, this event is run by the previous owner of MCM Comic Con, but if you just see this event run by new people then actually the size of the event seems to be correct. I felt looking through the stalls, there was a lot of variety to look at and buy. There were your usual stalls such as Genki Gear, Cupcake Company, David Birchham, but there were a lot of independent stalls selling unique items, artworks, geek stuff and more. It was refreshing not to be seeing most stalls selling Funko Pops and there was some uniqueness. Also there was a nice steampunk area to study or have a look at. The number of cosplayers was amazing to see. For a first time event, it seemed cosplayers came out in force and wanted to be part of this. It was such lovely weather so some people decided to head outside to take photos. I chose to be inside for most of my time, walking around to meet with as many people as possible. I really enjoyed seeing the wide range of cosplays I saw over the weekend and for me as a photographer for me to walk around and then picking locations to fit the cosplayer really worked for me. I think some of the complaints I have about the event are both the name of the event and the look of the event. What I mean by that is I don’t know what MegaConLive mean as a name, it is meant to be big things, mega construction items, etc. The name doesn’t really describe to me what the event is. In time, that will change, as MCM doesn’t mean much but has built a reputation with that name. The other thing is the look of the event, more on the mascot and font. It seems it is geared towards a very young audience. I’m not sure if I knew about this event, I’d assume this event really involved geek culture a place for cosplayers to turn up, etc. Overall I really enjoyed myself at this event. The space there was enough for me to walk around, take photos, enough areas for me to take photos around the venue. Like most Birmingham events, it was such a nice chill event and a lot of people who I spoke to, share the same opinion. This will be an event I’ll visit again next year should it come back on the calendar. Check out the podcast I recorded with guests of Kitty Cosplay and CJ the Geek where we discuss this event covering some of the things we have chatted about here and more. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
After a two year hiatus on 13-14th November, the NEC Birmingham opened its doors again to eager comic, gaming, film and anime fans attending MCM Birmingham! For many, including myself, it was the first big comic con and we were keen to venture back out into the open.  Like many I dug out my cosplay from the back of the cupboard and in the words of the Red Guardian ”It still fits!” and updated it with a suitably matching face mask. It won’t have escaped the notice of many attendees that the guest list was significantly shorter than normal events – likely due to travel restrictions and guests wary of attending large events. However other Comic Cons have had a larger and more varied guest list this year so it was disappointing to see quite such a diminutive list.  That said the guests who attended were well-received – plenty of Star Wars cosplays for Hayden Christensen and Ian McDiarmid along with a collection of cowboys meeting the voice cast of Red Dead Redemption. The Main & Live Stage panels looked popular for many of the guest’s talks although some of the other panel topics were unusual including “Are NFT’s the Future of Collectables?” The Cosplay Central Stage provided both advice and a chance to show off cosplays in a casual showcase alongside the bigger Masquerade on the Main Stage. Many lockdown cosplayers had stepped up their game and it was great to see the variation. The variants of Loki was probably the most popular choice but there was something from every fandom. While I’m not personally a fan of Anime, it was clear many congoers are and there was plenty to do, see and buy at the Pop Asia stage and surrounding stalls. It was lovely to overhear the excitement of a girl who’d got a photo and autograph with their favourite K-Pop artist and to see the busy crowds watching the rapping by Shao Dow. The NEC provides a mix of outdoor areas to get some fresh air – or pizza – which was a welcome to the busy halls. I assumed they would have to make stalls areas more spaced out and reduce numbers but it didn’t seem like big changes had been made – especially compared to London MCM based on attendees who’d visited both venues. It wouldn’t stop me revisiting but I’d make sure I kept my mask on. There were far fewer stalls compared to normal and a few of my favourites were not in attendance however there was the usual mix of comics, Pops, anime and plenty of art to enjoy. I personally like looking out for something a little bit different like these preserved butterfly wings as earrings and beetle shell necklaces from Urban Faerie Oddities (https://linktr.ee/urbanfaerieoddities) – something you would never find in a shop! It was great to see a mix of other handmade items including these colourful geeky bubble bath dice which smelt amazing from Geeky Clean (https://www.facebook.com/518374941554146/). While MCM Birmingham didn’t have as much to do for a full weekend since there were fewer panels and stalls, it was still a fun day out and kept its Comic-Con vibe which it always had. I’ll be looking forward to the return in November 2022 (as MCM will no longer be visiting the NEC in March) and likely will make it a weekend again – especially having found the Ibis Hotel located just behind with cheaper parking and less of a walk from some other cheaper hotels. The article was written by Handbag Cosplays Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
