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Saturday, 4 November 2017

A Visit (or Two) to MCM London Comic Con

star-wars, wicket, pop-figure, warwick-davis
Image: Lorna Holland
On two weekends a year, the capital becomes awash with visitors and cosplayers with one thing in common - a shared love for modern pop culture. Held at the ExCeL exhibition centre, MCM London Comic Con has fast become the must-visit convention for UK fans. 

However, despite my love for many of the shows and genres catered to, 2017 was my first trip. After enjoying the first show so much, way back in May, we decided to go for two and took a trip to the October convention too, heading down on Saturday 28th.

On my first visit, I was a little overwhelmed and consequently went rather overboard on the spending front. Between the pair of us, my boyfriend and I spent the best part of £500 on that day, coming home laden with an assortment of oddly-shaped bags, packages and swords. Despite the fact that we severely lightened our purses, it was still a great day, topped off by getting the chance to meet actor Warwick Davis and browse all the displays and stands.

Having been left so impressed by the calibre of cosplay back in May, we set ourselves a challenge and agreed that the next time we went, we would also try our hand at cosplay.

Fast forward five months and we had decided to go again, though this time with a group rather than just the two of us. In amongst all the planning and preparations, we had to honour our promise to each other and get our cosplay outfits ready to go.

cosplay, daenerys-targaryen, trafalgar-law
Image: Lorna Holland
After much debate on my part and virtually none on his, we picked out our characters. After failing to find a decent replica of Newt Scamander's coat for less than £100, I would be Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones; he would be Trafalgar Law from One Piece.

For someone usually as reserved and self-conscious as me, agreeing to dress up and walk around the middle of London in cosplay was a pretty big thing - one of those moments that just goes to show how far I've come in terms of not caring what people might think.

But self-development aside, what about the actual convention itself?

Spending far less than May's extravagance, October certainly brought a different perspective to the event. Instead of rushing around like headless chickens trying to see everything and meet everyone and buy it all, we had a look around and headed specifically to the places we knew we wanted to visit. We took more time out to meet up with friends and just sit back and relax, enjoying the atmosphere and checking out all the fantastic cosplays.

On the downside, it was also incredibly busy, much more so than the crowds present back in May. We agreed that from now on, we'll probably only go once a year rather than twice, but for a first foray into the world of the pop culture convention, these two days certainly provided one hell of an introduction.

Have you ever visited a convention? Let me know in the comments below!

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