I took the trip to the great New York City to attend Liberty City Anime Con 2017 some time ago. It was my first time attending the convention, as well as the convention’s first time in its new location, Times Square. During my two days there (I attended the Friday and Saturday) I roamed the convention floor to find what it had to offer.
The Sights of Liberty City Anime Con
In terms of events, this was one of the smaller cons I’ve attended. All the panels were either fan panels or guest panels from American industry members, but no industry panels or booths. The opening ceremony had a familiar feel like the convention was put on by people just looking to have a good time. Unfortunately, the opening ceremonies, as well as some of the larger events, had to be held outside of the venue as the hotel had been double booked. The walk was only a block, but still, it’s not an ideal scenario. As for how I enjoyed the rest of the con, this is a more complicated matter.
If you’re like me and like to spend a lot at cons on Blu-rays and DVDs, then you’d be out of luck. The dealers hall at Liberty City Anime Con was very small and was mostly cosplay and figure related. If those are things that appeal to you, then there was a decent selection of both. Otherwise, this was not a con for the physical media collector. Artists alley was also fairly small, but there were things to be had in it.
Panels at Liberty City Anime Con
As for panels most of the guests were voice actors for English dubs of Anime. Many of them work on dubs by Media Blasters, but some had also worked on other projects at places such as Funimation. I attended two panels on voice acting. The first was hosted by Matt Shipman (voice actor, dub writer for New Game!) and Brittany Lauda (voice actor, ADR director). For the second panel, they were joined by others who work with Media Blasters.
Some insight was given into the process and the location of Media Blasters recording studio. Some bloopers for the dubs of World War Blue and Ladies vs Butlers were shown off to the attendants. Bloopers are always a blast. The panellists had great presence, and to me, this is where I had the most fun at the convention. Insights into the process of dubbing are always interesting to me, especially with behind the scenes of Funimation’s broadcast dubs. Both Shipman and Lauda discussed this (Shipman was writing an episode of New Game! in the hotel room he was staying at for the con).
However, other than these panels, my experience at the con was fairly lacklustre. Much of my enjoyment came from simply walking around the venue with my friends. This isn’t a deal breaker, cons are a place where anime fans can simply hang out with peers and be themselves. Though, you don’t need to be at a convention to feel that way.
Was Liberty City Anime Con For Me?
Overall, Liberty City Anime Con was an experience that I don’t regret having. In the heart of Times Square, I got to hang out with friends in a place full of anime fans. There was lots of good cosplay to look at, and the panels I attended were entertaining (I need to watch the full World War Blue dub when I get the chance). If I were asked if I were to attend next year though, I’d probably answer no. It is surely a fine con for many, and I wouldn’t tell people not to go, but it isn’t the con for me. It could, however, be the con for you.