I wanted to give my perspective of the recent MCM London Event which occurred over the weekend of October 22th – 24th and talk about some of the key points of the event. I have to admit upon attending this event, I had such covid anxiety because deep down big crowded events such as comic-con events, sporting events, large crowds etc shouldn’t be going ahead at the current infection rate England is experiencing.  Covid passport When I arrived at the venue, I was pleased to see that security on site made sure that everyone entering the site had one of the three conditions covered by Reedpop’s covid policy, which were Proof of double VaccinationProof of negative lateral flow test within a 48 hour periodProof of natural immunity to covid-19 Each day on site I was given a new wrist band to confirm that I’ve been checked, though I’m not sure how much they really looked into what I showed them as it was a quick glance at times. But I have to say I was glad this system was there which gave me the security that on appearances, checks are being made. I have heard of some attendees who arrived who couldn’t prove any of the three criteria that they were turned away at the door. Stalls and space I only visited the dealer’s halls only during the morning or in the evenings but was pleasantly surprised by how much space was made available to people to walk between the aisles. The stalls themselves were still packed in close which could prove a problem once everyone was inside and crowds built up and possibly started to crowd around the table.  With that said, the benefit of having so much space meant the number of stalls was low, which hit both mainstream companies and independent owners trying to buy a pitch at the event. I do feel that the amount of money spent to attend the event and the number of stalls available wasn’t really value for money but then again to keep within covid rules, Reedpop possibly trying to recoup as much money as possible, I can give them a pass this time but would want to see an improvement for the next event.  Mask wearing I’m very disappointed that not many people wore a mask indoors. I do know that wearing a mask was “strongly encouraged” but with everyone within the cosplay community experiencing in past years of con flu, I would have thought more people would wear a mask to prevent themselves from catching any illness that might be going around the event.  But I do have to understand also if everyone at the event follows the covid policy that Reedpop set out, no one should be entering the venue with the covid-19 virus.  I also heard that when people were attending panels or meeting celebrities, that mask-wearing was a requirement, no room for excuses. Which is a good sign that the event organiser is looking at the health and safety of the people attending the event. My time at the event I have to say, Reedpop/Excel have created such a safe environment for everyone attending. I truly believe this year they made sure to hold back general entry until their designated time as you could really feel when priority entry was in attendance and then general attendees then appeared. I also have to say that the number of people attending the event at its peak did feel and look lower than previous years. I couldn’t say how much of a reduction of attendees to the event but you can certainly see it at times.  I chose to keep wearing a mask throughout the event even if I was outdoors and was pleased no one questioned my choice in doing so and was successful in photographing people without any issues.  I’m not sure if now I turn up to these events looking forward to seeing and working with people then actually going to buy geek merchandise from stalls. This is why my view of the event isn’t the same as others as the stalls at comic con could be barebones as long as there are people in cosplay wanting their photos taken. I’m surprised again how much I needed this event from a personal point of view. I miss seeing and interacting with people and seeing people in Cosplay, taking their photos, really took my mind off things and gave me the time to enjoy life once again and not worry about life. I had such a fun time getting to know people and friends again, I even took out my phone and streamed from the event, to capture what I was experiencing throughout the weekend as it was such a return to an atmosphere I so missed. I do understand why a lot of people stayed away either for health reasons or allowing others to test the waters of the events and see how it went. Over the weekend I took so many photos of cosplayers which says to me how much the weekend took over me and not how I was worried about the health and safety of the event. View this post on Instagram A post shared by Food And Cosplay Photography (@foodandcosplay) I’m looking forward to Birmingham MCM in November and fingers crossed I have a similar experience to what I did in London. Don’t forget to listen to the Podcast with my guests talking about aspects of the MCM London event and more.  For more cosplay photos, visit our Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook page Twitter Instagram Facebook WordPress Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
Written by Shark of Skybot Film On Saturday 7th March 2020, before comic cons began to postpone their events, we went to Liverpool Comic Con in the Liverpool Exhibition Centre. We arrived at about 11am and were lucky enough to get a car parking space in the multi-storey opposite. There was a little queue inside which was great. Alarmingly though security did not do any sort of bag checks. Once our tickets were scanned, we weren’t issued any sort of wristband and there was no signage saying where everything was. We followed our gut instincts and took a left where we came across the main hall of the convention. It was split into 3 sections, vendors, photo/prop area and the signings area.  Firstly we visited the vendors area. There was a mass array of older toys, brand new toys/comics, artists (which had some amazing work), and even an area where they were demonstrating effects make-up on someone of the Demigorgon from Stranger Things. This area was fantastic, it had both the feel of a small con with nostalgic stalls and the feel of a bigger con with you FunkoPops, newer toys and merchandise also. However, it was incredibly crowded. Yes this was a Saturday but speaking to other people who went, it was just the same. The aisles seemed too narrow for the flow of people and it was free for all. Some cosplayers were pulling along suitcases also which did not help the matter.  The next area was the photo and props area. This was a wide open space with hardly anyone around. Some of the props were amazing with a life size ED209 from Robocop, a Tardis, a Jedi training area, some Autobot cars and a photo opportunity to take a picture on the back of Falcor from Never Ending Story. I bought a photo with Peter Cullen, a legendary voice actor who is mainly known for voicing Transformers’ Optimus Prime in the original cartoon, the new live action movies and many other Transformers games and cartoons. The queue was very swift at moving and the staff were very ‘on it’ at communicating with people and making sure they were in the right line as there were 2 photo area. I was possibly in the queue for 5 minutes before meeting Peter Cullen. He was giving fist bumps instead of handshakes which was very sensible at the time. This was before any information was given about social distancing etc.  