Buses, Trains and Cosplaying Marines!
After surviving a replacement bus service, we finally arrived outside the SEC to see a herd of nerds. An ocean of colourful wigs, head dresses and weapons. I couldn’t wipe the stupid grin off my face, these are my people and they speak my language. Thousands and thousands of them, all ages and all walks of life, gathered for MCM Scotland Comic-con.
As is British tradition, especially with this many people, an orderly queue fills all available space outside the building. This should be the boring bit, not at comic-con, the queue is where you make friends. Comrades in what seems an endless exercise of being herded closer then further away and then closer to the door. The line is where conversation flows naturally from Anime to Doctor Who, video games to the weather and superheroes to bitching about the geeks that already got in.
Other great pastimes of the queue include marvelling at all those who made an effort to come in cosplay. Pointing out the ones you recognise that become the subject of a new twenty-minute conversation, before being brutally cut down by seeing an even better more difficult character waltzing around – yes, I’m talking about you Mr Xenomorph.
The cosplayers are the unsung heroes of any convention, the time, effort and accuracy they put into their characters is to be applauded. From the home-made to the eBay bought they all deserve applaud. Next time you find yourself in a con queue make friends with the people around you and have a game of cosplay bingo.
Before we know it we’re at the door fumbling for our tickets, they get scanned and viola, we’re in. Staring out stunned hit with a cacophony of noise, the smell of chips wafting in from somewhere unseen. A vast cavern of nerdgasmic splendour awaits, we wade through otaku’s, gamers and cinephiles to get the lay of the land. Screw looking at the maps posted around we’ll do this the old-fashioned way, get lost and follow the tide.
The atmosphere is electric and alive as comic book connoisseurs flick through boxes looking for hidden gems, fan-girls squeal over new plushies and popz, brave adventurers risking it all on mystery boxes. It feels near impossible to look at every stall, but we tried our best; libraries of single issues, scores of retro games and walls of wearable merchandise. So much to see and not enough money to buy all that I wanted.
Sadly, at this con, I didn’t get to see any panels but from the crowds outside the theatre section it’s not hard to ascertain that they were packed and why not? With guests like Troy Baker, Peter Davison and Bryce Papenbrook, there was a guest for almost every fandom.
Yes, the room was too warm but with 50,000 people passing through they’d have to set the air-con on arctic before it took any effect. By the end of the day my feet ached, my back twinged and I was entirely too sweaty for my liking. However, it was all worth it for the atmosphere, the conversations with like-minded strangers, the coming together of all kinds of fandoms and of course the small haul we came home with.
Here’s to the next one!
By Holly Rihan