Con Decompression Part 2: Cosplay


So welcome back to Part 2 of my Con Decompression. Dublin City Comic Con Anime Edition has still come and gone, and I’m still trying to decompress from it all. Still trying to quantify, correlate, and find the words to describe all that I saw and experienced. This time round we’re going to ramble and talk some nonsense about Cosplay. 

Now if it’s your first time hearing the word ‘Cosplay’, don’t be afraid. It’s not some crazy cult or some adult only game. Cosplay is basically dressing up as your favourite anime, manga, cartoon, comic book, video game or movie character. Think Halloween at a Con and you’ve got it.

You’ll probably want to go get a cup of tea or coffee before you buckle yourself in, as again this is probably going to be another long one.

I would first like to take a few moments to talk about ‘Cosplay is not Consent’.

If your not fimiliar with this concept/ code of conduct , or new to a Convention that has a Cosplay presence please allow me to fill you in (Parental tone activating ). 

Just because someone, whether that is a Man, Woman, or Child has gone to a Convention in Cosplay, it does in no right allow/ or entitle you:

  • To Touch that person in anyway.
  • To jump around that person in excitement or something similar.
  • To pressure that person into taking a photo with you or by you.

What is expected of you is:

  • To ask the person for permission to either take a photo of them or with them.
  • To respect a persons personal space.
  • Not to pressure the person in Cosplay for photos, signatures etc.
  • Not to stare at a person in Cosplay. Certain characters from Anime, Manga, Video games are hyper sexualised. Some of these elements may carry over to a persons costume but please, there’s no need to stare.
  • Cosplayers are artists, some have spent hours and maybe months working on their costumes so compliments are always welcome. Just be cool and kind.

(Parental tone disengaged)

Now just for the record I asked people in Cosplay if I could take their photos while at the Con, and they were cool with that.

Located on the ground floor of the Convention Center, just behind the traders could be found the Cosplay Village.


The Cosplay Village showcased an exhibition of professional Cosplayers, a repair station (to repair any unfortunate damage to ones costume), a makeup station, an exhibition of movie props, and a number of photo sets. Which I have to say was a great and unexpected inclusion.


The photo sets ranged in theme from Anime, to video games to movies…

As well as the Cosplay Village there were a number of panels and workshops running through out the weekend at the Cosplay Academy.

Some of the Cosplay panels included talks about Photography, How to take measurements for your costume, makeup, and how to choose a Cosplay character. 

The workshops focused on working with ‘Worbla’. ‘Worbla’ is a thermoplastic modelling material, similar in regards to EVA foam. Which when heated can be formed into different shapes, to make items such as armour and weapons. It is quickly becoming the go to material for Cosplayers.

These panels and workshops were in great demand at the Convention and I was unable to attend all of them.

The Cosplay segment of Dublin Comic Con Anime Edition concluded on Sunday with a Costume Contest hosted by Wayne Talbot of Rogue Comics and the Irishpubcast podcast.

All in all I think it was a great turnout over the weekend from Cosplayers and fans alike. It really goes to show how big the Irish Cosplay community is, and how big the Anime, Manga, Comic Book and Video Game community is that it deserved a Con focusing on itself, instead of being mixed in with a larger Convention.

Over the weekend  I met some awesome people and I’ve included some more photos of their awesome Cosplay costumes.



Until next time, I’ll see at the table.

– from The Man Cave 

Con Decompression Part 1: Guests and Trade Hall

Dublin City Comic Con Anime Edition has come and gone, and I’m decompressing from it all. Trying to quantify, correlate, and find the words to describe all that I saw and experienced. I’m going to have to divide it up into parts just so I can do justice to the Con.

You’ll probably want to go get a cup of tea or coffee before you buckle yourself in as this is going to be a long one.

It was a frantic weekend, but a brilliant weekend. I filled up my memory card with photos, video and interviews… And in typical Man Cave style a good chunk is unusable due to either bad sound, people photo bombing or plain old shaky hands syndrome.

Protips for moving forward:

  • When taking a photo, check photo before moving on.
  • When doing an audio recording, do a test recording first.
  • Note to self, stop drinking so much coffee.

