This year’s FanimeCon on Memorial Day weekend was my fourth in a row (after going sporadically three other times) and was very memorable because it was very much an Eva-themed con for me in several ways. I will thus focus largely on the Eva aspects in this post.
First I wanted to show off my Eva pride with two Asuka shirts that I picked up a month before from Eva-T with some help. These were the Stay Real shirt, which I was going to wear on Saturday, and the white Cospa shirt for Sunday as these are the biggest days of the con. I also wanted to sport the Asuka button by GE Animation but it was released about two weeks before the con started, so I planned to see if one of the dealers had it.
Day 1 (Friday, May 24)
Right after getting my badge I headed to the dealers' hall, which was quite early for me as I usually don't go there until later. Fortunately, Anime Jungle had the button and it was the only one that they had out. Coincidentally I had scoped them out on the list of dealers posted on the FanimeCon website to check the button's availability. This was my final button set up starting on Saturday with no doubt left as to what my favorite series was:
One of the things I like about FanimeCon is the swap meet, which gives attendees the opportunity to sell off any anime related or other goods that they want to part with it to their fellow con-goers. I asked to find what I was looking for at swap meet, which was Eva primarily and damn did I get what I asked for, along with some other oldies, but goodies. Here's what I landed Eva wise:
Day 2 (Saturday, May 25)
In the morning I found this in one of the open areas of the San Jose Convention Center where registration is typically held (not this year due to construction):
This was serendipitous, as after dinner I considered going home, but opted to return to the convention center to see if there would be anything worth seeing. Turns out that there was.
Day 3 (Sunday, May 26)
In the morning I went back to where the cockpit was and it was still there, but not as busy. I also talked to the guy who put it together. He selected one of the four cockpit designs and went with the coolest looking one. It is supported by several scaffolds where the pilot sits but can be assembled and broken down. As a veteran modeler he just goes by the feel of putting it up and taking it down. Construction took three weeks. Crunchyroll later covered it. This time it was the Asuka cosplayer who asked me first for a photo.
I had missed out on the opportunity the previous day to get a sketch by Tsuyoshi Nonaka, who is an excellent artist to ask for robots and the like as he is a toy designer. I figured that since he had worked on the Chogokin-Damashii series of toys that he would be able to sketch the Evas and this was confirmed when I saw some photos of what he had done, including the Berserker version of Eva-01 and Eva-02 in Beast Mode. I asked for Eva Shogoki and Nonaka got right to it. I told him about the cockpit in the convention center and shared my opinion of 3.0 when asked, which was that some things are better off just not understanding, and he agreed.
Later I saw two Asukas, one in the test plugsuit and one in the yellow dress. I had also seen this lady earlier but missed the chance to get a photo of her at the time.
This Mini Cooper S was across the street in front of the Fairmont Hotel. The left side has the same design while the Nerv logo is above the Cooper logo on the back. Nothing on the hood. These are 2.0 designs by character designer Yoshiyuki Sadamoto, who also did the manga.
At McDonald's I ran into the only other person I saw that entire weekend wearing an Asuka shirt. He told me that he was trying to get his friends into Eva via the Rebuild route as they thought the TV series too old and long. His shirt can be found on Redbubble.
Day 4 (Monday, May 27)
The final day of the con and no guest signings, so this is typically my shopping day. From my earlier scouting around I had an idea on what to get. Now a big reason for this website is to document my Eva collection and avoid buying duplicates. I brought a binder of printouts of it (since I don't have a smartphone yet) and it proved its worth as it saved me several times. However for some reason I didn't consult it when I saw a Real Model of Eva-04, the only one I don't have. Thus I didn't pick it up.
My priorities were the older goods showcased in E-Mono. From Kimono My House (they had the Eva-04 Real Model), I picked up a complete set of six gashapon and four idol cards. The two on the right are from the Death and Rebirth out of a set of four. The other items are a Real Model of Ruri Hoshino (which I had seen so many times over the years but never this cheap) and a Plastic Little shitajiki.
Seven posters from Nikaku Animart: Asuka, screensaver, Genesis 0:1, 0:3, 0:5, 0:8, and Death and Rebirth.
And from Toyslogic, two Rei bikini figures as they were doing a deal. I did not pick up any Asuka figures this time around.
All in all it was a very enjoyable con despite having taken some steps backwards. I picked up a lot more Eva goods this time than ever before but overall I still came in under my total con budget. The Eva exposure was also much, much higher. Of course I myself had a part to play in that and will do so again in the future.