MCM Ireland Comic Con 2017 Review

Posted: July 3, 2017 in Comics and Cosplay
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Boy oh boy, didn’t think I’d be doing one of these again. I felt my first review ticked off MCM just a tad! A “tad” being enough to have them block us on social media and stop us from leaving comments on their posts. But that was a long time ago, they’ve changed right? Learned the error of their ways? Ironed out the kinks? Well, see below to find out!

As soon as I walked in I was greeted with what seemed to be the same layout as previous years, which I didn’t mind really. You walk right into the trade hall and see the stands, the banners and the usual trailer viewing area. Which I still don’t understand, I get it’s sponsorship and it pleases the people who sponsor and fund the events but did you really need it in an open floor, surely a smaller room with less crowds and noise would have been better for viewing trailers. But I digress, absolutely nothing seemed to have changed from previous years although the panel room was moved and thankfully was as far away from the wrestling ring as possible this time.  The floor was spacious this time, due to what to me seemed like a lack of vendors, which I know is strange for me to criticize but it just made the place seem really empty. Especially in the second area, it had so much wasted space and wasted potential. I had one attendee complain to me that the lack of a proper seating area for kids and families was a concern, they had more than enough space to use for such a facility. My guess was they hoped for a larger attendance and the space would be better for the crowds. But on the saturday, there were no “crowds”.

Courtesy of Lloyd Shiels

The artist alley and comic village seemed none existent in my opinion. There was technically a AA & CV present, but they were small, and contained little to no Irish artists, just UK sites and comics. I get it, you’re British and want to promote British work, but c’mon folks, you’re in Ireland, and you advertise as Ireland Comic Con, feature some Irish content next time please, it isn’t in short supply. The trade hall was made up of around 15 -18 big stands rather than the usual multiple smaller vendors, but they had one company taking up 5 of these places. Selling MCM’s coveted “questionable” art prints and posters. I’m not saying these were copied material, but I’ve done some research and I just find some of them kinda sketchy (pun intended!)

Courtesy of Lloyd Shiels

The panel room was OK. That’s all I can really say. It was OK. Thankfully it was set on the opposite side of the venue from the wrestling so the smashes and bangs from the performers didn’t distract or drown out the panels. But I do have some criticism for you MCM.  If you have a giant screen next to the stage, and have access to high speed internet and a budget of God knows how much money, place a camera to focus on the guest speakers, and possibly stream it on twitch for the whole world to see!  The walls could’ve used some posters or something to break the bland monotony of the room, but thankfully the quality of the panels and interaction from the audience made it a pleasant experience, people laughed and joked and found out some great facts from the guests!

The guests were, in my opinion, one of the saving factors of the convention for me, if it wasn’t for the guests then I probably would’ve left a few hours earlier. But it was my love for the Voice Talent attending that made me stick around until I managed to have a chat with them. In attendance was; the cast of Uncharted, Power Rangers, various Game of Thrones guests, Veronica Taylor (the voice of Ash Ketchum), Summer Glau from Firefly, Manu Bennet (Deadshot in Arrow) and last but not least Sam J Jones – Flash (aaaaah) Gordon. It is usually at this point where I would critique the extraordinary prices they charge for autographs and photos but alas that’s not the conventions doing, but Summer Glau charging €40 per autograph is way overpriced in my opinion. The lines were managed at great pace and I honestly couldn’t see any flaws in MCM’s management, good job fellas!

Courtesy of Lloyd Shiels

The best part about the convention for me was definitely the cosplayers, you guys saved this convention for me. The masquerade was the most entertaining aspect of the con and each of you that entered deserve a massive round of applause for your skill and courage to get up on stage. The cosplayers throughout the con seemed happy and willing to pose for photos, wherever you looked there was photos being taken, which is always a satisfying sign. The empty space actually did a good job of allowing people to divert their route in case a big group were getting a photo. Also, I love you guys/gals who got up on stage, posed and scurried off, you guys really made me chuckle and well done for being very brave and going up in front of a big audience *applause*

Before I end this review one thing I will give MCM credit for was their amazing staff at this event. I chatted to a number of the staff both in the organizers office and manning the guest tables and each of them were friendly, courteous and went out of their to helping me chat to some of the guests one on one. My major thanks has to go to the sweet lady who was in charge of the guest area, Janey!? I apologize for not remembering you name but if it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t have gotten my interview with Nolan North. So congratulations MCM you managed to win me over again!

Overall I’m not sure how to feel about the event. It wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t amazing. I felt completely indifferent as I left and I even asked myself is there anything to really review about this place. I have omitted some opinions due to word limits but they are not vital, so they can be left out. Questionable decisions were made for this years MCM, for me it felt somewhat lazy and looked like a kid playing “Comic Con Simulator 2017” who hasn’t unlocked all the good stuff yet. But the sad part was, they had the opportunity to do it, I’ve been to Belfast & I’ve been to London and both of these shows were night and day compared to this. I don’t know why they skimped on so many things. They need to up their game if they return next year. Whether Akroview will be attending, that we will have to wait and see.

Thanks for reading,

Adam.

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