Oct 16, 2012
Oh-No Manga’s first foray into the events scene didn’t come as a surprise to us. We knew they were really pushing to get their manga publication into the mainstream public. We even got a chance to interview them a few months back, and suffice to say, their efforts in entering into the Philippine manga scene is nothing short of impressive and well-timed.
To further increase awareness of Oh-No Manga’s existence, the publishing company organized a huge one-day event called Oh-No Manga! Cosplay Camp last July 29 at the Skydome of SM North EDSA. Oh-No Manga pulled out all the stops to advertise and pitch the event to cosplayers, otakus, and even local indie comics/manga artists. And we’re not exaggerating when we say the event was overcrowded! The tickets were already sold out at just a couple of hours after lunch, which left most of the oncoming visitors stranded outside the walkways of SM North Skydome area.
This is actually my first time seeing the insides of SM North’s Skydome. It wasn’t as huge as I imagined. It’s probably just equal to one SMX Function Hall (converted to a spherical area instead). With an estimated 1500-2000 seating capacity, foot traffic definitely became a problem. I’m not particularly sure about the estimated number of attendees, but it surely far exceeded the Skydome capacity. Add the many booths and tables neatly arranged at the center of the dome and by the edges of the bleachers, and you’ve got an event area as packed as a train station on the rush hours of Friday. The vicinity of the stage area had the worst foot traffic during that day. There was little space for the audience to stand and watch, and any passage up front had been completely blocked. The sheer number of cosplayers, otakus, and curious event-goers was simply too many for Skydome to handle.
Cosplay Camp had its surprises, most astonishing of which was the 18-ft Gundam Unicorn statue. No sirs and madams, it wasn’t commissioned by a third-party statue maker or shipped from Japan. The staff of Oh-No Manga did all the hard work. The statue required some assembly due to its sheer size. But in its full glory, the statue was the best thing the Philippines had, in terms of fan-made scale model replicas. It’s an amazing piece of art that deserves more attention. I do hope it gets more exposure outside of Oh-No Manga events, and some aesthetic improvements to the model as well.
Being in the komiks/manga industry, Oh-No Manga invited indie artists to promote and sell their self-published titles. The organizers from Komikon were also present to promote their next event, Winter Komikon (October 27th, 2012). There were a lot of indie comic/manga titles around the event, though not as much as your yearly Komikon. In addition to giving the indie comics industry a certain degree of spotlight, the “Cosplay Camp” motif of the event was also made important with its own cosplay building seminar.
Oh-No Manga’s debut into the local J-pop culture events scene is something to be welcomed. It’s a simple, yet large-scale way, to provide exposure for indie artists outside of the yearly Komikon events, while still maintaining that Pinoy otaku vibe that keeps everyone coming back.
Expect more events from Oh-No Manga in the future, as they make bigger pushes to market their manga publication and increase awareness about the thriving indie comic industry we have.
Videos at the next update