Name: London Super Comic Convention
Date: February 20th-21st, 2016
Location: Excel Centre, London, UK
Overview: London Super Comic Convention (LSCC) was only a short tube ride away from downtown London where I was staying, and for someone as directionally challenged as I am, it was not hard at all to find. Once I began getting closer to the destination, it became more and more obvious that the tube was filling up with other con-goers. I was headed the right direction, and I needed only to follow the blue wigs and cardboard armor to find the Excel Centre.
The facility, by the way, was massive, and offered tons of food options, stores, and places to sit when one simply became faint from the intense concentration of comic culture. There was even a classic car show going on directly across the mall from the comic convention. It was easy to get in, so quick that I waited in line with a friend despite already having a press pass. The convention itself was not honestly that large, to be the largest comic-specific convention in the UK. I have been to larger conventions in smaller places. But as the old saying goes, it isn’t the quantity that matters, it’s the quality.
And oh boy, did this convention shine in the quality department.
Guests: The guest list for LSCC was star-studded, without a doubt. And for once (out of the conventions I have been to), it focused solely on comic creators. I was happy to see the likes of legends like Brian Bolland and Mike Zeck alongside newer stars such as Sarah Pichelli and Lee Garbett (there was especially an inordinate number of people who had drawn Spider-man at this convention, it is worth noting). The list of guests who were at LSCC 2016 goes on, but the most important thing was that as far as famous names went, it was no slouch. But the most amazing part was the turnout of indie creators.
There were more fresh artists, amateur authors, and small-time publishers there than I had time to meet and talk to, and many of them had top notch work available. The amount of talent there, their excitement to talk about their stories, and the level of interest in the crowd made me very happy as a fan of indie comics. It was a proud moment, seeing as much attention being given to relative unknowns as was being given to people like Mahmud Asrar. In the end, I took the money that I had set aside for commissions from the well known Marvel artists that I had seen on the list, and put it towards buying hundreds of pounds of indie comics (a sentiment that is true using both meanings of the word “pounds”), a decision that I only regretted once I had to lug my carry-on bag back through the airport.
Vendors: The vendors at LSCC were not copious, and they did not need to be. Referring back to the sentiment of quality vs. quantity, LSCC featured much more high quality vendors than most conventions I have been to. There were, of course, plenty of stands selling shirts, Pop figures, and classic, collectible titles. But there were also an abundance of publishers there in the vendor’s areas. Some of the notable inclusions were 2000 AD and Markosia, who each had very active booths. There wasn’t a time when I passed by Markosia that they weren’t having a signing on one of their graphic novels, and I even managed to nab a picture with Ryan Stegman when I stopped by talk with them about some of their upcoming titles. Much to my dismay, he is an actual giant when standing next to me.
Cosplay: Cosplay at LSCC was no slouch, with some amazing costumes. Some whole families even got involved! The subject matter ran the gambit, including anime, comics, movies, and all variety of mashed-together concepts. Some were well known, some lesser, but there were definitely some that gave me pause at their quality.
Even more of the fantastic cosplay can be seen on LSCC’s website (http://londonsupercomicconvention.com) and in this Youtube highlight video!
Final Thoughts: This was honestly one of my favorite conventions that I’ve ever been to. Everything was easy to navigate and well worth seeing. There could have been more events going on, true. There could have been more panels that addressed a broader crowd. However, for the most part, I would go to LSCC again before any other convention I’ve been to thus far. The only problem is that it’s all the way across the pond. Still, I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything.
I also learned that my selfie game needs a bit of work. Y’all know how to take an impressive Facebook picture in the UK.