I hope I salvaged enough to give you a feel for how good the Con was, and I hope you forgive my rookie mistakes. So with that being said, lets move on…

 I was able to attend the guest panel Press meeting which consisted of (both Brent Spiner and Tara Strong weren’t in attendance as they had prior engagements):

  • DC Douglas (Legion from Mass Effect 2&3, Albert Wesker from Resident Evil, Chase from Transformers Rescue Bots, Gundam: Iron Blooded Orphans) 
  • Kira Buckland (Power Puff Girls, Blue Exorcist, Nier: Automata, Sailor Moon, Gundam: Iron Blooded Orphans)
  • Eric Stuart (Pokemon, Yu-Gi-Oh, Dinosaur King, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)
  • Seth Gilliam (whose film and tv credits include Starship Troopers, Oz, The Wire and The Walking Dead)

 They were honestly fun and friendly people. Answering questions about their careers and freely offering antedotal stories from their careers. 

…and I was lucky enough to get a few minutes with DC Douglas.

I hadn’t quite realised just how tall of a man DC Douglas was prior to meeting him. 

As for the con itself, it was hosted in its traditional home of the Dublin Convention Centre located on the Dublin Docklands. 

As it was the first ‘Anime Edition’ of Comic Con’s in Dublin, it spanned the entire ground and first floor of the Convention Centre. 

The ground floor consisted of exhibitor/ trade hall, the cosplay village and photo sets. Personally, I wish I was a richer man, as there were so many goodies on offer from vendors. There was Asian treats from vendors such as Minamofoods and Kantanliving. Comics, graphic novels, figurines, toys and Gundams were available from vendors such as Dublin City Comics & Collectables, Big Bang Comics and Planet Minifigures to name a few….




… And there were cosplay and ancillary items available from vendors such as Hogwarts Wands, Otakuninja, Viking Drinking Horns, and The Cosplay Village to name a few.

Oh god it’s a good thing I don’t have a credit card, and that they don’t accept children as payment …
– from The Man Cave

A meeting with DC Douglas


The Man Cave had the chance to sit down with the man of many talents, DC Douglas at Dublin Comic Con Anime Edition.

I am grateful for the opportunity to sit down with an Artist that I admire.

Until next time, I’ll see you at the table.

– from The Man Cave

I got a new Gundam (Iron Blooded Orphans Astaroth)


I got a new Gundam, High Grade, 1/144 scale, Iron Blooded Orphans Astaroth.
As usual I got this kit from the most excellent folks over at Dublin City Comics and Collectibles.

When I first saw Astaroth I knew I wanted him. I very much like his design. Although Astaroth is part of the Iron Blooded Orphans (IBO) product line, he’s actually not part of the IBO main story line in the TV show. Instead he was the main Gundam suit from a manga side story.
In the side story, the family that owned Astaroth hit hard times and were basically selling off his parts (and replacing them with cheap parts from other Mobile Suits) in order to make ends meet. This is what gives Astaroth his asymmetrical look. Anyways I digress.
Inside the box, you get…


2 bags of multi coloured sprues, the assembly instructions, and a bit of promotional flyers.
Inside the bag of sprues, you get…


… A small sticker sheet, 7 sprues, any of you that have built a HG Barbatos, will recognise the inner frame parts, and then some blue, red, and White sprues for his armour panelling.

One of the gimmicks on the Astaroth is his giant hand that pegs onto his right arm. It gives him a sort of ‘Hellboy’ ascetic (which I really dig), it has 2 fingers and a thumb that have a limited range of motion. Which can help pulling some poses, and to help hold his main melee weapon. Speaking of which…
When not in use his main weapon, the ‘Demolition Blade’ (I believe that’s what it’s called) is stored on his back.


It has a sort of ‘Buster Sword’ from Final Fantasy 7 vibe to it, which I dig. The blade has a extendable gimmick, where it unfolds. In the extended mode Astaroth’s ‘Hellboy’ hand, and a little fold out handle for his regular hand, aids the gundam wield his gigantic weapon.

Astaroth also comes with a gun and a dagger, to complete his weapons load out (however there is nowhere to store these weapons when not in use).


Visually Astaroth is one of the more unique Gundam’s in the IBO line (due to his odd parts) and has the inner skeleton that we have been spoils with in the IBO line, allowing for some great poses.
“By the power of Grayskull…I…Have…The Power…”

Now I’m not going to lie, Astaroth has a few issues with himself. The first is due to his ‘Hellboy’ hand. It likes to pop off when posing (at least mine does), and it can get in the way with his blue shoulder, so you may not get all the poses you want with him. The second issue I had with him, was with his waist mounted thrusters. They have a habit of getting in the way and can pop off during posing as they are attached too close to the hips and legs. Too me, these issues are a bit minor as I do love this suit.
It’s also worth noting that as the Astaroth shares much of the same inner skeleton as the Barbatos, if you have the Barbatos 6th form, you can perform some parts swapping to give Astaroth a new hair do.

