Anime Boston invaded Beantown’s Hynes Convention Center over Easter weekend, and just like Christians flocking to midnight mass, anime fans from all over the East Coast made their yearly trek to this nerd-Mecca.
While home in Massachusetts for Spring Break, I set out early Saturday morning, accompanied by my friend Al, to indulge in the prolific art form that is Japanese animation.
Neither of us had attended an anime convention before, and unfortunately, neither of us will be attending Anime Boston again.
Being super-negative isn’t usually my bag, but taking part in Anime Boston was like waiting in line (for four hours!) to see a unicorn and then when it is your turn to finally see the mythical steed, it turns out to be a giant ugly horse.
There will never be enough space to go into detail about what went wrong, but here’s a brief rundown: due to an understaffed crew, a juvenile registration system involving thousands of fans and four computers, and unprofessional organization all around, my Saturday at Anime Boston almost became the worst day of my life.
Thank God for those crazy anime fans.
If you didn’t know already, anime fans are a different breed of sub-culture. There is a Japanese word, otaku (oh-talk-ooh), defined as anyone with obsessive interests, especially in anime.
Otaku was invented by non-anime fans to describe the fanatics’ insane obsessive behavior. The only reason Al and I survived Anime Boston was because of the thousands of otaku and their affinity for “cosplay.”
Cosplay is when anime fans hand-craft costumes of their favorite anime characters and then don them for all to admire. I would equate it to an anime Halloween, but that would be discrediting the insane amount of detail injected into these costumes.
Most fans spend months creating their costumes using detailed intricacy to create wardrobes identical to those worn by various characters.
The majority of fans at the convention cosplayed, and Al and I actually felt out of place for dressing normally.
Countless anime were represented, but the best costumes we saw came from Neon Genesis Evangelion, Fooly Cooly, Death Note, Desert Punk and Jin-Roh.
After Al and I waited four hours to enter the convention, we were tired but ready to party. Our first stop was to see the Japanese band The Pillows, perform songs from our favorite anime Fooly Cooly.
In traditional Anime Boston fashion, the show was postponed an hour.
While seething and waiting for The Pillows, we were treated to a special opening performance from Japanese pop group, Luv & Response. Listening to Japanese pop stars lip-synch and dance to carbon copy American-influenced pop-ditties for 45 minutes is only entertaining when they tell you and the crowd to, “crap your hands.”
After finally bobbing our heads to a few of our favorite Pillow’s tunes, we entered a conference room that was scheduled to hold a question and answer forum for Adult Swim.
Adult Swim plays “mature” adult comedies as well as late-night anime on the Cartoon Network. As quickly as we sat down, Al and I got up and left after the two people sitting at the podium said, “Sorry, but we have no affiliation to Adult Swim. We’re bloggers who have been fans of Adult Swim for years.”
Al and I gave each other a look that said, “what the.?,” then left Anime Boston never to return.
We exited with fond memories and a few pictures of the die hard fans that definitely spent more time preparing for Anime Boston than Anime Boston did itself in running this debauchery of a convention. Everybody crap your hands!