Brum MCM: My favourite con of the year!
Updated: Nov 30, 2018
Convention season is almost up for this year, and my season will end this weekend at Wales comic con! (Sunday only if you're there!)
But I thought it would be good to reflect on surprisingly my favourite convention of the year! Although I did go last year I had such a horrific nightmare due to most of the trains being cancelled, and me being stranded in the middle of nowhere, and my tickets were unable to be refunded, so I didn't really have the opportunity to actually try and enjoy the convention.
First off, we got in a little late (2 hours to be exact. Our breakfast buffet was incredibly hard to tear ourselves away from) and the queuing system we were in was... super short and easy! I don't know if it was because we rocked up at 12 or it was because they actually gave enough space for there not to be a stampede of people trying to get in but, I think I was in there for a maximum of ten minutes. The staff were super friendly and kind - nice and painless.
In terms of location I would say having the entire convention indoors absolutely has it's perks. For one, not being frozen on the spot is absolutely a plus, but another being that it was a lot easier to navigate and find people. The only minus points to this was that in
terms of convention photography it can be quite limiting if you want something more interesting in the background other than hallways but, honestly, I'm sure if I scoped around a bit more I'm sure I could find my way around that. Special shout out for who ever controls the temperature indoors not going absolutely gung-ho to overcompensate for the winds outside - no sweating for me!
The one thing I never really get the opportunity to do at cons is actually look/ buy from the dealers tables, due to the fact it's either maddenly crowded, too warm, or I'm just too damn busy. So having the time to look around at stuff was really cool! MCM Brum really treated me to a large range of stalls with a variety of profession, a couple of which I absolutely spent at least an hour trying to decide what I wanted. According to my friend (who had her own stall), she had a steady amount of traffic to her table, and the prices for having a table in general were relatively easy to re-pay because of it.
The overall atmosphere in comparison to that of MCM London was a lot more organised, a lot less stressful and a lot happier! Another plus of having it in the NEC centre, is that food, drink, toilets etc are thankfully not far away, so you don't have to
disappear for ages to then miss half the convention just to get a sandwich.
The only major downside is that unless you own a car, if you want to find a hotel that isn't too costly or is within walking distance, it is quite difficult. We were lucky as we had transport, but unless you want to fork out either £120+ per night or a small expense on taxi's, I can see this being a problem for some. That and trains can be incredibly erratic as I found out per my last experience.
But back to the positives!
The tickets were super reasonably priced, and I ended up making a bunch of new friends/ collecting a whole bunch of Sabrina cosplayers along the way who were all super friendly, in fact; everyone I met from the Archie universe that weekend were quite possibly some of the nicest and most welcoming people I've had the pleasure of meeting at cons, as we all brought either other up instead of trying to compare ourselves to one another. Honestly in the end, conventions are only as good as the company you keep. A rubbishly organised convention can be easily shadowed by spending time with the right people, and I had the pleasure of not only being surrounded by support and excitement, but by friendly staff and an easy to navigate convention that let everyone feel a sense of calm and less of a mad panic to get everything done. I'll definitely be coming back next year to see if I had a crazy fluke or I've found a convention that's a perfect medium between complete boredom and utter chaos.