Crowd shot of Anime Expo 2014Anime Expo 2014: Another convention come and gone! Over the last few years, Peter has introduced me to the world of anime—I had only ever watched Sailor Moon has a kid—and I’ve become obsessed with Naruto, Bleach and the culture and community that surrounds anime and manga. So when planning our conventions for the year, I knew that Anime Expo was a must-go.

It was by far the biggest Con we’ve ever been to—we heard that they expected more than 200,000 people be there over the course of the weekend—and we barely got to see everything this awesome Con had to offer. We waited nearly 2 hours to get our badges on Saturday, but it wasn’t entirely miserable. Everyone in line was friendly, they had put up canopies to ward up the sun and I was even able to snag a popsicle (best $2 Peter ever spent, he said).

Since it was the 20th anniversary of Sailor Moon and the premiere of the new Sailor Moon Crystal, obviously Sailor Moon was a huge draw. And 20 years after first watching Sailor Moon and wishing that I could be Sailor Mars, I got to be her! Whenever my friends and I played Sailor Senshi as kids, I was always Jupiter, but longed to be like Mars.

Emily as Sailor Mars

I love Rei because she is strong and reserved and devoted to her beliefs, but I never thought I was as pretty or cool as she was. I’ve talked before how cosplay has helped me to work through my issues with anxiety and negative body image, and so—like with Red Sonja—I knew I wanted to finally achieve a lifelong dream of seeing myself as Sailor Mars.

This Con was especially special because I was able to introduce my best friend to the world of conventions! She’s been hearing about all of our past Cons for the last few years, and even helped finish part of my Red Sonja cosplay. Like me, she has always loved costumes and actually has a real talent for crafts and sewing.  And when I’d told her we’d be going to the Expo and I wanted to do Sailor Mars, she excitedly said that she would be Sailor Jupiter (a dream of hers, as well.)

Probably the best part of the entire Expo was when Becca and I were hanging out and these two little girls make a beeline straight for us and proudly show us that they have a Luna plush. Both of the girls were wearing Sailor tiaras and excitedly asked us questions and talked about Sailor Moon. The littlest one asked me, “I thought Sailor Mars had purple hair?” but then her sister showed her that in the pictures, it’s black. Then the littlest girl turned to me and whispered, “Are you guys real?” I told her yes, but not to tell anyone. When they left, Becca and I turned to each other and just smiled big, big smiles. That’s what it’s all about, man.

One of the coolest things at the Expo were the cosplay sets. An entire hall was dedicated to Entertainment, which included a handful of physical sets, video game and table top gaming stations and more. The sets were fun to play around in and it really made the characters come to life, whether it was in the classroom or the forest. Another awesome thing was this 360 degree shoot. You stood still on a moving platform and a camera took a 360 degree shot of you. Excellent for detailed cosplays! To see ours, simply hold down the mouse over our image and move back and forth!

We always have so much fun at Cons and there’s just not enough room to talk about everything. Click through the gallery to see some of our favorite moments and make sure to head over to our Facebook to see all of our photos from this weekend!

Cosplayers: If we took a photo of you, contact us and we’ll link to your pages! 


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Co-Founder at Wrong Button Media
Emily Kelley is a writer, actress, video game junkie, comic book nerd, and future galactic war hero. She lives in Los Angeles and spends most of her time at the Disney Interactive office. Along with being a multiple award winning journalist, she is an avid RPGer, cosplay noob, and mother to two beautiful cats.
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