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  • Symon Leech

For the Love of Horror 2021- Mancunian Monster Mash!

Updated: Feb 18, 2022

This is an event we’ve really been looking forward to, the first Monopoly event since lockdown. We’ve done FTLOH before and it was amazing. They had put together the cast of Lost Boys including Kiefer Sutherland, and the buzz around it was tangible. It also helped that last year during lockdown we had a little Halloween event of our own – “Brambleween”. I painted 26 pictures during October and it was great to be able to get them in front of a horror crowd.

The other thing we were looking forward to was taking the Cosmic Sleep Pod out for its maiden voyage! That will have to wait for another day, since at the last moment one of our SuperFans, Marissa, stepped in and offered us a spare room for the weekend, what a lifesaver! The trip was all set to go and our ETA was about 5pm, a pretty respectable arrival time. Typically there was a crash on the M6 and our ETA spiralled out of control and we eventually arrived at about 8pm.

So our set-up was put off until Saturday morning and we had dinner with Marissa and Ben, plus a bit of dirty booze to make up for the crappy trip.

Bowlers Exhibition Centre is a decent venue with two huge halls and the best bar ever upstairs. It’s themed to look like the Mos Eisley Cantina from Star Wars! We set up the pitch right next to The Geek Monkey. They foolishly called our island Geek Monkey Island, when it was clearly Brambledown Bay! While we were setting up we heard the dulcet tones and screaming sax of Tim Cappello, the Sax guy from the Lost Boys, he has still got it!

It wasn’t long before the monsters started creeping in, there are so many preconceptions about people and how they look. Horror folk are some of the loveliest con goers we meet, they might be covered in tattoos and occasionally covered in blood but they are a bunch of sweethearts!

The cosplay was incredible, a massive range from cute to creepy, taking a shortcut through downright disgusting!

We saw quite a few old friends; customers, traders and cosplayers alike. For example, the insanely talented Sophie, aka Twisted Squid, who we hadn’t seen since before the lockdown. Her body of work is superb, I’ll be doing a #drawthisinyourstyle of one of her pieces of work at some point. Solly of SMArt was in attendance, along with Fish, two stalwarts of the con art scene. Those guys never seem to stop working!

The guests were superb, headlining was living legend Tim Curry, plus pretty much every other Rocky Horror cast member. It was lovely seeing so many people and their reactions to meeting Tim. People were truly touched and a little overwhelmed to meet their hero. There was a Scream reunion this year with Matthew Lillard and Skeet Ulrich, who were absolute heroes signing autographs over an hour and a half after closing! Top blokes!

As traders, we obviously missed a lot of the talks and interviews but we did get to wander around the scare maze which was genuinely creepy!

We had a great weekend getting back into the swing of a full-on convention complete with crowds and guests aplenty. If you’re a horror fan this is an unmissable convention!

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