By Jason S. Yadao
So contrary to what I wrote in my last post, I did manage to make it out to Comic Con Honolulu for a few hours last weekend -- thanks to con staff for having a press badge ready to go! -- and managed to catch the Art Improv panel, which ... well, in the spirit of 50 Shades Totoro, here's ... umm ... Magic Mike Baymax.
Was it fun? Of course. Looks like the next Art Improv panel will be at Kawaii Kon 2016, so you'll want to check that out.
I also got to chat with a bunch of the usual Friends of the Blog, including Ivan Sanidad on the right -- you may know him as "that guy who's been conducting surveys at Kawaii Kon since the dawn of con time" -- and reader Max Ogasawara-Fukumoto.
Con staff announced at closing ceremonies that first-year attendance was 5,280, a nice number for a first-year con. If you're interested in attending next year, dates have already been announced; save space on your social calendar for July 29-31, 2016.
Back in the days when there was one, maaaaaaybe two or three major cons in the state, this week would be a time to recover and reset for the next event, usually several months away. But this year? The year of All the Things? Let's put it this way: There are two con-hosted beach days coming up in August, one of them happening on Saturday.
The more immediate beach day is being hosted by an incoming show, Anime Matsuri Hawaii. The Anime Matsuri Beach and LUV Day will serve two purposes: Not only can attendees cosplay, join a potluck lunch, enjoy some fun activities (Water balloon fights! Relay races! Capture the Flag! "Senpai Says," a version of Simon Says with an anime twist! Watermelon smashing!) and maybe possibly perhaps even win some prizes, they can also learn about volunteer opportunities for the upcoming convention. (Hence the "LUV" part of the event name, an acronym for "Let Us Volunteer.") That's happening from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday near the center part of Ala Moana Beach Park; just aim for the area directly across from Piikoi Street, and you should be able to find them. Here's a map for more exact positioning.
Fifteen days later, on Sunday, Aug. 16, Kawaii Kon will be hosting its annual beach day, also at Ala Moana Beach Park, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. That's pretty much all the information released to date, but if previous years have been any indication, attendees will have a chance to cosplay, eat lunch, enjoy some fun activities (Water balloon fights! Capture the Flag! Sand sculpture building! Watermelon smashing!) and maybe possibly perhaps even win some prizes.
Can't make it to either beach day? Perhaps the idea of being out in the sun-baked real world gives you the heebie-jeebies? Other cons are hosting pre-show events in coming weeks as well. Amazing Hawaii Comic Con is hosting another informal meet-and-greet at Dave & Buster's (1030 Auahi St., in the Ward Entertainment Complex) starting at 8 p.m. Aug. 12. After my experience at the first event -- and given how that day's also featuring half-price games in the arcade -- I think I'm going to sit this one out unless the Otaku Ohana Anonymous Director of Forced Social Interaction insists I go. If you do go, though, maybe you can play a few round of that new Angry Birds machine for me. Plus your first drink is free courtesy of the con crew.
Over on Hawaii island, HawaiiCon is hosting a pair of cosplay contests in coming weeks. The first -- and what likely will be the cutest -- event will be their Keiki Cosplay Contest, part of downtown Hilo's First Friday festivities, from 5 to 7 p.m. Aug. 7 at Kapohokine Adventures, 224 Kamehameha Ave. (If anyone goes to that, please send me a link to your photos. I want to revel in the cuteness. Also, don't forget to fill out this registration form.) The second cosplay contest, for participants ages 14 and older, will run from 7 to 10 p.m. Aug. 14 at Yamada Technologies, 25 Waianuenue St., also in Hilo. Food trucks will be around, so bring an appreciation for cosplay and a hearty appetite.
Elsewhere around town
Comic Jam Hawaii: This group of collaborative cartoon artists meets every first and third Sunday of the month at Pearlridge Center; locations within the mall may vary. Visit www.facebook.com/groups/ComicJamHawaii (Facebook login required). Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.
Dragon Ball Z: Resurrection of 'F': The latest cinematic installment in the Dragon Ball Z franchise will be in theaters next week, and it's a pretty hot Dragon Ball tale, what with the resurrection of F(rieza) and yet another evolution for Goku, known as Super Hyper Turbo Champion Omega Mondo Extreme Over 9,000 Saiyan God Mode Plus Edition Now With Bears Goku. Well, okay, it's actually only Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan mode, but with a new TV series on the way, it's only a matter of time before more convoluted power levels like that come in to play.
Here, have a trailer.
This movie is enjoying what's been the widest distribution statewide for an anime-related film this year, playing on three major islands (sorry, Kauai, you've been left out yet again). Check Fandango for the latest updates, but here's the list I have of dates and locations:
- Ward: Tuesday and Wednesday, 7 p.m.; Aug. 8, noon
- Dole: Tuesday and Wednesday, 7 p.m.; Aug. 8, 11 a.m.
- Pearlridge: Tuesday and Wednesday, 7 p.m.; Aug. 8, noon
- Mililani: Tuesday-Thursday, 7 p.m.; Aug. 8, noon
- Kapolei: Tuesday-Thursday, 7 p.m.; Aug. 8, noon
- Kaahumanu (Kahului): Tuesday and Wednesday, 7 p.m.; Aug. 8, noon
- Makalapua Stadium 10 (Kona): Thursday, 7 p.m.; Aug. 8, 11 a.m.
- Regal Prince Kuhio 9 (Hilo): Aug. 8, 11 a.m.