Otakon 2003 - a blast!

Last year I attended one day, this year two. I believe next year I’ll try to attend all three days of Otakon 2003. There is so much to see and do, and Otakon is one of the largest anime cons in the US. This year I went on Saturday and Sunday.

If there was one standout cosplay outfit, this year it was perscoms from Chobits, specifically Chi (both light and dark). I lost count of how many Chis were in attendance. Quite a few were very well done, and a lot of thought went into the earpieces (the major distinguishing feature most perscoms have in Chobits). Also in attendance were a few Belldandys and Skulds from Oh My Goddess, but I don’t remember seeing any Urds.

One of the standout exhibits was the Bandai booth in the Dealer’s room, where they were previewing Witch Hunter Robin. I did get a large (about 24x36) movie poster for it. And if you stood in the hideously long line, you could see the preview and get a free shirt. I thought about the shirt, but the line scared me. What got burned into my brain Saturday was Evanescence’s “Bring Me to Life”.

Pat and I wanted to attend one of the ParaPara panels Saturday afternoon, but our check-in ran a little long. About 11:30 we made it to BCC and through registration. (Pre-registration is wonderful.) We browsed the Dealer’s room to find Pat’s sister, but she had the morning off and did’t make it in yet.

We caught the Naze Nani Megatokyo panel, and it was a blast! Piro did a top ten of why Megatokyo sucks, and Seraphim did a top ten of why Megatokyo doesn’t suck. A long Q&A session ensued (Piro is not a girl, but Pirogeth is, etc.). Two big announcements: a second MT blanket was debuted - the darkly cute Miho; and the second MT tankubon (presumably Chapter 1 from the website) will be published, although a publisher has not been determined. Several MT cosplayers in attendance, one of the best (IMO) was Ed from this strip, complete with KillStick. After the MT panel was a photo-op with all the MT cosplayers, Piro, and Seraphim.

Pat wanted to see the TM Revolution concert, so up to the fourth level we went. But standing before us was a maze of twisty lines, all alike. The line was moving, but we got dizzy and claustrophobic after about ten minutes, so we split the line.

Back to the Dealer’s room, where we found Pat’s sister and made dinner plans. Stuff happened (shopping, I think, I don’t remember). Anyway, after dinner, Pat and I went back to the convention center to see the ParaPara Dance workshop. It was interesting, but they only did 30 second snippets of songs and repeated them several times. One thing that was nice was there were two girls on stage leading the ParaPara, one facing the audience and one facing away from the audience. That way the audience could follow the girl with her back turned (so the arm movements were the same). There wasn’t enough ParaPara for us, so we found the dance areas.

Otakon had two dance areas. One was in Camden Lobby on the third level, and an adjacent smaller room. It wasn’t quite dark when we got to the dance area, so we elected to go in the smaller room (Aux. Dance). Where the Camden Lobby area was “regular” music, the Aux. Dance room was a rave. I was severely tempted to re-name the room to CAVE of Evil. Pat and I both thought the 10-11PM DJ had the best mix.

Sunday we got up later than expected. There was a ParaPara dance event at 11:00AM. After watching the last 20 minutes of Minority Report, checking out of the hotel and schlepping our stuff to the car (bargain parking), we missed the event. Ugh. Baltimore needs smaller city blocks. :)

We wandered around a bit, found more stuff in the Dealer’s room. I think we spent the rest of the con in there. And that’s a wrap!