Ollie's Otakon 2000 Report and Pictures
Otakon 2000 was held in the Baltimore Convention Center [BCC] in Baltimore, Maryland. The convention drew about 7500 fans, many arriving already on Thursday before the con began on Friday. This report focuses just on my own personal experiences of the con. For more information on the rest of the con, please go to A Fan's View or look for other convention reports on The Anime Web Turnpike.
Thursday morning I woke up early, added a few final touches to a costume, and then packed my bags to get ready to go. I live in Rockville, which is just outside of Washington, DC, so I was lucky enough not to have a long ride ahead of me. Unfortunatly, my friends who came to pick me up came a bit late and I was unable to attend the Cosplay Mailing List pre-con night dinner. Instead, I got in about 7pm, and had checked in and unpacked by eight. I knew where some of the local supermarkets were, so I went out with a friend to stock up on food (read - mountain dew and oreos) and some real dinner for the evening.
Friday morning I got up early to help set up the dealer's room. Once that was done, I roamed the halls of the BCC a bit to see who I could find. The more I wandered, the more people I found! By the early afternoon I had already found most of the people I had expected to be there. Not only did I find a lot of costumers to take picures of, I also found Reza and Resu
, the two new Ironcat mascots! It was then finally time for me to get into costume, as well. I put on my Shinsen Gumi uniform and went around the BCC to various panels, the dealer's room, and video rooms.
Friday evening I was looking forward to the opening gala and the performance by bôa, the British rock group who performed Duvet, the opening song to Serial Experiements Lain. However, I wasn't feeling quite up to a rock concert, so I went out with a large group of friends to an all-you-can-eat sushi bar on North Charles street. When we told the hostess, who was very accomidating for our large group, how many people we had, she thought we were joking. The dinner was good, but could have been a bit better; the sushi was a bit dry, but quite good for a buffet. It filled me up and got me ready for the rest of the weekend. Afterwards, I went back, changed, and found friends to hang out with. I even stopped by the dance, but by the time I got there, it had died down and they were only playing really loud music, so I left to call it a night.
I was up early this morning to get into costume and take picutres. I'm glad my Ferio costume was so well recieved, but the armor was a bit heavy and kept slipping down; I had to change after only two hours. Then it was back to the BCC as Spike Spiegel. I spent a good amount of time in the dealer's room, but also checked out a few panels and peeked into a few video rooms. By noon I had checked in for the cosplay and then went on to look around the con a bit more. Since the costume judging took place at four pm for me, I had to be in my heavy Gats costume by then. [Many many thanks to Jupe for helping me get the armor on!] However, my drill press broke right before the con, so I couldn't finish up the last holes and screws in the armor. I tried using heavy-duty tape to hold it on, but it wouldn't stay. So I went down with only half the armor. Cosplay is about having fun, and I felt it didn't matter too much that it was incomplete. My wish was to walk about Otakon as one of the biggest anime bad-asses around, and that I got to do. What impressed people most was probably my steel sword, which I had to carry around on my shoulders. Finally, the cosplay started, and since I was number 5, I got to get it over with quickly and enjoy the rest of the cosplay. Afterwards, I went back to change into normal clothes only to find I was locked out of my room. Once I finally changed, I got some pizza with some friends at a small room party, then headed back to the BCC. Not much was going on, so I went back to my room to take it easy. Feeling that Saturday night shouldn't be slept away at a con, I called up some friends to see what they were doing. I met up with them and had a good deal of fun, spelling various words on the Skywalk and listening to Steve Bennett tell stories. Eventually, though, I went back, packed up my stuff, and got a few hours of sleep.
This is the day the con ends... and I felt it. I was quite tired, but still managed to get packed up and checked out without any problems. As morning turned into noon and afternoon, I saw many of my friends off, but also missed a lot of people. I had a fun time watching people sign THE BOX, and taking a final look through the dealer's room and art show. However, the people I was driving home with needed to go, so I said my own final goodbyes, and went home, arriving about 5:30 pm. I pretty much went right to bed, sleeping until about 9 pm. I had to get up and have dinner with family members who were in town visiting. The con was now really over; I had returned home.
The biggest problem I had with Otakon was how big it was, both in headcount and physical size. With people spread out in over 7 hotels and over 10 city blocks, it was hard to find anybody. I spent as much time looking for people as I did actually spending time with them. What this meant was that, especially at night, I couldn't find some of the people I had promised to see. The reason cons are fun are because you get to see and meet people, and when it's hard to find them, it distracts from the fun. I'm looking forward to both Anime USA and Neko-con, much smaller cons where you can relax more.
The Otakon staff, like so many others, was of two kinds. Some were really nice and helpful. The cosplay staff was wonderful and helpful. Some of the other staff was a bit nasty, though. Overall the staff did a good job, though, so I'm happy.
I got to meet a lot of people at this convention, and almost everybody I knew was there, too. That kinda made up for the fact that I couldn't spend much time with anybody in particular. It was also nice to enjoy Otakon, since the last one had been a bit of a drag.
