My first time, virgin expedition to Comicon. Yes, a Comicon virgin, but now I safely graduated and joined the Comicon alumni.
The first day was very overwhelming. Compared to AX, it was probably twice its size, and had so many people, which reminded me of Tokyo subways. I had no idea of the scale of this convention, and when I arrived there, it was really humongous. The Dealer’s Hall swarmed with a horde of geeks.
Well, mostly I focused on going to panels, especially those about women, since I have a tremendous amount of interest in women: well not sexually this time, but feministically.
So, first I went to Yaya Han’s cosplay panel, where she was giving a presentation. She was lively and fun. She wore a Wonder Woman costume, and she said cosplay is very beneficial to stay fit. Yes, especially when you wear a skimpy costume, you show a lot of bare skin, so it is a prerequisite to have a well shaped body. Yes, need to eat healthy meals everyday. That idea was very striking. Really smart thing to say. Oh, yes, Michelle Obama should promote cosplaying, that should be the solution to the obesity epidemic! Right on! The White House should appoint Yaya Han to be an ambassador for that awareness.
Then, I went to the Womanthology panel, and the female comic artists were very funny. It’s great that they could express their desires as they wish. Yes, like, “I see these booth babes everywhere at the Dealer’s Hall. But where the heck are the booth beefs?” And then, the room mostly filled with women went uproar like “Yeaaaaaah!” Yes, putting only babes at the booths is very sexist. Need beefs for girls too. So, they were speaking their mind, and that was great, because usually women don’t express their desire, especially in romance and sex, they just wait for guys to take the lead, and then, they are passively asking, “Do you want to do this?” instead of advocating “I want this!” But they said they want booth beefs! Right on! Screw suppression! And also they talked about how women were looked down upon, or rather, people didn’t believe in their possibilities. Like most women would be getting married and raising kids, so they were told that they couldn’t be a comic artist because of that. But, they said, “Don’t listen to nay sayers, but just do it.” That was really cool. And they are the living examples of it!
And then I went to Most Dangerous Women at Comic-con panel, and the room was filled up. The geek girls are on the rise. It’s fascinating that women are turning into geeks, or rather they are speaking up and coming out in a male-dominated gaming culture. A girl playing MMORPG all day, and meeting a boyfriend through the game like Felicia Day. Yes, new romance! Japan has that too, MeetMe. Yes, like in Japan, otaku girls are rising too! Or rather becoming noticeable and prominent like fujoshi: yaoi fans, or slash fiction fans. Yes, otaku girls or geek girls are more connected with each other and form a community to get something done than otaku men who tend to be sporadically isolated, i.e., hikikomori. And then there’s a doujin or fan fiction of the Twilight saga, Fifty Shades of Grey. 20 million copies were sold? Just amazing. Oh yes, this clearly tells that women are perverts too, and otaku girls are now taking great pride in being a pervert-lady or hentai-shukujo (変態淑女). In short, shukujo! Finally they are becoming so open about it! Right on! The ultimate women liberation!
Then, I went to Lost In Translation Manga panel. One panelist explained that the Japanese schools only hire a young white man or woman for teaching English. So, some Germans were hired although he had a heavy Arnold-like accent. I thought that was funny but serious at the same time. It’s sad that Japan is not embracing diversity in this global age. And that was eye-opening.
Then, I went back to my hotel, and was really tired. So, I fell asleep immediately.
Next day, I woke up with my feet hurting from a lot of walking, so I got to take a little break until the afternoon. The exhaustion level was nothing like AX.
Then, I went to Comic Con and attended the Powerful Women in Pop Culture panel. The actresses from famous shows were there, yes like Fringe. And they were talking about how they wished they had more female writers and directors. Sometimes they can tell the script was written by a male, because they said women don’t talk that way. Some dialogue sounds very weird to them. Yes, in anime, Kids On The Slope (Sakamichi no Apollon), that manga was written by female, so the dialogue between dudes (Sen-chan and Kaoru) was very awkward, almost BL-ish. And dudes just don’t hold hands like girls do. It’s weird, and that was from the 1960s, metrosexual didn’t even exist at that point. Male perspective was completely lacking. So, yes, I can see why they said they need more female perspectives. And I thought their point was valid.
Then, I went to Viz Media and saw a PV of the new Berserk movie, which was pretty exciting. But I couldn’t get in to see the film later that night, since there were so many people lined up, almost three hundred people for the room that can only contain less than 200 hundred people. So, that was disappointing. It was a huge turnout, so clearly Berserk was getting a lot of attention, which I must be proud of as an anime otaku in America.
Next time: Day 3 and 4.