maandag 19 maart 2018

Made in Asia 2018

The first geekycon I joined for 2018 has past last saturday, as Noshi and me went to the Heysel in Brussels for Made in Asia, a convention themed around the anime culture and more.

Okay, so the and more is pretty important, as it is in essence not that different anymore from regular conventions, bar that the activities and club stands are all anime and oriental minded, so don`t expect Star Wars clubs, but Gundam clubs instead... which for me is a bonus.

There where tons of activities this year where you could join in, like learning japanese or folding origami.  The signature alley was present, but mind you, this works different like events as FACTS or Comic Con, but more on that later.

But most of all, there was a HEAP of people, because when we arrived at 11.15 (it opened at 10), this was still the amount of people queuing to get in.  Luckily, the security opened the extra emergency exit gates and the masses could stream in better.

One of the activities I went for to the event was the GunPla building contest, which included some awesome entries across the whole board, as well as displaying a huge amount as "comes build from the box like this" models.

There was of course the huge stand of the Saint Seiya diorama builders, who expanded their diorama`s, but their core business is still building scenic pieces around the Myth cloth line.

A collector of Dragonball Z merchandise was also present with a big stand, which featured a lot of gorgeous models.

One of the halls (there where 5 in total, in sequence the food and drink hall, the club hall, the trader hall, the game hall and the videogame hall) featured a lot of boardgames of all sorts of strokes.

While in the other one, you could try out a variety of videogames or enter in a series of competitions like League of Legends.

Of course, before we tackled the traders hall, we strenghtened the inner person with some Onigiri.  And we could enjoy one of the many concerts (6 a day) while at it.

The trader hall featured the usual suspects in merchandise of all sorts, though understandbly the focus was on anime stuff.  So don`t go there if you`re hunting for vintage cartoon stuff, there was very little of it.

And this... I might order that online for sure...

So the artist alley.  At the other conventions, you queu, pay for the signature in the two minutes with your chosen celebrity and your off.  Here, it works differently, in that first of all, it`s FREE to get an autograph.

But it works with a limited amount of people.  There are two sessions of about an hour for each, and they close the line at around 30 people.  This makes that the artists take out a bit more time for you, but you won`t be able to go shopping at all of them though. 

Noshi and me went in the line for Hirsohi Nagahama (best known for his Stan Lee cooperation on The Reflection), but who also did Guilty Crown (Noshi loved that series) and he was a key animator on some episodes of Saint Seiya Omega. 

So I wanted to ask him to put his signature in my Myth cloth collectors book... and he went on drawing a Seiya on the page for nearly 10 minutes.  Taking they at best do 150 signatures during the whole convention, this is a pretty unique one I have now, me very otaku-happy now :-D

We took another walk through the trader hall after that, before going back to the trainstation and Antwerp after a very fun convention.

How was it compared to other events?  Well, as my Marvel / DC days are more and more drifting away from me, this was all yokai in my book.  Sure, there was a lot of non-anime cosplay around with the public, but heck, that happens.  Some people still put down fantastic looking costumes for sure.

Though sorry, wearing a onesie from Primark with a cardboard board saying "Free Hugs" doesn`t qualify as cosplay for me... and there where a LOT of those...

But all in all, Made in Asia was a great event, a fun day out, and now onwards to the next event, trip or holiday, whatever comes first!

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