World is Mine, Music is Ours took place on August 25, 2012 in Little Tokyo's Anime Jungle located in downtown Los Angeles, CA. The event is part of a grand re-opening of Anime Jungle and to celebrate Vocaloid. Over the years, Vocaloid has taken over the otaku fandom by storm. There are hundreds and hundreds of Miku Hatsune cosplayers. The appeal that Vocaloid has is the music, the various characters, and the various outfits. Miku Hatsune alone has dozens of outfits to pick from! The Scarlet Rhapsody team consisted of Miku Zatsune, a very Mexican Bruno, and a friend from Epic Cosplay donning my Magnet Luka.
We arrived into Little Tokyo around 7:30PM. No cosplayers were really roaming the streets. We ended up parking at the garage right by the Pinkberry at about $5 flat rate (typical for Little Tokyo). Little Tokyo was really busy for a Saturday evening. The neighborhood was already winding down for the previous Nisei Week. Wanting to try something different, the crew decided to take a break from the usual Orochon and Curry House. We tried Kagura, a restaurant in the Japanese Village area that had a variety of different dishes. I reccomend this place if you are with a group of friends who can't settle for just one type of Japanese food. Kagura has Udon, diferent ramen dishes, unique sushi rolls, and more. Prices are reasonable and compareable to typical sit down places in Little Tokyo.
We purchased our tickets at the third Anime Jungle storefront. Vocaloid cosplayers got a discount to get in ($3 as opposed to the $5 entrance fee). The third Anime Jungle storefront had purikura (never done this before, but I would love to someday!) and a rental place to wear Japanese themed clothes: Tokyo Street Style, schoolgirl, typical cultural style, etc. You can also rent wigs to look even more anime-esque. The event already had hundreds of people lining up in front of Anime Jungle. We joked that it was Anime Expo all over again.
The doors started letting into the new Anime Jungle. The store space is larger and there were new items in stock. Gone were the pictures from the 2002 Nisei Festival cosplay contest and this event really felt like it ushered in a new era of otaku culture in Little Tokyo. There were 300 warm bodies in the new storefront all standing in anticipation to see what was going to be presented. The attendees were treated to a small performance of someone dancing to "World is Mine" and a fashion show that showcased Vocaloid cosplayers. The cosplay contest followed after. Another friend who was also cosplaying as Zatsune encouraged that I enter the contest, but unfortunately, contestants had to pre-register prior to the event to enter.
The atmosphere felt like a very loud night club. This time, it was full of 20 something male otaku and sprinkles of Vocaloid cosplayers. Though Vocaloid is a huge trend in the cosplay scene, there was plenty of variety found. It was not just Miku Hatsune, but the others from the endless peanut gallery of vocaloids. No one recognized Miguel's Bruno though.
I will admit that it got really stuffy pretty fast and it was really hard to see the stage from the back. I wanted to take photos of the fashion show and get a glimpse of the opening act. Yet, it was being blocked off by the tall fanboys snapping photos and videos. However, I was able to get photos of the models and cosplayers after the fashion show. It was really hard to socialize inside Anime Jungle because it was so loud, it was better to catch up outside of the store. It was nice seeing familliar faces such as Tune in Tokyo, How a Girl Figures, AX Live, and other cosplayers at this event.
Many thanks to Cherry Jelly Productions for putting on this show. Even though it had some funky moments, it was very well run and it also gave me an excuse to wear Zatsune again. I really look forward to see what is in store for Anime Jungle. This will not be the last of otaku party events at Anime Jungle as more will be planned for the future. It is really nice that Little Tokyo is embracing otaku culture and inviting cosplayers and anime nerds to participate in it. Overall, it was worth the $3 to peek in and be a part of the grand re-opening of Anime Jungle. For more updates and convention reports, please follow Scarlet Rhapsody on Facebook.
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