Until next time, I’ll see you at the table.
– from The Man Cave

I got a new Gundam (Iron Blooded Orphans Io frame Shiden… and then did a Custom)


I got a new Gundam, High Grade, 1/144 scale, Iron Blooded Orphans Io frame Shiden. I’m not usually one for grunt suits but I loved the visuals of this suit, that I had to get one. And then I gave it a custom paint job, but more on that later.
As usual I got this beauty from the excellent folks at Dublin City Comics and Collectables.

The Io frame Shiden, was introduced in season 2 of Iron Blooded Orphans (IBO), as the main grunt suit of everybody’s favourite child soldiers, Tekkadan.
In the box you’ll find…

… An instruction sheet, and 2 bags of sprues. Inside the bags, you’ll find…

… 4 sprues of various greys,and a reddish, ruby colour, and a small sprue of polycap’s.
Building the Io is surprisingly simple and enjoyable (it’s a grunt suit, after all). The Io frame Shiden comes with a surprisingly large set of accessories compared to other IBO kits. He comes with a small forearm attachable gauntlet shield, a telescopic melee weapon that looks like a cricket bat, a rifle (I don’t think I’ve mentioned before how much I love the fact that IBO has no lazer guns), and the best accessory of all… A Big Asss Balistic shield.
The only negative I have about this kit, is that I would suggest using a dap of glue on his feet as they have a tendency to split apart.

Once all built, the Io does look a bit of a Badass, as he comes with a big ass ballistic shield, as part of his accessories (have I mentioned the shield already?). As a straight build, he does look capable…

… But he did remind me of another robotic character. One called ‘Chappie’, so I gave him a custom paint job.
Introducing Io Chappie Shiden…


… I don’t think he turned out half bad, although I think I messed up the ‘bullet holes’ by drilling all the way thru but I’m happy enough.
Until next time, I’ll see you at the table.
– from The Man Cave

I got a new Gundam… (Iron Blooded Orphans Option Set 4)

I got a new Gundam… High Grade 1/144 scale, Iron Blooded Orphans Option Set 4, to be exact.
As usual I got this kit from the awesome guys at Dublin City Comics and Collectables.

Inside the box, you’ll find…

A small bag of Runners, in a purple/ lilac colour, and a small instructions sheet.

Once assembled, you have a booster (Primarily for the HG IBO Kimaris), a sword, and a new Mobile Worker.





A bit of a disclaimer is called for in my review of this Option Kit. Option Kit 4 is geared towards the Kimaris, and I don’t like the Kimaris. Not its look, gimmicks, or  it’s colour style (I do however very much like the Kimaris Trooper, even though they share many similarities).
This Option Kit is by far the weakest of those released thus far, IMO. If your a fan of the Kimaris, then go ahead and get this kit. If you fancy a pretty cool looking sword for your Graze or Graze variant, it’s sort of a 50/50 answer.  But hey, at least we get another mobile worker to add to your collection (at some point I will paint up the ones I already have).
Until next time, I’ll see you at the table.
– from The Man Cave 

Christmas Haul

Christmas 2016, has come and gone, and ive gotten a nice little stash of goodies.

I got some new Gundams (a couple as early gifts)…

… paints, glue, deodarants, aftershave, and socks (plenty of socks, so many socks im thinking of building a fort out of them).

I also got a gift voucher, so I’ve bought myself a little sneaky gift.

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Revell’s model version of Battlestar Galactica, from the 2005 tv series. I really loved the look of the new Galactica, so i couldnt resist.
I’ve seen there are a couple of 3rd party upgrade kits available for the kit, so I’m Gona have to save up (They’re not cheap). Cause I plan on blinging the sh@t out of this kit.
Until next time, I’ll see you at the table.
– from The Man Cave 

I got a new Gundam (Iron Blooded Orphans Gusion)


I got a new Gundam… 1/144 scale, High Grade, Iron Blooded Orphans, Gusion, to be exact.

As usual, I got my Gundam from the excellent lads of Dublin City Comics and Collectables.


In the box, you’ll find 2 bags of plastic sprues and an instruction guide. 


Once opened up and out of the bags, you’ll find a very small sticker sheet, about 5 or 6 sprues in 2 shades of green, grey, and a light purple/ lilac colour.

The Gusion, is a fun and simple build. It has a partial inner frame and its bulk is made up by large plates. Gusion is one of the shortest Gundams in the IBO (Iron Blooded Orphans) range in terms of height but what it lacks in height, it certainly makes up for in bulk. 


For accessories with this kit, we get a machine gun and a big ass Hammer (I think it was called the ‘Meteor Hammer’ in the show).


