By Indra Wignall
After an arduous journey on subterranean railroad, the two plucky heroes met up and stepped into the cold, rain soaked streets of Holloway.
'Excuse me good sir, where be the convention?'
'Follow Mario and Luigi over there, that's where they're heading'
So the two carried on through the rain, after the red and green moustachioed pair until they finally came upon their destination.
Last weekend saw the first London Anime Convention of the year hosted by AnimeLeague, one of the largest anime communities in the world. Held at the Rocket Complex on Holloway Rd, the LAC ran for two days and covered not only anime but cosplay, gaming and more. As a smaller convention it was easy to have reservations as to how professional or entertaining it would be, however these concerns soon fell away.
Hailing from the great land of YouTube the Abridgers dub popular anime such as Dragonball Z and Yu Gi Oh to create shortened parody episodes that are rapidly becoming as popular as the originals.
Shadyvox and XtheDarkOne (Yu Gi Oh GX The Abridged Series) with MasakoX (Dragonball Z Abridged) were on hand throughout the weekend and took part in several elements of the event. On the Saturday the Anime Quiz was hosted by XtheDarkOne and MasakoX and, even with some difficult questions, the quiz was a huge success. A special mention has to go to the team who used a burger box as an answer sheet when they ran out of paper.
In a room behind the bar, you could attend talks by various groups and individuals on a range of subjects. These were both informative and fun and brought together like minded people who could discuss issues and ask questions about anything they didn't understand or were having issues with. A host of different topics from cosplay make-up to Bronys to reviewing anime were covered and there was something in there for everyone from beginners up.
If fighting games weren't your style then you could take part in other tournaments in the video gaming area which was available on both days. Sonic All Stars Racing Transformed and Mario Kart had fans zipping round the tracks to try and beat each other for first place, while FPS fans could get their hands on Halo Reach and CoD Black Ops II. Elsewhere, there were pletny of gaming cos-players too.
The Sunday also had a pub quiz in the bar area, this time it was based on video games though. The questions were again varied and there were two music rounds. The best thing about this quiz however had to be the hosts. They were charming, funny, charismatic and most importantly, one of them was me!
Heading upstairs you entered into a much bigger room with a beautiful blue and white high ceiling and a stage at the far end. In this room were several stalls selling toys, dvds, books and other items. The prices were quite reasonable and certainly felt a little cheaper than other conventions, if you picked through you could most certainly get a bargain......and we did!
Finally the stage at the far end hosted several different events throughout the week and queen of this stage was the voice actress Caitlin Glass. Best known for her role as Winry Rockbell in Fullmetal Alchemist, Glass took to the stage for a Q&A session giving the audience the answers to questions they've always wanted to ask. If that wasn't enough, Caitlin joined the Abridgers later on where she was introduced to fruit salad sweets, Abridger style chaos and even more questions from the audience. Fans even got the chance to meet her face to face and get her autograph in a signing session that didn't have the hefty price tag normally associated with them; it was free.
Every aspect of the weekend was great and there isn't a convention around as friendly, warm and welcoming. When you arrive at London Anime Convention you already feel as though you are in a room of friends, and by the time you leave, you will be. Staff, guests and attendees should all be proud of being part of London Anime Convention.