I had a very quick chat with him, thanking him and he thanked me and I was on my way to let the next person. This was when the headache happened…both photo booths merged into one and was an incredibly long queue to get your photos. Instead of the photo being printed out as soon as you left you had to queue and get your photo. They were trying to hand them out to people who they could see and if they couldn’t then they would put them at the end of the table but not make any announcements about that. I was in the queue for about 15 minutes to get my picture and had to rummage through everyone’s photos to get it. Not the most organised. I met back up with my friends then who were in line waiting for Peter Cullen to return for an autograph. They were waiting for about 10 minutes which I thought was great. Then they queued up for Frank Welker, mainly known for voicing Transformers’ Megatron. The queue went on for an hour to get a prepaid signature.  Above the photo area were 4 large screens where they were live streaming the panels that were taking place but we had no idea where these rooms were. After getting all autographs needed we went on one final search through the stalls, it was about 3pm and the queues had died down a bit thanks to some top celeb panels on. Once we finished our shopping we went to look for the cosplay area. We looked outside of the main hall and there was just the Liverpool Comic Con sign so went for a wander back to the entrance. We noticed many people going upstairs so we went up the first flight…still no signs…went up the second flight and went down a skybridge corridor and found the panel room. At this point we were a little fed up of hunting to find other things so decided to call it a day as we had a long journey home. So overall feel was that they needed to spread out the vendors a little to make the traffic flow more fluent and less claustrophobic. Also the system in where you get your photos after they are being taken needs an overhaul as other events have the printers near the camera so by the time you leave the room you get it handed to you. Finally the building needs better sign posting to the areas.  However, we had a great time meeting some childhood heroes, meeting friends from other Transformers conventions and also all the amazing vendors and artists. Would we go back…it purely depends on who would be there and if the above concerns were rectified. Thanks for reading everyone and hope you all stay safe from the Covid-19 virus. Shack – Skybot Film Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
On the first day of Advent, the doors of The Tropicana opened up to give geeks of the South West a warm welcome, albeit in a very chill hall! Stars of Time have been hosting comic cons in Weston for many years and despite various location changes it has still proved to be a popular event for families and cosplayers alike. I mostly spent the day behind the stalls as part of Bristol Ghostbusters collecting for Children’s Hospice South West. We were joined by a huge Ghostbusters rooftop scene complete with Terror Dogs. Ghostbuster cosplayers had travelled from as far as Kent to grab a photo with the Temple of Gozer. Visitors had several other opportunities for photoshoots including Emperor Palpatine’s chair, Han Solo in Carbonite, and Akira inspired Bike and an Indiana Jones display. Alongside there were also a variety of stalls featuring retro toys, scented delights, comics and artwork. A charity auction was held in the afternoon with bidders getting some bargain movie posters, autographs and props. The best-dressed stall was Fulcrum Fashions who had a lovely array of pretty Star Wars themed jewellery. The stall had caught my eye at a previous event so I was pleased to get a chance to take a closer look (and buy something shiny!) The Somerset Cosplayers hosted a cosplay contest – complete with a surprise Macarena dance opener! There was a great mix of costumes from both adults and children – my favourite was a pink, Christmasy foam Stormtrooper. The Christmas spirit was definitely showing with Santa hats appearing on Stormtroopers, Ghostbusters and even Daleks. Rumour has it there Dalek Candi (in pink) was spotted gliding around the local ice rink! Stars of Time is a great, friendly local con and well worth the visit to the seaside – even on a chilly December afternoon! The next event will be Sunday 30th & Monday 31st August 2020 in The Tropicana, Weston where hopefully it will be a bit warmer and sunnier – although with a British Bank Holiday you never know! Thank you handbagcosplays for your review of this. If you want to follow handbagcosplays, can on her instagram account. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
Reedpop & MCM welcomed geeks, cosplayers and photographers to the NEC on 16-17th November, it was a very busy show – one of the busiest I’d see in Birmingham for a long time and I hope that this continues. As usual they had several halls in use, however, they also continued their bizarre layout which means I spent half the weekend lost or rather randomly refinding stalls. Despite this I do feel that MCM could make Birmingham bigger – the NEC has enough room to rival London’s Excel centre. Cosplay is always a big feature at all MCM events and there was such a variety to enjoy.  Keen cosplayers could learn more from the free MCM Workshops including foam weapon building classes from Artyfakes or artists could improve their drawing with Tony Fleecs hosting My Little Pony drawing classes. Definitely worth checking out for future events but be sure to sign up before the show.  