“Why watch anime at an anime convention?”

September 30th, 2015 in Kraken Con by


When I first heard that, I thought the speaker was crazy. That is a driving reason TO go, as you get a chance to see the latest and newest before anyone else or an opportunity to find something you didn’t know about. For “KrakenCon”, it was a grand disappointment for me in regards to the anime offered.

Two of the viewings made sense: “Evangelion 2.22” and “Kim Possible: So the Drama”, as the ladies who did the voices, respectively, for Asuna and Kim, were guests of honor (or ‘luminary’, as that is what their badge said). The rest of the shows had some kind of naval or military tie in: “KanColle” (girls who are battleships), “The Princess and the Pilot” (giant airships that are like aircraft carriers), “A Lull in the Sea” (about watery folks), “Arpeggio of Blue Steel” (a Japanese submarine takes on an alien battleship fleet), and others, although I would have chosen a couple of different ones, like “The Pilot’s Love Song”, “Squid Girl” and/or “Tide Line Blue” (OK, that last one is an older title, but one of the first series I watched during my Seventh Anime Attempt). But, except for “Gargantia on the Verdurous Planet”, I have seen them all and I have reviewed them all. That is a problem when you watch as much anime as I do: unless it is a Grand World Premiere, it’s old hat. I did try to take in “Gargantia”, but logistical problems arose and it was not shown. (more…)

Anchors Away

September 30th, 2015 in Kraken Con by


So, after all the problems and concerns, the Day finally came, but not without more problems and concerns. The first was transportation.

Now, with acres of free parking (and I mean acres. “Mythbusters” does their show here at the Alameda Naval Base for a reason: lots of empty), I had planned on taking the car, but the wife has this Saturday class, where she learns about proper and sustainable gardening techniques. Yeah, so how do you keep the rats from eating my tomatoes, short of me standing out there with a shovel? Anyway, she needs the car. Fortunately, between public transit and a shuttle from the hotel to the site (a mere ’10 minute shuttle drive’), I get to hoof it. Me, being paranoid, I like to give myself a lot of time. True, the event did not open until 10am, but I remember what went off the track for Famine!, so I gave myself a cushion. The subway ride takes about 30 minutes, but I don’t have to transfer. Yeah, I tried to work the NYC Subway system once and I practically ended up in Syosset trying to get to Wall Street.

I spent a lovely Saturday morning power-striding to the station (“It’s SATURDAY! I get to SLEEP IN!!”) and getting the train, then a one-block trod to the shuttle point (as I can remain underground until needed, like Punxsutawney Phil), in front of the hotel that I didn’t stay at to get the 9 am shuttle. You see, it only runs on the half-hour; I guess 10 minutes there, 10 minutes to unload/load, 10 minutes to get back. Lather. Rinse. Repeat. I did not want to cool my jets by making a misstep and hang ANOTHER 30 minutes. The shuttle should have tipped me off to the logistical problem ahead. (more…)

Another One So Soon?

September 30th, 2015 in Kraken Con by


Yes, I know, I have told people that they should really do no more than one anime convention a year and really, do it every two years, but what can you do when an opportunity arises? I will gladly explain.

I had initially thought about doing SacAnime. This is located in Sacramento, California, about 90 minutes from where I reside. I was debating whether to get a hotel room (fantastic rates, right?) or crash with some relatives that are fairly close to the location of it (CalExpo). SacAnime started out as a small small, but has grown to a medium medium (Anime Expo is a large large, whereas Fanime! is a large medium or small large, depending on how well it gets attended and who they can bring in). When I broached this idea to the daughter, as this would occur over the Labor Day weekend, she counter with KrakenCon, which took me aback, as I was not fully familiar with it, even though it is much closer to me than any of the venues mentioned, being located on Alameda Island in the San Francisco Bay Area. (more…)

Over the Sea, Let’s Go Men!

September 30th, 2015 in Kraken Con by


Owing to a change in scheduling and approach, I feel compelled to give another pre-convention update as to what is going on. For a one-day convention, it certainly is creating a huge amount of problems. Thank goodness I didn’t decide to go for a hotel room; I can’t imagine the logistical nightmare that might generate. Also, the parent company for KrakenCon wants me to play up and promote and push this all over the place, as they want to increase the size of it and get more people in (What? With an attendance cap in place?) Well, as Oscar Wilde once noted, “The only thing worse than being talked about is NOT being talked about.” So I guess all ink is good ink (or electronic lettering, depending).

Now, the Big Thing about this venue is that it is being held on an AIRCRAFT CARRIER! Well, that’s different, but doesn’t the flight deck of a carrier have the room for about, say, four football fields? (A football field is about 1 1/3 acres or 57,600 square feet). And you need a vendor’s cap? How big are the tables? The size of the end zone? That’s a huge amount of manga! (more…)