- By James On November 5, 2012 at 1:44 am -

James has solicited a number of reports on recent comic and manga events in Ireland, including one from your humble editor, while taking a look forward at what is and may be coming up;

Grazing Green Fields, Comic and Manga Events past and future

Comics and manga can be a solitary hobby but I have always enjoyed the social side of the media, the interaction in comic shops, going to conventions and signing events and even to talks in Pubs.

It has been a busy year, and it is not over yet, of possible interest to comic readers will be Ireland largest Anime con, Eirtakon.


EIRTAKON (http://eirtakon.com/) is just a  week away now, (9th-11th Nov, The Helix DCU) and is Ireland’s largest and longest running Animie convention. With a committee of over 20 people, and held at Dublin City University, under the auspices of the DCU Anime and Manga Society, its a pretty stunning event. I attended one a couple of years ago, and the participation and cosplay was brilliant. This years they have two guests who are impressive to say the least, Richard Epcar, (http://www.richardepcar.com) who amongst many credits, wrote and directed GHOST IN THE SHELL 2-INNOCENCE and played Batou in GHOST IN THE GHOST IN THE SHELL: SOLID STATE SOCIETY. That is enough for me, while joining him is Ellyn Stern, another animie voiceartist with a long list of credits, but again, her work on Robotech would win me over. Although the atmosphere is fantastic and the good humoured nature of many events, mixed with insightful panels, is good.


On the same weekend, and tailored to a different audience, is PEGBAR at the science gallery in Dublin. Pegbar is a dedicated animation networking organisation, with a blog on  http://pegbar.ie/wordpress/ while, this event sees two presentations in the Paccar Theatre by
artist Jordie Bellaire (Marvel Comics) and filmmaker Nora Twomey Tickets to this event cost just €6 and can be bought in the Science Gallery.


The COMIC BOOK & COLLECTORS FAYRE is taking place in the Avalon Arts & Crafts Village,

Haymarket Arcade, Belfast on Sunday the 9th of December. Comic stalls, Workshops, Talks, a Comic & Graphic Novel art exhibition and  Comic Book Launch. Its free in and it runs from 12pm-6.30pm

COST: NOTHING for customers. (http://www.facebook.com/events/297313710370217/)

email [email protected]


I unfortunately missed DICE, the Dublin International Comic Expo. I had already committed to going to a different convention, disappointing, as I have to admit the previous comic con that I attended run by John Hendrick who owns Big Bang (http://thebigbang.ie/)  comic shop in Dundrum was really good. Dynamite and 2000AD writer, Michael Carroll (www.quantumnprophecy.com) went and sent us a report.


D.I.C.E. – Dublin International Comic Expo

September 29th & 30th 2012

I’ll get the negative points out of the way first… Both days of the event started an hour late. That’s forgivable – sometimes it can be tricky to get everything started – but the decision to stick to the
running order and thereby delay *every* panel by an hour wasn’t the best solution. Instead, the first panel should have been cancelled or postponed to the end of the day. That way, everything else would have been on time. Another problem was the PA system used in the panel room. It wasn’t always loud enough or clear enough to overcome the rattling of the marquee, the howling of the wind outside and the rather squeaky chairs. And the third problem was the event’s website,
which appeared to have sacrificed clarity for lack of information.

But all conventions have teething problems – no one should let that put them off attending the next D.I.C.E.!

On the positive side, the guest list was extremely strong. All of the guests seemed to have had a great time and the panels were very informative and entertaining. The dealers’ room / artists’ alley wa friendly with a nice, relaxed atmosphere, and thankfully it never got too crowded: there’s not much that’s more annoying than being three feet away from a tempting box of comics and not being able to get t it because there’s one guy hogging it for ages as he checks the date and issue number of every comic against his list (trust me, I know: I’m usually the guy with the list).

On the whole, the first Dublin International Comic Expo was a fun event, and very, very good value for the price. It’s great to have an event of this scale in Ireland, and here’s hoping there’ll be many
more! Ends.

Bleeding cool reported that there was confirmation from John Hedricks that there would be another DICE and I hope to get along.


‘I contacted John Hendricks and he said plans are in great shape for the next DICE, with a lot of work already done.’

Another comic event being run by a comic shop owner, is Dublin Comic Mart, which is run by Robert Curley, of Sub-City comics. Shabbir went along;


Dublin Comic Mart (http://www.facebook.com/DublinComicMartAtCentralHotel)

It’s been a while since I attended a gathering of fellow comic-readers, as the number of these types of events seems to be quite erratic in Dublin. The nice people of Sub-City Comics (located on Exchequer Street) set up this event. My understanding is this is the first in what they hope to be a very long run of monthly events. And it is on today. (Saturday 3rd November, and every first Saturday of the month following that. So next is the 1st of December)

Set in the Central Hotel the room was full of: back issues, TPBs and classic comics to boot. With out a doubt the star of the show was Sub City’s 1-euro back issue sale featuring 1000’s of all-sorts of comics along with their TPBs offer and comic sets. Not content with just his Sub-City stuff; Rob Curly was signing the new issue of The League Of Volunteers #3 comic as artist Barry Keegan was signing, sketching and meeting the fans.

