In a Revoltuion, One either Triumps or Dies

The Queen of Wrath


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My review of Anime Banzai 2009
Kakumei
toshiya_kurai
Every year I get excited for this con, and every year at the end, I always end up hating it.

Anime Banzai (pronounced as bonsai) is Salt Lake City's only anime convention. Always hosted a weekend or two prior to Halloween, this is the world's only convention that has a very strict 'Family Friendly' moral/rule/whatever the hell you want to call it. Is it just me? -I thought all conventions were family friendly unless common sense tells you otherwise (ex: Fetish con, AVN, etc.) This same convention,last year, tried banning Ekkia last year for being in drag. Anime Banzai does not support female impersonators, but is okay with a man in a dress.... as long as this man is not pretty, and still looks like a man.
 
Thank the lord, because across the street from this convention is the Utah State Liquor store. I believe just about every person I spoke to at this con, clearly made a visit there.

Anyways, this very small convention started on Friday Oct. 16th and, for the first time, ran until Sunday the 18th. As said, this was the very first time this con ran on a Sunday. This has never been done before, probably due to Mormans fearing that the Baby Jesus would bring another flood should there be anime watching on his day. I didn't know that Japanese cartoons could upset Jesus so much, but then again -Jesus is American you know, and he speaks English!

Day One
Pairing up with Ekkia for the con, we planned to wake up at 8am, dress Lolita, and make it to the con by opening ceremonies which started at 10am (yes, we do take 2-3 hours to get ready). Well, that didn't happen. We both stayed up the previous night, getting ready, until 4 or 5am. I stayed in bed until 9:30 and didn't get out the door until 11am.
I picked up Ekkia & Alex and we headed off to the fantastic-ness that is Anime Banzai! We planned to compete in the Iron Jrock event (which is designing visual kei inspired clothing) but upon arriving at Anime Banzai we were stopped by a very long registration line that ended up taking an average of 1 hour to wait through. Using my girlish charm, I was able to leave, pick up Vyle, and return only to cut a head of everyone and get my pass (which was $35 = not worth it).
Thank god that Anime banzai is known for having every event start vary late. We didn't get our passes until 12:30pm because we had to wait in line for so long, and as everyone knows -you can't enter a event unless you posses a pass.
What I would like to know -What if I wanted to attend an event that was at 10am? How the fuck would I get in if I couldn't even get my pass unless I sat in a line for an hour? I always thought it was common sense to have a Day 0 or sometime where people could obtain passes in order to make it to a planned event, should the event actually start on time. But, then again, this is Anime Banzai after all.
Anyways, this brings us to Iron Jrock.
We finally made it the to Iron jrock event which started 45min late -Lucky for us. Iron Jrock is much like Iron Chef (so they said) were a group is given a certain amount of items/materials and have to make a visual kei inspired outfit within a certain time limit. So I guess this was more like Project Runway -as if I ever watched an episode of Iron Chef.
Our team consisted of Ekkia, Vyle (who was only there to model) and Myself. Other teams had as many as 6. The time limit stated, and we were given our supplies. I remeber emptying the bag, and the baffled 'What the Fuck?!' looks on each of our faces.
We were given a very small child/infant sized tu-tu (which was only 3 thin layers of tulle), a cheap, thin-rowed, feather bowa, and a roll of tape. It was all given to us in a medium sized birthday bag. So, all in all, we had to make a full outfit of a plastic bag, feather boa, and a few scraps of tulle.
Whoever thought of the Iron Jrock event needs to be shot in the feet.
With only 15min time limit we started our creation -a corset/waist cincher (made from the bag) and whatever the fuck we could do with the feathers and tu-tu. Not 2 min later, we noticed the group next to us doing the exact same thing. This is when Ekkia proceeded to yell at them, telling them to "Turn the fuck around and stop stealing our design!"
In the end, we stuck to our corset idea, put used the tulle as lacing, and pieces of the bag as shoulder-armor things. We used the feather boa as a necklace-thing, and the 'To:/From:' tag on the birthday bag as a face mask (which Ekkia scribbled an X on). I can't describe the other monstrosities made but we ended up taking first place, and won the Nana 2 movie and a used Nana 2 poster.

Iron Jrock is really the only thing I can go into full detail about, because EVERY other event we, I, Eekia, Noyzz, or anyone tried to get into was full. Full as in, we got denied, turned around, told to leave, etc, because the event rooms could only hold 40-50 people, 300 for the 'huge' main event hall.

We were denied from the Gothic Lolita Tea party because it was full (50 people). Not only did this event have a strict dress code ("No street Clothing") but the people allowed in were just shitty cosplayer, most costumes made of felt fabric, and made by the wearer's mommy. The Gothic Lolita Tea party ended up being a 'Naruto, FF7, and Deathnote' Tea Party.
I hope you all choked and died in that tiny room from the awful Otaku B.O. smell (which I later found out is properly called -"Con Funk")

Noyzz & I were denied from the Dissidia Brawl room because it could only fit "however many people until after this wall" which was only 40 people. 2 hours later, we ran into another Dissidia panel, only to find out that it was the same previous Dissidia event, but it was finally starting (2 hours late -way to go Anime Banzai).

