So for this year's SMASH!
the Japanese seiyuu guest of honour was Yuko Miyamura, most famous for her role as Asuka from Evangelion. I thought I would be late for her panel, but I should have known that these things never start on time. Anyway, she came across as a warm and lovely person, and hardly seemed old enough to have been doing this fifteen years ago.
Most of the questions were general, but one I found interesting was that she was the one who came up with the "Kimochi warui" line at the end of the original Eva movies, after director Hideaki Anno asked her what she would say if she woke up to find someone strangling her. On request, Miyamura performed the "Anata baka!" line and demonstrated the Eva roar. But the highlight was the live dubbing session, where three scenes from Eva were played, and she voiced Asuka's part in front of us. The first was a fight with the Angels where she kicked ass, the second was her introducing Shinji to her Eva unit, and the third was where she and Shinji were having an argument after a battle. I was amazed at how swiftly and completely she dropped into character, full of fire and energy. Very impressive transformation.
The cosplay comp was pretty entertaining and largely pain free. Highlights included a guy who danced an Idol Master routine with a dead serious expression and complete knowledge of the moves, the most adorable 12 year old and 8 year old sister pair as winged characters from Touhou Project, an FFXIII group whose white robe costumes were unveiled to reveal another set of fighting costumes beneath, and a Loveless dance that was unsettlingly charged but a genuine example of dance as story that I have never seen at a con before.
I caught a few of the AMVs and some of the karaoke finals, and wandered through the stalls without picking up anything this time. Although I did stand in front of a plush Mokona for several minutes wondering if I really was too old for it.
I have to say, I'm still not completely sold on the Town Hall venue, although it is convenient to be able to just go upstairs from the train station. It's a bit of a maze, and the sound still carries between the main stage and the art stage, with ambient noise permeating both. It is a lovely building though, and to be able to watch the cosplay from plush red velvet seats in the gallery was kind of cool.
I caught up with aerias
and Chris. Everyone else though seemed like they were ten years younger than me. Some of these kids probably weren't even born when Eva first screened. I felt like a bit of a dinosaur, and kind of wished there were more of my fellow dinosaurs around to chat about the prehistoric days.
I had a caramel mousse cake from the Guylian Cafe for dinner, since there was no one to stop me, and then I headed on to GRAPHIC!( Photos )