Neither David nor I are really a big fan of anime, manga or video games but at the same time we are very intriqued by this bizarre japanese pop culture that is very popular all over the world! And beside, I love jumping into a costume when ever I get the chance.
So I was hoping to participate in some kind of manga and cosplay festival in Japan when we were there in mars-mai 2014. Strangely I couldn’t find any information about an anime-theme festival before leaving!
A few weeks later when we were walking somewhere in Osaka city Picachu and Batman walked passed by us.
Nothing strange since we are in Japan I thought.
Then Mario and Luigi passed by and walked at the same direction as Picachu and Batman. We honestly didn’t thought anything weird about it until a group of super heros caught our attention. They were walking aswell toward something so we were curious and discretly followed them from behind. They turn left, right and left around the corner and more and more super heroes, sexy maids and sexy school girls, dinousaures, robots and other caracters that are unfamiliar, emerged from nowhere.
I then happily realised that we were in the middle of a manga festival!
I was so excited but so annoyed at the same time! So excited to experienced an extraordinaire event…. in the mother land of manga, Japan! But annoyed because I wanted aswell to be walking around as a super hero!
There were shops where you can rent and buy costumes. But at the end it was raining quite alot so I was happy to be in my winter jacket!
It was like beeing in a whole different world walking amongs these people dressing up like-I-don’t-know-what or who!
Many of them really loved posing infront of an audience and photographs and they are not at all shy like the foreigners think a japanese can be!
We talked with a japanese about this. Since most of the japanese are shy, polite and very conservativ cosplay is a way for them to become and play someone else and let go of themself! Perhaps that is why this is so popular in Japan? And we have heard that most of them spend a lot of time and money making their own costume so the are really proud to show their creation in public.
Once at home I actually found some informations about this festival. You can read about it here and here.
Now when we know the existence of this lively manga festival, next time we are going to Japan my daughter and I will be dressing like a…who wants to guess?!