I was ignoring writing the all-important MegaHobby Expo Spring 2013 coverage yesterday (I’ll finish it up today, sorry) in order to attend a once-a-year event: Anime Boston, the biggest anime convention in my home state of Massachusetts! It was pouring rain and an altogether awful day outside yesterday, so I didn’t feel like doing my yearly Coby Marine outfit cosplay, but I still went to Anime Boston with high hopes for bringing home some great One Piece swag! I didn’t end up bringing much home at all, but I did see some pretty neat stuff…
As far as One Piece MegaHouse Portrait Of Pirates selection goes, the show was almost a total bust. I was hoping to see a One Piece POP Jimbei or P.O.P. Silvers there, but the selection was pretty limited to reissues of Sailing Again Luffy, Sanji, and Nami. I saw an (overpriced) Gecko Moria at one booth, as well as Perona, Sailing Again Perona, Benn Beckman, and Marco–all at inflated prices. The best figure I saw anywhere in the Dealer’s Room was a One Piece P.O.P. Franky Strong Edition figure, but I felt like even he was somewhat overpriced at $155.
There was not a single One Piece WCF (World Collectable Figure) at the show that I could find. This was a major letdown, as last year there was a booth that had a table filled with Banpresto WCFs. I was hoping to add to my small One Piece WCF collection this weekend, but that was not to be.
Possibly the coolest thing at the show was Anime Boston’s Artist Alley, where one of the artists had made up some custom One Piece magnets of the Straw Hats! I went back and forth and back and forth in my mind before deciding not to spend ~$30 to get the two Brook magnets, but I think that I’m very likely to regret that decision in the future. Adorable stuff.
The one and only item I bought at the convention–One Piece or otherwise–was a One Piece Carue plushie by Recommembers. I knew that the Recommembers Carue plush toy existed, but I had no idea it was so large or detailed until I saw it in person. Carue retails for 1500 yen overseas, so I was happy to purchase him for $30 and avoid having to pay shipping fees and waiting for him to come in the mail. I was tempted by the Unluckies (who were also there), but I could bring myself to drop another 60 bucks for them. However, Carue is an absolutely terrific plush toy that I can fully recommend if you’re a fan of Carue at all and want a soft, huggable version of the best One Piece duck.
As far as cosplayers go, I think the number of Trafalgar Law cosplayers outnumbers all other One Piece cosplays at the show all put together. Seriously, you couldn’t throw a rock without hitting a Trafalgar Law cosplayer (not that I tried). I saw a great Tony Tony Chopper cosplay that was a standout, and there were plentiful Nami, Luffy, and Ace cosplays as well. A little sad there was no representation at all for Tashigi, Smoker, or Caesar Clown. I did see an amazing group of One Piece Film Z coplayers (including a Franky!), but they gave my wife the stink-eye when she took their photo, so I won’t bother posting their photo here (I’m bitter like that).
Overall, Anime Boston was kind of an “Ehn” convention for me this year. Bad weather, virtually no good programming at the show, and not as many cool cosplays as past years, and not much in the way of exciting merchandise. I’m satisfied to have my new Carue plushie to hug and love, and I’m certain I’ll be back for Anime Boston 2014 to try my luck again.