Anime Matsuri this year is set up to be bigger and better than any year ever. For the first time in the shows history, it is taking up floor space in the biggest convention center in Houston. That’s a big deal, and you can tell they weren’t exactly prepared for what that means. Schedules weren’t printed and dispersed until hours after the first panels had started and with the way that George R. Brown Convention Center is set up, you need a guide. Fortunately, everybody working the show that I talked with were exceptionally helpful whenever they could be. By about mid-day it became somewhat understandable.
Fortunately with everyone running around trying to find out the what’s and the where’s of the event, I got to snap up a large number of pictures from the event before I headed down to the exhibitors to pick up a Mini Moon plush for my daughter. Enjoy some of the fun costumes from the first day:
For those that are around the Houston area or plan to be this weekend and haven’t heard or gone to Anime Matsuri before, it is actually a hoot as the show makes strong attempts to showcase the beauty of the anime culture. That might seem specific, but it really isn’t. The person that enjoys anime likely is also a gamer, a cosplayer and/or motorhead. They enjoy fun music, bright colors, and people gathering together to talk about the newest hit shows while dressed as their favorite characters.
This is what the show is about, and there is a reason it continues to grow from 4,000 to over 14,000 attendees in 7 years. It is a festival of acceptance and fun with a loose theme connecting it. As a point of reference, I saw a homeless man having a wonderful conversation about costumes with 3 ladies and their escort outside of the convention center. No tension, and not a trace of awkwardness. Everybody was having a good time enjoying the fun of showing off their costumes, and that moment really captivated the atmosphere of why Anime Matsuri feels different from many of the gaming conventions I’ve headed to.
Tomorrow’s the big day, and with most of the hiccups ironed out today, I can’t wait to sit through some AMVs and then listen to the Black Ranger dish about the goings on behind the scenes at Power Rangers.