Anime Expo 2008 – Entry 2 of 2

How AX2008 Fared (Part 2 of 2 – Back from Intermission):

So last we had left off when Yoko Ishida had exited the stage and a brief 5-minute intermission was called up to allow Jyukai to make their entrance.  Jyukai seemed to be a two-member group with Minami Watanabe on vocals and presumably Dewa Yoshiaki, a Japanese guy who wore tight pants and played guitar.  Up until this point, I had not heard much of Jyukai’s works… or so I thought until the first song was played, which turned out to be Anata ga Ita Mori, the ED to Fate/Stay Night.  If there was one thing that was immediately recognizable, it was the fact that Minami wasn’t quite up to par with Yoko Ishida and that it was easier to catch her mistakes.  In spite of that, she performed Anata ga Ita Mori rather beautifully.  The rest of the pieces that the group performed weren’t ones I could name off the top of my head though evidently they took their themes from Ah My Goddess Flights of Fancy and its follow-up as well as one song from Buso Renkin.  All in all, I’d say that a lot of her songs were rather on the melancholy side, though it didn’t quite stir my emotions.  If there was any change that could have been made, I probably would have suggested that Jyukai performed first and followed it up with Yoko Ishida just because I think the end of the concert should strive to be energetic.  But that’s just me.  It was still pretty enjoyable though.

After that, the rest of the day was marked for acquiring loot and we started off with a visit to the Artist’s Alley which also contained the Art Show.  Normally, AX is pretty well-known for having decent works of art at the Art Show, but this year’s were a bit of a washout.  Many of the works looked like they were done by elementary school kids who drew crude pictures with crayon.  Needless to say, they looked absolutely terrible.  While I was there, I also noticed some familiar pictures which had been there the year before!  Apparently they had not been able to sell or something, so they made a return.  It was fairly disappointing to say the least since I had been hoping (and failing again) to snag a really well-drawn picture, maybe two.  Oh well, at least some of the models looked nice, though the no-camera policy didn’t allow me to snap the image of a really well-done model of Suigintou from Rozen Maiden.

At least the Artist’s Alley was pretty good and after wandering around looking for good fanarts, I stumbled across a table that had a very good picture pair of the 4 main cast members from Lucky Star.  The first pair consisted of Konata and Tsukasa.  Konata was, not surprisingly, cosplaying as Haruhi while Tsukasa was wearing an Evangelion plug suit.  The other set was Kagami and Miyuki, with Kagami wearing a dress while Miyuki was wearing a red vest.  They’re obviously cosplaying in that picture too, but I wouldn’t be able to tell you what they were.

Then it was off to the Exhibit Hall phase 2 (The Revenge!!) where I mostly drifted around aimlessly moving from booth to booth with the goal of trying to complete my Kaleido Star DVD collection (missing volumes 3, 4, and 6) as well as some ARIA paraphernalia.  I managed to obtain neither, unfortunately even though there was a figurine of Akira, which would have looked good next to my Max Factory Alicia, but I chickened out on that one and let it be.  I did manage to snag a Revoltec figurine of Yotsuba from Yotsuba&! as a gift since the person in question really likes the manga.  I also added a Ghost in the Shell keychain just to bump up the total price to above $20 as to pay by credit card.  That Lucky Star picture set pretty much drained my low amounts of cash.  Oh well.  I should have remembered to withdraw cash earlier in the day anyhow.

Also interesting to note was that Wizards of the Coast were there, touting D&D 4th Edition (which I have negative opinions of for being a shoddy piece of game design).  Also went back to look at Guilty Gear II Overture (that I mentioned before) and saw that it played a lot like a Dynasty Warriors game, but other than that, that’s pretty much how my day went.  I had to leave early so no panels, anime viewings (not that there was anything particularly great on), Persona 4 announcements, or AX Idol, which is just as well.  Day was still a blast and I enjoyed it immensely.


LA Convention Center was a shockingly decent venue with the Nokia Theater close by, allowing for easy access.  Parking was also plentiful (even if it’s a bit expensive) and the Convention Center as a whole was huge.  This meant that overcrowding wasn’t an issue and that I could move from location to location at a pretty good clip (not that I went to too many areas).  So all in all, the new location was a definite plus.

AX Staff was also a lot more organized.  I had praised the new registration system that they had in place which again, was excellently implemented, allowing for people to go in and out really quickly.  Waiting in line to scan the barcodes was never a big issue and aside from the occasional printer hiccups, everything went off without a hitch.

TL;DR Version:

The Good: I apparently got a lot better at Melty Blood or something, the Yoko Ishida/Jyukai concert was a blast.  Excellent location and organization for a change.

The Bad: I still missed out on the Anime Trivia contest again.  Not that winning it is something to be particularly proud of, but I’d like to see how disgusting my levels of knowledge are.  Or lack of knowledge.  My haul of anime merchandise was also distressingly small.  Also missed out on the BlazBlue demo in the console rooms. Ran out of cash. Note to self: try to see if I can go to more than just one day.

Ill-gotten Loot: Yotsuba Revoltec, GitS keychain, Lucky Star fanart.

The Irony: Most of those purchases weren’t for me but were gifts for other people.


Anime Instrumentality's Founder and Editor-in-Chief. As you can probably guess, I'm a big anime music junkie with a special love for composers who've put out some beautiful melodies to accompany some of my favorite anime series. I tend to gravitate towards music in the classical style with Joe Hisaishi and Yoko Kanno being a few of my favorite composers, but I've come to appreciate jazz and rock as anime music has widened my tastes.

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