Ah the joy and craziness of a con. Add about 10,000 plus people along with you, cosplayers, fans, scared passersby alike, and you’ve got a major con – like AWA. Thankfully Day 1 was more about joy and less about crazy, but let me actually start with what I’ll call AWA Day 1/2. See I arrived on Thursday and was able to get my press badge then, which saved Friday morning for other activities. Thanks to my early arrival I was also able to go to the “Happy Fun Sell.” Simply put if you’re ever at AWA when the “Happy Fun Sell” is going by all means go to it and be prepared to spend money. Why? Well it’s a garage sale basically but instead of clothes and odd things this is all stuff for us otaku. I myself purchased about 7 CD’s, full CD’s, from 2 vendors for a price of about $45 (including buying some from the Atlanta based J-Pop/Rock enthusiast B-Chan herself). I then found an amazing art book which I had never seen before for 8$ dollars. That’s right 8$!!! I’m still reeling from the feeling but anyways let me get to the actual Day 1 of AWA.
So after a night of looking at awesome anime goodies what was the first thing I did? Dealer’s room you betcha’! Sure I snapped some cosplayers pics. along the way, but I’m a sucker for dealer’s rooms and AWA is the grandaddy for my con circuit. Surprisingly enough I actually spent very little, and only on some snacks I plan to bring back to my co-workers (thank me later!) I however so much I wanted I was afraid my wallet would jump out and go buying on it’s own. Artbooks galore, J-Drama box sets, wall scrolls, and so much more! Heck I didn’t have time to look at the J-rock stuff. Anyways my friends and fellow BBAMAJAM contributors bought enough for me to peruse until I feel I know to have some personal owernship of the awesome.
After leaving the Dealer’s Room thankfully still a bit heavy with cash, I immediately proceed to the first of many interviews for both my show Tokyo Tower and this website (print & podcast). My first interview was with Samantha Inoue Harte, an animator, voice actress, film actress, polyglot, and all around awesome person. I’d first met her at JAMPcon and hit up all her panels, so I was glad to go into this interview with more knowledge than just online research. Anyways I’d love to say more but we’ll have that up on the site later.
Let me jump ahead then and discuss my next exciting adventure – the 1st Bleach photo shoot! So I came a little late and entered into the 12th squad’s picture moment, but thankfully I was able to get them, the 13th squad, and many pics of the members of Karakura Town. Those will too be up on this site but let me just say that all in all I’ve been greatly impressed with the levels of cosplay this year, and somehow the cosplayers have surpassed their already amazing work from last year!
Afterward I went to do interviews again back to back with Troy Baker and Caitlin Glass. I was a bit nervous to say the least. Since I’d never been able to attend a con with them before I didn’t have the familiarity I did with Samantha, but I felt they went well. I guess you’ll just have to listen/read those for yourself though when we post them.
Following the interviews I joined back up with my friends and we checked out the “Totally Lame Anime” panel. This is a very funny panel that I’d heard much about but never been able to see. The anime did live up to the title and the running commentary from the panel host was quite amusing too. Don’t expect new titles though but do expect characters do a costume change into a football uniform wearing mech pilot. I wouldn’t expect anything less.
Equally amusing, yet also amazingly educational, was the panel “History of Hentai”. The panel host Gerald from the Anime World Podcast knew his stuff and was able to teach us to. Sadly the panel was delayed due to technical issues, and summarily cut short for the same reason, but we had plenty of strange videos and commentary to teach us more than I ever really wanted to know. There was a true blue Hentai panel after that titled “The World of Hentai” but I was getting a headache and that was the last thing I wanted to see then. Nick and Erica will probably go into detail but otherwise that’s all I know on that.
Instead, Nate and I went to check out a D.N. Angel that sadly dissolved before it got started, so then we joined up with our friends post-hentai and returned to our rooms. Long day, lots of pictures to upload, and well it’s been busy since. Hope you enjoyed this Day 1 con report of AWA and look forward to all our reports from Day 1 and the other reports from Day 2 & 3.