DaiCon 2009 day 1

DaiCon has been the talk amongst Malaysian anime fans for the pass few months, especially after the announcement that Miss Chihara Minori would be attending as guest of honor. Well, the weekend has finally arrived! Today was day 1 of the event. How was it? Read on…

Arriving early due to commitments as an exhibitor, I walked into a hall abuzz with vendors, exhibitors and the DaiCon committee itself doing last minute preparation. The hall that DaiCon was held in was big and spacious enough that booths weren’t cramped. Air conditioning was good as well. Mild enough to keep the sweat away, but not cold to the extend of being chilly.

The stage area at the front was partitioned off from the booth area due to the nature of the event, but more on that later. Suffice to say that most of the early morning was lost to setting up over at TFM’s display area.

DaiCon started right on time, with the opening ceremony speeches beginning at 11am sharp. Unfortunately I will have to rely on Quaz for this part of the coverage, as I found myself in what was to be an epic queue that formed right outside KKnM’s booth, even before they were open for business. It was clear that I wasn’t the only one looking forward to original anime merchandise. While I got in early, the queue itself was to last until late evening when KKnM closed up. KKnM was by far the most popular booth of the entire day.

The first event after the opening ceremony was the cosplay competition. I only caught snippets of this on the giant screen, because the way the hall was set up, keeping an eye on TFM’s exhibit meant being on the other side of the partitioned hall. A few of the more notable cosplayers included the K-On! girls: Mio, Yui and Mugi (Ritsu was supposedly in Australia). All 3 beautiful young ladies were very popular with the crowd, as I’m sure the photos Quaz will upload later will attest to. The Yui cosplayer’s voice was extremely similar to the anime Yui’s. Her monologue during her act on stage had me in disbelieve – she was that Yui-like.

Particularly popular with the crowd was Solomon, aka wisefreeman aka dannychoo.com.my. This time around he showed up in full dance trooper armor, and his routine on stage had the crowd cheering wildly.

After the solo cosplay event, we had a short lunch break, after which the show resumed with the karaoke contest. DaiCon’s committee elected to go with no prescreening, so that meant the contest had its share of… lurid moments. The song selection was surprising. There was Angela’s Shangri-La, performed by a girl who had quite the powerful set of vocals. Gukichan chose one of Kukui’s song from Rozen Maiden. Even the Dance Trooper sang – his muffled (he had his storm trooper helmet on) rendition of Bump of Chicken’s Karma, complete with fake guitar playing, again had the crowd cheering itself hoarse.

My favorite however was Kiseki ni Umi, a song from the Record of Lodoss War. I didn’t quite catch the singer’s name, but she advanced to the finals tomorrow, as did gukichan and a few other very able singers.

A slight grouse with the Karaoke event – the sound system could have been better. Backing music was sometimes too soft, while the mic was rather loud.

When I could, I took some time away from TFM to wander the hall. One thing that struck me was how few doujin booths there were – probably less than 10. The Go exhibition and the board/card games each had a room on the 2nd floor of the hall, and both events had their share of followers. There were multiple Weiss Schwarz running in the board game hall – seeing moe cards go up against characters from shonen action anime was quirky.

The Macross collectors of Malaysia were also at DaiCon, in what I believe is their first exhibition. On display was Valkyries from multiple eras in the Macross franchise – VF-00’s, VF-01’s, the anti UN planes, VF-25’s, and even a Koenig monster. These guys also had May’n signed CD’s on display, and they even brought an LCD monitor to show May’n in concert. Good show guys! I hope we’ll be seeing more of you at events from now on.

Of course, I can’t leave out TFM. Our collection is huge, and its growing every month. Our display at DaiCon runs up to about 250 figures, but that number is actually far short of what we have in total – a lack of space had us shuffling some of the older figures out of our selection.

That about covers the booths. There’s also a maid cafe at DaiCon but I’ve yet to find the time to pay them a visit. There’s also the now ubiquitous Guitar Hero booth, which attracted a constant flow of people, but I doubt Guitar Hero needs any introduction.

Day 1 ended with Chihara Minori’s Q&A session. I’ll be covering that in the next post, which will be up soonish.

p.s. Pictures of the event will be added later by Quaz, so check back later. You will want to, if only to check out the K-On! cosplayers.

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