By Florence Okoye
It’s not everyday you get invited to see a new show in Liverpool but one of the things I’ve learned since starting MancsterCon is that it’s surprising how often the not everyday occurs.
Panic Lab, a performing arts company, known for their fusion of contemporary dance, theatre and performance, were putting on a show called R.I.O.T., described as a comic book come to life with a dash of political commentary thrown in. Excited, I wasn’t ever likely to refuse and so once the tedious bit of organising my schedule had been done, I was all set for an evening about which I had absolutely no idea would turn out.
Breakdowns: The Outer Limits of Comics.
This section focusses on something I’ve never really considered; the role of magic in British comics. With some of the biggest names in the industry being practising magicians it makes sense though. A lineage from opiate use in Victorian dream comics, to astral-horror writer Lovecraft to modern day comics writers like Alan Moore is presented, providing a timeline of altered states being studied in fiction. To finish off the exhibition, the future of comics and crossovers into other media are also looked at.
Let’s Talk About Sex.
This section looks at how changing attitudes towards sexual imagery in Britain has affected comics. This is the only part of the exhibition which has been separated from the others, which says something about current attitudes in itself.
To See Ourselves.
This section looks at how all sorts of different people have been represented in comics, whether we’re talking about race, gender or disability. It also looks at how people represent themselves in autobiographical works.