Sunday, October 25, 2015

Mega busy MCM show

I had a good day at the MCM London Comic Con yesterday. A massive show with a huge attendance (rumoured to be 100,000) with visitors of all ages. The great thing about modern conventions is there's a much better balance of male and female attendees these days. Comic and cult media shows are no longer mainly the domain of the male 'geek' and the occasional female fan or bored girlfriend as they were 30 years ago. There are many young women now who are as passionate about comics and sf as their male counterparts, and this applies to the creatives as well as the fans. Whatever changed things (and I suspect it was mainly Manga, Animie, and stronger female characters in comics and sf) it's done the comics community a power of good. 
I spent the day at Panini's Doctor Who tables, doing a few sketches. It was great to see Tom Spilsbury (my editor on Doctor Who Magazine), Scott Gray (Panini editor and writer), and Jason Quinn (writer/editor of Doctor Who Adventures), and to meet Russ Leach (artist, Doctor Who Adventures, see his Facebook page here: and John Ainsworth (editor, Doctor Who The Complete History). A few other Doctor Who folk dropped by too, including artist Rachael Stott, showrunner Steven Moffat, director Rachel Talalay, writer Sarah Dollard, and even 7th Doctor Sylvester McCoy. 
Editors Scott Gray and Tom Spilsbury.
Artist Russ Leach, with editor Jason Quinn looking on.
Next door, in Panini's Marvel booth were editors Brady Webb and Ed Hammond who had brisk trade on the Marvel graphic novels. One thing that occurred to me was where were all the other mainstream UK comics publishers? There were many families in attendance and this would have been the perfect opportunity for D.C. Thomson to promote their new Thunderbirds Are Go comic and the latest Beano and Dandy annuals, or for Egmont to promote Toxic and their other magazines. (Update: D.C. Thomson were at a different event on the same day, so fair enough.)
To infinity and beyond!
One drawback to being at a con is you don't get much exercise sitting behind a table so I took a few breaks to walk around the massive hall and take some shots of other guests...

Mighty Grant Perkins was there, showcasing some of his excellent artwork. Check out his website here:
Grant Perkins.
Very nice to see Paulina Vassileva again. A fantastic artist who often attends these shows. Visit her website here: 
and follow her on Twitter here:
Paulina Vassileva.
Time Bomb Comics had a stand, with publisher Steve Tanner launching the latest book, Bomb Scares 2015. (Which I'll review on this blog later this week.) See their website here, and support British indie comics:
Steve Tanner.
It was great to see Rachael Smith again, one of the top new comics talents of recent years with a very appealing style. I'll be reviewing her new book, The Rabbit, soon. Visit her blog here:
Rachael Smith.
I also had a quick chat with writer Tony Lee, artist Gary Erskine, and a few other comic pals, and it was good to finally meet artist Lynne Triplett, whose Far From Faith comic I'll show here soon. 

This was my first visit to an MCM London show. It's quite a trek getting there by train as it's about half an hour or more on the tube from Euston, but shows like this and the London Film and Comic Con attract so many people they have to use huge 'out of town' venues to accommodate everyone. There were also other conventions around the country on the same weekend, as there are nearly every weekend these days, and they're also well attended, so it's clear to see that the interest in comics and sf/fantasy media is growing exponentially. Long may it continue!

Doctor Who Magazine website:

Panini Comics website:


Simon W. said...

Entirely agree that we should be seeing DCT and other UK publishers getting involved with comic-cons. Perhaps DCT don't realize that there could be a market of all ages for DCT comic characters, not just kids. I wonder if DCT still think the only adults interested in their back catalogue are pipe-smoking granddads of the kind who appear in the Beano - I still think some "artists editions" of e.g. 1950s Beano classics would be a hit. Let's hope if some DCT execs read this blog they might catch up and get to those cons!

Lew Stringer said...

DCT did attend a couple of Bristol cons years ago, as did Toxic, but the convention landscape has changed a lot since then and I think they could really benefit by attending the big shows such as MCM where lots of kids are attending.

Sam Morgan said...

Went to the Cardiff one. It was a bit rubbish.

Lew Stringer said...

I've just found out that DC Thomson were at the Toytopia event at the same weekend so that's a good reason they were absent from the MCM show.

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