Wednesday, I travelled down to Great Yarmouth. My train between Middlesbrough and Darlington was delayed, meaning that as I was running to get my train to Peterborough, I watched it pull away. Meaning my record of having delays in every single long distance train journey I make had, in fact, crossed over into 2023.
After an hours wait, I finally got going and got into Yarmouth an hour late. I got to the hotel and, to be honest, I hated it. The room was tiny, the toilet made a horrible noise when flushed and the shower was crap. But, worse of all for me, it was unstaffed. One of those where they text you the code for the door of the hotel and the room, even the lights were on sensors. If you like that, great, but I really don’t. I prefer to have someone actually there if there’s an issue. Not a phone number to call.
I won’t be staying there next year (I am going down a day early again, so much easier).
I headed out for a wander, then went down the pub and met some of the other people who were going and had a good night.
The next day, I left the hotel and headed up to the campsite. Checked in and discovered that my room was on the edge of the site, almost as if they’re embarrassed of me. It was a nice caravan. Smaller than in November, but that was expected with less room.
I finished off cross stitching my baseball cap (let’s just say Lessons Have Been Learned) then went for food. I crashed for a couple of hours, then went to the first event. Last November, the karaoke was a bloke in his laptop using YouTube videos. This year, someone who was attending anyway who does events volunteered. He did bingo, where I won a Buffy graphic novel, then karaoke. I got to sing:
Which won me a DVD of a very bad looking film and a cross stitch design.
Friday was the first day. I went for a swim then watched a few panels. The first one was Victor Dorobuntu. He plays Thing in Wednesday and this was his very first con. He was funny. He talked about the problems of playing a disembodied hand and him being a magician.
Next up was Nina Wadia. She was absolutely hilarious and has quite the foul mouth. also, likes a practical joke. She also took us through an acting exercise so we knew what it’s like to act when something is going to be CG’d in later.
Following her was Fraser Hines and Wendy Padbury, former companions of the Second Doctor on Doctor Who. This was fun. They were funny, Hines in particular, and very informative.
Last of all in the main room was Jon Davey and Mickey Lewis. They’ve played many, many monsters on Doctor Who. This one was very informative about what it takes to do that job.
I then went to the small room for a panel about writing being a passion. I didn’t really learn much about writing from that panel, but I enjoyed listening to the answers to the question. The two rooms shut down then, so I went back to the caravan, chilled then went back for the nights entertainment.
First up was Pop Up Puppet Theatre. Which, as the name might suggest, is a puppet theatre that does half hour spoofs of films. The film in this case was Back to the Future and it was absolutely hilarious.
Next up was someone doing magic. I didn’t see much of him, but I did see the one trick that was done by Victor Dorobuntu. I mentioned he is a magician. Him doing this was thrown together at the last minute, but it was good.
After that was someone doing stand up comedy. She was OK, but not brilliant, to be honest. Then a quick game of Chair Congo and we were ready for the music.
First of all was Professor Elemental. He was, as he always is at SFW, on top form. He did all the usual classics and broke out some new stuff as well. There were inflatable unicorns, a lion and a tiger and dancers from Area 51.
Next was Madam Misfit. I caught the end of her act in November, but only the very end as she was on in the small room when Professor Elemental was on. What I saw, I really liked so I was glad that she was back and got the upgrade. She was absolutely fantastic. High energy, a costume change, half a moustache that fell off (it makes sense in context), glow sticks, sweets and a conga line (which I took part in). Bonus points for using her watch to que up tracks on her computer.
I got her and Professor Elemental to sign the sign, listened to a bit of Blues Harvest with Darth Elvis then went to bed.
Sunday I went for a swim then to my first panel. Which was The Ufologists. It’s a spoof documentary about people who claim to have been abducted by aliens. They showed the documentary and then did a Q&A in character afterwards. It was hilarious.
During that, I went to get my sign signed by Victor Dorobantu, who also gave me a fist bump from his Thing hand.
Then there was more Pop Up Puppet Theatre. This time it was Forbidden Planet. Now I (shamefully) haven’t actually seen the film, but I still found it to be brilliant.
I did stay for a bit for Richard Ashton, bit only because that was when Nina Wadia was signing. She thought the sign was brilliant and when I said it was supposed to say “Geek Camp”, she admitted she was tempted to correct it.
I spoke to Death Ingloria, showed them the cross stitch design I made of their logo and got them to sign the sign.
Not being bothered with most of the panels, I went to Asda to pick up some bits and then went back to watch PUPT do BTTF again. Went back to the caravan for food then back for the evening.
First up was Death Ingloria. I saw them in November, same room, same day, same time slot, same set. Different and more impressive set up and still fantastic.
Next was George Coppen doing stand up. He was hilarious and had a bit about doing panto in Middlesbrough, which sounded about right.
Then The Antipoets. They were hilarious, whether doing poems about service stations or about teaching children arcane swear words. (There is a reason for that one. When they play festivals, people tend to leave their kids at Antipoets sets while they go see other acts.)
Then the small room kinda shut down, so I went through to the main room for the last half of the Jolly Boat set. They’re a geeky comedy music duo and I was in stitches. Could have done without the people deciding to have a full on conversation on front of me right through one of their songs though.
Then it was The Dark Room, which I’m not really a fan of. So I got Jolly Boat to sign the sign and hung out in the small room. Listened to a bit of Level Up Leroy and went to bed.
Sunday, got up, packed, threw out my rubbish and got the train home. Which involved a two hour delay as someone was hit by a train at a train station.
And that was my weekend. Came home with a unique souvenir, some awesome memories and a case of con flu. (I’ve recovered now.)