There were several stages at MCM – amongst the Main stage selection was the Sean Astin talk along with the MCM Championship of Cosplay Final – both proved very popular with queues snaking around the halls. The smaller Cosplay Central stage provided advice for new and improving cosplayers alike. For those preferring a more intimate experience, the MCM Live Stage hosted various interviews across the weekend including a Hattie Hayridge talk. We learnt about her surprising start in Red Dwarf – in less than a year she went from being a frustrated secretary to a drunken open mic comedienne to starting a career in stand up and then being picked out on TV to play Holly. You could really see her dry sense of humour in the interview and I was keen to look into more of her comedy after. In between interviews, the MCM Live stage hosted various events including an interactive game of Codenames hosted by Dicebreaker with the audience guessing the words. We were presented with a selection of words and our leader had to provide clues on which to pick (or not to pick!) I’ve played the game in small groups but it worked surprisingly well with two audience teams and both sides got quite competitive! There were various extra areas including Side Quest for all your gaming desires from custom consoles to PC’s set up ready to challenge your friends. For smaller visitors, The Treehouse had a festive theme with snow-topped trees, reindeer and sleigh along with plenty of activities including Lego and face painting. Also, the Steampunk Emporium featured a number of different sights including Steampunked SciFit artwork by Mostly Curious Games. There was an interesting selection of stalls from the usual t-shirts, mystery boxes and Pop figures to steampunk, Christmas decorations and even various alcohol stalls including Vampire themed wine. Never one to turn down a free drink I did intensive testing at these stalls – with Dracula themed red wine which had a deep and fruity palate and rich warmness but thankfully no bitter tannins. I slightly regret not buying a full bottle but alas I was distracted by something shiny… literally! The Mead stall had limited edition MCM gold shimmering mead – despite, or maybe because of, my hangover I decided to take home a bottle of shiny booze to see me through the comic con off-season!  Most unique item of the weekend had to be leather asthma inhalers – practical and yet fits in with any ye olde costuming.  Unlike MCM London there isn’t really an obvious post-con party pub – one of the things I do miss at the con. During the daytime, the Wetherspoons (there’s two within NEC) is a popular meetup point but it closes early so this time we explored Resort World which is just outside of the main NEC entrance. I’m not quite sure how I missed this large shopping mall previously but it’s certainly on my list to explore when I next visit the NEC. Amongst all the shops there are a number of restaurants and bars with excellent 2 for 1 cocktail to be found (Espresso Martini’s are good, Tonka Martini’s are bad).  Being in a central location it is easy for many people to visit Birmingham for just a day – especially as the hotels can be expensive due to the proximity to the airport. However, I would recommend it for a weekend as there is plenty to see and do over two days so you can get good value out of a weekend ticket. Staying at a hotel near the Birmingham Airport Car Park 7 proved to be much more budget-friendly and it even offers a free quick shuttle bus over to the airport (and you can monorail to NEC from there). Otherwise do your research as the cost of overnight parking can almost be as much as a hotel! I’m looking forward to the next MCM Birmingham Comic Con on the 21st & 22nd March 2020 – I’ll definitely be back for a weekend. Thank you handbagcosplays for your review of this. If you want to follow handbagcosplays, can on her instagram account. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
I have been attending MCM London Comic-con for a decade now, and I do not know if that makes me qualified to write this or gives me rose coloured glasses where all red flags just look like flags. With ReedPop taking over, I think there are some flags, but there are a lot of good things too. It is all about your personal experience. With my friends, I had a good time. It’s busier than it’s ever really been for an October con. Being towards the end of the year, October has always been the quieter convention but the more mainstream it gets, the busier it’ll get. There were some flags with staff, the new prop policy being an issue. However, there were lots of improvements with lines, panels, and guests. The following is my experience during October MCM 2019 and should be seen as an opinion if you had a different experience do let us know! candyylocks at the Halloween photo section Ticket prices and lines The prices do keep getting higher and I know that angers a lot of you but see it this way, we keep getting more for our money, more organization, more guests and panels. It was just under £80 which is steep, but it shouldn’t be getting any more expensive anymore after October. So if £80 is still within your budget then I think it is worth it to a degree. The lines were swift, which was new to me. It was so quick on the Friday morning for weekend tickets, some of us wondered if we had somehow skipped the line altogether. I have never seen it so organised before. A friend of mine attended only for a day on Saturday and had the same experience with the lines. He arrived at around 11 am, so most people had already gotten their wristbands. The prices are more reasonable for the day and he said he was able to do everything he had set out to do when he arrived. Staff – What were they like. Most years, I have interacted with friendly staff, one staff member even offering to help me “steal” the giant wonder woman posters. I did get permission, but it was still funny that they helped me take the giant cardboard posters outside and back to my hotel.   