While I wasn’t planning to go to Otakon, when my boss asked me if I had any interest, I said, “Oh, heck's yeah!” Despite a grueling con season that took me up and down the West Coast, I couldn’t pass up the chance to go to one of my favorite cons.
Why do I love Otakon? The 90+ heat combined with sauna-like humidity, of course! Seriously, the reason is very simple—Otakon attendees are really nice! Unlike AX, Otakon is not corporate sponsored. It is 100% fan run. I don’t know how much of an effect that has, but I can tell you this, Otakon has a really good vibe.
Plus, the cosplay is great! Not to cast aspersions on other cons, but I just get the feeling the cosplayers here are dressing up as their favorite characters because they love the anime, not because they’re trying to best a rival cosplay group. While I didn’t see as many extravagant costumes, I did see a lot of great ones. In fact, I probably took more great photos here than any other con this season.
Also, there were so many families getting in on the act! It warms the cockles of my heart to see an entire family dressed up. Remember, the family that cosplays together, stays together!
Unfortunately, we didn’t get to do a lot of SJ-related events at the con, but we did get to do a panel! It was a VIZ panel, but it was hosted by two #TEAMJUMP members, and we love talking about SJ Alpha! The panel went great, and the audience was amazing, however they didn’t like my Naruto lounge act as much as I’d hoped. I guess it needs some more work.
Otakon is the largest anime convention on the East Coast and has an attendance nearly as large as AX. While the dealer’s room isn’t quite as banging, the vibe is better. If you’re out on the East Coast, and you get a chance, you should go. I recommend it!
Join the SJ Alpha crew at our next SJ Fan Meet-Up at NYCC! Oct 11–14! More details coming soon!
by Urian Brown