From Batman to Star Wars: Force is strong with comic fans
IT'S a niche market, but thousands of families have turned out to pay tribute to their favourite comic book heroes and action figures in a celebration of science fiction.
Adults and children of all ages flocked to the RDS over the past three days for the 2014 MCM Ireland Comic Convention in Dublin.
Stalls showcased video games, old adventure films, classic and contemporary comic books, silicon body part props and unique artwork – but it was the ticket holders themselves who were the main attraction.
Visitors spilled through the doors dressed from head to toe in costume. There were dozens of 'Star Wars' storm troopers making their way up the aisles admiring the displays, while 'Spiderman', 'Batman' and 'Pirates of the Caribbean' rogue Jack Sparrow were also popular choices.
For many, the fantasy world of science-fiction is an off-duty hobby.
Husband and wife Karl and Donna Dornan travelled from Co Down to spend their weekend in character as a 'Star Wars' Jedi and the evil Darth Maul. "I'm a jeweller and Karl is a lorry driver, so this has nothing to do with our daily lives, but it's great fun – and it's perfect for families," Ms Dornan said.
"I'm a tax consultant by trade, but I grew up with comics and have always loved them, so in recent years I've been getting back into it," said Naomi Butler, from Rathfarnham, Co Dublin.
Jason Flood, owner of Dublin City Comics and Collectibles, said: "My father Christy read comics as a kid and passed that love on to me. It's more accepted than it was 10 or 15 years ago."
Fans also queued to meet an array of actors from big and small screen hits, such as Warwick Davis, known for roles in 'Willow', and 'Star Wars', and 'Dr Who' star Ian McNeice.
Friends Ceire Hoey-Daly (23), Melissa O'Brien (21), Fiona O'Reilly (27) and Ally Scott (22) were also among the revellers and told the Irish Independent there was no other community like that of the "geeky comic book crew". "We're all from different parts of the country and we all met at a convention in 2009," Ms Hoey-Daly said.
"We meet at these kinds of things all the time, it definitely brings like-minded people together."