When it came to needing help with anything this year, the staff was willing and friendly. They’re human and they want to enjoy themselves as we do, if you treat them with respect, they will do the same. Most of my issues with staff weren’t really their fault but the general rules that they have put into effect since the convention have gotten so busy, or bad communication through different types of staff members. One of my group attended con, dressed as Negan using the same prop bat, he brings every single year. This year it was deemed as too dangerous and confiscated. Which was frustrating as you have to come back at the end of the day just to be able to pick it up again. Normally I would agree that when things get busier, we must get stricter and more careful, but they aren’t careful. With a weekend ticket, I got in no problem with my prop sword. It never got checked! Only because I didn’t go through the ticket checking entrance. This is not an issue with the staff but with the general organisation at the convention by Reedpop. Overall if that is my biggest issue with the staff then I’m pretty sure it has improved over the last decade. The stalls – shopping The stalls like most years are a big part of the convention. I have been going a lot and every year I spend more and more time in the Comic Village. It is a wonderful amalgamation of artists and creatives coming together to sell/show off their wonderful work. I feel like it has gotten bigger with every passing year, filled with more regulars that I make sure to see every London MCM convention. For example I make sure to find Ohayouclothing, sushiartstudio and a few others. The more mainstream stalls are still good too, although I find that every other stall tends to sell the same thing for different prices so it’s worth looking around more than once to find what you want for the cheapest possible price. Do not hesitate to look up certain things online as it might be available online for even cheaper! I personally try to use MCM as a way of buying things I cannot get elsewhere. Luckily Reedpop is very on top of where things are placed in the halls, opening more halls for all the space needed to. Using the maps placed all around the Excel Centre, I was able to find the stands I wanted to visit. Comic Village isn’t as represented on the maps but the specific stalls I wanted to visit tended to put their placement up on social media, or I wandered till I found them. Panels – What were the ones we attended like? From the panels that were attended within my group, the consensus seems to be that since Reed Pop took over, the panels have been much more organised. They were relatively easy to find and get to, if this was not the case then the staff was helpful and able to point us in the right direction as well as big screens near each stage, telling us what was on. The Cosplay stage where Eurocosplay was being held was the only one difficult to find as it wasn’t in its own area like the mainstage. It was lost in the crazy shuffle that is Comic-Con. The Witcher Panel: a large much sought-after panel as so many of us are excited for the Witcher Netflix show coming out, was very busy. It was a first look panel showing us what to expect with the cast and crew attending. We got actual inside conversations and inspirations, so it was more than just PR and advertising. Andrew known as Moosebooks said it personally “calmed concerns about the show, so it did a great job hyping up interest for it. Before was going to wait what and see what people thought, but now happy to give The Witcher ago based on the footage .” The See panel, starring Jason Mamoa had similar vibes with crew talking about the show coming out, inciting similar interest in the panel goers. These panels were good, however, that did mean it was insanely busy in the panel halls. Author panels tend to be quieter. Which I believe is a good thing for the people that attend. It is more chill and a comfortable environment. The panels were informative and in-depth with a lot of crowd interaction towards the end. A way to understand the minds of the writes and what goes into writing in general. Reedpop tries to get a lot of authors for these panels, and you get to see what they feel and think about writing and how they approach it. It had led some of us to buy a fair few new books that we may not have bought before, purely because of these panels. Cosplayers The biggest reason I go to comic con is because of the cosplay and how big it is. I did not get a chance to attend the competitions, but I did get to see many amazing costumes this year! Every year people just keep getting better and more creative with what they bring, even if Reedpop is getting stricter with the prop policy. A few personal favourites were: Cumbermatch and his insanely accurate Dr Strange who took a photo with chaos_quinzel‘s awesome Femstrange, josephanthonypettit‘s Gladio with a sword I couldn’t even lift, Gotham_gwen‘s Hawk Girl and beast_awakens‘ Homelander. josephanthonypettitgotham_gwenCumbermatch and chaos_quinzel There were so many cosplay’s that I loved but unfortunately did not catch their names, so these aren’t the only cosplay’s that I loved over the weekend. Besides the masquerade and competitions, there are meets too for people to attend but I find some of the meets are too busy. The stranger things meet, however, was small and personal, and I got to meet likeminded people as well as get a few fun photos with people! I like the smaller meets as they’re a chance to meet people who like the same thing. Bigger meets like Marvel or DC are so busy that I never end up talking to people as much. Evenings When it comes to the conventions as the Excel building, the party doesn’t stop for some of us who attend the local bar, The fox which in on-premises. Being London, it isn’t surprising that the prices are through the roof. The fox has a small dance floor where us nerds can dance to old music with an inexperienced DJ who hopes everyone there is too drunk to notice that the music taste is terrible. I go to see people and hang out, chat, have a fun time. I dance to the terrible music still and I tend to enjoy myself but this year was lacklustre. The music was even worse than usual and the fox isn’t even really trying anymore, however, The fox is the only proper nearby bar where people can dance so they don’t feel like they need to try. Which isn’t entirely true because most attendees are now going to the Novotel bar instead. Overall, I still enjoyed myself but that is probably because I have friends I like to see and talk to and it wouldn’t matter where we are. Do you go out at MCM London? maladjustedfreak, candyylocks, poisoned_cosplay, samm213cosplay and pages_of_izzy The article was written by candyylocks. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
