Otakon was SO much fun. We did a lot of stuff in just one day. I got some cool stuff, saw an incredible concert as well as a sneak peak of the FMA dub, and got my picture taken for a magazine (now THAT'S scary).
I love my Izumi costume. It made me feel really confident. It was made pretty cheap, but seeing as it was my first ever cosplay, I think I did an okay job. I didn't bother with the hair, since I don't like to mess with it and I can't stand wigs. I got this silver ring for my left hand (Izumi's wedding ring), and cut off the sleeves of the shirt thing we bought at the mall (though it's actually supposed to open at the back, not the sides). I borrowed a pair of my mom's black pants, but the sandals were more difficult.
They needed to be light purple with the letters "W.C." on them (I assume that means Water Closet- Izumi gets zero points for style on that one). We found some really comfortable tannish sandals at the mall, and I just colored them purple. I'm surprised at how good they look. Then all that's left was to write the letters in magic marker. My mom drew the red tattoo thing on my chest before we left, but by the time we finished waiting to get into the convention center, it got all smeary by my sweat. -_-
We got there just before the doors opened, but the line was woah...really long. We had to stand around and wait for over half an hour. There were these annoying Inuyasha fans behind us who kept saying random, badly pronounced Japanese words and screaming about nearly everything. Yakamashii~! ><
Once we got in, we had our choice of badges. I chose the FMA one, of course, and made my mom get the Wolf's Rain badge. Nomura-san asked me what he should get, and since the only other ones I recognized were Ghost in the Shell and Gravitation, I said he should get the Gravitation one. I should have thought a bit more about whether he'd like wearing something shounen ai, but oh well. He didn't seem to mind. ^^;
We had to go to the top floor to get our badges stamped for concert admission, and on the way, we stopped by the Beginner's Go Workshop. Five minutes in, I got bored, and we went on upstairs. At least I got to feel some real Go stones. :P
The staff had their own badges, and they had Conan pictures. Me = envious!
Then we went to the Dealer's Room. First we checked out the FUNimation booth. They had the giant Al statue! W00T! My mom took a picture of me with it. I also got a free FMA poster (which I must find a frame for), and lot's of free cards.
We looked around some more before the photoshoot, and I quickly went broke. Here's a comprehensive list of what I bought:
-the L'arc-en-Ciel CD! With Karaoke track for "Ready Steady GO!" YEAH!
-Full Metal Alchemist manga artbook! So cool!
-Kino no Tabi artbook! It was MEGA EXPENSIVE ($50- my mom paid for this one), but I couldn't find it anywhere else, so I was desperate. Didn't catch sight of the Their Memories book, unfortunately. :(
-Haibane Renmei 3rd DVD. I'll watch it later.
-FMA bag! With logo and crucified serpent! COOLNESS!!
-FMA keychain! It's all metallic and red and has Ed's head attached! (Hey, that rhymed.)
More FMA merchandise including Roy's gloves and pencil boards were all very expensive. But I'm still happy with what I got. :D
Up until then, I didn't see many FMA cosplayers. Sure, there was an Ed here and there, and I met another Izumi, but I only spotted one military uniform, which was disappointing.
But once everyone gathered for the photoshoot...OMG. A swarm of Edwards! Invasion of the military! Attack of the Sins! At least 5 more Izumi's! About 4 Scar's! An Armstrong! (LOL that was great.) 3 armor Al's, and a couple of restored!Al's! There was a Trisha, making everyone go "Awwww!" (Kuyashii!) And surely a lot more, but it got so crowded I could barely see a thing. I had to resort to waving my camera around in the air, and from a bad angle, so I'm not sure if any of my pictures came out alright. I might just have shots of people's heads.
I'm nervous whether I looked weird in the picture. When they called all the Izumi's together, I only just managed to squeeze to the side. The Izumi's in the middle had a strangle-hold on an Ed cosplayer, but I just stood there posing with my "Easy Cooking" book in hand. God, so embarassing...
But all in all, it was fun. Nice to see so many fans in one place. ^_^
Then we went to this panel called "The Fairy Tales of Hayao Miyazaki." It was very interesting and informational. They had clips from nearly all of Miyazaki's movies, even his earliest. The guy heading it was a big fan, and obviously knew what he was talking about. No doubt the best Otakon panel I've been to so far.
After that we had some time left before the concert. The doors to the arena were supposed to open at 4 PM, and the line began at 3:30 (if you came before that, you would be turned away). I wanted to sing "UNDO" at Karaoke, but the ticket I got was 101. They were currently on number 58. -_-
My mom said we could watch some music videos while we waited. But the AMV's we saw were just horrible, with over-used songs, over-used anime, and no theme or sense of style. After I while I couldn't take it anymore, and went back to the Karaoke room. My mom and Nomura-san came to join me again later on, and we stayed listening to people screech into the microphone until about 3:20.
The line for the concert was OMGWTF NO WAY UNBELIEVABLE. It stretched for about two blocks, twisting and turning around streets like a maze. We had to stand and wait in the sun again for over an hour. By then we figured no way was this going to start at 5; they would HAVE to delay it further. I started panicking because I didn't want to miss the FMA dub episode that would be airing right before the concert.
Finally, the line began moving and we got some decent seats in the arena. The dub had just started when we sat down (the Prologue with all the flashy alchemy and blood and screaming), so I got to see most of it thankfully. I posted my comments in the FMA community, but to summarize things, I was a bit disappointed. However, it could have been MUCH WORSE. Al's voice was no doubt the best part.
Then the concert started at last with some awesome pyrotechnics and lot's of colorful lights. I didn't recognize any of their songs other than "Ready Steady GO," but it was still great. Speaking of which, I kept waiting for them to play that song, but once they did, I got kinda distracted by the screens showing scenes from the FMA anime with some HUGE SPOILERS mixed in there. And they only played it once. :(
But still, SO MUCH FUN. That was the best concert I've ever been to. Definetly tops T.M. Revolution from last year. Hyde and the other guys in the band yelled stuff in strongly-accented English, and most of the time I couldn't tell what the heck they were trying to say, so that made me laugh. And one of them threw bananas at the audience! LOL! I am now an even bigger fan. ^_^
After the concert, there wasn't much to do. None of the anime or events on the schedule sounded very interesting, so after going to the restroom and buying drinks (our water bottles were confiscated at the arena), we went home.
Even with the lack of Megatokyo, and despite not having time to do karaoke or watch any new anime, I enjoyed this Otakon far more than the ones of past years, for various reasons. And one thing remains clear: I must cosplay again someday. Even if the costume sucks, it's just the experience...how people recognize you by your character, even though you're a complete stranger, and how you quite suddenly belong to an immense group you've never met before.
Ah, bliss. Best. Saturday. Ever.