Today I went to the Birmingham (UK) MCM comic con at the NEC (National Exhibition Centre) and as usual it was great! The event is slowly gathering momentum since the first one I attended a few years ago, as can be measured by the quality of guests. This time around we had the likes of Lee Majors (Six Million Dollar man, Fall Guy), Dina Meyer (Starship Troopers, Saw), and the glamorous Liv Tyler (Armageddon, Lord of the Rings). Not to mention Game of Thrones actors Ian Beattie, Ian McElhinney plus UK known Andrew Lee Potts (Primeval, Wireless) and Colin Baker (Dr Who). But enough name dropping.
To add to the guests there are plenty of stalls selling a massive range of memorabilia, which include replica weapons from film and TV, clothing and accessories that cover all genres of entertainment, the ever popular Pop figures and of course comics. But with all this going on around you, for me there’s one thing that makes this event such a pleasure to go to and it’s the fans who attend.
For everything that happens at these events, without the support of people like you (and me) there wouldn’t be much point in hosting the Comic-Con. Just walking through the hallway, before you even gain entry to the main halls and seeing the array of cosplay on display never ceases to amaze me. Whether the person has spent a fortune on their efforts or simply done it on a budget it doesn’t matter, because the joy is obvious on their faces. It’s not just about the joy they are experiencing but they bring a little bit of magic with them that everyone shares; because not all have the time, money or bravery to cosplay, so those who don’t can admire those who do.
I went with my family and close friend (which is becoming my own unique geek squad) and decided to attend as Cyclops (previous efforts have been Ryu and The Riddler). Not only were people more than happy for you to ask for their photo, they would ask you for yours as well. This, for me, is one of the best parts of attending. It’s such a buzz when you get youngsters coming up to you with their parents asking if they can pose with you for photos. It makes every minute, every penny and every needle stuck in the finger making the costume (yes, many times) worth it. No matter if the person is young or old, it’s amazing to see how much they enjoy themselves and the family friendly atmosphere is an extra bonus for myself. I have never seen a single person refuse someone a picture, denying them the chance to bring fantasy to reality and share the magic of the event. Not to mention the camaraderie if you see someone who cosplays from the same show/film as yourself (I couldn’t resist the chance to have my photo taken with Hank McCoy and Magneto).
If the MCM continues to gather support then in time we could see bigger and better guests. And with the continuing efforts from the great people I have met year after year, they’ve definitely got the fan backing to create a great Con for more people and fans like me to enjoy.