Emmett Taylor was there with a small selection of his stock but it included interesting variants including Deadpool and The Walking Dead #100. Hidden Treasure Comics (ht-comics.com) another retailer based in Ireland, had selection of back issues from his extensive back catalogue. Joe from Hidden Treasure Comics stood out from the crowd was his passion and his lively banter.

I finally got to meet John Currivan the writer of If Only I was A Waterproof Watch comic: as he was selling of his last batch of his comics he had left.

There was a good vibe in the air as young and old talked about their favourite Batman movie, as some were completing their collections and other starting new collections. All in all a good day out, it was nice to spend a few hours with some like-minded comic-readers and did I mention it was a free event.end. Shabbir


For myself, I have just returned from OCTOCON, Ireland’s Science Fiction convention, and although it seems unlikely, it has always been a hot bed of comic activity, inviting such guests as Garth Ennis, Will Simpson, and J.G. Jones,  This year, there were many local comic creators in attendee,  Micheal Carroll, Robert Curley Maura McHugh, Alan Nolan, Leanne Hamilton and what must be the upcomming tranche of artists, working very hard in the dealers room. Next years event has been announced, and of interest is Guest of Honour Gail Simone. The con is scheduled for the 12th and 13th of October with Richard K. Morgan also announced as a Guest. (Www.octocon.com)


2D in Derry have yet to announce their Dates, but Maura McHugh (http://splinister.com/blog) writes about this years event;

2D Comic Book Festival is a vibrant, cheerful convention which takes place in Derry (or Londonderry if you prefer) in early June every year. It’s the only successful recurrent comic book convention in Ireland, and it has gained a reputation after only five years as one of the friendliest events in the comic book events calendar.

The festival kicks off with a couple of days focused on workshops for young people in the community, which are hugely popular. No doubt the next generation of comic book writers and artists are already being prepped for their future careers.

On the Friday evening the adult part of the convention kicks off with a series of panel discussions upstairs in Sandino’s bar. This can be a bit of a rambunctious affair, but mostly due to the high spirits of the gathered crowd. The next morning starts a day-long event in the Verbal Arts Centre where comic books publishers, writers, and artists hawk their new titles to the public. Due to the policy of having free tables and free entry, this has encouraged a wealth of emerging talent to participate along with the more seasoned pros. It’s a welcoming environment especially for the newcomer. It also means there is large turn-out from the locals, with many kids (and adults) dressing up as comic book characters.

The evening continues at Sandino’s with more panel discussions, where you can hear from a variety of the industry people attending the festival. The calibre of guests at the event is considerable, and there is usually a representative from a major publisher conducting portfolio reviews on the Saturday.

The combination of warm hospitality with a range of top talent makes 2D an unmissable comic book event. The only problem the festival may encounter in the future is growing its event in line with its popularity and growing attendance. Ends.



Other upcoming events include;

Akumakon anime and manga convention is held in The National University of Ireland, Galway. It is  taking place on the 18th-20th January 2013!

Hirokatsu Kihara who has worked with Studio Ghibli on Laputa: Castle in the Sky, Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind, My Neighbour Totoro, and on Gundam: Seed and Code Geass is their Guest.


Heroes and Legends Convention have said they will be back for their second con in February and holding it at the W5 in Belfast. .http://www.heroesandlegendscon.com/

Organised by the Emerald Garrison, (http://www.irelandgarrison.com/garrison/home.html) who ran Invasion Belfast, Invasion Dublin & Invasion Cork, comes the Heroes & Legends Convention.


Epiccon V http://epiccon.info/ in Maynooth is scheduled for the Spring, organised by Omega, the Maynooth NUI Science Fiction, Fantasy and Anime society.


Phoenix Con X Epiccon Vis on the March 2-3, 2013, at the Irish Writers’ Centre off Parnell Square in Dublin city centre. (http://www.pcon.ie/)

Darryl Cunningham who worked on Psychiatric Tales is one of their guests.


Offset 2013 http://iloveoffset.com  the Graphic and Creative arts gathering is on the 5th-7th April the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre Dublin, they have had some stunning speakers, so worth watching.


BroCon 2013 Games and Anime convention shall be taking place July 12th to the 14th at the University of Limerick   (https://www.facebook.com/ULBroCon)


ArcadeCon  brings together Anime, Gaming, Music, Movie and Comic book fans in July. This is a pretty large convention.
They have just confirmed Dates and Venue, Ballsbridge Hotel, Dublin
City, 5th – 7th July


Dublin Comic Con which although does not have dates or a venue, does have some information.



‘Dublin’s first Comic Con showcasing full size props and costumes from a wide range of movies, tv programs, games and comics. Come along and spend a day (or two!) viewing props and costumes, both replicas and screen used (direct from the movie sets!), learn how you can make props, molds, scupts and prosthetic pieces from professionals giving workshops, walk through sets to immerse yourself in another world, getting photographs with your favorite characters and props, challenge your friends to some console gaming, take part in the costume contest and much much more! Coming summer 2013!’

John Hanley from Nom-Con (http://nom-con.net/) has let us know they are currently sorting out a date and venue. This is an annual Japanese Art and Culture festival founded in 2010 and held in August. Nom-con also hosts a variety of smaller events throughout the year for fans of Japanese art
and animation to meet up, but again its rather soon after their annual event for hard details.


No doubt, there are more events and perhaps more details, feel free to post any information in the comments section and let us know.




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