Ekkia & Alex were unable to watch Ghost in the Shell in the viewing room, because that was also too full.

I was unable to attend the Cosplay hair and Make Up panel -that was too full.

Noyzz and I had the opportunity to attend Basic Japanese (even though we already know it) but Noyzz hates the fat piece of shit running it, so we decided to sit by the pool instead.

If you do not have the space for an event, why have it in the first place? Why even have this awful convention if there is really only room for your fat ass, and a few of your fat fucktard friends? This issue went on through out the entire con, so it was more of a mix & mingle anime meet up, than a real convention. People lined the walls and hallways throughout poor Sheraton Hotel, because they had no where to go. And as all con goers know- the smell and trash REALLY starts to build up.

Other than panels, the dealers room seemed smaller this year. Other than the goth booth hosted by Arsenic fashions, all dealers had the same items: candy & plushies, maybe a manga or two. As Anime Banzai is Family Friendly, no yaoi/yuri or hentai could be sold. Even an item or sign displaying the word Hentai, yaoi/yuri would result in being banned from the convention. Signs themselves were banned.
Though hentai and yaoi was banned, I am proud of Noyzz for still being able to find a way to purchase her porn fix xD

Noyzz made a comment that made me laugh. She told me that she does love anime, but needed to go outside, because Banzai can be just a little too much. I always dream of seeing Noyzz shove someone down the stairs.
Sometime throughout the day, I ran into a very intoxicated Bread, who I am very surprised was never kicked out for his alcoholic smell, behavior, stumbling, shouting, and just about every action a drunk could do.
I never really met up with Milky, as planned, though I did see him across the street, on his way to the liquor store.
I met a few others, from Idaho, who were also carrying water bottles, not containing water.
It's funny how this year everyone was on the same level, even with the pass situation.

At one point, on Friday night, Noyzz and I decided to visit the Hotel bar, and see what the thought of the Otaku overload. This is were Noyzz was then harassed by the bar tender and manager, who accused her of working for the state and being undercover, all because she had a temporary paper ID, not an official plastic ID. We didn't stick around for long in there, hell, we didn't tip well either, but I recommend to not visit the Downtown Salt Lake City Sheraton Hotel Bar, unless you feel like getting yelled at for wanting to buy over-charged alcohol.

After wondering around with my drunk party for a few more hours, I stopped by the Formal Dance, which didn't play the annoying anime show tune theme songs for music as previous years, instead their playlist consisted of Top 40's from the 1990's. I quickly left, and Noyzz and I finally made it into one of the last panels -an Axis Powers Hetalia panel.
This is when Noyzz and I really started to get drunk. Me -wearing an 18" corset, takes a while to feel booze (due to the constriction) and when the booze fell, it FELL xD I don't really remember leaving the panel, but I do remember Noyzz giggling throughout the whole thing.

After that, the con was pretty much over for that day, wrapped up at 12:30am and I was later haraased by a 45-year-old dyke, lmao! What a 45-year-old was doing at an anime convention without a child, or volunteering time -I'll never know, but we suspect that it has something to do with the hard-core porn magazines that were found in the parking lot throughout the convention.

Noyz made an attempt at driving a car that night, but was too drunk to find the head lights xD She later took a cab home, after I went home and drank the Otaku overload away.


Day 2
As Day 1 was very detailed, it was definitely the most active, and the most fun. Not giving a shit, I didn't get there until 4:30pm. Arriving in my SiSen inspired Cyber gear, it took only 10 min for someone to bitch and complain about my outfit. As Anime Banzai is strictly Family Friendly, I made the mistake of thinking that showing my tummy was okay. From what I was told, my outfit was 'very suggestive' and I guess I was inspiring a lot of wet dreams.

I later ran into a female Domo-Kun cosplayer, who decided to be original -making her cosplay a little more girly- who was also asked to add more clothing for making Domo-Kun hentai dreams come true. There was also a cat-girl cosplayer, petticoat wearer, and various other random girls who wear asked to change and add more clothing. All were not breaking any Utah state laws but had bare stomachs showing, or committed the crime of wearing booty shorts and/or bikini tops.

Saturday didn't have a lot of action. It just consisted of walking in circles, seeing other people wait in very long lines, and later seeing them bitching about how the waited for hours but never got into the event the wanted.