For the weekend of 25th – 27th October fans of all ages beamed down to the NEC Birmingham in a variety of costumes to meet the many generations of stars from Star Trek.  Along with the traditional uniforms, there were some great examples of inspired twists on Trek. There were several free selfie points around the venue so fan could have photos with Voyager inspired Shuttle, a Hota Alien and Borg Alcove. It’s nice to see bigger venues add more free options for visitors as cons can quickly get expensive when you add photoshoots, autographs and talks.  The NEC hall was well spaced out so you didn’t feel rushed and there was always plenty of room for a quick photo, to browse stall or find out about the latest game updates. Along with the selfie points, many stalls had some really interesting displays including a detailed map of the ship and space backgrounds perfect for a spacey selfie. It can be a long weekend for Trekkies, so you could chill out and watch your favourite episodes from across the eras in the screening room – it was pretty busy throughout the weekend but there was always a few spaces to sit. The European Space Agency had a stand showing examples of real-life of spaceships alongside a Lego Borg cube. It’s nice to see educational aspects in an entertainment environment. The event hosted a number of different panels through the weekend including discussions about a wide variety of Star Trek books to updates on the Star Trek Online, including some of the actors from the show who lend their voice to the game. Discovery’s Anthony Rapp on Saturday (Lt. Stamets) and DS9’s Chase Masterson (Leeta) on Sunday. On Sunday they held a Cosplay Parade- as a Cosplayer I prefer parade’s over competitions as it’s much more relaxed and friendly. There was a wonderful mix of cosplayers from previous competition winners to the more casual looks and several lovely families. Various attendees did a little skit on stage and my personal favourite was the mini Kirk & Spock who had a very dramatic fight on stage (although based on their mother’s face I don’t think it was planned!) Keep an eye out on the Handbag Cosplay’s page for an album of all the participants of the parade. One of the highlights for fans was a sneak peek at costumes and props from the upcoming Picard TV show. Cosplayer were inspecting the badges and uniforms to update their own costumes. Personally I would love to have taken home a bottle of vintage Chateau Picard! The Captain himself, Sir Patrick Stewart, also made a brief appearance in a very popular paid talk.  The next docking station for Destination is Excel, London on 13-15 November 2020 and confirmed guests include Kate Mulgrew (Captain Janeway) with many more to follow. If you enjoy the comic con culture then it’s well worth a day visit and for Trek fans staying the weekend they often have exclusive parties in full costume – Black Tie or Formal Dress Uniforms encouraged and even some of the celebrities join in. Thank you handbagcosplays for your review of this. If you want to follow handbagcosplays, can on her instagram account. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
Having lived in the UK, the vast majority of my convention understanding had come from MCM London Comic-Con and a host of smaller conventions that I’ve attended over the years. This year I made a trip across the Atlantic ocean to attend New York Comic-Con. While this would be my first trip to NYCC, it would however not be the first US convention I’ve been to. Several years ago, I attended both Long Beach Comic-Con and WonderCon on the West Coast of the United States. I’ve long understood that American Conventions are on a totally different level of events when they are compared to their British counterparts. However, nothing could have prepared me for the scale and size of what I found at NYCC. Even though I was there all 4 days of the convention (because of a very kind gesture by Food and Cosplay), it was still impossible to see all of the convention by the end of the first day. It would eventually take us the first two days to work our way through the event halls while stopping off at the food court and venturing outside to take photos of cosplayers. It would be an incredible feat to go with the intention of making a checklist of all the things to see at NYCC and accomplish them all. You may have a certain cosplayer you want to find and yet the event is so huge that it becomes unfortunately impossible to locate them. This isn’t a drawback, however. NYCC never lets up with its wow factor. I personally found it very difficult to wrap my head around the size of the convention on the first day. Eddie of FnC told me after several hours of walking around the hall that this was just half of the first hall. It was impossible to comprehend just how huge NYCC was. This doesn’t even factor in, the food court, the artist alley, and the numerous panel rooms. My brain 404’ed at the concept of the size of the convention and even after Eddie had shown me just the rest of NYCC, it was still difficult to comprehend how vast the convention is. A convention with its own floor for a food court? Madness. Yet that was what I was presented with and while it took time. I eventually managed to grasp the scope of the event and was thoroughly entertained throughout. Having finally had the chance to meet well known US cosplayers who’s work I’ve frequently seen on my Facebook or Twitter feeds was a fantastic opportunity. To quickly chat with Danielle DeNicola at the end of the convention to conversing with Hendo Art about New York and it’s locations in video games and the Marvel Universe, to see fellow Brit Osh of the 86th Floor filming his NYCC cosplay music videos where both myself and Eddie were caught unaware in the background of his videos. Whereas MCM Comic Con’s tend to be more of a varied affair with a mixture of video games, anime, panels, movie guests and artists. New York Comic Con was solely geared to the comic lover and offered far more. In fact, the term “more” is what would best describe NYCC. There’s more of the event itself with 4 days (than compared to MCM’s 3 days), there are more cosplayers and there’s more artist alley. In fact, Artist Alley had it’s own dedicated section solely for people to find their favourite comic book artists. MCM’s attempt at Artist Alley often felt nothing more than an afterthought and are shoved to one side and then promptly forgotten about. What makes NYCC most appealing is that you have the city of New York in the background. When the convention closes for the night you have the fantastic city to fall back upon and be carried off to some fantastic places to eat (if you’ve got time in the morning, go to Penelope’s alone for their Blueberry pancakes). This gives the convention something that a lot of the English events frequently lacks character. Right from the very beginning to its final day. NYCC is unique and always reminds you that you’re in Manhattan. The fact that NYCC brings in such an amazing crowd of talent in both comic book art to cosplayers is an incredible draw and bonus for the visitor. You could find yourself at the Vero stand where cosplayers like Hendo Art, Holly Wolf, Kristen Hughey, to name a few cosplayers who could be found for photos and prints. There are artists like J Scott Campbell, Jamie Tyndall, Scott Blair, Tana Ford, Jen Bartel, Gabriel Picolo, and many more all offering unique covers to their comics and amazing artwork. I loved New York Comic Con and I fully intend to visit again next year. It’s a convention much like the city of New York itself. Big in spectacle and determined to keep your jaw on the floor. Written by Titans of Cosplay. You can follow their account on Twitter. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
