Leicester! A fine city filled with ace people, fantastic culture and lots and lots of geeky goodness. It’s always been a pleasure to visit but today was extra special, as the Emcat and I woke up early and made our way to the 2018 Leicester Comic Con.
What Star Wars characters would we see in cosplay style? What collection goals would we score? Quite a few on both counts, as it happened – read on to find out more!
The Athena is an urban art-deco palace opposite the Curve Theatre; two grand buildings adding to the attractiveness of this part of town. Having arrived early we queued for about 20 minutes outside in the middle of a good-natured crowd, and it wasn’t too long before a couple of Stormtroopers turned up – accompanied by a great Chewbacca rocking a pair of shades.
As we made our way in we passed a swathe of Mandalorians, Jyn Erso and a Death Star trash compactor en route to grabbing essential supplies – a tea for Emma and a coffee for me. Finally fully caffeinated, we were ready to hit the hall.
The former function of the Athena makes a brilliant venue for this kind of event, with the multiple stairwells providing plenty of room to manoeuvre and the decor and lighting lending the con more class than many I’ve been to. All those prior experiences came in handy straight away as the Emcat demonstrated her excellent training and made sure we did a complete sweep of the place for any bargains before spending time on anything else.
It was a good shout, and it wasn’t long before I made my first spend – the Episode 1 preview box Battle Droid and STAP for £5. It’s something I’ve been after for a while, specifically in this box with the gorgeous Doug Chiang-inspired artwork, so to get it for that price was an absolute bargain.
Next up came the POTF2 Commtech Jawa and Gonk Droid, something that I’ve watched multiple times on eBay but always seen shoot up and away from any reasonable price. Scoring this for £5 was a great result – if nothing else, 8D8 finally has something to torture…
On the first sweep I spotted a Black Series 6″ Scout Trooper and Speeder Bike for the competitive price of £35, but didn’t want to splash that much straight away. After buying some beautifully drawn smallpress comics, checking out the extensive gaming area and picking up a random issue of Liberty Meadows we returned to the Biker Scout stall only to find it had gone – but as part of a re-stock they had pulled out more POTF2 goodness.
I finally snagged a boxed Ronto and Jawa for the bargain price of £8, completing one of my primary collection goals at a price I was more than happy to pay. Watch this space for a review of the Special Edition Creature Sets soon.
That completed our purchases for the day. Even though I could have happily spent a lot more filling up on discount POTF2 and Episode 1, all of the pieces I got have spaces waiting for them in the collection.
As an extra bonus it was fantastic to see Reaper Squadron in attendance – the first time Em or I had seen them since they attended our very own special event last year. Northamptonshire’s finest Star Wars costuming group were out in force for the event raising money for Kidsaid, proving once again that they’re a great group of guys and gals that you should definitely contact if you ever need Stormtroopers.
With that (and some novelty fudge) we were done. There was much more to do than I’ve outlined above, and you could easily spend all day between the different gaming areas, the panels and the stalls; alas, we were on a much tighter timescale today. Regardless it was a great day out, and as conventions go Leicester is one that I’d return to in an instant.
N.B.: A Snowtrooper and Imperial Royal Guard standing outside vaping with their lids lifted was definitely not something I was expecting to see today…