Sakura-Con…

Wow…

I’m a little late here, (the con wrapped up last Sunday), but I needed to collect my thoughts…

I don’t know if I’m going to do this again. One of my best friends, an acquaintance from our anime club and I got there on Saturday around 9:30am. I figured this was early enough to give us the full day of viewing rooms, panels, and the BIG attraction for me: the dealer’s room. I was wrong. THE REGISTRATION LINE TOOK TWO AND A HALF HOURS TO GET THROUGH!!! We didn’t actually get to go enjoy the con until a little after noon… Wow…

Where's Aang?

The dealer’s room was everything I expected and more. I got a couple small items and one big one (I only had about $150 to blow that day) after going through the entire room twice. My friend and I took pics of the various cosplayers milling through as well. Around 4-4:30 we decided to go check out the other areas like the panels and viewing rooms. Every viewing room except one we checked at around 5:00pm was showing English-dubbed anime. The one exception was supposed to be showing the Lucky Star OAVs subtitled, but when we went in, they were still showing the English-dubbed tail end of Gasaraki. Ew…

Lots o' people... And is that Waldo?!?

Now is as good a time as any to make my feelings about dub vs. sub clear. The only reason English dubbing for anime should exist AT ALL is for the developmentally disabled or the dyslexic. The fact that most Americans (even the ones claiming to be anime fans) are too lazy and/or stupid to enjoy a film in it’s original language is beyond my comprehension. This goes beyond the realm of anime as well, by the way. The Orphanage was one of the best, most original and most atmospherically creepy movies to come along in the last decade or so and hardly anyone has seen it… Why? BECAUSE IT’S IN SPANISH!!! It almost makes me embarrassed to be an American… Is it really so hard to READ?!? I know the literacy rates here in the states are down, but jeez… I have even seen some anime that contextually SHOULD be in English (Riding Bean), so I’d watch both and guess what? The English dubbing is so bad it’s like they got Bob from Accounting to come up and read a few lines… I have to watch that show in the original Japanese simply because the voice-acting is so much better!

I didn't know Predator sizes came in "stocky". Cool costume, though!

OK, so the viewing rooms were a wash. I don’t even remember what panels were going on except for a fairly weird and a little lame AMV game show thing. We actually sat in on this one, but I found that I couldn’t keep my eyes open. My friend had to keep nudging me awake. It was so boring and stupid… Ultimately, we waited that one out and then strolled around taking more pictures of cosplayers, then left. Apparently, the cosplayers and dealer’s room was the highlight of the day Saturday, (for us anyway). I had another friend from the anime club texting me about the cosplay contest we missed because we were standing in the registration line, and I’m aware that we missed one of the  premier showings of the new Trigun movie THAT STARTED AT 9:00AM?!? Who the hell scheduled that?!?

Gotta love it when the Spartans show up...

Finally we come to the real attraction: the cosplayers… I remember attending AX ’95 and cosplayers accounted for about 30-40% of the con attendees. Here it was like 80-90%. Now I’m not going to do the typical nerd-bashing that is so prevalent, I’ll leave that to George Trombley over at YesJapan.com. I’ll just say that everyone seemed to be having a lot of fun posing for pictures and most put a lot of effort/expense into their costumes…

Best of the con right here. She made me want to throw her on my back and go kill splicers... (God, I love Bioshock).

Kerrigan! This is tied with the Little Sister for Best of Show in my book...

OK, I will make one quick note: heavy-set people should not be cosplaying as 17-year-old Japanese school girls… That goes for both sexes, by the way.

This is a heavy-set costume done right:

I don't know what this character is from, but it's just fantastic...

This is a heavy-set costume done wrong:

Yoko's put on a few pounds... Success'll do that to ya.

We REALLY don’t want to see that. I am a little heavy, but you know what? I wouldn’t be caught dead doing this. Why? Because it’s seriously not right to subject others to unsightly things… It’s not about high or low self-esteem, it’s about proper self-esteem. Someone should have the propriety and good sense to know that if you have rolls of belly flab, people DO NOT want to see it, and as a member of considerate and functioning society, you shouldn’t want to subject them to that… When I see a cosplayer, I don’t want to be wowed by the wrong things, you know?

Lelouch from Code Geass, (that I still haven't seen yet)...

All-in-all, I had a really good time– because I was hanging out with a good friend of mine that I probably won’t be able to hang out with again before I move at the end of the month… I did enjoy the dealer’s room and the side-show attraction of all the cosplayers, but still. If I had to rate the con on it’s own merits (for the six hours I was able to attend), it would come up severely lacking. Maybe with some alcohol…

Wait... Is Scooby Japanese? Hmm...

At any rate, I have little impetus to pre-register for the whole three days next year, you know? We’ll see…

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~ by 45shiro45 on April 7, 2010.

5 Responses to “Sakura-Con…”

  1. Pre-regging and doing the whole weekend is definitely the way to go. The panels and events really are hit and miss, so you want to be able to plan ahead of time which ones you want to go to. I managed to catch the concert, one of my favorite character designer’s autograph sessions, two industry panels (Funi and Dark Horse), a panel about the history of censorship in manga, a panel about creating Visual Novel games, and a panel about the JRockRevolution website. Like you said though, between the normal registration line cutting into your time and not having the chance to really pick and choose your events, it can come up a little lacking. I think the cosplay was probably the best I’ve seen it this year (not necessarily due to more great cosplay, but more due to less *terrible* cosplay than usual), but the whole assumption that geek culture overlaps and that South Park, American cartoon, movie (I’m looking at you Jack Sparrow), and non-Japanese game costumes are appropriate is getting a little out of hand in my opinion. It is an *anime* convention, after all. I didn’t realize that you were leaving so soon… We should make time to hang out at least once before you go!
    ~Justin

  2. Ha ha! OK, you convinced me… As far as non-Japanese game cosplay, I didn’t mind mostly because I love Bioshock, Halo, and Starcraft so much… But Waldo?!? Seriously???

    As far as hanging out, any time! I’m still unemployed (obviously), so I’m pretty much available 100% of the time… I don’t even have a regular sleep schedule right now…

    I made the decision to move pretty quickly. I somehow blew an interview for a great job that was a perfect fit for me and the company, I’m almost out of unemployment, and I don’t want to be caught with my pants down at the end of the month when I have a sure-thing job waiting for me over in CDA…

    What are you doing Saturday? I’m going to be attending my last anime meeting over in Parkland…

  3. Hmmm… Depends on what time I get back into town, but I’d like to go. This weekend is the big Washington State vegetarian fest thingy… Me and my mom signed up to volunteer and whatnot, so I’m pretty much tied into going Saturday, but our shift is in the very beginning of the day, so as long as we don’t screw around too much before coming back home it shouldn’t conflict. Is your number still the same? I’ll hit you up and give you a status update at some point? Could I snag a ride with you, and if so, what time would you want to be leaving?

  4. I’d be leaving my place any time between 4-6pm, and yeah I can give you a ride! My number’s still the same, too…

  5. Alrighty, I’ll make sure to call or text you by 3ish with an update on whether I’ll be back in time or not!

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