SMASH! 2014 in Review
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Chris: SMASH, Rosehill's anime answer to Sydney's Supanova, has come and gone. And what a convention it was!
Those looking for cosplay, anime-themed karaoke and a graffiti wall with scribbles from participants need look no further than SMASH! It's a mega-super-hyper-kawaii-awesome con that scratches the manga and anime itches, and even a couple of itches you never knew you had. For instance, I got my photo taken with Evangelion Unit 02, which is something I never knew I wanted until I stood beside the cosplayer and smiled like a dork as Christof took my photo.
Never too old, I say.
The con this year was packed to the rafters with people, purchases and purveyors of fine artwork; it's easily one of the fullest conventions I've ever visited outside of San Diego, which is heartening to see especially in somewhere a little off the beaten track as Rosehill. Inside and outside the main event I witnessed a cornucopia of cosplay and colour, and coupled with a day that began cold and foggy before eventually metamorphosing into a sunny, idyllic afternoon just made it all the better to be there.
Guest-wise, we were treated to three international people of note: first was Reika, touted as the "number 1 cosplayer in Japan", who showed up as Levi in probably the best Attack on Titan cosplay I've ever seen, who expounded on her love for anime and the channeling of that love into her costuming craft.
We also had Kotono Mitsuishi, the seiyuu (voice actress) behind Misato Katsuragi from Neon Genesis Evangelion and the eponymous protagonist of both Sailor Moon and its reboot Sailor Moon Crystal, amongst other characters. Resplendent in a royal purple kimono, Kotono-san talked about how her initial wish to enter childcare in Japan instead gave way to one of the most prolific anime voice careers in recent memory.
SMASH was definitely a big hit this year, especially in terms of the spacious and almost-certainly-filled-to-capacity Artists' Alley towards the back of the convention. What'd you think of it all, Christof? What stood out to you?