Ota-cool Incoming! for August 2013

Surprise! It’s August already, and 2013 is just whipping on through. Seems like only yesterday that I was pondering whether to start marathoning all of the Marvel Comics movies that I haven’t seen to prepare myself for Iron Man 3 (for the record, that’s Iron Man 2, Captain America, Thor and The Avengers … yes, I’m just as behind on my live-action movie watching as I am with my anime watching and manga reading, sigh) … and before I realized it, I had missed the theatrical run of not only that, but also Star Trek: Into Darkness AND Man of Steel. AND I’m going to have to hurry to catch Monsters University, too. I did manage to catch Despicable Me 2 (human characters were okay, Minions were awesome) and Pacific Rim (human characters were okay, Jaegers versus Kaiju were awesome), though, so at least there was that.

The summer movie blockbuster season may be winding down, but it seems like the Ota-cool Incoming! calendar is heating up, with no less than five, count ’em, five events taking place over the weekend starting on Friday. I think this pretty much covers all the high points for the next few weeks; of course, if anything new worth noting arrives here at Otaku Ohana Central, I’ll try to let you all know as soon as my schedule allows.

To the calendar!

Close-up detail of Julie Feied's "Tomo-e-Ame," which will be part of the exhibit. Yes, if you've been paying attention, this was part of MangaBento's exhibit as well.

’90s Anime Art Exhibit: The Loading Zone (47 N. Hotel St.) in the Chinatown art district is hosting this artistic tribute to the days of Evangelion, Escaflowne, Sailor Moon, Cowboy Bebop and countless other series that I’ve loved that now officially qualify as “vintage” anime. Sigh. MangaBento Tomo-e-Ameparticipating artists Julie Feied, Devin Oishi and Dennis Imoto will have work in this exhibit, as will artist Chanel Tanaka.

From 7 to 11 p.m. Friday, as part of First Friday, there will be music by VJ Christian Berg, a dance performance by Blank Canvas, a fashion show presented by Visual Kei Dark Castle at 9 p.m., and Aloha Beer Company specialty beer on tap.

From 7 p.m. to midnight Aug. 9, you can meet the artists and enjoy an improv show by Mr. Aaron Presents from 8 to 10 p.m. and a cosplay contest at 10 p.m.

Both events will feature caricatures by Andy Lee and an art workshop; cover at each event is $5. And if you can’t make either event, the exhibit itself will be up through Aug. 26. Gallery hours are 3 to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, or by appointment. Visit www.facebook.com/events/205760262908791 (no Facebook login required).

Aiea Library Anime Club: Young adult librarian Diane Masaki will be screening episodes of Hetalia Axis Powers at the library, 99-143 Moanalua Road. For more information or to RSVP, call 483-7333 or e-mail aiealibraryanimeclub@yahoo.com. 3 p.m. Saturday.

Kawaii Kon Beach Day: Watermelon smashing! Sand-castle building contests! Watermelon smashing! The Cosplay Runway! Watermelon smashing! A game of Capture the Flag! And did I mention the watermelon smashing? Indulge your inner Gallagher and have some fun in the sun at Magic Island Beach Park. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

Comic Jam Hawaii: They’re baaaaaack! After a one-month break, this group of collaborative cartoon artists is back at Pearlridge Center for their regular first-and-third-Sunday-of-the-month gatherings at Pearlridge Center. As usual, locations within the mall may vary; visit www.facebook.com/groups/ComicJamHawaii (Facebook login required). Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Summer Smash 2013: It’s the island’s biggest Airsoft shoot-em-up event of the summer, presented by Impact Games and Ash Bash Productions at Hawaii All-Star Field off Nimitz Highway (someone correct me if I’m wrong, but I think that’s the patch of land just after the entrance to the Disabled American Veterans Hall). So how did this make it into Ota-cool Incoming!? Kawaii Kon will be there, preregistering attendees for the 2014 convention (preregister at Summer Smash, get an exclusive patch!) and hosting a cosplay contest, to boot. (I’m kinda hoping one team shows up as Social Welfare Agency Special Ops Section 2. Just because.) For more information on the event and where to register, visit www.facebook.com/events/357207584390708/ (no Facebook login required). Sunday.

MangaBento: This group of anime- and manga-inspired artists usually meets every second and fourth Sunday of the month at the Honolulu Museum of Art School (1111 Victoria St., room 200). Visit www.manga-bento.com. Next meeting: 1 to 4 p.m. Aug. 11.

Taku Taku Matsuri: A summer festival with an anime/manga slant featuring food, games, artists and vendors selling all sorts of cultural swag, photo shoots, live music, and the Cosplay Chess Brigade and Yu x Me Maid Cafe and Host Club, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 25 at Hawaii Kotohira Jinsha-Hawaii Dazaifu Tenmangu (1239 Olomea St.). Volunteers also needed; training sessions are at 1-3 p.m. Sunday and 10 a.m.-noon, 1-3 p.m. and 4-6 p.m. Aug 18. Meet at Hawaii Kotohira Jinsha-Hawaii Dazaifu Tenmangu for that, too.

Future Attractions

Mini Con 2013: The comic con in the handy petite size returns for its fourth year at McCully-Moiliili Library, 2211 S. King St. nemu*nemu artist Audra Furuichi has already confirmed her participation … and the date also happens to coincide with Star Wars Reads Day, so could a tie-in with that be forthcoming, too? Hmm. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Oct. 5.

Oni-Con Hawaii: Guests include Yuko Ashizawa, a fashion designer with Atelier Pierrot; Final Fantasy series composer Nobuo Uematsu and his band, the Earthbound Papas; Hiroshi Takahashi, voice of Ryu in the later Street Fighter games, Eiji Kikumaru in Prince of Tennis and Japan in Hetalia; and Sana, visual kei musician. Also featuring the Cosplay Chess Brigade and Yu x Me Maid Cafe & Host Club. Preregistration open now; $45 for a three-day pass. Hawai’i Convention Center, Nov. 1-3.

Kawaii Kon 2014: Guests include voice actors Michael Sinterniklaas and Stephanie Sheh and professional cosplayer Leah Rose. Preregistration open now; $37 for a three-day pass for children ages 5-12, $42 general admission. Hawai’i Convention Center, April 4-6, 2014.