By Olly MacNamee
With a large crowd of enthusiastic, albeit wet, comicbook fans turning up briskly at 11.00am at the Cheltenham Racecourse, True Believers Comic Festival 2016 seemed to be poised to be a soaring success and that it was. While official figures are not in yet (I’d pester the organiser, Stuart Mulrain, but he deserves the sleep in as I write this up on a sunny, but cold, Sunday afternoon), over 1000 people crossed the threshold and entered into a world of fandom in it’s many guises, breaking last year’s turnout and showing that there is growth and interest for comic cons still.
From comic book dealers (and my thanks go out to one in particular, Comic Connections, for making my daughter’s friend and me very happy in scoring a variant cover Darth Vader Down No. 1 each), indie creators (such as the talented Sammy Borras and here Giant Rhinos In Space No. 4 – fresh off the printing press and straight into my daughter’s hands) and geek culture inspired jewellery, t-shirts, coasters and cupcakes (and, again, a big thanks to Coventry’s Bakeology for sneaking me a fondant fancy Deadpool – too neat to eat) to the panels (with a crackingly good natured and good humoured Dr Who panel featuring Mike Collins, Lee Sullivan, Paul Cornell, Emma Vieceli and Rachael Smith, as well as a prize draw) and the cosplay catwalk which was a very popular part of the day, with one and all vying for position around the catwalk as if we were witnessing Paris Fashion Week, but with better designed clothes and more realistic looking models.
I was able to say hello and a Happy New Year to a growing number of friends and professionals that I have grown to know over the years writing for Bleeding Cool and made some new friends along the way, such as Jon Laight and his Brethern Born comic book (which you will be hearing more on shortly). It really was a great event and one that will secure it a spot again next year too, I imagine, which can only be a good think for fans, creators and cosplayers.
I leave you then, with a small selection of the outstanding cosplayers strutting their stuff and showing off their skills.
Enjoy your day.
Olly MacNamee teaches English and Media, for his sins, in a school somewhere in Birmingham. Some days, even he doesn’t know where it is. Follow him on twitter @ollymacnamee or read about his exploits at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or don’t. You can also read his articles fairly frequently at www.bleedingcool.com too.