MCM London Comic Con appeared for the second time this year from 27-29 October at the Excel Centre. It’s one of the few times a year when you feel comfortable starting a conversation with someone on the underground. “Are you going to Comic Con?” you might ask Spider-man as you wonder just where he keeps his Oyster Card. Sometimes this friendly approach backfires. I was convinced someone was cosplaying as Arthur Dent but it turned out he was simply dressed in pyjamas and a dressing gown at 9:30 in the morning.
Putting my minor social mishaps aside, I was soon ascending the stairs to the west entrance with the speed of Rocky Balboa. I passed some assembled journos from a much bigger website as they struggled to get through security. I’d like to attribute my rapid access to charm, wit and sophistication but I think it had more to do with me remembering to take my invite. The other journos had forgotten. TOP TIP: always take the necessary paperwork to conventions. Let’s just say Nerds 1, Geeks 0.
The Marvel presence was strong, following a partnering with MCM, and they had plenty to promote with the likes of Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Spider-Man, Avengers and Ant-Man. The Marvel zone was rather large and very popular. The red carpeted area dominated one of the exhibition halls. WWE also partnered with MCM and I got to examine The Undertaker’s cloak up close. It didn’t look like he was that tall. Alright, he probably is.
Wandering around, you would soon come across Pop Asia, which is often referred to as an explosion of pink. Japanese cosplay was as popular as ever, particularly Attack on Titan. I recommend visiting this area in short bursts as the real world seems scary and hard after prolonged exposure to the fluffiness and cuteness.
Of the games companies, Nintendo had the most to show including (take a deep breath) Super Mario Odyssey, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, Splatoon 2, Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, Fire Emblem Warriors, Pokémon Sun & Moon, Super Mario Maker, Mario and Luigi Superstar Saga, Laytons Mystery Journey, Story of Seasons: Trio of Towns, Fire Emblem Warriors and Metroid Samus Returns. Bandai Namco were promoting Code Vein, Naruto to Boruto: Shinobi Striker, Dragon Ball FighterZ and the one I’m looking forward to the most, Ni no Kuni II: Revenant Kingdom. It looked great, but then you’d expect an improvement from the original on PS3, with combat now involving small armies. I’m not completely convinced about that yet but people were enjoying it.
The Comic Village was as good as ever with famous artists and writers tucked between the talented indie teams. This is one of the hidden jewels of MCM London. From the edges it looks less impressive than the great displays from the big companies but the creativity is incredible.
Nerd culture gets everywhere including the West End stage. There were performances from the cast of Bananaman and Graeme of Thrones. I’ve not seen Banaman yet because it doesn’t start for another couple of weeks (15 Dec – 20 Jan, Southwark Playhouse) but it looked promising. I can recommend Graeme of Thrones (currently on at Charing Cross theatre). The special effects have to be seen to be believed.