Convention Recap: Akon 26 in Dallas, TX

First off, let me say “what a con!” I truly had a blast at Akon this year, so let’s recap the madness. It was about a 12 hour drive from Sioux Falls to Dallas. I actually really enjoy long drives, something zen about driving and gives me plenty of time to think about stuff.

I arrived at the con at about noon on Friday. Getting my badge was a painless process and I also met some of the con staff. I spent a bit of time checking out the con and getting reacclimatized to where everything is. I missed Akon last year. I also scored some autographs before my panel.

The time came for my panel on Friday night and it went really well. I got to show off my newly designed slides and the audience had a good time looking at some bad CGI and discussing what we all have and have not seen. (Picture of the attendees below)

I went to check out another panel, this one on podcasting, before taking off for the night and getting some rest before Saturday.

Saturday was a day full of panels and awesomeness. I met up with one of my friends and we attended a panel on translating manga. Little did we know, the panel head was also a translator who was going to be leading a Q/A session with Mitsuhisa Ishikawa, the “I” in Production IG. He displayed some unseen materials and promos from some of their works and answered questions about Production IG, the anime industry and anything else we wanted to ask. He was even so gracious to allow us to take a few pictures afterwards.


(Me on the left, Ishikawa on the right)

Production IG had some influential titles when I was first getting into anime. Ghost in the Shell was one of the first anime that I saw. This really was an amazing experience, and truly an honor to hear his opinions on the industry.

I attended a panel on voice acting, since I am looking for voice over talent. It was very informational since the panel was run by 3 different people and all came from different backgrounds, directorial, voice over for anime and voice over for gaming. Very cool stuff!

My friend and I grabbed a late lunch and checked out some more panels. One of which, was the Vertical panel on manga. They are the company that brought us the Flowers of Evil manga, which I highly suggested on this blog for just about anyone to read.

Sunday I allowed myself to be a little bit of a fan. I waited in line to get some Attack on Titan stuff signed by the voice actors. I went to the vendor room and picked up some merchandise, or should I say a mini library of art books. My love of art books may have to come in another post, but I picked up the following books.

Attack on Titan 1-4
These books contain the storyboards for several of the episodes and even show frame by frame drawings.

Kill La Kill
Admittedly, I haven’t actually finished this series yet but I had to pick up the book regardless. The show has such a unique style that I wanted to dive into behind the scenes content. I also haven’t seen this book anywhere before.

Terror in Resonance
I am excited for this show to be released at some point, but the overall design of this book was fantastic. I love looking at the background elements and seeing the hand painted detail. It even has a cool character flowchart to see how all of the characters are related to one another in the show.

Shinkai Collection
Speaking of sexy art books, the Shinkai book I picked up was fantastic. His artwork is simply stunning and again, the format of the book alone is worth a purchase.

I haven’t had a chance to really dive into all of these books, but as I get going through them I will get some comments or reviews of them up. I am eagerly awaiting Akon next year already.

And to the Akon staff, a big thank you for all of your work and planning!


Recent Viewing: Attack on Titan


The above trailer belongs to a series called Attack on Titan. It was a series that I watched in spurts when I had some downtime because the title has a pretty big buzz associated with it. The fact that you are reading this is evidence of that. You are either reading what another viewer thought or you have heard something about the title and are interested in knowing more.

I am going to start by being completely honest, I think this title is going to be a big series for the anime community when it gets released in the states (by FUNimation). The series is a stark contrast from a lot of the titles that are coming out. Attack on Titan is not a series based in comedy, not a musical promotion anime and not one for the harem crowd either.

The series takes place in a world where humanity has retreated to within tall walls to prevent “Titans” from getting in. Titans are giant fleshless human creatures that exist to wipe out humanity. There are various classes of Titans, some 12 feet tall and some with abilities, as you will see in the show.

The animation of the series is pretty enjoyable. Some have griped about the color palette, I personally didn’t mind it. There were lots of earthy tones, some oranges, tans, etc. I felt as if it felt the world they were portraying well. Considering the circumstances of the story, they wouldn’t have various colored buildings, etc. The action scenes are animated well, with several shots having unique camera views.

The soundtrack to the series enhanced the animation and the unique story. I was watching the stream so the title isn’t dubbed yet. I am excited to see the dub when it is eventually released. The opening tracks by Linked Horizon are some of the catchiest openings I have heard since Evangelion and Deathnote.


While the trailer provides a unique look at the world and the story, it really doesn’t do it justice. There is so much more to the series than story outline I described, but I want to avoid spoilers for readers who haven’t streamed it this season. Let me put it this way, Attack on Titan may be an early favorite for my presentation for next year’s SGMS conference.

Have you watched it yet? If not, go check it out on Crunchyroll, I don’t think you will be disappointed.