Otaku event is returning as public health improves, but personal health is important too.

For 44 solid years, no matter what else was going on in the world, otaku could count on Comiket taking place. After starting in 1975, Japan’s largest gathering of self-published dojinshi manga creators grew exponentially in popularity, eventually evolving into its modern form of a three-day, twice-a-year event held in August and December.

The chain of otaku memories was broken, though, in 2020, with the coronavirus-caused cancellation of what would have been Comiket 98. Since then, Comiket’s next iteration has been repeatedly postponed, but in August the event’s organizers announced that Comiket 99 will take place on December 30 and 31, barring any worsening of public health conditions.

With infection numbers decreasing in Japan, it looks like Comiket really will return this winter, like a phoenix rising from the ashes. At the same time, the organizers have some advice for otaku: it’s time for them to rise from the couch and get some exercise.

Comiket takes up several halls at the sprawling Tokyo Big Sight convention center, and the focus on small independent creator circles selling wares in very limited quantities means fans have to cover a lot of ground very quickly to get the most out of their time at the convention. But with a two-year gap since the last Comiket, and dozens of smaller regional anime events also cancelled during the pandemic, plus the safety impetus of living a stay-home lifestyle during that time, a lot of otaku have been leading an especially sedentary existence since the winter 2019 Comiket. The announcement that Comiket is coming back this December led one hopeful participant on Japanese website Togetter to comment that participants and staff might want to start getting in some regular exercise, and the official Comiket Twitter account agrees, tweeting:

“’In the two years since the last Comiket, some of us have probably gotten really out of shape! For a lot of people, it might even be dangerous for them to participate in their current state, so let’s start getting some exercise!’

Some of us on the Comiket Preparatory Committee feel the same way, so we’ve started going for longer walks for exercise.”

Commenters could see the logic behind the advice, even though some of them didn’t necessarily need to be told.

“Yeah, I seriously need to build up my stamina.”
“It’s crazy how much walking you end up doing at Comiket.”
“Honestly, I don’t think I could make it through Day 1 right now.”
“No problems here. I’ve been getting tons of steps in playing Dragon Quest Walk.”
“I’m actually in better shape than I was before, thanks to Ring Fit Adventure.”

And for any otaku who needs some music for their workout playlist, this should be a good choice to start with.

Source: Twitter/@comiketofficial via Otakomu, Togetter
Top image: Pakutaso (edited by SoraNews24)
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