Viencon started as a meetup of friends who shared a love of Anime, Cosplay, and Nendoroid (mini figurines) photography. The group grew and last year they made the huge step of hiring out a Center Parcs for “a convention that feels like a vacation”. For the second year running, I joined a mix of cosplayers and photographers and journeyed to the south of The Netherlands with bags full of cosplays, cameras, and swimwear. Travelling to the event is pretty straight forward, I preferred the Eurostar so I can bring plenty of luggage and have a longer holiday en route, but others flew to directly to nearby airports or drove. The Netherlands has a very efficient railway system and Viencon laid on coaches from the nearest train station so no need for cars or taxis. You can even use the UK Trainline app to book your train tickets. Our cabin group met up in Eindhoven the night before con and enjoyed an eclectic meal in the Down Town Gourmet Market where you can pick your meal from over 20 street style vendors. The potato platter was something a bit different from the usual jacket potato! Viencon is very much about the cosplay and Limburgse Peel Center Parcs offers a variety of locations for daytime photoshoots from sandpits to playgrounds and from trees to waterfalls. By mid-afternoon there were photoshoots popping up all over – some booked in and others open to snapping all the cosplays on offer. Keep an eye out on the Viencon Meets… Facebook group where most people make plans before they arrive. This year the Viencon Gophers started the House Games – everyone could pick a team (Go Sharks!) and throughout the weekend they had different events to gain points for your team. It added an extra something to the weekend and started some friendly rivalry. Through the afternoon there is a mix of events from Anime quizzes, talks on cosplay and photography, a spicy food competition and my personal favourite, beer tasting! I was encouraged to join in with the Saturday Cosplay Catwalk on the main stage – we introduced ourselves, gave a twirl to the audience and cameras and then got to admire the other costumes. As someone who isn’t always that confident in cosplay and wouldn’t enter a competition, it was a nice way to show off my costume in a friendly environment and support others too.   Outside there was Matsuri Festival with some traditional Japanese games. I had a fun time collecting goldfish with a paper scoop – harder than it sounds! It got quite competitive and there were some good prizes for the top scores plus a variety of small prizes for everyone who won. Inside there was karaoke and gaming open till late so there’s always something to do. The biggest pull for me is the chance to cosplay in the tropical swimming pool – something which most of us will never get the chance to do. Each evening the pool is reopened for convention attendees – for safety reasons they do bag checks and breathalyser tests so no risk of drunken silliness knocking cameras into the pool (although a few photographers take the risk of jumping in themselves!). The pool is busy every night with photoshoots all around, water fights on inflatables and lots of cosplay selfies – it’s quite an experience to see and makes the trip over well worth it. I really enjoyed my Ursula pool photoshoot and it’s inspired me to plan more for next year too. After the pool is closed the private bar is opened for happy hour with entertainment from gaming, karaoke and Deshima Sounds. The late-night does mean that there’s not much going on until 11 am in the daytime – ideal if you want a quiet photo shoot or just a lay in! There’s plenty to explore around the Parc in the morning – or visit the pool with the normal holidaymakers. Like many European cons, there is a heavy Anime focus on the cosplay also mixed in with Baywatch and Disney. Unlike other cons you won’t get autographs from guests or find lots of stalls to buy from yet it is just the most chilled out con I’ve been to and I’ve had the best photos from there. I’d recommend it to anyone who wants a holiday with a difference. I’m looking forward to next year’s Viencon held on 28th to 31st August 2020. They are doing very well at building on their success along with asking for and listening to feedback – hopefully one year they’ll take over the whole Center Parc! Thank you TxtEva for your review of this. If you want to follow TxtEva, can on her instagram account. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
On the 29th and 30th of June, while Europe enjoyed a heatwave, over 35,000 cosplayers & geeks sought refuge in the chilled halls of Messe Stuttgart to share their love of comics, films and games at Comic-Con Germany (CCON). As with other European cons I’ve visited (VienCon & Celebration Europe) CCON is used to travelling visitors so provided many panels in English and most staff, guests & stallholders spoke various languages – so if you’ve forgotten all your German school lessons there’s no need to panic!  