Every time a MCM show comes around, I find myself stuck between thinking it won’t be that bad, and thinking I shouldn’t go.

As we all know, MCM stands for Manga comics & media. Or we all know it at least has “Comic” In there somewhere, yet they rarely have many comic guests. This year was slightly different. While they didn’t have loads of comic guests they still had some good ones.

John McCrea was there sketching again, with his son Kirby. John was charging £20 for a headshot, which is a bargain. And £50 for a full figure sketch, which again is pretty solid. And his son was charging £1.50 for sketches, there’s nothing better than seeing people feel too mean to turn down a kid and throwing money at him.

Kirby mysterio sketch

Lee Bradley came a long this time too, it was his first time at Manchester MCM but he seemed to really enjoy himself.  Antony Johnston was there too, selling some of his books and games. But, as we all know MCM is always about the loud noises and dancing.

Jade Thompson was charging around £5 for a full sketch of anything, she’s not famous but she’s good at what she does. Sadly, her leaflet has a broken IP address on it.

This wasn’t that different. While they did have good guests there simply wasn’t enough, and the only comic related stand, Diamond Distributor had a tiny stand, two shelves that had some old graphic novels on them and a shelf of previews. They did have a cool glass cabinet that had the new Batman stuff in, but you couldn’t buy any. There was one or two game shops, and several anime related shops.

Probably the most successful was the plastic and wooden toy sword stand. Or “replica” weapons as they like to call them. But all in all, the stands were just the same thing over and over.  There seems to be a growing concern however, over the cosplay. Now, I can’t post pictures of the cosplayers or pictures of the cosplayers out of respect for them. But if you plod through some of the MCM groups you’ll see arse shots and cleavage everywhere.

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Some people are saying it’s unfair to take pictures of them when they’re like that, but the reason they do it is for attention, but it’s becoming clear parents are starting to worry about taking their kids to these things, I think it’s time MCM staff took a forward step and sorted out some rules regarding this.

The main issue last year was the fact it was too cramped, and while they had a bigger room and larger aisles it was still very packed. And the artist alley seemed to have aisles that were stupidly small, with both lines getting stuck every half an hour.

Lee Bradley Sketch MCM Expo

The lines for Vic Mignogna and Warwick Davis were stupidly long, to the point of people missing out on getting signatures. The talks on stage were mixed, and the stage had a lot more seats than last year. It’s very clear they’ve listened to feedback, so I have to commend them on that.

But it’s the same old MCM issues we’ve faced before, no comics, few games a hell of a lot of anime and manga, MCM need to admit they don’t really look into games and comics much. The guys over at NanimeW set up the after party, but got no help from MCM, and while the after party wasn’t my scene at all, I have to admire a small group setting up an after party.

So all in all, not a great convention, and the feeling seems to be mutual with a lot of people, even the anime lovers. Sorry for the lack of pictures, but honestly there wasn’t all the much to get pictures of.

There was a nice loot bag though, with comics, a DVD, badges and a few posters. But they ran out very quickly.