That time of year has come again to make my bi-annual trip to Wrexham for Wales Comic-con, slightly later this year then usual. This Comic-con was slightly different for me and my wife as it was our first as parents with child in tow to experience the event as a family. We arrive at the Glyndwr campus in Wrexham in good time to compensate for the fact that this comic-con may actually be the busiest & most successful in its history, in no small part to the quite frankly intimidating quality of its guest lineup, around the region of 50 stars of screens big & small, writers, artists and everything in between are lined up for this chilly weekend in December and the assembled queues outside were already hyped for it to start as were me, my wife and I hope in some small way, my infant daughter, I know it’s unlikely for a 12 week old child to grasp the concept but hell, start em young. The WCC community is very much a family affair, everyone helps one another and people of all ages and walks of life come to let their hair down and meet some guests from their favourite films & TV shows, it’s a community I feel very comfortable taking my child to be a part of and I hope when she’s a little older she’ll dig it as much as her old man. There are a couple of glaring bugbears at this particular con and the first was encountered on arrival with some delay getting into the event and I would be remiss not to mention it, it is something that hasn’t really happened before whilst I have purchased earlybird entry and was a good 40 minutes past opening before we got into the event without little to no explanation other than an apology for the wait. Having a weekend ticket, this didn’t really bother me too much, I know that tomorrow we can walk straight in with our wristbands, however, if I had purchased a Saturday only earlybird I’d probably be quite rightly annoyed right now.
After making our way around the large vendor marquee to peruse some of the many stalls set up for eager con attendees to part way with their hard earned moolah, we make our way to our first Q&A of the day, and that is where we encounter bugbear number two. We make our way into the Q&A hall for the Sherlock panel and are waiting for quite some time for it to start, it’s not for a good 20 minutes or so after the original start time that we learn that both Andrew Scott & Louise Brealey are waylaid on their way to the con. It’s something understandably out of WCC’s control but after the issues being let into the event nearly 45 minutes late, it leaves an even more sour taste in the mouth as we leave for our first photo-op of the day to beat the queues as they take to the stage. Not a good start.
You may think I’m being a little negative in this piece but believe me, that’s not my intention nor my wish but I am being honest. You will be glad to know I have nothing else bad to say about my first day at WCC as what was to follow put mile wide smile on me & my wives faces. We make our way into the photo-op hall and wait for Andrew & Louise to arrive for our Sherlock photo. During the wait our daughter Amelia is gaining a lot of attention from con goers cooing and spoiling her with attention which was beyond lovely for her first con experience, when it was our turn were greeted by a beaming Andrew Scott who seems quite taken by Amelia in her rather fetching Tiger onesie asking us all about her which was an unbelievably cool and disarming moment of fan service that pretty much made my day, the photo was lovely also even if Amelia fancied a snooze.
No sooner are we finished in the Sherlock photo-op than it’s time for us to queue for the Sting photo-op. My heart sank as we walked outside to see a queue that ran all the way back to the main hall some distance away. We walk over and ask a member of event staff if this was the Sting queue which she confirms and then proceeds to find us a place a little closer to the front as she can see our small daughter and appreciate it’s really quite cold, it was a fantastic moment of above & beyond customer service and some good natured people around us in the queue who had not issue with it, my mood is improving by the second it seems. We queue in the hall for our photo with The Stinger, when were greeted by the man himself he asks if he can hold Amelia for the photo, errr YES! As you can see, Amelia was rather overwhelmed to meet The Icon.
After taking some more time to bimble around the event, taking in the sights and Amelia enjoying a lot of attention from con attendees who seem quite taken with her, it’s time to make our way to our last Q&A before we head home, the Sting Q&A. Compared by former valet So-cal Val, Sting is an engaging & interesting person to hear interviewed, gamely answering questions from the audience with all the charm befitting of a living icon.
And with that, our first day at WCC is over and it as been a mixed bag, more good than bad thankfully and a wonderful first con, hopefully of many, for our daughter. Ready to do it all again tomorrow.