Hardcore fans brave the elements and the crowds by lining up hours before start of dojinshi comic event.

For most people living in and around Tokyo, March 13 was a perfect day to stay in bed until noon. Being Sunday, schools and offices were closed, and a cold snap dropped temperatures back down to wintery single-digit Celsius numbers, with the skies grayed by advancing rainclouds all day long.

None of that was stopping hardcore anime fans from descending on Tokyo’s Big Sight convention center, though. The home of the twice annual Comiket dojinshi independent comics extravaganza also hosts other otaku-oriented events throughout the year, and last Sunday it was time for Haru Comic City 21, which focusses on the series currently in-vogue among female fans. The gates opened at 10 a.m., but since dojinshi tend to be produced in very limited quantities, if you’ve really got your heart set on buying something it’s critical that you be one of the first attendees through the door.

So, even before 6 o’clock in the morning, the line already looked like this…


…and it wasn’t going to be getting any shorter for several hours. In some places, the line was a dozen people wide, and still stretched as far as the eye could see.


Thankfully, the organizers did take some crowd control measures. Different halls held fan works related to different series, so the staff split early-arriving attendees into various queues depending on which area they were heading to once they got in. However, the benefits of this action were somewhat limited by the fact that so many frantic fujoshi had shown up in order to snag dojinshi based on Mr. Osomatsu, the current runaway hit among female anime fans in Japan.

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Sure, giving Mr. Osomatsu its own dedicated space inside Big Sight was a smart move, but the line to get in to said space still looked like this.

As a matter of fact, there was such a mass of humanity waiting to get into the Mr. Osomatsu area that in places it appeared more like a refugee camp or student protest site.


When you consider that some people started lining up four hours before the start of the event, which ran from 10 in the morning to 3 in the afternoon, it’s likely that some of them spent more time waiting for the doors to open than actually inside the event. But you know what they say, the early anime fan gets the dojinshi.

▼ And maybe a cold from standing around in the elements for so long.

Source: Yaraon via Anime News Network
Insert image: Akaboo