Anime Iowal 2008

Friday | Sat Afternoon | Sat/Sun

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Turns out that chair that I had claimed was absolutely terrible to sleep in. I managed a couple hours and had no trouble waking up for whatever there was to do pre-masquerade Saturday. Which, besides attending the announcement of the AMV winners (incorrectly listed in the program as the AMV contest itself), wasn't a whole lot.

Perfect.

Saturday
As I Walk Through The Valley

The first item on the schedule that I had any interest in was the Rock Band contest (correctly listed as the actual contest... in Main Programming too!), but they were behind schedule with technical problems. So I took advantage of the nearly-empty game room to sneak a few songs of DDR with Sir Exal. Which was a big mistake at ten in the morning and subject to all the muscle spasms from an uncomfortable sleeping location. Ow.

The Vendor's Room was much less painful. Having it on the playlist at NTAO and constantly hearing it, even at the Name That Tune at Ohayo, the original elf-stripping series Those Who Hunt Elves had been constantly coming up with Midori Days-like regularity. So when I saw the box set at the Fast Food booth, it was almost begging me to buy it, despite my voluntary moratorium on new anime until I finish what I have. But c'mon... elf stripping!

I also bought a Pillows CD. Strangely enough, it had nothing to do with FLCL or their appearance at ACen '05 and everything to do with one of their songs ending up on my Pandora station. The fact that I was seeding the Fratellis and the song was better than anything I'd heard on FLCL was too sweet to pass up.

Another throwback for you- St. Tail. This, Spencer, would fall into the "Old School Tribute" category.

In lieu of random battles, a chess match sprung up. Knight jumps Queen! Bishop jumps Queen! Pawns jump Queen!

Time for some Rock Band. Featured here are the winners, Common Sense Is Dead. Bonus points to the lead singer/lead guitarist for not only doing both parts on Expert, but for jumping off the stage and strutting around during the guitar solo of My Sharona, jumping back up to make sure he got the vocals.

I stayed for the AMV Contest Winners. Good choices for the most part. Surprisingly, two of the "audience" favorites (the audience, remember, being the 25 of us crammed in that tiny room last night) were classy choices- drama and action videos to 5cm and Shana. They also picked a hilarious When They Cry video using the song from Portal- a shoo-in for best comedy.

Only it didn't win best comedy. Remember those ugly, ugly videos using the fansub footage with subtitles intact? Committing the cardinal sin of AMVs? One of those won best comedy. I'm sure you're thinking "but there must have been a great concept to make up for it." Nope- just random Naruto clips. And because of that When They Cry vid, they can't even use the "there weren't enough comedy entries" excuse that ACen and Detour like to pull. Just pure, pasteurized fail in a can.

The other winners were good choices, and a reverse-Iron Editor (in which the unfortunate souls knew their video but not the song) produced three good entries, but the lack of anything else in what was listed as The Contest was definitely, definitely disappointing. That sweet-ass Macross video? Stuck back in the tiny viewing room with mine and the other 45 losers. 'Tis a dark, dark day for AMVs.

Epic fail? No... believe it or not, it gets worse. Bad enough to make me want to forego AMVs all together and do something productive with my life. I've always wanted to be a lumberjack.

The lumberjack from yesterday, however, decided to become an Angry Scotsman for Saturday, because Angry Scotsmen are just as awesome.

Anyway, after ranting about the ridiculousness of all that to whomever would listen (KORfan, and only with one fox-ear as he was in the middle of staff stuff), I needed a good DDR session and some sweet cosplay to get my mind off that.

Not bad...

There we go! Better now!

(Not pictured: me rocking Mikeneko Rock to an audience.)

Eventually, I found Tyler and we found Tiff and we were all thinking the same thing: food. Since we didn't have anything scheduled until four, and that was just picking up our tickets to get into the masquerade, we were due for a Perkins run. Time to rendezvous with everyone in the room!

We were poolside this year. Despite being on the eighth floor, we still got our zoom lenses close enough to catch the action on the patio. Such as this Bleach photoshoot...

...and its bloody aftermath when Joker shows up.

Scratch that... THIS is Old School Tribute! Maetel from Galaxy Express 999.

In hindsight, damn it must have been hot in that.

Being only a block away and open at all hours, Perkins was a popular place all weekend. In fact, while we were there, the Ayres brothers and their handlers stopped in. Granted, it was little awkward to discuss the dance's shortcomings with Jasmine when tonight's DJ was a few tables away.

We returned just after four and found a huge line to get tickets for the masquerade. In fact, Tyler and Theresa dropped out on sight. But I had such a bloody good time at ACen's masquerade that I was determined to see if a convention's premier event was always so entertaining. I mean, if so, who'd have thunk it?

Despite the line looking like ACen, it moved like Iowa. Staffers put a little sticker on your badge and away you went. We were through in fifteen minutes.

So we had two more hours to kill. And what better way to do that than watch Tiff and Tyler get into cosplay and kill each other?

Dante vs. Desmond... FIGHT!

Ten paces... go! (Dante won after only eight.)

Lest we forget that God is always watching us.

Having effectively killed time with their firearms, the hour of the masquerade (or at least its line) is upon us!

Everybody follow the nifty dragon-thing-I-don't-know-what-it's-called to part three!