This is the third best con I've been to this year. Animazement and Anime Central were even better. It's not for lack of quality that Otakon was only third, though, but due to how wonderful Animazement and Anime Central were. I'll certainly be going back next year.
- Card Captor Sakura
- Alexiel from Angel Sanctuary
- Digi Charat... nuff said
- Lady Une and Asuka Sohryu Langley
and Resu, the two lovely new mascots for Ironcat Studios!
- Utena with a foil. Next time I'll get you, Kat! ^_^
- A kodama and San from Mononoke-Hime
- Bondage Fairy with a gunblade. That's scary.
- Sharon Apple A simple yet amazing costume.
- Faye Valentine Really well done
- Rei Ayanami on the Cross
- Line for the Dealer's room about half an hour before it opened.
- The Dealer's room before it opens.
- Lina Inverse and Cammy
- Megumi, Yumi, and myself as Shinsen Gumi Saito
- Captain Harlock
- Ed! From Cowboy Bebop. Kat was perfect as Ed, too... how does one bend like that?
- Duo Maxwell and Merle
- Sakura and Tomoyo
- Chess Pieces from Miyuki-chan in Wonderland
- Oh! It's Ulala!
- Three members of the Shinsen Gumi. Myself on the right.
- Cho-Li and Toh-li from Miyuki-chan in Wonderland.
- Wonderland Girls Toh-Li, Cardgirl, Mad-Hatter, Cardgirl, Morning Glory, Cho-Li (l2r)
- The Wonderland Group Pic Toh-Li, Doremouse, Mad-Hatter, Morning Glory, Miyuki, CardGirl, Miyuki in PJs, Queen of Hearts, Chesire Cat, Cho-Li (l2r)
- Mima from Perfect Blue. This girl looks dead on...
- American Cosplay Paridise GIrls!
- ChamCham and ServBot1
- Duo, Relena, Noin
- Iris from Sakura Taisen
- Lady Une
- Final Battle version Hikaru and myself as Ferio
- Tree of Kodama
- Movie Utena and B-ko
- Roo and myself as Faye Valentine and Spike Spiegel
- Another pic of Spike and Faye. I was really happy to find a Faye to take Pics with!
- Battle between Fushigi Yuugi characters
- Male Utena and Himemiya
- Kaji and Asuka so cute!
- Tamahome and Miaka
- Dilandou and Merle
- Too much pink!Alisa as Felicia and Lander as Dan
- Folken with Naria and Eriya, who were interviewed for The Baltimore Sun newspaper.
- Mil-chan! The best I've seen so far!
- Plug suit Asuka
- Hex as Ryouga Hibiki
- Myself and Jupe as Spike and pre-Bebop Faye
- Jupe as Faye with the Cigarette holder
- Utena walking the streets of Baltimore
- Rob and Tikki as Manji and Rin
- sorry, don't know
- Moderator of the COSP ML Widya
- Rezu, Carrot, and Resu
- WHAT DOES SHE HAVE IN THERE? HYDROLICS?!
- Steve Bennet being tortured. Really...
- Meiji era Saito Hajime
- Neko-Ruri! One of the cutest costumes at Otakon!
- Sailor Star Healer
- Officer Jenny twins!
- Slayers Try Characters
- Escaflowne Mecha On sunday, too!
- Hotokiri Battousai
- Pretty kimono and a kinky obi
- Whoever let me take a pic of her pants, thanks!
- The Beginning of the Signing of THE BOX
- Hoo! Haugh! Hoo! It's big Dan T as Johnny Bravo
- The Signing of THE BOX continues...
- Jason and her short Yiddishness
- And so ends Pikachu...
- Lost Universe Characters
- Jupe and I take simultaneous pictures...
- A cool dude and her tall Yiddishness...
- more of Kat...
- Kris and Ryo-Ohki
- Video cameras are fun...
- No idea, sorry. But they signed the BOX!
- Is it me or just the jacket?
- Going up the escalator...
- ...and getting off the escalator
Thank you for visiting my Otakon 2000 report and pictures page. If you are in any of these pictures, and would like them to be removed, please contact me. I grant permission to everybody to copy and repost these pages, so long as they are not modified in any way, save for changing the file name. If you wish to modify them, please ask me in advance; I'll usually give permission. I also ask that if you do use or repost/distribute these pictures, please inform me so I know where they are ending up. For some of the pictures I don't have any names; if you can give me information on either character or cosplayer names, I'd be happy to update the page accordingly.
Ok, I would normally do shoutouts, but since this con was to a great extent running around, I didn't get to spend as much time as I would have liked to with everybody. So here's just a list of "thank yous" to people who made the con so great.
Iris, Heather, Dan, Keiyo, Anna, Larry, Scott, Lester, Jupe, Roo, Chuck, Johnny, Bunny, Steve (both of them), Arnell, Wing, Jerry, Kevin, Bacon, Zoe and Hikaru, Llania, dark elf chick from Sunday morning, and of course all of orgy. There are also quite a few other people who made Otakon enjoyable, especially the people from Friday's dinner. So even if you're not listed, if we met, you probbaly should be.
I can be reached several ways:
Or visit my home page at jhunix.hcf.jhu.edu/~oto12/