So sorry for the major delay of this post, I had some technical difficulties that I needed fixed with my laptop that took longer than expected. I am back and ready to tell you guys about one of my favorite events I attended in the beginning of this month, Anime Expo 2015! (Click on link to main website) For some of you, like me who unfortunately can never get their hands on a San Diego Comic Con badge but you enjoy comics and love anime, this is perfect for you! I do have to inform you, it is strictly Japan released media but in my opinion they are the crown holders of animation and there is always a little something for everyone in anime.
I was able to attend one day, of the 4 four day expo and it was enough to make me anticipate next year. With a grossing number of 9,500 fans, breaking it’s attendance record, the anime expo was wild and better than ever. Set in Los Angeles, California, the Anime Expo comes every year just before Comic Con and graces us with exciting anime fun for four long days. People from across the country travel to the Los Angeles Convention Center for the pure love of anime. Just like Comic Con, there is cosplay at every corner of your peripheral. At least 90% of the fan base dress up at least one day out of the four, it’s almost a MUST to cosplay it up. They don’t only dress up as anime or Japan based characters but in other ranges of anime, comics, video games and movies as well. You can literally spend a whole day walking around the entire venue just looking at all the many characters and the fun part is trying to figure out where they come from. You also see the intensity of the costumes, they can be as simple as elf ears to as wild as becoming the characters in real life. There were a few moments when I was walking around and two fans would bust out a skit and role play in their full on detailed costumes, it was so exciting to watch. They also have a whole section of scenes set up dedicated to cosplayers called the cosplay Senpai, you can get the perfect shot of you and your fellow characters in different scenes. For example, you’re a group of school girls, they provide a classroom scene set up so you can capture that perfect photo.
The best and main reason to attend is being the first to get the inside scoop on the latest and greatest animes, mangas and recently released video games. I do advise that you arrive to any events that you are attending there extremely early. Take a couple of friends so you can switch out while waiting in line for panels and premieres, the lines get really long and become quickly capped. I was able to attend one panel called “CrunchyRoll Presents Summer Anime Previews 2”, it was indeed impressive. I discovered a great amount of animes that had peaked my interest and I had never heard of before, which has now lead to my binge watching of animes. Thank you CrunchyRoll!
For the first time ever this year the expo created a cool hangout room for the 21 plus crowd called “The Lounge 21”. It was a bar set up, giving it a cool vibe to meet new people, as well as a stage and every night a cover band would play. I got the chance to see a band called Midnight Shinigami, they totally blew all the other cover bands out of the water. Their energy was so uplifting that the room eventually got packed. The bass guitarist was running around and head banging with some the crowd, he was extremely entertaining. I hope The Lounge 21 comes back next year as well as Midnight Shinigami. There was also a few concerts that required purchasing of a ticket that was separate from the expo badge. Porter Robinson, Paul Stanely and Gene Simmons from KISS, the famous WagakkiBand and more held concerts that weekend making it one epic expo.
Just around the corner from The Lounge 21 was an Open Mic Karaoke hall. It was a full length list of Japanese songs from variety of animes that you love. I was so shocked to hear people giving it their all and doing great at it! I’m not sure if they may have practiced before the event but it was truly inspiring. Just around that corner was a dance room called the “AXDance” there was one for 16 plus and 18 plus. I headed on over to the 18 plus of course and it was probably one of the coolest times I had at the event. I felt like I was at a real rave for a moment. There was shufflers, glovers and dance circles breaking out every where.
Some other cool activities they had were card games, scavenger hunts, arcade games, video games and lots more. They dedicated the Kentia Hall to card and board game players. Take a break from technology and go rent a game of Jenga, it’s a great way to meet new people as well. Not a good card holder? Just walk on down to the Entertainment Hall and there’s a circle of your favorite arcade games. There you will find almost every Dance Dance Revolution ever made! If you’re not that light on your feet but are just not the gaming type, there is plenty of activities you can participate in. With no winning or losing involved, there are many workshops that are just for pure fun. This hall was also for the cosplayers as I mentioned above, the cosplay Senpai also offers a sewing booth so those wardrobe malfunctions won’t bring you down for the rest of the day.
So you have some down time and you just feel like exploring or maybe want to purchase something. At the Exhibit Hall there is booths after booths lined up with all of your favorite anime goodies. You can purchase items for your costume, your favorite manga series, maybe test out a recently released game, they even had a stage set up for dub voice overs. You can audition to become a voice over for any anime, that was really fun to watch. This is definitely the place to find the latest and greatest goodies.
There is so much more I wish I could show you but you will just have to find out for yourself. For more attendance information click here AX Expo How To Attend
I hope to see some of you there next year. Remember to dress up and have fun with it!