MCM London Expo Weekend May 2009

May 24, 2009

Friday 22nd May 2009

Left work at lunch time and caught the 12:35 train direct from Chester to London Euston after just over two hours I arrived and got the underground to Tower Hill where my hotel was.

I was staying at the Travelodge Tower Hill that I got at the bargain rate of £9 per night during the January sales. The hotel was clean but reception staff at check in was very miserable. Room was adequate but no hairdryer, shower gels, draws, wardrobes etc. I went across the road to a Weatherspoons for fish and chips and then went into town.

First port of call was the Donmar Warehouse where I was going to wait for the cast. On my way there I walked past Benicial Del Toro, but as he was with what appeared to be his family I did not want to bother him for a picture, When got to the theatre I found out that Gillian Anderson had arrived a couple of minutes before me and signed for everyone who was there, damm. But I was able to get autographs and pictures with Tara Fitzgerald, Chistopher Eccleston and Anton Lesser.

I then went over to the Wyndhams Theate to see a performance of Madame De Sade starring Dame Judi Dench and Rosamund Pike, to be honest it was not my kind of thing and despite being will acted with fabulous costumes I just could not get into the story.

Afterwards I went to the stage door and was able to meet, Dame Judy Dench, Rosamund Pike, Fiona Button and Deborah Findlay as well as Linda Bellingham who came out from Calendar Girls at the theatre opposite.

I then went over to the Theatre Royal Drury Lane to try and get Rowan Atkinsons autograph. When I was waiting for him to come out I ws able to get Angus Deaton and Hollie Taylor. When Rowan came out he would only sign Oliver items, which had nothing of, I tried to get him to sign my autograph book but he refused.

Last call of the night was the Royal Court Theatre at Slone Square where I met Wallace Shawn and Jennifer Tilly where they are in a play together, I was also hoping to get Miranda Richardson as well but unfortunately she did not come out.

When we were waiting Ethan Hawke walked right past me, and was able to get his autograph and a picture with him, that was unexpected.

I then went back to the hotel and went to sleep.

Saturday 23rd May 2009

Got up really early today, at about 6.30am and went down for breakfast only to be told they were not serving it until 8am which I did not have the luxury to wait for so began my quest to get to the Excel centre. Not an easy quest even though in theory it should only take a few minutes as it is on the same DLR line as Tower Hill which is where I got on, unfortunately due to engineering work, I needed to go to Canary Wharf get a bus to Canning Town and then change and get another bus to the excel centre. Once there I joined a large line and waited to go into the hall at 9am.

Once in if went straight over to the virtual tickets for Linda Hamilton and the Eureka guys followed by photo shoot tickets for later in the day, I then went and waited in another line to get a ticket for the Merlin signing to take place that afternoon.

I then went over to get some autographs, first was Neil Grayston who plays Fargo in the TV show Eureka, I was the first one in his queue that morning and talked briefly to him for a while, he seemed a really friendly guy.

Next was Linda Hamilton, who was really nice with a big smile and appeared genuinely happy to be there, last was Joe Morton, who turned up a bit late, but looked happy.

I had lunch at one of the take away noodle bars they have there and have to say it was bloody awful then went back in to attend the talks, first was Gerald McMorrow the director of Franklyn then Duncan Jones and Gavin Rothery the creators of Moon. My final talk for the day was the cast and creators of Merlin which I had to leave early to make my photoshoot with the Eureka cast. I waited for this for over an hour as Joe Morton did not turn up, in the mean time Neil Grayston came through the line offering everyone flapjacks, what a nice guy.

Eventually he arrived and got a picture with the both of them followed by Tony Curtis who was a really nice chap, I was the first person to get one and because the camera man was fiddling about with his equipment for a minute I got to chat with Tony for a while as we waited, nice guy.

I then had to rush to the Merlin signing and after explaining to the crew member about what had happened with the delayed photo shoot and how I needed to get back to the Linda shoot a very kind lady let me go in front of her at the beginning of the line, what a nice person and if you are reading this thank you very much. I got the autographs of all the Merlin people and even my picture with Katie McGrath before going back and getting my pic with Linda Hamilton. During this shoot she gave me a big hug and told me how she was enjoying being there ad meeting and talking to all the fans and even gave me a kiss before I left, what a class act.

I went back over to the Merlin area and took a few more pics with them and even one with Bradley James followed by getting an autograph with Tony Curtis. After this there was nothing left for me to do there so left.

