I had a weekend with nothing to do, so I decided that a trip to the Anime Expo might be an interesting experience. So, I got my media credentials for the 3 days I would be there, then it was game on.
As a person who has maybe watched an hour of Anime in my life, I walked around for 3 hours with my jaw to the floor. The Los Angeles Convention Center won the largest Anime Expo in North America from Anahiem. There seemed to be a benefit to the hosts because they had their largest crowd ever at 43,000.
What is it that would bring that many people out on a holiday weekend? Many dressed in costumes that would give any costume designer a case of green eyes.
1. what is Anime? Anime is “cartoons” that originate from Japan.
2. Who is their audience? Everyone. They have something for children to porn lovers.
So, knowing nothing about it, I proceeded into the world of Anime. The first things you notice are the costumes. People are dressed up as their favorite characters from the series they prefer, and then the other people are asking for pictures. If they had collected tips like they do in Hollywood, they would have cleaned up.
The Anime Expo was open 24 hours a day, which is something I have never seen before. What was there to do for all that time? Watch videos of course, sing karaoke, or dance. The exhibit hall, translation, giant store, and live events ended pretty much by 6PM. They did has a masquerade ball, concerts, and other stuff in the evening. Most of which was designated as adult only.
There was so much stuff to do that it could almost be overwhelming. I just had to accept that I was not going to be able to do everything.
I spent the weekend mesmorized by the fact that Japan had so infiltrated our culture in this unique way. The amine was generally in Japanese with English subtitles, so imagine my surprise when I went a concert at the Nokia L of Shoko Nakagawa, a young 23 year old, who had a couple of songs chosen for some of the Animes. The whole concert was done in Japanese. The crowd was totally involved with glowsticks and all.
The videos I chose to view were randomly selected. I saw Fancy LaLa, which was cute. City Hunter was funny, but a little sexual. The animes were good, but the technology varied according to the show. It was definately not like Kanda Pa. The animation ranged from the old fashioned to the high tech.
Going to the Exhibit hall was huge experience with all the people. It had over 200 vendors selling everything from T-shirts to Hentai (Japanese anime porn). There were tons of games like Guitar Hero, which was fascinating.
Overall, I was thrilled that Los Angeles hosted this great event. It even made me want to see more anime, but don’t look for me to dress up in a costume.
At the closing ceremony, the date was set for a return for July 2-5, 2009 at the Los Angeles Convention Center.