Friday evening in London saw me teetering down past St Paul's Cathedral, my heart in my throat as I came closer to a bar hosting the RTX meet-up for fans of all things Rooster Teeth.
I documented proof that I was there by taking a photo of the sign.
“A fan meet-up? Do elaborate!” I hear you cry!
Well, it is what it says on the tin. Members of a certain 'fandom' will use social media to ask fellow fans if they’d like to hang out, at a certain place at a particular time. Then, everyone shows up. Fan meet-ups are especially common around London, as the city has so much to offer. For this meet-up, members of the Rooster Teeth crew organised it themselves; similar RT meet-ups are held throughout the year by enthusiastic fans too.
For those who don’t know, Rooster Teeth are a production company based in Austin, Texas. They produce content that primarily revolves around video games, animation, and nerd culture as a whole. They are best known for the Machinima, Red vs Blue (how I first discovered them), the anime RWBY, and their weekly Rooster Teeth Podcast.
A selection of some of their shows and affiliated channels. They have tons more that I’d love to tell you about, but this is a blog post, not Wikipedia.
This evening was a prelude to Rooster Teeth’s first convention in the UK, RTX London, which will be taking place October 14-15. Like all conventions, the event offers panels, stalls, meet-and-greets and parties. Though tickets are sold out for this year, the team were over here planning the same event for next year, so keep your eyes peeled if you want to attend RTX 2018!
So upon arriving at said bar, I was confused to see many corporates milling around, and not many geeks in sight. Just as I was losing hope, I spotted two guys wearing graphic t-shirts and jeans, and made a beeline for them. They directed me to the trendy basement, where all the fans were hidden away. I sat down with the guys to chat, and thus ended up hanging out with them for the majority of the evening.
For the record, when going to events like this, clothing is a great way of identifying your fellow fans if you are looking for someone to chat to. Here’s a few examples of what to spot if you are ever in that position.
"Geek Aesthetic". Graphic tee, jeans, bright converse - often wearing glasses, these creatures are most likely on their phones doing something fandom related.
This is the best thing about events like this, because you can go along by yourself and know that there will be people in the room who love the same stuff as you. Thus, you can strike up a conversation easily. Just a simple, “What’s your favourite show/episode?”, and you'll be locked into a debate for the next few hours, forging new friendships and building communities with people who enjoy the same niche content.
And that is a truly wonderful thing.
As the night drew on, the event got a little crowded. We all spilled out into the street, which seemed like the perfect opportunity for a group photo.
Photo credit to Bethany Feinstein. It was great to see her, as I know her from possibly my favourite RT show, Always Open. PS, I am in that bunch somewhere.
As the drinks flowed, I ended up staying much longer than I had anticipated, flitting from person to person, chatting about the community. Funnily enough, those guys that I mentioned earlier? I ended up grabbing food with them after the night was over, and we just chatted about everything and anything. By the end of the night, I felt like I’d made a whole new bunch of friends. We exchanged details, and I'm looking forward to meeting up with them again soon.
If you’ve never done a fan meet-up before, I couldn’t recommend them highly enough, especially with a community as welcoming as this one. Do a quick google on your fandom, and I almost guarantee that there will be a meet-up happening somewhere in London.
After all, this is the city that has it all.
Edgy pic round-off time! A cool spot in the basement of Wolfgang's Beer Haus, where the event was held.