< Piro >
Thursday - May 8, 2003
note, i've updated a few things here - in particular a note about the Yoko Ishida concert at Acen - piro
It would break with a long standing tradition for me to actually prepare for an anime convention.
Anime Central is only one week away. Yikes.
Hard to believe that it was just three years ago that Dom suggested the idea of having a panel at Anime Central. I figured what the heck, and found myself driving out there that weekend.
After meeting Dom for the first time, we went down to the panel area and found our room. The room was still full from the previous panel, so we waited in the hallway for the room to empty. There were some people standing in the hallway wearing Megatokyo shirts. It was bizzare - just a few miutes earlier I met the very first megatokyo cosplayer EVER (she was dressed in a burgandy version of Kimiko's idol outfit). We talked with some of the people in the hallway for a bit. Dom showed me this prize that would be given to the person who asked the worst question... a sad, broken little toy sheep that used to walk and shake its head in a former life, but now only buzzed and vibrated pitifully when it was wound - the VSOD of legend - and some mittens. Then someone from inside the crowded room wondered what the hell we were doing standing in the hallway - the crowded room was OUR panel.
The room was packed. It was obvious we were breaking a half a dozen fire codes and an awful lot of personal space in that room. It was my first experience with 'crowd shock'
Since that day, we've learned that for some reason people like to come to Megatokyo panels at anime conventions. I have no idea why. Until very recently, I've had great difficulty in convincing con staff that i needed, like, a big room. Since we didn't really get big rooms for a while, we usually had to offer overflow/late night panels to accomodate people who couldn't get into the normal panel. If anyone remembers the room we had for last year's Anime Central and the line of people thinking they could get into that room... yeah, i think the fans proved a point. :) If you are comming to Anime Central this year, I am pretty sure that there shouldbe enough room for everyone. We're gonna be in Main Programming from 12 noon to 1:30pm on Saturday.
One unique thing i think i've noticed about the crowds and lines that form for MT related events and signings is that the lines themselves are like a mini Megatokyo con. It's sorta like a big linear Megatokyo community event or something. :P I don't think i've had a single complaint about having to wait in those lines. Maybe suffering as a community dulls the pain :P
Anyways, enough musing, lemme fill you in on what we have planned for this year's Anime Central.
First off, last month I had mentioned the possibility of a Megatokyo / Cave of Evil Industrial/EBM club event somewhere near the convention on thursday night. The response to this was really good, but unfortuntely we were unable to find a venue nearby that didn't cost a proverbial arm an leg, so we've had to postpone the idea of holding a MT club event for now. It is something i do want to do at some point in the future, but it will take more planning.
I don't feel too bad about it because Acen has a LOT of music/dance events at this con. There are several concerts on Friday, the first of which is a concert by Yoko Ishida of ParaPara fame, who will perform her concert immediately after opening ceremonies, at 12:00 Noon. It's an early concert, so please be sure to come see Ishida-san perform :)
Next, at 4pm by the suprisingly good Japanese group Dual Jewel (you may have seen them at other cons around the country). This is followed at 7pm by a show by the american anime music group SWEK. I've known the SWEK people for a long time (we all hang on the same irc channels) and thier concerts are a lot of fun. If you read WIRED magazine at all, you may have seen the mention of SWEK in it last month. If after all that you still find yourself in the need of more music, you can then roll onto the UndergroundGroove@Acen which startes at 8pm.
There aren't any actual MT events scheduled for Friday, but I plan to spend the entire day doing my best to draw and sign stuff for people. As always, you don't need to bring or buy anything for a sketch or a drawing, i'll have index cards on hand. I do ask that you try to keep the number of requests down to something reasonable tho - asking for four drawings can take 15 minutes of time, and historically the darn line never seems to get shorter ^^;; I am not sure where I will have a table, I don't know if it will be in Artist's alley or in some remote corner of the convention where we won't bother anyone, but I hopefully won't be too hard to find.
There won't be a lot of Megatokyo merchandise availible at the con (as usual) but there is one thing you might be interested in. I was asked to come up with the image for this year's Got Soap? shirt design, and I think it came out pretty amusing. They tend to go fast, so try to pick one up early if you want one.
I am going to try to have two original drawings in the art show this year. The first one will be auctioned off to raise money to purchase a second server to help relive some of the stress on poor Makoto-rin. Nayuki-chan will be taking over serving the main website and leave Makoto-rin in charge of dealing with the forums only. I just need to stock up on Nikuman and Strawberry Nutrigrain bars. :) The second artwork will be auctioned off for charity (more info on which charity it is later). Ugh, i still need to do these drawings ^^;;
Saturday is the big day for Megatokyo stuff. The main MT panel will be a second attempt to pull off the Naze Nani Megatokyo show. If you remember the first Naze Nani Megatokyo show at Otakon last year... well, we learned a lot from that (planning is a good thing not a bad thing. don't trust to complicated flash presentations. Make sure dom's handlers have big metal pipes.) and this time we promise a new and improved version! We promise! :P Actually, the idea behind a Naze Nani is that its an attempt to add some color to what i feel can be the bland old panel discussion, and because i like to complicate my life. Dom, Asmodeus, Seraphim, Ukyo, Natsuki, Cortana and myself will be there and we'll try to manage the mayhem a little. We will try to avoid it being a disaster like it was last year. :) The show will be in Main Programming (that's the big room with all the lights and stuff) at 12 noon on saturday. We will also have a special musical guest :)
After this at 3:00 will be the official Megatokyo autograph session. I'll be doing drawings at my table as much of the con as possible, but this is the official one.
On sunday at 10am the esteemed Hot Soup will be presiding over the Webcomics panel which is also being held in Main Programming. Please stop by so we can talk about webcomics (other than MT for the most part please ^^;;). I'll update this with a list of the webcomic folks i expect to be there later.
Somehow I was talked into doing yet another Iron Guest comptetition at 12pm on sunday. Come watch Bruce Lewis kick my ass in public (no contest here, i think, but it should be entertaining :)
That should do it. I don't think we'll need a late night overflow panel this year, we should be able to take care of everything on saturday. Megatokyo cosplay is welcome - and be sure to stick around after the panel for a bit so we can get a picture of everyone.
Ok, time to get to work, got a lot of prep to do yet. I'm probably going to do a Dead Piro Art day for friday - it will be the drawing that I put up for auction next week, but after that, with some luck, there shouldn't be any other breaks in Megatokyo caused by the con (possibly the following monday, but it all depends on if i can get Friday and Monday's comic done before I leave. I'll keep you posted.
If you are going to Acen, we'll see you there. It should be fun. :P