June 19, 2014

Get Ready For TOYCON 2014

Get ready for this year's iteration of the country's biggest and grandest pop-culture event as TOYCON 2014 celebrates their 13th anniversary on June 20 - 22 at the Megatrade Hall of SM Megamall.

The Philippine Toys, Hobbies and Collectibles Convention, or TOYCON as it’s more widely-known, is Asia’s biggest and longest running convention for collectibles, toys, anime, comics, cosplay, gaming and anything and everything related to hobbies and collections. Started since 2002, it's now on its 13th year of thrilling fans and aficionados alike. It's biggest pop culture event in the country putting a record of about 25,000 attendees annually.

In celebration of the 75th Anniversary of DC Comics Batman, a display and art gallery area which features a life-size batpod of the Dark Knight Detective will be on display at the event. A kids play area and new batman merchandise are also included in the list of activities.

Samurai X fanatics are in for a good run. Warner Brothers will preview the Rurouni Kenshin live-action film trilogy Parts II (The Great Kyoto Fire) and III (The Legend Ends) as well as a display of the original costumes from the movie.

Love cosplay? Let Alodia Gosiengfiao adore you with her performance, on and off her booth on the second day as well as Ashley Gosiengfiao's lively tunes alongside her band, Midnight Meetings on the third day. Not only that, there will be the standard individual on Saturday and the group cosplay competition on Sunday. But the biggest cosplay event this year is the Philippine finals of World Cosplay Summit. Who will be the pair to represent our country this August in Nagoya, Japan? We definitely can't wait!

TOYCON would not be complete with the usual gaming line-up. Level-Up, War Gaming, Cherry Credits and Uplink will be providing free play of their latest games. New for this year are some of the country's independent gaming developers showcasing their games to the public.Lastly, Occulus Rift demonstrations and gaming tournaments courtesy of Hive.Ph, Reimaru Files, & Back2Gaming will be there to fulfill your gaming appetite.

Last but not the least, enjoy the biggest and largest exhibitor hall for anything geek and nerdy. From coca-cola collectibles to die cast figurines, anime figmas and gundams, comics and graphic novels, novelty merchandise and apparel, there will always be something that will unleash the eccentric collector in you.

So come in and join the fun! Tickets will be 130php (at the entrance) and 180php from SM Tickets (130 plus additional 50php service charge). Gate opens at 10am at the Megatrade Halls 1-3 at SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City.

This is co-presented by Collectibles Unlimited and the SM Megatrade Halls, and sponsored by Maxi Collector, Toy Kingdom, Toy Empire, Warner Brothers Pictures and Pacific Licensing. With special thanks to Big Boys Toy Store, Great Toys, Arigatoys, Authority Hoodie, Transfer It, Otaku Asia, War Gaming, Uplink, Level-Up, Cubizone, Canon, Level-Up, Cherry Credits, CIIT, Loctite, Walt Disney Studios, gaming Library and Resorts World Manila. With media partners, ABS-CBN, Flip Geeks, Reimaru Files, WheninManila.com, Chalk Magazine, UNO Magazine, Manila Bulletin, Inquirer.net and 99.5 PLAY FM. Also supported by Anime Alliance and World Cosplay Summit.


May 20, 2014

My Cosplay Message To The Public

Year 2007 I came across to a guy who open and showed me the other side of the world. To my surprise, I'd never thought that it would be possible. I thought I'll just see this characters on screens, but hey? It is possible! THE COSPLAYERS. They look different to me, and I'm going to call them unique. 

I never saw this kind of people who has this kind of talent and take every bit of opportunity to showcase what they have. They might not be good at school, or maybe just love playing online games, or maybe, just maybe, a high school dropout. Not a professional to some but some are ants who work hard for everything. Nevertheless, they are talented and responsible people who love their craft with passion and contentment. 

In the public eye they might be called as "nerds", "out of this world " or even worst, a "loser" but as humans we should be reminded of the saying "Never judge the book by its cover". You see them acting, portraying or even mimicking characters that they love while talking about episodes of an anime or an OVA movie for hours. To some they may be absurd but to them it's how they reminisce every bits and pieces of detail they love the most. 

Never laugh at them because these people are serious. They have wide range of optimism and hardship. Yes, it's costly but don't get me wrong because I can clearly see that their efforts are paying off. 

As time pass by I tried to tackle things about cosplay. I got reasonable answers. Reasonable enough for me to say that "parents may want to make their child look up on these kinds of people." 

Girlfriends! You might watch out as these kinds of people tend to be SUPER busy whenever they have an upcoming event and that it takes much of their so-called QUALITY TIME (Just kidding, but we must understand): 

  1. They are having fun, and keeping their grounds. They might take it to another level but remember that they are having a great time. 
  2. It is a stress buster for them as they get to express themselves as to who they are and what they wanted to be. 
  3. Your talent will continue to develop. Learn how to improve yourself. 
  4. Imagination. If you are happy with your selfies what more if you can have it collaborate with friends? 
They may look weird in such a way but cosplayers are eccentric, free-spirited people who are living their lives to the fullest just as they wanted.

