Yasumicon was great!!!!! XD
The joy of attending a good con is undeniable.
This afternoon, I went to Yasumicon at the Florida International University in Miami to set up for my yuri panel. I met up with the panel director in the Dealers' Room and like last year, he was extremely nice to work with. One of the other con staff members kindly offered to show me where my panel room is, so I went with him. Before the panel even began, the room was *packed* with people!! XD
I went through a brief "What is yuri?" segment- which I kept more brief than last year because *everyone* in the room seemed to be a Card-Carrying Yuri Fan. (Unlike last year, when many of the panel attendees seemed to be curious newcomers who were like, "What exactly is this yuri?") Then I covered the broad characteristics of shoujo and shonen yuri, the history of yuri (including Nobuko Yoshiya, Riyoko Ikeda, Go Nagai, Takarazuka, and the yuri manga magazines), and early yuri anime milestones- Oniisama E (first heavily yuri-ish anime), Sailor Moon (first anime with happy yuri), and the Revolutionary Girl Utena series and movie (continuing the move towards positive portrayals of yuri).
Then I had the usual "Yuri Anime" segment, in which I presented slides of different series in chronological order (beginning with Oniisama E and ending with Sasameki Koto), briefly described them, and presented a clip of each one so that the panel goers who hadn't seen this or that series could get a taste of what it's like- a yuri smorgasbord, if you will. Unfortunately, I didn't show clips of Aoi Hana or Saki, because I didn't have time to pull up the videos online. -_-;; But I praised Aoi Hana to the heavens, and told everyone that both Saki and Aoi Hana are streaming for free on Crunchyroll.
Then I did the "Best Yuri Manga" segment, in which I showed off/gushed over the slides for various titles (also noting which authors are particularly big "names" among yuri fans): Strawberry Shake Sweet, Hayate x Blade, Aoi Hana, Sasameki Koto, Girl Friends, The Conditions for Paradise, Rica'tte Kanji!?, Octave, and Free Soul. (I actually like Love My Life more than Free Soul now, but the cover image of Ichigo and Eri, as salacious as it isn't, might raise the hackles of some hyper-sensitive con-goer or con staffer who reacts with "OMG, A BRA!!!!" Like the people who react to the end of the Aoi Hana OP with "OMG, NUDE WIMMINS!!!" -_-;; Grow up, people. But I guess that sort of prudence is necessary to keep the panel okay for people under-18.)
Next came "Yuri To Show To People Who You Despise." :) As in my most recent panel, the titles in this segment were Fight! Iczer One and the ICE OAV. I've been wanting to watch at least a part of the Blue movie because it sounds so mind-numbingly awful that it would probably be perfect for this part of the panel, but I haven't been able to find it online.
Then I ended the panel with a "Fin" slide featuring a cute picture of Kyoshiro to Towa no Sora's Kaon and Himiko, and answered questions from the audience. :)
I was a really fun panel!! ^^ Not only did the audience seem to be a 99% yuri fan crowd, there were more girls at the panel this year than last year- at least 50% in the beginning. I'm not sure why. It was pretty amusing how nearly all of the girls were like "OMG Haruka and Michiru!!" when I got to the Sailor Moon S slide, but a lot of guys were like "...buh? There's yuri in Sailor Moon?" There was a small group of teenage LFBs who expected HLS, but left before the panel finished- no loss. Most of the audience was great, though. :) It was just really fun seeing everybody laughing at the funny/ridiculous parts of the clips and saying things like "They're one of my favorite couples!"
After the panel, I walked around the con, mainly browsing through the Dealer's Room. It was great to see the cosplayers- there are always some great costumes! ^^ I perused the DVD offerings, and saw the different seasons of Marimite being sold, along with the Kashimashi and Gakuen Alice box sets. :) But I primarily looked at the merchandise- like cell phone straps, posters, and key chains. There was a ton of Kuroshitsuji merchandise. I enjoyed watching Kuroshitsuji, but I was still surprised at how much there was- I have no doubt it will be licensed.
Like last year, I amused myself by looking at some of the covers of the stacks of (plastic-wrapped) doujinshi being sold at one of the dealer tables- although nothing this year was as hilarious as last year's glittery pink FMA doujinshi, or the Haruhi Suzumiya doujinshi titled "Baby bam bam!" in which Kyon and Itsuki have a baby, judging from the cover. I saw a few yuri doujinshi, but none that didn't make me weep a little inside. ;__; (Certainly none from the circles I like.) The manga weren't as deeply discounted as I remember seeing in previous years at various cons. Maybe because of the economy. There were a ton of people, though. In the end I bought some strawberry Pocky, strawberry-flavored Ramune, and a giant chocolate Pocky stick, which I'm enjoying now. :3 (I normally don't buy much at cons. ^^;;) There were a ton of other activities- like a spontaneous dance contest-, and in the end everybody seemed to be having fun. Oh, and when I was leaving the con, I heard somebody say "Hey, Yuri!" It was three guys who went to my panel, and they told me that it was a good panel! ^^ Hehe.
Regarding next year: after I finished my panel, the panel director asked me if I would like to return to next year's Yasumicon and do another yuri panel! Definitely!! ^^