things i watched at otakon #3

girl cosplayer at otakonIt always takes me a bit of time to decompress from Otakon.  I spend literally days engulfed in anime and cosplay and fan art and brightly colored objects crying to come home with me.  I don’t eat enough and staying hydrated is difficult (despite the ready availability of ice cold water at only one dollar).  The floor is hard on my feet, the convention center is just horribly laid out, and the lines for anything good are too long.  I always schedule myself too aggressively (of course I can make it all the way over to the Hilton in five minutes!) and there’s always too many things I want to see that are scheduled at the exact same time.  The building is always too cold, except when it’s too hot.  The escalators appear to work at random times.  Rubbing endless elbows with 30,000 other people can be difficult for someone who rarely leaves the house.  Everything in the dealer’s room is overpriced and I’m always depressed that I can’t support as many of the artists as I’d like to, especially the ones making comics.  But I never come home anything less than tired and happy.  It’s the best thing ever.

I did a few different things this year.  First off, I skipped the matsuri on Thursday, which I am sorry I did.  I’d just got back from week long vacation the night before and wasn’t up to the trip to Baltimore.  That decision cost me a couple of hours in line on Friday to get my badge.  Lesson learned.  This year, for the first time, I attended some panels.  Panels have never interested me much but this year a few sounded intriguing so I made a point of going.  One of them, “New Anime for Older Fans”, was completely brilliant (thanks reversethieves!).  Another, “Voice Actors After Dark”, was funny as hell but went on a bit too long.  The third, “LOL”, just spent the hour exploring the inexplicable pile of weird that is Japanese television.   It was also funny as hell and saved me the effort of culling this stuff from Youtube.

So, now to the shows.  There may be some SPOILERS below but probably not too many, since in general they only present a few episodes of these shows as a teaser, and some of these I literally only watched for a minute or so.

otakon cosplayer with swordFairy Tail:  This anime follows a young celestial wizard who wants to join the wizarding guild Fairy Tail, which is known for its unorthodox approach to magical problem solving.  I’ve heard really good things about this anime but the four episodes I watched at Otakon didn’t draw me in.   Mostly it is just goofy.  The main character uses keys to summon elemental beings.  This sounds cooler than it is; one of the beings is a clock that she uses as transport whenever she doesn’t feel like walking.  Her friend is a fire wizard (or more correctly a dragon wizard) and has an adorable flying cat companion.  The Fairy Tail guild is itself full of odd-ball characters: the wizard who always manages to lose his clothes, the hard-drinking female wizard, the miniscule guild leader who inexplicably reminded me of Dungeon Master from the old D&D cartoons…, etc.  There’s lots of extravagant magic casting and unnecessary yelling but from what I saw there is little that sets this anime apart.  Still, I will most likely watch it once Netflix has it since it does have some potential.  It is a very long running show and perhaps the characters will grow on me.

Score:  Meh.

Another:  This one intrigued me.  In the prologue, we are told that a popular student at a high school has died but her grief-stricken friends and teachers continue to act as if she is alive.  Apparently this effects some sort of curse on the school and on her classroom in particular.  Sixteen years later a young boy with a chronic illness comes to the school and is assigned to that classroom.  From the outset, even when he is the hospital, strange things happen involving the school.  In the elevator he meets an odd young woman with an eye patch who appears to be going to the morgue.  His classmates come to visit him and act secretively.  Once he is actually at the school he finds that Eyepatch Girl is his classmate but that everyone pretends she is not there.  His friendship with her is met with increasing hostility by his other classmates and even she warns him off of being friends with her.  Eventually he follows her to a creepy doll museum where…  And that’s all of it I saw.  I hope this one is available soon!

Score:  Meh.

otakon dr who photo shootOccult Academy:  I’m not really sure what to think of this one.  Maya is the daughter of the founder of the Occult Academy, but she hates the occult and is angry with her father so she will have nothing to do with it.  When her father dies Maya returns to the school as its new headmistress with the intention of destroying it.  Upon her arrival she meets a time traveler sent back to prevent an alien invasion that will lead to the destruction of the world.  After an initially rocky meeting and some bizarre events at the school Maya teams up with the time agent and some of her classmates to find a hidden key that will avert the apocalypse.  There are hints that some of the faculty and staff at the school are not what they appear to be.   Much of this anime seems like stuff I saw elsewhere, from the first “meet cute” interaction between the two main characters (he’s naked when he comes through the time travel, much like Akira in Eden of the East), the constant physical abuse Maya delivers whenever he upsets her (I honestly can’t imagine an actual Japanese woman ever smacking people as often as they do in anime), the goofy classmates and school staff (overweight magic dowser, the ninja mechanic, the kawaii girl who squeals a lot and is always the first to be possessed by demons, etc).  However, in the few episodes I saw there was some interesting back story to both the main characters and the series might improve on further watching.  I might check it out further, I might not.

Score:  Meh.

[to be continued…]

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~ by gun street girl on August 13, 2012.

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