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Complaint about the organisation of the expo

I don’t really complain about many things, at least not in public, but feel that I have to about the organisation about certain parts of the expo.

It is clear that the event appeals to two different attendees, firstly and he majority, Manga loving kids and secondly entertainment collectors such as myself. Who is it then so difficult to organise a schedule that is tailored to each demographic that attends, surely have all the entertainment and film guests talks and photoshoots in a flowing schedule so nothing overlaps, my plan for the day was to attend the Eureka talk, Linda Hamilton talk, James Duval talk, Franklyn talk, Moon talk and Merlin talk as well as photo shoots with the Eureka cast, Linda Hamilton and Tony Curtis. This is in addition to free signings from Frankly, Moon and Merlin.

Unfortunately, the schedule was put together by an illiterate fool who had no concept of planning (I talk from experience, not as an illiterate fool of course, but as someone who has been involved in organising events for different industries in the past).

Surely a well though out and cohesive schedule for entertainment guests would keep a lot of people happy, due to the mismanagement of aid schedule I had to miss talks by the Eureka cast, Linda Hamilton, James Duval and half of the Merlin one, along with the free signings of Franklyn and Moon. I was only able to make the Merlin signing and still get my picture with Linda due to the kind lady who let me cut in.

People complain about this stuff every event on the shows forum and everytime the management delete the threads, which has happened this time as well, why don’t they own up to the shortcomings they have and develop a solution to stop it happening again, surely this is in everyone’s best interests????

Rant over!!!

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After stopping at the hotel to freshen up I head into the city and get tickets for Pricilla Queen of the Desert, the musical. I have my dinner at Pizza Hut before the performance and then go to the theatre.

I was up in the cheap seats and almost had a nosebleed due to the altitude from up there. The show was really good and was good entertainment filled with toe tapping classics.

After the show I went back stage to get Jason Donovans’ autograph, he came out in a couple of minutes but only signed for about five people saying we was in a rush to get home, luckily I was one of those who got an autograph but he did not let anyone take a picture with him before shooting off, I only got one of the side of his head and his back so was a bit disappointed with that.

I then went back over to the Wyndhams Theatre and got another pic with Rosamund pic before going to try my luck again with Rowan Atkinson, this time I was going to go into the theatre and get a programme for him to sign, only problem when I got there it was closed, nutz!!!

Before he came out I was able to get an autograph and pic with Jodie Prenger who was very friendly. When Rowan came out I tried to get him to sign my autograph book again but he refused so I pulled out my Pricilla ticket and got him to sign the back of it, and I was able to get a picture with him.

I then went back over to Slone Square to see if I could get a pic with Miranda Richardson who I missed the night before but when I got there I found out they had all left a few minutes before I got there.

So went back to the hotel and fell asleep.

Sunday 24th May 2009

Got up a bit later today, at around 9am, had a shower, packed my bags and went to breakfast at the Weatherspoons across the road. When I went in I was told they were not opening until 10am, so went back to the hotel for a few more minutes until I returned a bit later.

Had a full breakfast for £2.99, and although it did not taste the best (what do you expect for less than three quid) it filled the gap.

I checked out of the hotel by 11 and was a bit annoyed that they did not offer a left luggage service which ment I would have to carry my pack around with me all day, not very happy about that because it was very sunny and I had quite a think coat with me that was too bulky to fit in my bag.

I was planning on going to Hampton court today but did not fancy the travelling involved with my bags so decided to have a short day so went to the Science Museum instead.

It has been a few years since I have been to the Science Museum but it is quite interesting there, especially for me as a space enthusiast and it had free entry. I started out on the first floor looking at early steam machinery and then on to early vehicles and the space area which included the original Apollo 10 Command Module.

I explored the other floors before leaving and poping over to Oxford Street to do a bit of shopping for Sarah, have to keep her sweet so she will keep letting me coming on these weekends ;-).

I then go to Marylebone station to catch my train back to Wrexham. It turns out that there was a football match at Wembly today and it seems like this station was a get off point after the match. Nothing like sweating to death waiting for over an hour in a train station surrounded by drunken chanting idiots, made 100% better by a delay in my train by 40 minutes. GREAT!!!!

It is the first time I have used this direct train to Wrexham, it was forced upon me by work being carried out on the regular line I take with Virgin, I am sure it would have been quicker if I had walked, it took ages, and there was no air conditioning.

Finally got home almost five hours after boarding the train.

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Comments

One Response to “MCM London Expo Weekend May 2009”

  1. May on July 11th, 2010 3:25 am

    Its look so cool!

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