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Film & Comic Con Exete

We were at the Exeter Film and ComicCon this weekend, to see what is arguably one of the biggest names in convention organisers in the UK had in store for us this year at Exeter’s Westpoint arena.

Upon entering the arena, it was apparent that it would be a very different story to last year. The celebrity guests were no longer in the centre of the room – instead, they were along the left wall, near the cafe and toilets. The centre was taken up with stalls, and the majority of the of the booths were the usual vendors selling everything from comic books to t-shirts and even knives and swords. I may be in the minority when I say this, but in my opinion, I’m not sure that these kind of items should be on sale at this type of convention.

There was a group of stalls that really stood out to me. One was an exceptionally talented artist by the name of Chris Barker whose astounding artwork is so detailed, it resembles a photograph.  His dad explained to me that Chris,  like me, has Aspergers (a form of autism) and is a self taught artist. His website (CJB Art) is really worth checking out.

The other stall that impressed me was the only indie comic book there, called Moon. We are going to be reviewing at a later date, but if you’re keen to read it, it can be found here (Beyond the Bunker Comics)

There was also a retro gaming area and a group that does LARP (Live Action Role Play) there. It  was great fun to chat to some of the guys that take part in this, about what it entails, before settling down to play a round of Sonic the Hedgehog!

This year I managed to catch one of the cosplay talks given by Jinxy Dragon Cosplay.  This was informative with lots of hints and tips, including latex buffing. This was followed by a great Q&A covering some very hot topics and, of course, the do’s and don’ts of convention cosplay.

All in all, it was a great little convention with some fantastic guests including K-9 and Colin Baker.  The one thing I felt that was missing from this year’s line up was comic book artists. Last year, we had the likes of Jock and Lee Garbett, but this year it felt this side of things was sadly missing and would have been a welcome addition to the guests.

Also a big shout out to all the wonderful guys and girls who came dressed as their favourite characters, there was a great deal of time and effort spent on costumes as you can see with our rogues gallery bellow.


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Exmouth ComicCon

Well it’s that time of year again where the geeks and nerds of the southwest dust of their costumes, raid their piggy banks and converge on the pavilion on seafront for the second Exmouth ComicCon.

This year see’s a big name in the industry joining the convention… Forbidden Planet, which is great to see them along side the smaller and independent traders with the usual wares from comics, t-shirts and collectibles. There was also a number of artists and illustrators like our good friend Matt Bucket from Ink Pott Graphics creator of The Weapon graphic novel to industry heavy hitters (and locals) Henry Flint and John-Paul Bove.

There were some fantastic guests like actor Clem So and local author Andy Robb and also lots of great and imaginative cosplayers from the professional Star Wars 501 garrison and Local cosplay legend David “Judge” Wilson to the children and adults that had put so much time and effort into their costumes the ones that stood out were a girl dressed as a Hogwarts student, Indiana Jones, Deadpool but above all the small child dressed as a Tauntaun rider really made my day.
Thank You to everyone that worked so hard behind the scenes to make this event happen especially those there at three o’clock this morning and of course Laura Nurse for organising yet another brilliant event.

We hope to be invited back next year to report on how this fledgling convention has grown even further and gone from strength to strength. 

Recommend Read October

This months recommended Read is a new indie series that has just put together its first collected trade paperback. I give you Geek Girl by Sam Johnson.
When ‘Little Miss Popular’ Ruby Kaye lands a pair of super-tech glasses (invented by brainiac college geek Trevor Goldstein) in a game of Strip Poker, she’s granted flight, super-strength, and – due to a flaw in the glasses’ programming – super-klutziness! And this is just the beginning of the changes the glasses will wreak on Ruby…

Trying to be a super-hero, Ruby Kaye stumbles across a mysterious and extremely dangerous new villain taking down her town’s Numero Uno heroine – and is forced to step up and use her powers for more than just accidentally knocking drinks over her friends… Geek-Girl is entering the Super-Hero Big Leagues – whether she’s ready or not.
Sam Johnson’s Geek-Girl has been on my radar for a little while, since I read the first issue and realised that story apart from being new was a fresh take on the usual stories I had read. 

What Geek-Girl does is flip the usual story completely. In this comic the unpopular girl does not become a superhero and improve her life while improving that of others. Ruby Kaye is already very popular and uses that popularity and also her looks to get a pair of hi-tech glasses invented by a local nerd.
I read issue one and found it a very easy to read story with some bright and bold artwork to match, the story shows a lot of promise longevity wise as it hints at a plethora of villains and heros we are yet to meet. 

The only thing that I think some readers may take issue with is there was girl on girl kissing and very skimpy costumes. If I’m honest we have seen the major labels doing this for a long time with female characters, so I don’t see a problem with it myself.

Geek-Girl: Vol.1: Lightning Strikes! is Out Now and available at for UK orders) and Geek Girl Comics Website

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P.I.S Review

We are reviewing the latest comic from Guido Martinez and Evoluzione publishing called Paranormal Investigators Showdown. This issue is written and lettered by Guido Martinez, penciled by Wilson Palacio, inked by Scott Forster and colored by Christopher Denney.

This issue begins with a focus on the characters and there relationships these things will come to define the series way more than the paranormal side of things. Firstly we meet the main characters of Phil Shallowhall and his partner Marty who run a paranormal detective style agency, Phil has certain otherworldly style abilities and Marty is there as muscle basically, next we meet Sofia who surprisingly  also runs a similar business and doesn’t get on with Phil not just because he runs a similar business although I’m sure that’s a factor, but mainly because he’s her ex spouse. This adds an interesting dynamic to the story that really gives it a shot at longevity. 

The artwork which is a combined effort of Palacio, Forster and Denny is bright vibrant and certainly makes the pages of this book and the story come alive almost popping off the page at points. This looks like it could be another hit in the making from this team and guys and Evoluzione Publishing. 

Recommend Read September 

This months Recommended Read is inspired by the latest Marvel Netflix offering: The Defenders and one of its more famous members, Daredevil. It is a really powerful look at the origin story of Matt Murdock, the man who would eventually become known as the Daredevil, who was created by two industry greats. They need no introduction, really; they are Frank Miller and John Romita Jr. This month, I am recommending ‘Daredevil, the Man Without Fear’.

Matt Murdock is a young boy living in Hell’s Kitchen. His father is a single parent and washed-up prizefighter who’s down on his luck and resorts to working for The Mob to support his son. One day, Matt is involved in an accident that results in him losing his eyesight. Matt’s pursuit of justice, either learning to fight criminals on the streets of Hells Kitchen, or fighting for justice as he pursues his law degree at Columbia University, makes him every bit the violent vigilante. Both professions are bloodthirsty in their own way, It makes for a tragic and emotional backstory, and as Matt learns the truth about his father, he must decide whether he can forgive him his wrongdoing. 

This being an early Miller story, it indicates the writer’s thirst for a good story and it contains many of the elements and influences that would later go on to be in Miller’s classic The Dark Knight Returns. The artwork captures so accurately the various emotional states that the story runs through, and the panels certainly add to the lead character’s angst. His combination of strong writing and powerful artwork only serve to add a more meaningful bent to the story. 

In summary, this is a strong, gritty and emotional tale. In my opinion, even if you are familiar with the story, it’s still the perfect place to start, to get to know the character of Daredevil.