By folding down a small panel on the Gundams back skirt, and by removing a small panel and adding a connection piece, both weapons can be stored on the Gundam.

I for one have been waiting to get my hands on a Gusion. It’s a neat little Mobile Suit, between its looks, the amour, and surface detail it’s very orginal in the world of Gunpla.
Until next time, I’ll see you at the table.
– from The Man Cave

I got a new Gundam (Iron Blooded Orphans Gusion Rebake)

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I got a new Gundam, 1/144 scale High Grade Iron Blooded Orphans Gusion Rebake, to be exact.

I was quick enough to grab one from the guys at Dublin City Comics & Collectables.

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In the box you’ll find…

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… 3 bags of sprues and an instruction guide. Within the bags you’ll find…

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… about 7 sprues that come in a gray (for the inner frame), beiges & some white (for the armour parts), also an orange shade. Also, included is a rather large foil sticker sheet.

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It’s a big sticker sheet even for a High Grade, and it still leaves the kit less than accurate in terms of colouring.

If the Gusion looks a bit fimiliar thats because it is…

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In the Iron Blooded Orphans series the Gusion was captured by the boys of Tekkadan, and seeing how it shared the same ‘Inner Frame’ as the Barbatos, it was upgraded with parts from Barbatos.

With a straight build the Gusion Rebake is very similar to the Barbatos. However, where the Barbatos has a complete ‘Inner Frame’, The Gusion Rebake doesn’t, so you won’t be able to make a Barbatos clone. That’s ok, cause the Gusion Rebake has its own personality. With a straight build (minus the stickers), the Gusion Rebake looks like this…

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The Gusion Rebake combines the old with the new. It has a new sleeker look, compared to its old self…

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… It still uses visuals and ‘parts’ from its old self (namely, the Rebake’s big butt plate is a throw back to the Gusion’s chest and back plates, and its legs form parts of its new back pack).

For accessories, we get a modified version of the ‘Graze’s’ rifle, 2 heads (an open and enclosed version), and a shield (although technically its also part of the suit).

For gimmicks, the Gusion Rebake has 2 hidden arms in its backpack. The arms are similar in appearance to the ‘Graze’s’ arms.

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The Rebake’s mini arms slide down from inside the big thrusters. They are able to hold different weapons so if you wanted, you could equip it with 4 ranged weapons, 4 melee weapons, or a more balanced approach of 2 ranged & 2 melee weapons.

All in all, the Gusion Rebake is a nice kit, although not without its faults. I can understand the large sticker sheet, as for its price point and being a High Grade, we wouldn’t be getting such a large parts separation for colourings. The biggest fault I personally have with the Rebake is this…

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… There is a huge gapping space where its shoulder connects to the arm, this for me is a let down. All it would have taken is for a little flap or moveable armour piece to go in here and the appearance would have been golden for me.

All in all, its a nice kit. It’s fimilar but different enough in the build process. It has a unique look to itself, although this some can argue is just because of its backpack and gimmick. Poseability is high enough, just a little below the HG Barbatos & Graze, but miles ahead of its old self.

Well, that’s all for now, I’ll see you at the table.

– from The Man Cave

I got a new Gundam (Iron Blooded Orphans Option Set 2)

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I got a new Gundam, Iron Blooded Orphans Option Set 2, to be exact.

This is the second accessory set to be released for Bandai’s High Grade 1/144 scale Iron Blooded Orphans Gunpla line.

I was lucky enough to get mine, as usual from the lads at…

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I really like this Options Set, and I’m considering picking up a second of this one + Option Set 1.

Where as Option Set 1 catered more towards the High Grade (HG) Barbatos and Graze, this set caters more for the HG Graze Custom and Hyakuri. Although all the High Grades in the Iron Blooded Orphans line can make use of the Option Sets.

I sped thru the build process on this set, but you get a couple of sprues in the same colour which gives you..

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… 2 new shoulder pads for the Graze Custom, a bazooka (that connects to the new shoulders), a booster pack (for space flight), a rocket laucher, a grenade launcher and a new Mobile Worker.

When attached, the Graze Custom looks even more kick ass…

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The Hyakuri gets armed to the teeth with the Grenade Launcher + Rocket Launcher.

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Whats more, there comes 2 connection pieces comes to attach the weapons to the Hyakuri. By removing 2 tabs on the Hyakuri’s backpack, the weapons can be stored away.

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I love these Option Sets, not only do they offer more playability and customizing to the IBO Gundams but I love ‘collecting’ the little Mobile Workers.

If I had anything negative to say, it would only be how the Option Sets need a lick of paint but for the price they cost it’s a very small negative.

– from The Man Cave