Saturday, October 20, 2012

I Think i'm Turning Japanese...Anime Banzai

What is Anime Banzai?
Anime Banzai is an educational convention focusing on Japanese anime (animation), manga (comics) and culture. Anime Banzai is sponsored by Utah Anime Promotions, a non-profit educational organization dedicated to bringing the culture, art and fun of Japan to Utah. In 2005, the first Anime Banzai was held and hosted 600 attendees, which was double what we had planned for. In 2011, we had around 3300+ fans join us, and we're looking to have another excellent year in 2012!
The goal of Anime Banzai is to bring an event to Utah where fans can come together to celebrate Japan and Japanese Culture in a fun, safe, family-friendly atmosphere. To that end, we hold our convention three days each year with panels, events, and contests that will let fans enjoy their favorite aspects of Anime and Japanese popular culture.

Day 1 - Friday 
I arrived with my stepdaughter who was donned in an amazing Korra cosplay.  We were quickly directed to the registration line.  

Registration - ahhh yes. That pesky thing you continually forget to do AHEAD of time - hence the name PRE-registration. Not only do you get to go in the shorter line, get to pay LESS cash, but you get EXTRA goodies and a NICE SWAG bag at this ANIME con to boot! After waiting in line for 2 hours and 20 minutes - I would advise all - pre register. It is so worth it. 

I would like to give a big round of applause to  all Utah Anime Banzai staff and committee.  
As with all Cons the wrath and powers that be - will and always do happen.  And the train wreck happens just when all believe that they can smile and breathe.

The darkest forces and foes begin to dance and party and cause chaos short ...the credit card machines ALWAYS go down and twice as many fans show up! 

Personally, I was actually thankful for the 2 hour line wait so I could be slowly introduced into the new worlds, regions, universes, fandoms, dimensions, of these characters that were so foreign to me. Just the colors and amount of time that goes into these costumes, WOW, add the unpronounceable names and tragically heroic yet feisty back stories and let me tell you - I was ready to buy every book in the expo hall!

After registering and getting our name badges, and coveting the pre-registration swag bags, (mental note PRE-REGISTER FOR EVERYTHING!!!!!!)  I  was told that last year, 2011 - on the Friday they had a total of 600 guests, this year 2012 - by noon they had 600 guests! It was 1 pm and their were still three lines out the door and around the building! I was impressed. 
I am excited to go back tomorrow and hear the final numbers for day one.

The rest of the day was a crazy blur of A LOT of hugging.  Probably, one of the biggest differences I noticed from my experiences at my Comic Cons verses my first Anime Con so far. Comic Cons there is more hand shaking. This hugging is called glomping. For a more intense description of what exactly a GLOMP is, be sure to read below.

I enjoyed Artist Alley, just sitting back and viewing the amazing COSPLAY - even though I had no idea who half of the characters were. (One major factor and trend in manga and anime - is animals. If it is an animal: you can bet it is a hot item. Especially if it is a cat, or a creation that has a cats ears, or a tail resembling a cat.)

I also enjoyed going to a couple of panels with special guests in the Anime journalist community, Voice talent, and film industry. I also got a peak at the expo area but then there is also two more days.

All ages were represented, and well I might add. There were full families in cosplay, and all ages of OATKU- a Japanese term used to refer to people with obsessive interests, particularly (but not limited to) anime, manga or Japanese video games.

Fans and cosplayers were full of smiles and enjoying GLOMPING - which I discovered was hugging another person out of shear excitement. For a further introduction to the GLOMP I did find this amazing tutorial:

Glomping 101
~By Shimegami-chan

Definition: A method of greeting or attack using hugging/tackling.
Word origin: Unknown, but has Japanese manga roots.
The Basic Glomp:
1) Approach your target from front, back, or side, usually at a running or jumping start.
2) Throw your arms around them, usually around the ribcage or surrounding area.
3) Squeeze.
Different Forms of Glomping:
1) Flying Glomp: Usually used as a surprise attack, this airborne glomp can be attained with a running start or by standing on a conveniently-placed high object such as a table or chair. This type of glomp is often found in Sailormoon or other shoujo manga.
2) Glomp of Death: Similar to the Flying Glomp, the Death-Glomp can easily injure someone. It is usually executed from behind and without the target's knowledge.
3) Tackle Glomp: As the name indicates, this glomp is meant to knock the target to the floor. Should not be performed on concrete floors or near sharp objects. This type of glomp is often found in fanfics.
4) Twirl-Glomp: Less dangerous than other types, this glomp usually has the target's prior knowledge or, at the very least, excellent aim. The target may glomp back and/or spin around in a circle with the assailant. For optimal effect, the assailant should be a lighter weight than the target, preferably by at least half.
1) Arm Glomp: Attach yourself to your victim - I mean, target's - arm They cannot escape. Sometimes called the Jun glomp by the author of this guide, having Digimon origins. Also employed frequently by Shampoo in Ranma 1/2.
2) Neck Glomp: Can be utilized as a choke hold. Encircle your target's neck. Use with care unless aiming to cease their respiration.
3) Jogress Glomp: Another glomp with Digimon origins, with the Jogress the target is glomped from two sides at once. An Arm or Neck glomp may be used simultaneously.
Other variations can easily be made using the placement of the arms, depending on the target's size/relationship to you/patience. The span of time before the glomp is released also depends on these factors.
Popular Glomping War Cries: Random Japanese phases are often the choice of glompers, and the most common (as this author knows) are:
'Ohayo!' ('Good Morning')
'KonbanWA!' ('Good Evening')
'Konnichiwaaaa!' ('Good Afternoon')
'Mou!' (Indignant noise)
The target's name may also be shouted, with the option of adding the suffix '-chan,' a term of endearment.
This concludes 'Glomping 101.' I hope that this has been an informative guide to the little-known tactics of the Glomp. Thank you!

1 comment:

  1. It's a well written and detailed article! It seems you had fun there! :)