This year we went to our first Comic Con in Bournemouth and had a brilliant time, but Hubby didn’t get to go as he was working, so when I saw that MCM Comic Con was coming to the ExCel over half term I excitedly booked tickets and arranged to meet up with friends.
The show promised a whole host of sci-fi, film, television, comic book, video game, anime, manga and cosplay content and my husband and teen were especially excited. As we approached the exhibition the kids were excitedly pointing out all the Cosplay characters they could see. It was obvious that a lot of people had gone to a lot of trouble to look like their idols.
We arrived at 11am as kids under 10 were free after that time and the whole event was rammed. According to the website there were 130,560 visitors and although that was over 3 days, it really felt like it.
Unlike Bournemouth Film and Comic Con where you could get up and close to the actors you admire and even have a chat, here they were out of sight, hidden behind security and massive queues in a couple of corners of the ExCel, although we did catch a glimpse of Sylvester McCoy. Isaac and I made a beeline for all things Dr Who and he was very excited to get his magazine signed by the illustrator who was at the exhibition.
In hindsight I wouldn’t take the children along to this event again. It was very heavily focused on selling and with most stalls selling various items such as clothing and toys it was a struggle to get around with the “I wants” ringing in our ears. Poor Sebby was also terrified by some of the costumes.
We didn’t find many shows with exhibits either so when Hubby spotted Walking Dead American Horror Story: Hotel stands, he was keen to visit them whilst I made sure I kept the kids a safe distance away. Luckily we found some computer games to try on the Sony stand.
We also didn’t get to any of the talks as the queues were huge but a friend went to the Dr Who one with Steven Moffat and he mad an exciting revelation – Captain Jack is coming back!!
We stayed at Comic Con for about three hours and by the time we left it was so busy you could barely move, which is not ideal with a young family in tow.
As it was still early we decided to take the Emirates Air Line over the river to the O2 which offers a unique view up to 300ft over London. Whilst we were waiting the kids watched in awe as a couple of people were in the water next door skiing and using aqua jets to launch themselves out of the water.
Sadly it was drizzly and the cabins were covered in raindrops so I didn’t get any decent pictures but I still chuckle when I think back to Isaac exclaiming he could see Torchwood (Canary Wharf).
The journey takes around 10 minutes and we were soon over the other side of the Thames. As it was raining we made a quick dash inside the O2 to see if they had any half term events going on.
It was surprisingly quiet, probably because of the weather, so we headed over to the Nissan Innovation Station as the kids were eager to play. There are lots of interactive stations to try from a virtual test drive of an electric car to Nissan’s Motorsports Training Lab which allows you to test your stamina and reactions against other NISMO athletes.
The experience is family friendly with activities for children of all ages, from colouring competitions through to the Gran Turismo racing pods where Kian stationed himself. We giggled as we each tried to beat each others score on the Batak Wall and even tried to race a wheelchair which is a lot more difficult than it looks. Somehow the kids managed to win the quiz against us adults too!
We spent around 45 minutes inside and tried everything they had on offer before heading off to try out Sky Studios. I was disappointed that the new Bring the Noise attraction wasn’t working as we could have lip synced for a chance to win audience tickets to Bring The Noise hosted by Ricky Wilson.
We did run for our lives as we tried to escape a speeding meteor in the You, Me And The Apocalypse augmented reality experience…….
and delivered the breaking news headlines in their interactive studio. I did get the giggles thanks to my dear husband putting on a ridiculously deep voice though.
The kids were more than happy to pose with their favourite characters and take photo’s on the green screens.
Once we had finished we stopped for a drink in one of the restaurants and let the kids run around playing football which was being organised outside the Nissan Innovation Station, before heading back over the river to our car.
It may not have been the day out we were expecting but we had fun nonetheless.