Sunday, November 23, 2008

Anime Festival Asia 2008

Domo-kun did not made me spend any money

AFA 08 was good, but not fantastic. The $5/$8 would have been worth it if I had stayed for the concert but I wasn't (and neither was Rien) prepared to stay so long at the fair.

But first, I would like to apologise to Rien who waited for me for an hour due to some miscommunication. I am also sorry for being an insane Gundam fan squealing at all the Gundam Models.

Kunio Okawara

The highlights of the event has to be the Kunio Okawara interview. Being able to see the Gundam Designer up close was truly a humbling experience. Many fans sat on the floor (when the chairs were filled) to listen to the peaching of the Great One. Fortunately I was with a Gundam hater, and was able to pull myself from my worship.

Trans Am Gundam Exia
Gundam Exia (Trans Am) Sold out before 11am

The entire event seem to be a great Gundam masturbation fest. The amount of space allocated to the Bandai was bigger than any other series. Of course, as a Gundam fangirl, I was most happy and natural in this habitat. I was found drooling at the models and resisting the intense urge to donate money to the Gundam cause.

Human sized Gundam Exia model Gundam Exia Cosplay
Gundam Exia VS Gundam Exia

For a brief amount of time, I thought I was seeing doubles. There were two Gundam Exia! As it turned out, the Exia with glowing eyes is a wonderful cosplay done by the master of mecha cosplay, Clive Lee. Poor Mr Lee was hounded by the Papparazzi every where. Even when he was resting with his head gear off, the cameras refused to stop flashing.

Robot by IFS
One of the IFS display work

Apart from the gundam fest, there were several smaller collection of booths such as the Imaginary Friends Studio (IFS). I was quite excited to see them and their works were as good as I expected them to be. However, they also came with a hefty price tag.

Movie booth
Encore Films Pte Ltd

Encore Films were also there with some of the Japanese films that they have distributed in Singapore. May I suggest to Encore films to take on some of the Japanese drama series? I do not mind paying more for a good DVD release with eligible subtitles and which do not crash my DVD player.

Anime Festival Asia 08

Apparently, this was an anime themed Japan Tour booth. I am not very sure since the intimating tigers in the background send me scuttling off like a frightened prey.

Dragon Ball

One of the main reason that I paid $5 was to see the the Shouen Jump World Tour booth. However, my high anticipation lead to a high disappointment as there were only some pathetic Death note, Bleach and Prince of tennis works. There were also some original Dragon Ball Z 'manuscript' that were submitted to the editor before being printed in the magazine.

Code Geass
Why was Lancelot featured here with Suzaku? Lulu? Where are you?

There were also 6 'experience' booth of the Code Geass, Skip Beat, Casshern Sin and the other series showing on Okto now. I really liked the booths and I would liked to think that it convinced Rien to watch Code geass.

And course, we have the figurines section. Rows of figurines one after another, in a showcase of toys from the various toy companies:

Giant Reborn
Life sized Reborn with Leon. This must have cost a bomb.

Hatsune Miku
Hatsune Miku with parts of Fate in the background

The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya
Haruhi Suzumiya Cast with blocked Yuki's head

Rei Ayanami
Rei Ayanami. I still prefer Kaworu.

I enjoyed the event since they managed to control the crowd entering the place unlike a certain cosplay event. I did like the booths for Sky Crawler and Lamb, Animax Asia's anime. It would be nice if we have more of such booths. For events, there was no interesting events apart for Kunio Okawara stage appearance and the sky crawlers trailer on Saturday in the afternoon. This is another aspect that they need to improve on if they want to attract people next year.

Soul Eater
Cosplay of Soul Eater

To be honest, the attention paid to the Gundam and Mecha series were higher than the other series. They should be more booths of other popular series such as Soul Eater. In additional, most of the merchandises sold there were of mecha models. It was of no surprise then that KKnM ended up with a long queue of people waiting to see (and buy) non-mecha products.

I am also slightly annoyed by the small area allocated to the artist alley. Only 4 tables?

AFA08 is not a bad event organised for the first time. But if they really want to attract people from the region, they will need more than this.

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