Anime Expo 2008

I just got back from Anime Expo in Los Angeles, and it was great! This year I went to the opening ceremony, the AMV contest, AX Idol, a signing by NIS character designers, a NIS America panel, Last Comic Standing, a David Hayter panel, a David Hayter signing, Whose Line Is It Anime?, and the closing ceremony. And I spent less than $50 on merchandise!
We stayed at the Omni hotel, which was only a few minutes away from the convention center via shuttle. Shuttles were free for us. The hotel was very nice, especially at 60 degrees the whole time, but I lost my extra battery for my camera. I’m pretty sure it was dead (broken dead) so it wasn’t a big loss. Antonio said he may have lost boxers and jeans. Duncan, who was in a different room, lost a pair of glasses. Justin, also in the other room, lost a pair of boxers as well. That doesn’t just seem like coincidence. Are the cleaning people stealing things? Together with the fact that there was a used tampon in between the mattress and box-spring of Justin’s bed (they got a free upgrade for that), I’m not sure I’d want to stay there again despite it seeming very nice.
This was the first year that I went to the opening ceremony. It was fun, but not too terribly exciting. I did mingle quite a bit with The World Ends With You, although it took me days to realize that the reason why I couldn’t see other players was because I was using the PAL version.
The AMV contest was quite long, but a lot of fun. There are definitely some AMVs I’d like to look up and watch some more, and they made me more interested in a few anime series. None of my choices won, but oh well.
AX Idol was really awesome. Last year I thought it was really boring, but this year, almost every contestant had a lot of talent. Half of the people were competing in voice acting, and the other half were singing. It was really amazing. One guy, who had his head shaved except for a short triangle-shaped mohawk, sang Rain, from Cowboy Bebop. I have a nice picture of him courtesy of “JUB” via Pictochat!
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Last Comic Standing is a stand-up competition. It was funny and very enjoyable, but some of the “comedians” were quite bad. A lot of them told jokes like “I’m a minority…it’s hard to like anime when you’re Black and/or Hispanic, food stamps, Home Depot etc.” I’m glad these people can joke around with their own culture’s negative stereotypes, but seriously, enough. The two finalists were also pretty bad >_>. I guess the audience was stupid because they’re the ones were judging. There were judges there to comment, but they didn’t choose the winners. Do you know who the coolest judge was? Man-Faye! It was awesome seeing him! Whose Line Is It Anime? is an improv show in which everything is anime themed. Terribly bad. It did make me miss Live Nude People that much more though.
We hung out at the NIS booth a bit, and I got my picture taken with a giant Prinny! Phoenix was funny as always too. I bought a Disgaea picture and got autographs from two different character designers that work at NIS. I also went to a NIS panel where they talked about Disgaea 3 and A Witch’s Tale, their new upcoming games.
I also went to a David Hayter panel. He was the voice of Lupin in Lupin the Third, the voice of Snake in the MGS series, and the screenplay writer of X-Men. It was really entertaining. I tried getting his autograph at multiple sessions but kept not making them. Finally on the last day, I managed to get his autograph.
I also went to the closing ceremony, and it was pretty boring. We did go to Little Tokyo to eat though, where the food was delicious!
I can’t wait for next year!