[PMX ’22] About Damn Time

It’s been a good few years since we covered Pacific Media Expo. Since 2012, we have heard through the grapevine that PMX wasn’t the same caliber of a Lolita party convention from it’s heydey in the late 00’s. I was invited as a Cosplay Guest at PMX 2022. I was quite honored to be a guest after a long hiatus from the convention. PMX typically takes place during Fall. In Los Angeles alone, there’s several conventions from LA Comic Con, Long Beach Comic Con, etc that might make scheduling PMX difficult.

I’m a guest! That’s awesome! It was about damn time. Guest status meant getting a complimentary badge and being able to roam around the convention meeting my Cadillac Cats. I had the option of getting a table, but I’m a convention blogger. I need to be roaming around to see the entire convention.

Because of a prior commitment, I ended up showing up to the con Saturday early afternoon. I do like the San Gabriel Sheraton Hotel, but the parking situation was pretty hairy. Guests couldn’t get parking in the structure because the Itasha Car Show was on the third floor. There was street parking right across. However, as a hotel guest, I felt safer leaving my car in the structure. Thankfully, the hotel was able to accommodate this. I do like the hotel has a Starbucks to keep me caffeinated during the convention.

Programming wise, it was fairly light. Many locals who run panels at SoCal conventions ran their panels here. I had a chance to check out the Final Fantasy Music Quiz Show. My partner and I teamed up to figure out which Final Fantasy game the song was from and got extra points for naming them. I also went to a Kingdom Hearts badly explained panel and that was a lot of fun going over the convoluted fun that is the Kingdom Hearts series. I also attended the Pokemon Sunday Morning Cartoons panel just to watch the latest episodes of Pokemon.

I also wandered across the dealers hall. It was small, but had some local artists selling prints, plushes, hair accessories, bags, and more. There was a jumbotron in the dealers hall that showcased the guests and upcoming panels. I even got to meet the voice actor for Kokomi from Genshin in the dealers hall (she loved my Ningguang cosplay!).

I also checked out the Chinese fashion section of the con. There were a few diorama’s where you can try out some Chinese hanfu’s and take photos in their sets displayed. This was perfect to pose as Ningguang, totally Jade Chamber aesthetics.

I also took a peak into Kazha’s concert where she and her backup band did a cover of Michael Jackson’s “Beat It.” It was a lot of fun and it’s cool when guests play homage to the classics. Of course, I had to check out Cosplay Wrestling Federation’s Pacific Media Mayhem where my partner played Walt Disney as a wrestling heel. This event was a hoot and brought back some CWF familiar faces like Mario and Spicy Burrito.

I stopped by the cosplay and Asian fashion section to support my fellow guests. I do liked see Haenuli again and I was tempted to get her Empress Sissi accessories. I even got an up close look at her Winnie the Pooh lolita dresses. The cosplay section was pretty small and held in the hotel lounge. I felt there should have been a separate lounge for the Only Fans cosplayers (slap ‘n charge all you like, it was just difficult navigating this small area because of boiz hoping for a dash of sadism) and one for craft focused cosplayers. These two types of cosplayers have different target audiences. (I love you all, fyi)

The hotel was a very nice setting cosplay photos. I like the library style of the panel rooms. I like the ritzy glamour of the hotel lobby. I also liked the small courtyard that had bamboo plants when I joined a makeshift Genshin photoshoot. Photographers were super friendly and down to meet and shoot cosplayers. I’m not used to this type of friendliness, but it is a warm welcome!

Overall, PMX is a small hotel anime con in the Fall. SoCal has very few hotel cons left. So many conventions are associated with outdoor fairground lots and convention centers now. In a way, it brought me nostalgia for the hotel con scene – get a room, roam around the con, explore the town, and party all night. The party scene is long gone; even the EDM DJ’s were desperate to fill up the dance room. I was sad we didn’t have a karaoke room either. I think PMX still has potential to bring back the hotel con feel. I love that we have a con that is dedicated to Asian and Pacific media worldwide. I certainly hope I can guest next year because if you need someone to talk about Fight Asian Hate, I’m your cosplay dame.

Written by Dame Aznable
IG: @damescarletaznable
Twitter: @dameaznable
TikTok: @damescarletaznable

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