Otakon Tweets on the Sidebar

I’ve activated a widget which shows the two lateast tweets from my twitter on the sidebar.  You can click to go to my twitter by clicking “Latest Tweets” or you can click to see each individual tweet.

Since I’m unsure whether I’ll have internet access within the convention center (it looks like most of the center is within about 300m of a wireless router across the street, I’m not taking any chances), I may end up having to post many of my updates via text message to twitter.  This way, a visitor to my site can see the lateast of what’s happening at Otakon.

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Web Stats for July 2008

July saw a massive increase in traffic from June, probably largely thanks to the fact that I’m actually posting things again, unlike my slow months of May and June.  The traffic did start trailing off at the end (relatively) but I was still holding between 300 and 400 visits a day for the most part.  July was easily the best month for my blog (previous best was April) as I passed 10,000 visits for the first time as well as 20,000 page views for the first time.
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Otakon Schedule Up

Here it is (pdf).

Huge gaps in the Hall D schedule and all.  Not sure what’s up with that, since I don’t recall such big gaps last year.  One person on the forum suggested that it was rehearsals, though I don’t know for what since Masquerade rehearsals appears to be in the Arena.  However, they don’t have TBAs either, so it’s possible that there is just nothing going on in there, which seems like a waste of space to me.

I’m also curious about the TBA between 12:30 and 2:30 PM in the HD theater on Friday.  Possibly Evangelion?  I’m not sure what else might be there which they wish to keep a secret unless it’s Ponyo.

Also, why have 3 workshop rooms if the vast, vast majority of the time there is nothing going on in there (by my count, there is a total of 46 hours of workshops.  At 38 hours of total convention time…38 hours x 3 rooms = 46 hours or programming?  I’m just sayin’.

Update

Looking back at last year’s schedule (I still have the booklet from last year), there were some gaps in the what was called Main Events room last year as well.  This year there is about 15 hours of dead time in Hall D while last year there was 17.5 hours, so it’s actually basically the same, plus 9 hours were spent on the Masquerade and a concert, which are taking place in the area this year.  So in reality, Otakon went from 13 hours of non-masquerade non-concert programming to 23 hours so it’s actually a significant increase, despite all the dead time.  And this doesn’t even account for 2 hours where the hall was used along with Video 1 for the AMV Contest.

So I guess despite all of the gaps in the Hall D schedule, it’s still a significant increase in programming.  I just think that it’s still a waste to have so much dead time, though, when you could be showing some popular shows (see: Girl Who Leapt Through Time) a 2nd or even 3rd time during those slots, but that’s just me.  I’m not organizing the thing and there are probably good reasons for the gaps.

Spice and Wolf – Anime Review

The Essentials

Name: Spice and Wolf
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Episodes: 13
Released: January 8, 2008 – March 23, 2008
Based On: Spice and Wolf light novels by Isuna Hasekura
Director: Takeo Takahashi
Produced By: IMAGIN
US Distribution By: N/A (licensed by Kadokawa Pictures USA)

Major Japanese Cast

Holo: Ami Koshimizu
Craft Lawrence: Jun Fukuyama
Nora: Mai Nakahara
Kuroe: Kaori Nazuka
Zeren: Daisuke Namikawa

Major English Cast

N/A

Scores

Animation: 8/10 (x 4 = 32 pts)
Story: 6/10 (x 4 = 24 pts)
Music: 9/10 (x 4 = 36 pts)
Coherence/Story Arc: 8/10 (x 2 = 16 pts)
English Dubs: N/A
Gut Score: 6/10 (x 5 = 30 pts)

Total: 138/190 (72.6%)

Review

Spice and Wolf is about a traveling merchant, Craft Lawrence, and the harvest wolf god Holo. Holo had always blessed the wheat crop of the country area called Yoitsu, causing good crops, but over time, as better ways of growing the crops were developed, the people of the area stopped relying on Holo’s help, and so she escapes the area by hiding in Lawrence’s wagon.

While Lawrence doesn’t appreciate the company to start with, Holo has a keen eye (and ears) for a good – or bad – deal, a trait which Lawrence eventually starts to appreciate. In return for this, Lawrence agrees to eventually agree to travel with Holo to return her to her homeland in the north.

The primary thing that drives this show along is Holo and her personality and interactions with Lawrence – especially since they are largely the only two major characters in the entire series. While Holo is indeed an intriguing character, it’s hard for a single character to carry an entire series, and that ends up being the case here. I think Spice and Wolf would have been good had either more gone on or the length of the show was cut in half or so, but a show about economics dragging on for 12 or 13 episodes just doesn’t work that well. Oh yeah, and Holo being naked half the time is kind of annoying to me.

The technicals of the show – the animation and music – are good enough, I suppose, and this may be a worth series to watch if you’ve already seen everything else, but there are just so many other series out there which are better and more entertaining to watch than this.

First Watched: January – March 2008
Do I Own: No
Do I Recommend: No