Anime conventions. The cornerstone of the otaku lifestyle. Some people say that these types of events are like one big anime meetup group; where hundreds of thousands of anime and manga fans fellowship and mingle with one another. (Kinda like a mixer; only with anime, manga, K-pop, J-pop, and Vocaloid fans.) Aside from meeting up with your fellow otaku and taking some pictures of cosplayers, an anime convention wouldn’t be anything without fan-produced (and fan-run) panels!
Panels at conventions can range from being seminar-like in nature, to being more interactive and fan-driven. One of the coolest things about going to one, is that you get to learn certain aspects about the anime industry you never knew before. (Like finding out how the dubbing process works in anime for FUNimation and its voice actors.) The content found in anime convention panels is like a mixed bag; meaning that it can range from a Walt Disney-style rating, to something that you’d find after midnight on HBO or Cinemax. (We’ll cover ‘those’ panels in Part 2 of this filler post.)
Without further delay, let’s begin! 🙂
At Number 10: Ask an Anime Character Panel!
We’ll admit, we’ve seen this panel on Youtube at various cons across the U.S. but never been to one in real life. A. Goldman and I can only imagine how much fangirls “Squeeee!” whenever they see Todd Haberkorn’s character on Sgt. Frog, or how excited we get when we see Alucard or Piccolo on screen. Needless to say that this is one of the many panels that we recommend going to see if you have some questions you’d like to ask your favorite anime character. Hopefully one day D&A will get the chance to host it. (*fingers crossed*)
Coming up at Number 9: Cosplay 101 Panel!
This one can come up at various anime cons and is one of the coolest fan-run panels that we ever had the chance to go to. It’s great for beginners who are trying to figure out how to get Kakashi’s hairstyle just right, or how much mascara to add for Stocking’s makeup. This panel even show you some DYI tricks to pull off the look you’re looking for, for less. Be sure to stop by this panel if you ever find yourself at a con!
Number 8: The Crunchyroll Panel!
This panel (we believe) is only found at certain anime conventions that take place at a convention center or a huge arena. (And even Crunchyroll’s own convention.) If you’re a subscriber to their streaming site then this is a must see panel to go to! They’ll show you their seasonal lineup of all new series, movies, and OVA’s for your own enjoyment as well as your friends (if they love anime as much as you do). If you’ve never gone to their panel, go! You won’t regret it! (And if you do, then we’ll let the titans eat us. T.T)
Number 7 is…Greggo’s Game Show Panel!
These panels are actually pretty fun! You get to play games like Password, Press Your Luck, and many others. If you’re a fan of game shows then you’re definitely gonna love this panel!
Number 6: The Gundam Panel!
This one’s for all you Gundam fans! If you wanna learn the history behind this franchise then we urge you to check out this panel, ASAP! 😉
At Number 5: The Autograph Panel!
Well it’s not necessarily a panel, but more like a line that you stand in while Monica Rial or J. Micheal Tatum signs some anime memorabilia that you saved up and bought from Amazon. (Or Layaway if you’re goin’ old school.) Make sure you get to this line at least 90 minutes early, because depending on which voice actor or guest it is, you may or may not get in at all. (And that would be a crying shame. T-T)
Number 4 brings us…Music and Band Panels!
Okay, these are not ‘panels’ actually, these are more like daytime (or nighttime) concerts that you go to if you wanna hear your favorite band or singer sing your favorite anime opening to your favorite show. (Who doesn’t wanna see TM Revolution perform the hit opening to Soul Eater, right?!)
Number 3: The AMV Showdown Panel!
If you’re looking for some of the best fan-produced AMV’s from Youtube, then you’re gonna wanna check out this anime convention panel! It’s a battle to see which AMV has what it takes to make it to the finals, and eventually which AMV creator wins a trip to Japan. Even if you’re not there to compete it’s still a fun panel you get to go to.
Number 2: The History of Anime Panel!
In order to figure out how all of your favorite shows came to be, you’d have to go back several decades (even as far back as WWII). It’s like the old saying goes; “Those who don’t know their history, are doomed to repeat it. However those who know their anime history, are blessed to conserve its legacy!” (Okay the last part is just an add-on but you know what we mean, right?)
And Finally Number 1: The Voice Actor Q&A Panels!
You already know that this is our number one reason for going to anime conventions, and we’re hoping its yours as well! Who doesn’t like hearing J. Micheal Tatum talk about his octopus story, or about hilarious booth moments from Kyle Herbert, Jamie Marchi, and Crispin Freeman. (We’re pretty sure they got some stories.) All-in-all, you get to talk to and ask your favorite voice actors about their character(s), what ADR means, and what their favorite line from the show is. (Just make sure you don’t ask them anything too personal.)
Well that’s it from us for now! Next time we’ll do a filler post on our Top 5 18+ anime convention panels. Stick around for that post comin’ up! 🙂