[Conventions] Kapow Comic Con 2011

I’d love to write more about people’s experiences at conventions, so please contact me if you’d like to write a guest post about a convention, or share any links with a really good convention writeup.


Last weekend was the first ever Kapow! Comic Con, an attempt to kick start a convention in the UK that would be comparable in style (if not size) to the San Diego Comic Con.

Arb and I went, along with some friends/ partners/ sisters and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. This is a very different style of convention from the scifi/ fantasy ones like Eastercon, which I’ve written about previously. It’s funded and organised by professionals rather than fans, so there is a very different type of atmosphere. Less of the wackiness, craziness, and warmth, and more queuing, organised sales pitches, and people from film/ television as well as writers.

Having said all that, it felt like a friendly event, full of fans of comics, cult TV shows (a category which apparently includes Merlin these days) and – yes – computer games. And they were very sharp with making sure that events ran on time.

We went to a panel which was a Q&A session with Mark Gatiss who aimiably chatted about Sherlock, Doctor Who, The First Men on the Moon, history of horror, why he prefers writing screenplays to books and just about anything else for the hour.

A few computer gaming companies turned up to show off upcoming releases, and I actually got close to a Nintendo 3DS for the first time. Which was long enough to ascertain that yes, the 3D pictures look very cool. I was also amused to see someone brought along some booth blokes dressed as soldiers rather than scantily clad booth babes.


There were plenty of cosplayers around, even on the Saturday (the cosplay competition was on Sunday), mostly in superhero costumes with a smattering of medieval. I’m not sure who this woman is dressed as but thought it was a great picture with her friend in the scarf.

Unlike computer gaming conventions, there was a fair number of women represented in the attendees. Or in other words – geeky girls represent!

I haven’t mentioned the comics yet, which took up the main body of the convention floor as you can see in the picture at the top.

There was some brilliant merchandise available – as well as back issues, there were models, posters, tshirts, mugs, et al. We came home with a really cool poster of Spider Jerusalem, a mug (for me) that reads “evil fluffy bitey things”, and the first issue of a new comic produced locally and which comes with its own CD where the entire creative team had turned up to make the pitch. Go check out their website for the Mister Who comic. It’s pretty darned awesome.

Anyone else go to Kapow last weekend? What did you think?