On June 30th to July 4th, Anime Expo held its annual event at the Los Angeles Convention Center in Downtown Los Angeles. For the first time ever, the event was held on a Friday to Tuesday so that they could end the event on Independence Day. Also for the first time ever, there were activities that occurred on Day 0 which was on a Friday. Attendees had the opportunities to attend exclusive events on Day 0 and the Anisong Matsuri Super Kawaii concert was held on Day 0. Finally, for the first time ever, attendees were able to pick up badges on Day -1 of the event since they expected the event to hit six figures. I’ll just write about my personal experiences for this event since I attended as a fan.
For the first time ever, I hosted not just one gathering, but two gatherings. Not only did I host two of them, but I had them run back to back. I ran the Tekken cosplay gathering and the “all fighting games” one which featured characters from all fighting games in front of the famed Staples Center. It literally blew me away on how many people showed up. There were so many cosplayers from this niche genre. Characters from Tekken, Street Fighter, Mortal Kombat, King of Fighters, BlazBlue, and all the crossover games came through to represent. It was also pretty cool to have representatives of Namco Bandai come through to take photos of the Tekken event.
For years, I had avoided the One Piece series because I felt like there were way too many episodes and that I was already left behind. Seeking things to do late at night, I encountered some friends that I only knew from the online world and decided to give it a try with a viewing of the movie, “Strong World”. I was very entertained and have decided to try the series out.
Normally, I watch anime at home, but there’s something about watching it in a bigger environment. That was the case for “Love Live Sunshine” and “Sailor Moon Crystal”. I’ve already seen these series, but to watch it with lots of people made it special. There are a ton of things to do at Anime Expo and to spend time watching a few episodes you probably may have seen already meant that you are a mega fan.
One of the annual events I always attend is #moonpanel which is the Sailor Moon panel that occurs every year. The English cast was there, and although I watch the series in Japanese and with subtitles, it was amazing to be there with all the other diehard fans. I ended up with a raffle ticket for the autograph signing with the English cast and was hoping to get my Sailor Venus arcade stick signed but wasn’t able to which was okay since I was able to get a poster signed. I was also happy that I was able to make new friends because in my case, I find it hard to find friends that are also hardcore Sailor Moon fans.
Although I saw Aquors perform at Anisong Matsuri: Super Kawaii Live, I was totally down to see them at a Q&A session at a panel the next day too. Basically, I could have seen some of the members the year prior, but I had not seen Love Live Sunshine yet. By the time 2017 rolled around, I had already watched it and was more familiar with it which made this event more fun. Unfortunately, the questions were already predetermined and the answered were pretty much similar. It was a glorified quick cameo then the airing of three episodes which were pretty hype since everyone had lightsticks as if it were a concert.
The 2017 edition of Anime Expo was my favorite one yet. I had a wonderful experience. I only documented official Anime Expo sanctioned events. I attended various parties, see two of my closest friends get engaged, ate lots of great food, and enjoyed myself casually. I can’t wait until 2018’s AX.
Written by: Timtastic