Like the true Troober that he is, Saturday saw the Defective Inspector braving the elephants and battling through freezing weather to get to True Believers Comic Festival 2019. Here's his report...
Well well well, look what time of year it is. Time for me to dip back into the indie comic torrent that is “Troobs” and return with a fist full of new concepts and crazy stalls. But this year it was all a little different, the venue had changed! Will this change the vibe? Could it get better or not feel the same? DID THE SNOW STOP ANYTHING? Find out next time in the newest issu- wait no just keep reading.
For those who haven’t heard of it, True Believers Comic Festival, or Troobs, is an indie comic festival designed to platform the unsung heroes of the comic world. While the range of “unsung” can be pretty broad, that is what makes it so special. This time around I met at least 3 people who had never entered the comic circuit before and had just released their own new fancy bit of artwork whereas others are regulars I could shake hands with fondly in remembrance. This inclusive nature is something I love about Troobs and I will keep saying it over and over.
Time to approach the elephant in the room. Let’s talk about the venue. Until now Troobs was held at the Cheltenham race course but due to some… unpleasant actions by the race course, Troobs was pushed into finding a new venue. Instead Troobs was held at the Jury’s Inn located near the M5 exit for Cheltenham and it wasn’t really a good or a bad thing, but it certainly was different. When I used to enter the race course Troobs felt like this giant concept still growing, like a big shirt in your teen years it was a matter of growing into it. Jury’s Inn however was smaller but more polished and felt a little fancier. There was an actual bar, small eatery and was located right next to some civilisation. At the end of the day I could take a quick trip to a supermarket before driving back home to Bristol. The only fault I could say about the venue was I occasionally got lost within the stalls, luckily my beloved was with me and simply pointed me right direction. Usually Troobs have a mapped stall hand out, I’d wager they would have had one if venue agreements didn’t go sour, but I’d love to see it return next year. Ultimately these little differences balance out in the end. The truth remains that what made Troobs enjoyable is, was and always will be the broad characters I interact with and workshops to participate in.
The interactive events are separated into 3 separate categories; Cosplay, Workshops/Panels and Learn to Draw. Due to snow I missed a lot of these events, much to my shame, but I was able to see the Super Hero Life Drawing event where cosplayers were used as artist models. You were then encouraged to draw them, since… it’s Life Drawing. I didn’t even attempt this as my artistic skills can be summarised on a piece of toilet paper. Nonetheless, for those more ambitious than myself, no matter your artistic direction, there was something worth trying. If you are completely new to the comic world there was a comics panelling session where you could take in some of the talent and see what would catch your fancy. Failing that you can just… speak to them at the numerous stalls. They even came together for a second time to create the “Tales from Beyond Infinity” series, a comic book made by Troobs to help a local charity. It’s dangerously wholesome when you think about it…
Troobs may have moved, but the spirit endures. So if you want to check out the more indie side of comics but don’t know where to start, I’ll point you towards Troobs every time.
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Images from TBCF’s Facebook Page.
You can buy the latest Tales From Beyond Infinity from the TBCF website HERE.