10 of the best UK Comic Cons
- Henry Northmore
- 10 May 2017
Calendar of sci-fi, superhero and comic book gatherings across the country
Comic Cons are no longer niche gatherings for superhero obsessives. Geek culture has taken over the mainstream. Marvel movies dominate the box office, shows like Stranger Things and Doctor Who are ratings monsters and Star Wars is back and brilliant again. Comic Cons are more popular than ever, offering fans the chance to pick up exclusive and rare merchandise, meet actors and creators, discuss their passions or even indulge in some cosplay.
Here's our pick of the best Cons across the UK.
MCM Comic Con London
One of the biggest names in comic cons with one of the most impressive line ups of special guests as MCM take over the huge environs of ExCel for three days. There are three international cosplay competitions; an enormous Comic Village; panels on movies, comics and animation; movie cars; manga; steampunk and videogames (MCM London is also back again in October).
Guests: The massive lineup includes Donnie Yen (Star Wars: Rogue One), Nichelle Nichols (Star Trek), Billie Piper (Doctor Who, Penny Dreadful), Summer Glau (Firefly), Lou Ferrigno (The Incredible Hulk), Vern Troyer (Austin Powers), Sam J Jones (Flash Gordon) and Warwick Davis (Return of the Jedi, Harry Potter).
ExCel, London, Fri 26—Sun 28 May.
Swindon Film and Comic Con
Swindon boasts movie, prop and comic zones alongside cosplay, talks and trade stands. Swindon doesn't just celebrate cult sci-fi and comic books but also TV, comedy, sports and more.
Guests: Big diverse lineup includes Chris Barrie (Red Dwarf), Christopher Biggins, The Stig, Hannah Spearritt (Primeval / S-Club 7), Ricky Groves (EastEnders) and Sylvester McCoy (Doctor Who).
Steam, Swindon, Sat 3 & Sun 4 Jun.
International Comic Expo
Brighton's ICE concentrates on comics. Expect a series of panels, interviews and discussions with comic stars plus cosplay, art demos and traders all included in the ticket price.
Guests: Dave Gibbons (Watchmen), Hannah Berry (Britten & Brulightly), Pat Mills (2000AD, Marshal Law), Chris Weston (Swamp Thing, The Invisibles), Tanino Liberatore (RanXerox) and many more.
Hilton Metropole, Brighton, Sat 10 Jun.
The Birmingham Comics Festival
Third year for the friendly festival that takes over various venues across Birmingham with film screenings, talks and kids events through the month leading up to the main event on Sat 24 and Sun 25 June.
Guests: David Lloyd (V For Vendetta), Hunt Emerson (Firkin the Cat), Ian Edginton (2000AD, Witchblade, Batman) and Staz Johnson (The Avengers).
Birmingham City University, Sat 24 & Sun 25 Jun.
Glasgow Comic Con
Annual showcase of established and up-and-coming comic talent that has grown and grown over the last seven years. Includes Nine Panels industry conference and the annual Scottish Independent Comic Book Awards.
Guests: Pat Mills (2000AD), Kieron Gillen (Young Avengers, Star Wars: Darth Vader), Marguerite Sauvage (DC Bombshells, Thor), Frazer Irving (X-Men, Iron Man, Annihilator).
Royal Concert Hall, Glasgow, Sat 1 Jul.
Cardiff Independent Comic Expo
CICE takes it back to its roots for a not-for-profit celebration of independent small press sequential art. A chance to discover new writers and artists plus guests and panels covering everything from big name titles to indie comics.
Guests: artist and video game designer Jon Davis-Hunt (2000AD, Forza Horizon), Rufus Dayglo (Tank Girls, Judge Dredd), Henry Flint (Judge Dredd, Nemesis, ABC Warriors, Haunted Tank), Mike Collins (Spider-Man, Transformers, Batman, X-Men), David Roach (2000AD, Doctor Who) and more.
Cardiff Masonic Hall, Sat 18 Jul.
Thoughtbubble takes comics seriously. A full week of events across Leeds promoting and discussing graphic novels, superheroes comics, animation and indie titles as 'an important national and international cultural art-form'. Includes an academic conference, masterclasses and a programme of related film screenings.
Guests: Very impressive roster of creators including Brian K Vaughan (Saga, Y: The Last Man), Gerard Way (My Chemical Romance, The Umbrella Academy, Doom Patrol), Charlie Adlard (The Walking Dead) and Sara Pichelli (Ultimate Spider-Man).
Various venues, Leeds, Mon 18—Sun 24 Sep.
MCM heads to Scotland with a mix of TV, film and comic stars. Plus their huge Comic Village, dealers, cosplay and Vidfest UK covering vlogging, YouTube, animations and other internet video and social channels.
Guests: Sam J Jones (Flash Gordon), four Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Veronica Taylor (Pokemon) and Bryce Papenbrook (Attack on Titan) with more to be announced.
SEC, Glasgow, Sat 23 & Sun 24 Sep.
The most northerly comic con in the UK. Offering old school arcade games and pinball; a 'zombie cage experience'; NERF shooting range and virtual reality taster sessions alongside the usual talks, panels and stalls.
Guests: Full lineup to be announced.
Nevis Centre, Fort William, Sat 30 Sep.
Sci-fi and comics galore with traders, exhibits, talks, The Force Academy for young Jedis and a Walking Dead themed cosplay comp.
Guests: Ian McElhinney (Game of Thrones), Toyah Wilcox, Jeremy Bulloch (Boba Fett from Star Wars), Nick Moran (Lock Stock & Two Smoking Barrels) and Nigel Planer (The Young Ones) confirmed so far.
Norfolk Showground Arena, Sat 7 & Sun 8 Oct.