[Anime Boston: To the Stars] Same Old Song and Dance

Japanese Composers by Jared the Greek

This was an extensive look at Japanese composers and their work both original and for an anime.  The panel was divided into different sections based on style and clips were played for the audience to show how the schools of music differed.  This is one of those subjects that does not get explored at most conventions and it is a great way to learn about music you might not have heard otherwise.  This was a great way to start the day as the eclectic styles of music helped the audience wake up and feel energized for the busy day ahead.


All the Mecha You’ll Ever Need by Jared the Greek

This was a poorly run panel and it felt like the panelists had done very little preparation.  The topics like ‘good starter series’ got derailed by random conversations.  The list of obscure series began strong with Gun X Sword and X-Buster, but then went into a discussion of Gundam SEED a heavily promoted series that even had a run on Adult Swim.  While the panelists had enthusiasm it takes more than that to run a successful panel.  People in the audience were leaving early and others were diving into their phones due to boredom.



Jez Roth Press Conference by Jared the Greek 

This was a press event where several reporters got to speak with guest Jez Roth about his career.  Topics went from cosplay where Jez discussed the importance of effort and his lament for the changing attitudes of the would be famous cosplayers.  There was also a discussion about his convention history beginning with his first con at Katsucon 98 where he was nervous to the more confident attitude he has now twenty years later.  He also was asked about starting his own business, which was a very difficult process for him including risking everything and giving up what he had in order to follow his dream.  The ending notes were on a less intense level revealing how he relaxes with video games and his dogs.  This was a great opportunity and hopefully anyone who has a chance in the future will attend one of Jez Roth’s panels because he is a fountain of knowledge and a very fun and enthusiastic person.


Game Room by Jared the Greek

One of the highlights of a good convention is a high quality game room.  This year Anime Boston took out all the stops with one of the best game rooms I have seen in years.  It had a large row of arcade games from rhythm based favorites to Dance Dance Revolution to fan favorite racer Initial D.  There were even some nice import surprises with some idol based rhythm games.  The majority of the room was based on console gaming with everything from classics like Aladdin and Super Mario to modern fighters like Tekken 7 and Street Fighter V.  They had space for Dance Central in the center of the room and one of the corners was showing off a new Touhou fighting game.  One of the best parts of the room was the projection screens showing off the current tournaments such as Dragonball FighterZ and Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite.  Lines aren’t too bad and most people are friendly enough to allow for new players to swap in after a match ends.  This was easily one of the best places to stop by when you needed a break from panels or shopping.


Metal Gear Solid Photoshoot by Jared the Greek

This year there were two Metal Gear photoshoots one on Friday and the other Saturday.  I attended Saturday on the third floor of the Hynes dressed as Otacon from Metal Gear Solid 2.  The gathering was organized by the East Coast Metal Gear Cosplay Union with Kristin Hughes as the official photographer.  It was well run with the shoots being divided into series and character groups.  There was a good sense of comradery as everyone made jokes and were very friendly.  While there were many Snakes (of all varieties) the gathering also had two Vamps, a Paz, a young Ocelot, and a Sith Snake wielding the stealth side of the Force.  This was the best gathering I have been to at an Anime con in a long time and I look forward to cosplaying with the East Coast Metal Gear Cosplay Union again.


Cosplay Lip Sync Battle by Eri Kagami

One of Anime Boston’s biggest traditions is Cosplay Games. Aside from masquerade, Anime Boston hosts Cosplay Death Match, Cosplay Chess, Cosplay Dating Game, etc. This is the second year Anime Boston has hosted Cosplay Lip Sync. Each contestant selected songs that tied into the character they were cosplaying as. The audience voted in several rounds on who would go onto the next round. This is a 90 minute show that starts out with 16 and ends with two finalists standing.

There were a lot of memorable performances. This included Karamatsu lip syncing to “Brother, My Brother” from Pokemon, Lizzy from Black Butler performing to “You Belong to Me,” Light from Death Note performing to “Look What You Made Me Do,” Greed performing to “I Want it All,” etc. This was really a fun show with plenty of surprises. I liked that each contestant kept their songs into character and didn’t use songs that would be commonly heard in these types of competitions. If you have 90 minutes to spare on a Saturday afternoon, I highly recommend coming out to this event!

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