The actors guest list focused on quality over quantity, I was excited to Brent Spiner, Jonathan Frakes and Karen Gillan. All of the panels were free with plenty of opportunities to ask questions. As a Mantis cosplayer I enjoyed the Pom Klementieff panel – especially when she shared that she enjoyed seeing cosplayers (a few cheers from the other Mantis cosplayers) and intrigued to hear that one of her dream roles would be in a Quentin Tarantino action movie using her kickboxing skills. There was also a smaller stage for talks with comic artists and cosplayers including Gladzy Kei explaining about how to make cosplay armour, Kit Buss describing how she develops the art for Critical Role and 3D Disney artist Hamid Ibrahim sharing the work he is doing with the comic anthology Kugali and how they are trying to bring African comics to the world. Based in the centre of the main con, there was lots of seating so you could also stop by to chill and expand your knowledge of cosplay and comics. There was a large cosplay area including a varied mix of international cosplayers to meet plus free & paid for photoshoot booths. Everyone was very friendly and there was such a wide mix of cosplay themes and levels from shop brought outfits to creative duct tape & foam costumes all the way up to finely detailed movie quality replicas. There were plenty of free photo opportunities including a Star Wars Speeder Bike and Deadpool’s couch. Up on the balcony, you could find numerous impressive displays of Lego models – including some interactive options and huge 27,000 brick mosaic of K.I.T.T showing the German love of The Hoff – there was even a large family section to create your own models. One event that really set this con apart from any other I’ve been to was the Saturday night after party. The official parties are usually a rather quiet and awkward affair or a messy drunken scrum, but CCon made full use of the convention atrium with a live DJ, music videos and surprisingly strong iced alcopops. The partygoers were there to dance and we arrived to a floor full of synchronised macarana-ing, shortly followed by Loki leading a conga line. The mix of high school disco music, newer pop songs and local favourites include The Hoff’s “Looking for Freedom” (the German’s really do love The Hoff!) kept everyone entertained. Bench seating provided plenty of people watching and seat dancing for those of us with tired feet from the long day. The party was still in full swing when we stumbled the short distance back to the hotel – which might have explained why, like most cons, Sunday was significantly quieter but that certainly made it easier to shop! There was a mixture of the usual comic con stalls selling Pop figures & Anime items but noticeably more goth/alternative stalls and medieval wares. I saw several interesting handmade items including a selection of plasticised comic books turned in to wallets and 3D papercraft cards (small enough to fit in my cosplay filled suitcase!) The food was the usual event pricing but there was a wider than normal selection to choose from including various Japanese vendors, German Currywurst, and the usual burger & chips offerings. Plenty of cool drinks and well-needed ice creams were spread out through the con with seating – always useful when melting through your cosplay. A new addition to CCon was the outdoor medieval market which featured various stalls selling medieval costumes and props along with all kinds of metal and leather products. Swords – both real and foam – were plentiful and there were lots to look at even if it wouldn’t make it home through customs! There was a wide range of food including pulled pork and crepes to enhance the atmosphere. It was an interesting addition to the con however the heat made it hard to stay outside for too long. The next Stuttgart CCON will be on July 11th – 12th 2020 and I’ll definitely be booking my tickets again! There are not many cons when you can step off the plane and walk straight to the con (it’s quicker to walk from the Airport to the Messe centre than it is to walk around the back of Excel centre!) Thank you TxtEva for you review of this. If you want to follow TxtEva, can on her instagram account. Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...
What up people, it’s your boy Starfish here, taking a break from the movie reviews and giving you a different kind of review today. So MCM comic con rolled into the Excel again on the last weekend of May, and I have not attended in some time. This was due to my own personal things, new job, money issues, trying to kick start my new TV show, “Pirates of the Arabian”…..still don’t know why it didn’t work… View this post on Instagram Day 2 – Let’s go! 🌟 To all the witches, elves, Avengers and Rebels joining us today, we can’t wait for you to see what we have in store for you! #mcmcomiccon A post shared by MCM Comic Con (@mcmcomiccon) on May 25, 2019 at 2:12am PDT But this was the first time I attended since Reedpop had taken over the comic con, so I was intrigued to see what was different. I can tell you now, I had the best time that I’ve had in a long time. For me, it is true that absence makes the heart grow fonder because I missed it all, the good stuff, the cosplays, the stalls, the food, even the queuing and over packed halls, I had missed it all Haha I had the chance to walk around inside and was impressed by the changes in some of the stalls, there were new stalls that I hadn’t seen before, there were new kinds of experiences that I hadn’t seen at the con, for instance, I believe there was a design booth, where you could create characters, as well as more stage areas for different panels and events. View this post on Instagram I’m just gunna write Dany… ☕️ #mcmcomiccon A post shared by MCM Comic Con (@mcmcomiccon) on May 25, 2019 at 8:04am PDT I know there has been controversy over how special guests were treated, I can’t comment on that because I didn’t take part in the meeting of special guests but I can only hope that things get better in this regard. A little less “the right-hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing” and more organisation will always be beneficial. And my God the cosplays! Since the last time I went, there were great cosplays, but it’s like you all looked at previous ones you’ve done, and just gone “Hold my Nandos bottomless refill!” There was a new level, with some incredible craftsmanship, and creativity that made genuinely regret not cosplaying myself! View this post on Instagram Post con mood… @selfiefactoryofficial A post shared by MCM Comic Con (@mcmcomiccon) on May 28, 2019 at 6:57am PDT I genuinely had the best time at comic con on a Saturday, so much so that I’m REALLY hoping I have the weekend off in October. Starfish needs to get back into the cosplay world! I hope you all had a wonderful time as well and enjoyed the con! Now on to the summer!!!!! Like this:Like Loading... [...] Read more...

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