Fanime was quite a while ago, but I had a friend visiting and didn't have a chance to do my obligatory post till now. So here it goes!
This was the first time in a couple years since we were able to attend Fanime for the whole weekend. The last time we went was when the registration line was ridiculously long. I'm happy to say that that is history. We arrived on Day 0 and got our badges super fast. The volunteers/staff were really friendly too. I was also pleasantly surprised to see that we got plastic badges with our names printed on them instead of paper ones. Afterwards, we headed over to Hydration only to find out that it had closed down. Super sad! Instead, there's a new place called Boba Bar. I got the pork belly bowl and it was pretty good. Only downside of course, is that it's pretty fatty and eating it more than two times over the weekend kind of makes you feel meh. lol Then we headed to the swap meet. It was held in the big blue tent a.k.a South Hall. The line was long, but moved quickly. Inside, the sellers only took up a little less than half of the hall. It still took a while to look through everything though, and it was kind of hard weaving in-between people. I was able to score some Gundam, Saiyuki, and Eva stuff. We also checked out the gaming hall which was super huge. There was giant Jenga and even some mahjong tables set up.
Day 1: First up was Artist Alley! The art was all really good and slightly overwhelming. lol I've heard some people say that artist alley looked very "samey", and I kind of get where they're coming from. Up close, you can totally see that each person has a unique art style, but from a distance a lot of the prints kind of blended together. Aside from prints, there were some plushies, a few scarves, and lots of acrylic keychains. Quality has definitely gone up since the old days. lol There were also people selling custom washi tape, mini zipper mags, tote bags, and a few acrylic standees of characters. I was really impressed by those. Some people had huge prints too ranging around $50-$70 I think. I only ended up buying one print though from . It was a super cute and colorful print of a bunch of 80s cartoon characters like She-Ra and Rainbow Brite.
Dealers Hall was pretty crowded too. I saw some really pretty Black Butler pocket watches from the Book of Circus arc, but wasn't sure if they were bootleg or not. They looked really official, but I couldn't find any info online. One seller had them for $75 and another for $30 and they looked exactly the same with the label on the bottom and everything. O_o So weird!
At night, there was a special Casino event where you could get a commemorative poker chip. Unfortunately, the line was super long so we skipped it and headed back to the Swap Meet.
Day 2: Saturday! I think we wandered around the dealers hall and artist alley again. At 3:00 pm we headed over to the Fairmont for the Anime Game Show. I signed up before the con started and was a contestant. I went onstage with 12 other people and we each had to answer questions related to anime, video games and other random stuff. You could only miss 2 questions. Luckily, my questions weren't too bad. ^.^; I even got asked what Roger Smith's car was named. lol I totally sucked in the final round though. We had to guess which titles were real titles of One Piece movies and I hadn't seen any of those. lol Then there was an Animal Crossing section, and I totally forgot that there were alligators and not crocodiles. It was definitely fun though, so I think I'll try to join in on one of the other smaller game shows next time too.
I tried to run over to the Civic Center after dinner to catch some of the concert, but I was really late and it was over. Later that night we watched Anime Hell and ate lots of snacks and bread. lol It was awesome.
Day 3: Sunday! I woke up early and walked to church. The weather was super nice! Before that though, I stopped by the Civic Center. This year, they were handing out color coded stickers that would determine when you could line up and get into the cosplay masquerade that night. After lunch, we caught the end of the Viz Sailor Moon panel. It was a pretty small panel and they didn't clear the room afterward so we decided to stay for the Q&A with music guest Back-On. While we were sitting there, Back-On just comes in and sits down at the table. I was kind of surprised that they didn't come in after the room had filled. Then at 2:00 pm, their translator announced that they would be starting the panel. It was crazy because there were probably only 10 people in the room. It was super sad! But then, someone from the back of the room was like "wait! We'll let the line in first". LOL They filled half the room and all was well. The band seemed pretty cool and were nice enough to high five and sign autographs for some of the fans. After that though, a staff member had to tell the audience not to request signatures. I think that was a good move because it was just taking time away from the Q&A and plus, they already had had an autograph session.
After that, we headed over to the masquerade. We were running late, but luckily our friends saved some seats. We sat in the balcony and looking down only about half of the hall was full. Seemed like not many people had tuned in for the masquerade this year. The emcee was very entertaining and did his best to move attention away from the technical difficulties (mainly problems with audio). I think there were about 47 entries. Miyazaki Medley was one of my favorites. I liked how they worked in all those Miyazaki characters. Nausicaa’s flyer was pretty cool, and the CatBus was so awesome. XD They even had Sophie do the air walk. So cute! Overall, the skits were pretty entertaining and the costumes well done. It took forever for the judging though. There was a martial arts group that performed during intermission and then the emcee told stories, but I hope next year they can find a way to speed up the process. After dinner, we checked out Yaoi Bingo, but it had just ended and prizes were being raffled off. There was some pretty good stuff! Maybe next year we’ll play too. Then we watched AMV Hell until 2:00 a.m.
Day 4: The last day! I made my last minute purchases and then we headed home early since we had to pick up a friend. All in all it was a good con. Got to hang out with my home slices and watch fun stuff and also didn’t have to wait in any annoying lines. (Although I’m still a little sad I didn’t get a poker chip)