Kawaii Kon countdown
at 5 days
This week's column leads off with a quick programming note: For those of you who read about the promised cosplay profile by Wilma J. and myself in last week's column and are now trying to figure out why it looks like there are remarkably good costumes of the likes of Jack Johnson and Eddie Vedder elsewhere in this section, that's because you probably ARE looking at Johnson and Vedder.
Due to today's Kokua Festival coverage, the cosplay article has been pushed back to this weekend's HiLife section, included with Thursday afternoon and Friday morning editions.
But the countdown continues, and the fact remains that there are five days left until the annual anime party that is Kawaii Kon kicks off at the Hawaii Convention Center.
Looking forward to returning this year is fan favorite Vic Mignogna, best known as the voice of Edward Elric in "Fullmetal Alchemist." While Mignogna will field fan questions at various voice actor panels throughout the convention like he did last year, this year he will also present a concert.
"I'm looking forward to doing a handful of songs ... not too many," Mignogna told me via e-mail. "It will be different from Q&A ... I'll just talk about the songs, I guess and go from there."
Joining Mignogna as repeat guests are artists Robert and Emily DeJesus; voice actors Monica Rial, Jennifer Sekiguchi and Michael Sinterniklaas; David Williams, ADV Films co-founder, producer and the convention's primary source of free ADV swag like DVDs.
Among the first-time guests is Christine Auten, who has performed as the voice of Sakaki in "Azumanga Daioh," Izumi Curtis in "Fullmetal Alchemist" and the poor, put-upon bunny Mesousa in "Pani Poni Dash." She also appeared in the live-action segments of "The Super Milk-Chan Show."
"I've never been to Hawaii, so that alone is what most excites me about doing this con," Auten told me, also via e-mail. "I do hope I have a chance to see some of the sights, but conventions can be hectic, and the convention is really what I'm there to do."
The appearance of another first-time guest, Travis Willingham, could lead to a convergence of squealing fangirls never before seen in the state. He is, after all, the target of the affections of the Mini-Skirt Army, his official fan club so named from one of his character Roy Mustang's lines from "Fullmetal Alchemist": "That day ... all female officers will be required to wear TINY MINISKIRTS!"
Mignogna has his own fan club with "Fullmetal Alchemist" ties, the Risembool Rangers, which has a friendly rivalry going with the Mini-Skirts. He had some good-natured ribbing ready for his castmate.
"Wait 'til you see the music video I just finished about the dodgeball game between the two groups ... that, incidentally, the Rangers won," Mignogna wrote.
It's on starting at 9 a.m. Friday; for more details, visit www.kawaii-kon.com or check back with the HiLife section later this week ...
Cel Shaded, a look at the world of Japanese anime and manga, appears every Monday. Reach Jason S. Yadao