May 14, 2014

Deja Vu on New Kojie San Indonesian Ad

Remember Kojie San? Well this time they started to expand their brand overseas with the release of their product line in Indonesia. This may not be something interesting but their latest advertising ad may spark a reminiscence to one of their famous ads in the Philippines back in 2010.

For those who don't know have a clue, one of the first print ads for Kojie San in the Philippines was endorsed by the now famous Alodia Gosiengfiao. The "cosplay goddess" went to the selection process by simply presenting her cosplay photos to the executives. After that, as with most people would say, the rest is history.

So what are the similarities? Pretty much everything is recreated. From the dress, backdrop, the sword and even the lighting, it's pretty much identical . Here are the differences:
(Left) Original ad from 2010 and the latest Indonesian  ad (Right)
  • Obviously, the Indonesian ad is flipped horizontally 
  • Larger wood columns on the door at the left while it's smaller on the right ad.
  • Alodia Gosiengfiao on the left (Obviously?!). The model on the right is Filipina model, Christine Grace Co.
What's really special about the right is definitely the sword used. It's a second generation "Kirishitan Katana 1060 Series" from Geisha's Blade. They are famous in the Philippines for creating Japanese-inspired swords. They also recreated swords based of anime the series Sword Art Online, Fate/ Stay Night, and Samurai X as well as the high frequency blade from Metal Gear Rising.

Kirishitan Katana 1060 Series (2nd Gen) from Geisha's Blade
Now why do they need to replicate it instead of using the original photos? We don't know but our best guess is due to copyright issues. Is this an Alodia rip-off? Not really. What do you think? Leave a comment below and tells us who did better among the two.

April 19, 2014

Banzai Unveils Trick Art Gallery This Easter

Actor-restaurateur Marvin Agustin is set to unveil the new trick art gallery on April 20, Easter Sunday, at Banzai: The Great Teppanyaki Theater, the latest in the string of restaurants he owns and operates.

      Located at SM Mall of Asia (By the Bay) in Pasay City, Banzai is the country’s biggest authentic Japanese buffet restaurant, with a the widest menu of choices made from mostly-imported ingredients. 

     Banzai’sunique trick art gallery is composed of three settings featuring Japanese scenes, props, and costumes – a samurai enclave, a sumo wrestling arena, and a colorful Japanese street scene, which diners can use for photo ops to make their Banzai experience truly memorable.

       On Easter Sunday, Banzai plays host to a set of professional cosplayers to pose with diners at the trick art gallery. Diners who upload photos taken with the cosplayers on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram with the hashtag #banzai get a chance to join a special contest.All entries must be uploaded by April 21, 11:59 pm and must tag @Banzai_PH (Instagram/ Twitter) and Banzai PH) to qualify. Entries with the most number of likes will be awarded with Banzai gift certificates. 

Diners can also get a chance to win one of 10 lunch vouchers, one of five dinner vouchers, or one of ten cake vouchers all valid for 30 days at the Banzai Easter Egg Hunt. Kids are also sure to have a great time with the Banzai Kiddie Fun Treat featuring face painting, balloon twisting, a mime actor, and a special kiddie buffet.

Established by Agustin and his partners in February 2014, Banzai has a maximum seating capacity of 300 and prides itself in being the Philippines’ all-unlimited, all-authentic Japanese buffet.

January 15, 2014

Marble Wonlerland Arrives in Manila

Are you "Kawaii"? Do you want to explore the world of kawaii culture and fashion? Get a chance to enjoy all of these on the 17th of January as Marble Wonderland is coming to the Philippines at Movie Stars Cafe, SM Mall of Asia, Pasay City.

Originally  a concept that was adopted from the "Cool Japan Project" which aims to spread the "KAWAII" (cute) culture to southeast Asian countries such as Indonesia, Singapore, and the Philippines, Marble Wonderland will have their own fashion show as well as live cosplay shows of Japanese Anime.The project was sponsored by the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade & Industry (METI). Items exhibited on the fashion show will be made available locally through Halo Halo Mall under the online shop name "Asia KAWAII Way" beginning January 17.

Other highlights include the launching of a new Filipino idol group, "Alodia's Sisters".  There will also be a competition for those aspiring "kawaii" ladies in which the winner will win 50,000php and will be working alongside Alodia Gosiengfiao as a new member for the said group. Two runner-ups will get 10,000php and an assortment of Alodia goods.

Finally are dance performances from Kamen Liar 217 and Miumi. They are currently members of a Japanese dance group, "Guilty Hearts". Their excellent dancing skills and charismatic charm made them popular through a popular video-sharing site in Japan: Nico Nico Douga. Both of their videos have reached more than 1 million views.

The event will also serve as a disaster relief fundraising in cooperation with the Girl Meets Girl project. The amount of proceeds will be donated to aid Typhoon Yolanda victims. 

For more information please check the official Movie Star Cafe event page for more details.