Every March, Den Den Town, the geeky section of Osaka, holds a cosplay festival. From 1-4 PM, the entire streets of Den Den Town are flooded with people in cosplay. For those who aren’t aware what cosplay is, it’s people dressing up as their favorite characters from anime and video games. I’m not that huge into cosplay, but when it’s done right, even I can be amazed. This year it took place on a national holiday so since I didn’t have work, I decided to check it out.
I knew Den Den Town was going to be packed, but I didn’t think it was going to be this packed. Apparently 220,000 people came!:
The range of cosplay was awesome. It ranged from recent shows that I’m not aware of to super old school anime that I used to enjoy when I was a kid. Here are a few highlights:
The Neon Genesis Evangelion crew:
Saint Seiya! I used to follow this show religiously as a kid:
This awesome robot. He could barely walk but he was awesome:
Minecraft! I don’t really play the game but I like the fact that it has a following in Japan:
Awesome samurai getup:
Halfway through my walk, I ran into a few friends. Some were in cosplay while others were dressed normally (like me!). Their cosplay was pretty badass; Carl was dressed up as Chris Redfield, Sarah was Alice, Graham was the Genie from Aladdin and Andre was dressed up as Pyro from Team Fortress 2. Graham got a lot of attention from girls and little kids, it was really funny. But when it came to getting attention, Sarah took the cake.
I was walking around with Graham and Andre for awhile until I decided to walk with Sarah’s group. I saw her getting her picture taken a couple of times and I had a feeling walking with her would be really interesting. My intuition was correct; every few seconds we were being stopped by people asking Sarah to take a picture of her. Now, I’ve seen people posing in cosplaying while surrounded by tons of cameras but I never thought I’d have first row seat in watching the insanity. Usually you can’t even see the cosplayer posing because they are surrounded by everyone so it was nice to actually see how it works. Sarah probably could’ve stood there and posed for hours and would’ve still had hundreds of people taking pictures of her. Here she is in action:
Sarah borrowed Andre’s flamethrower for a few shots:
The crowd really loved it when she put it between her legs (as predicted):
I was really shocked at the amount of attention she was getting, she was like a celebrity! Not just from the guys either, the girls really loved her too. I’d be hearing whispers from the crowd “Look, it’s Alice! She’s a model! A model!” It was really funny to hear the reactions. I learned that cosplayer’s friends usually have to do a countdown for photographers to warn them that they will stop posing soon. Otherwise, we would’ve been stuck in one spot forever. Total, I’d probably say at least 500 people were taking pictures of her that day. I’m not exaggerating.
Before we knew it, 4 PM finally came by. The police started to open the roads back to traffic and we were all hushed into the sidewalks. I managed to take a few more cool pictures of people before I went back home.
Guy In a ghillie suit!:
Powerpuff Girls. It’s cool to see American culture in Japan.
And finally, what I think was the greatest moment of the day: witnessing KITT from Knight Rider. This shit was amazing:
It even had the fucking lights in the front!:
And inside? Don’t get me started:
Despite some of the creepy people there, I had a lot of fun. I might even be tempted to dress up next year. It’s crazy to see how big the geek community is here in Osaka but I’m glad you don’t just see the stereotypical fat, greasy guys but also average looking people having fun. I can’t wait until next year!
And with this entry, I am caught up with my life in Japan. I’ll be going to South Korea tomorrow for spring break. I’ll be taking a small break from blogging during this time. I’m sure I’ll come back with more crazy stories to tell.