I think I visited the gaming room a few times, never playing a game, and maybe the artist alley, only to poke fun at the majority of talent there. My party and I did attend the Battle Karaoke (which started 35min late), but only for a place to sit and relax. We ended up booing every Karaoke singer (who deserved it, we aren't total bitches), I don't think anyone won xD

The much anticipated Banzai Boogie was canceled, apparently pissing off many and causing them to leave. This happened because (leave it to Anime Banzai) left a inexperienced volunteer in charge of one of the main events -the Cosplay Contest, which ran over time, and shit confusion with sound equipment, etc, they said it was impossible to host the Banzai Boogie. Instead, they had 'social hour' were the main event room played msic anyways, and the Otaku nerds danced around (at least their idea of dancing), and did what would have normally been done during the Banzai Boogie. Ekkia and I tried our best to get into the music and do some real actual club dancing, but the music was too too god awful!

As mentioned before, Banzai refused to believe that Japan has any other music but anime show tunes. In previous years the dances and raves would play Zelda theme remakes, Digimon themes, and various other bull shit. I remember last year having many complaints of these show tunes, so this years set lists were replaced with real music. However, real music does not mean good music. Soundtrack of REPO: The Generic piece of Shit (as I call it), Final Fantasy 10, Para Para, and Black Eyed Peas. The only thing missing -the theme song to Mortal Kombat.

After the failure of Banzai Boogie, the staff and crew of Anime Banzai made a big and bitchy moan fest, were the repeatedly said sorry for the cancellation of the Rave/dance. They then had Q&A where Ekkia asked them of the floating rumors of Anime Banzai moving location next year. The confirmed that Anime Banzai 2010 will be in Layton, a 45min drive from Salt Lake. They bragged about how its next to an Air Force Base - that already tells you what the area is like up there. The Q&A was mostly 20-35 nerds confessing their love for such a pathetic convention, as most people had already left. They continued on and on with excuses and 'Sorry this,' 'Sorry that,' -They never once apologized for the rude security, ass hole committee, limited panel room, long lines, limited areas, nasty smell, or having that lame ass band Art Beat play 2 years ago.

After Q&A, Alex and I decided to have a private word with the committee, trying to tell them what a better idea, moving the convention to the CONVENTION CENTER 2 blocks away, would be. This is when a committee member got in Alex's face, displaying his God-complex and insured Alex & Ekkia's decision to never return to Anime Banzai again.

After all of this, I sat in a lounge area, discussing with 11 other people how we will not be returning to Anime Banzai after this year, all for different reasons, but mostly the new location -you would understand if you've ever been to Layton, Utah. This went on until 3am. The convention ended at midnight that that.


Day 3
I don't know why I went on Day 3, I don't think anyone knows why they went on Day 3. This infamous Sunday had about 70 attendees, all just wondering aimlessly. I wore my I-no (Guilty Gear) cosplay, and this costume took about 15min be get bitched about. Surprisingly it was not the committee, it was some old bitch. She pulled me aside by my arm and refused to let me go until staff inspected my costume. I jerked my arm away from her old wrinkled ass and told her to not touch me. She then threatened to take way mt pass and I told her to go right ahead. She made the excuse that she had no authority to take it, but that's probably because she know I would take out one of her eyes throwing it at her. I got inspected once, he didn't seem to care, but the old cunt threw a fit, making another committee member inspect me. During this time I was pulled aside, I had many people stop to take my photo, telling me how amazing I looked :)

Eventually I got a second inspection, they shrugged and told me "I suppose you could cover up more" and to simply pull my jacket a little farther forward. That old bitch is a fucking pervert, she was the only one thinking my costume was 'inappropriate', she just wanted to stare at my boobs!

Sunday at Banzai was a waste of time. Starting at 10am, everything wrapped up at 2pm, some even at 1 or 1:30pm. We left the convention bitching and complaining, planning to go back to my place and drink -anything to forget what shit we put up with. On the way out, we spotted another porno magazine someone left in the parking lot. We didn't stop to look at it, we just wanted to get the fuck out of there.

In the end, we all now laugh at Anime Banzai. Change of location has insured it's death, and we will be dancing the day Anime Banzai 2011 does not appear.
If anyone were to attend Anime Banzai. I stress to go only one day, and be very drunk. One day is all you need. The other two days just ruins and makes you sick of it. And even then, next year's Anime Banzai in way the fuck up in Layton, if you are willing to drive that far, you may as well head all the way up to Boise, for Anime Oasis.


The few good things from this convention- Ekkia and I celebrated our 1 year anniversary of knowing each other, seeing Sharyl's top fly off at the Arsenic Fashions booth, and I was able to meet the father of Anime Oasis -Boise, Idaho's 24 hour anime con that has a separate Adult Cosplay, Hentai and Yaoi room. There are no nudity laws, dress code, or alcohol rules. Obviously this is the convention to be at, and funny enough, Anime Banzai refused to advertise or allow Anime Oasis fliers from being handed out. They even attempted to keep a check that was meant for an Anime Oasis ad being placed in the Banzai booklet/schedule. They said they 'never received the ad.' It's actions and attitude like that that makes me hate Anime Banzai. That arrogant, thick-headed asshole attitude that they are the best, and they are the only anime convention in the world.

Fuck you anime Banzai. You are the reason children bring guns to school -to get rid of fuckers like you.



 


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