The Good, The Bad, and the Waifus: Anime Expo 2017 Review
Last year was my first year attending Anime Expo and it was such a great experience that I could not wait for 2017’s event. If you are unfamiliar with Unfortunately, a series of events that happened at another convention sparked changes in the convention community which resulted in a different experience for the average convention attendee. Many folks joke about this year’s issues while others are dead serious about the concerns. But was it all bad?
Lets jump into the review to find out!
Anime Expo is one of, if not the largest anime conventions in North America so it is easy to understand that they have a small army of staff who help maintain what order they can during the busy weekend. I can say that they did as much as they could to assist during they weekend as possible.
My personal experience was that I arrived on Saturday morning to collect my badge and was completely lost due to he various lines for registration. With a full day of interviews ahead of me I had no choice but to break from my spot in line to ask staff members for information on what I could do to get my badge. The first two staff members had no idea at all and said they were trained only to watch for line cutters while the third literally escorted from from the line to the press registration and answered all of my questions along the way.
I also had the awkward situation of having issues with my photographer’s pass. I was able to present the situation to the staff and they did not even blink as they jumped to assist. These were experiences I had never had before and honestly appreciated their hard work.
What I witnessed were staff members constantly clearing traffic from stairs, hallways, and other choke points to ensure everyone got to where they needed. Custodian staff rushed to clean up after con goers and keep the area clean for the next group of folks. The security did their best to examine bags and move folks along during the weekend, never taking any chances. They did a great job and I want to give a big kudos to them for all of their effort!
If you love anime then Anime Expo was your paradise. In their vendor hall they had a number of big name companies such as Crunchyroll, Loot Crate, Funimaition, Viz Media, and so much more. They informed the public of their upcoming events, shows, and wares. In particular, we attended the RWBY panel which will have its own article soon and Loot crate who spoke about the partnerships they made which resulted in incredible new items for their buyers! As always we got to chat with our favorite vendor, Anime Trash Swag and they explained to us how they expanded tremendously from hats and jewelry to shirts, jackets and so much more! It is fantastic to see indie artists have so much success!
Artist alley was filled to the brim with incredible artists selling fantastic art! One of those artists was our homie Rin the Yordle! Over in the entertainment area they included major vendors such as Nintendo, Blizzard Entertainment, and so many others. This was a sight to behold since just last year they didn’t have such booths and yet they went all out this year. You can tell Anime Expo is constantly trying to improve and better themselves which is appreciated!
The cosplay at Anime Expo is always on point. Some of the biggest names in the community come out to showcase their latest efforts. Among the Cosplay Senpais which were cosplayers that were guests. Among them were Steff Von Schweetz, Amber Arden, Kiba the cosplay corgi, Dustbunny, and so many others! They helped answer any questions whether it was about cosplaying itself to more silly questions regarding their personal interests. I always enjoy the cosplay senpais because they take time out of their busy schedules to interact with fans and aspiring cosplayers to help teach the community and grow.
The other fantastic cosplayers we saw during the weekend were Momokun, Jessica Nigri, Hendo Art, Q Ki, Khainsaw, and so many others! Be sure to check out our photo gallery for a ton of other photos of cosplayers.
Anime Expo was chalk full of incredible events from concerts, fashion shows, panels, premieres and more! the most notable events was the Anisong World that featured a number of international bands. I know that a good bit of my friends went to the expo solely for that event and had an absolute blast! Our photographer, Deegan, attended a panel on RWBY where they discussed the upcoming season and answered questions about the show. On the flip side she also got to attend a fashion show that show cased designs not normally featured in the US. You can be sure to check out her review coming soon!
If these events are a bit tame for you, they also had various 18+ after dark from Cosplay Deviant’s Burlesque Show to panels on hentai and even a Fakku Party! Anime Expo never disappoints when it comes to entertainment yet they somehow only ever seem to increase their quality with each year!
Although there were so many wonderful aspects to Anime Expo, there is one major flaw to the convention and that would be the infamous wait time in order to get your badge. People reported waiting for up to five hours in a line that sometimes stretched for 2 miles. Whether this was a result of the increased security, problems logistically, the hype of Anime Expo or some combination of them all, there is a major issue here and it needs to get sorted. Thankfully the weather that day was only 75 degrees with light humidity but waiting for hours in a costume would and probably did result in some issues. I Strongly believe that the convention has grown to the point where it needs to place a limit to their ticket sales so that even if there is a wait for registration on their prime day, it lasts for maybe up to an hour and a half at max and there are alternative methods of getting badges such as mailing them out.
This was really the only major flaw I found all weekend and I hope it does get resolved in the near future.
Anime Expo continues to be a fantastic convention filled with too many awesome events to do in one weekend. They have something for everyone and I recommend this convention to anyone who loves anime. I offer a warning that only those stout of heart because it is a whirlwind of an event. I jokingly call it the Wrestlemania of Anime but it is actually pretty true! I hope you enjoy our review and we hope to see you next year at Anime Expo!