I went to the Promare Themed Cafe in Tokyo!
Today, I go onto the next part of my adventure so I thought I’d close out the Japan trip with unadulterated weeb trashhood.
Every time I come to Japan, something new thrills me and becomes a surprise highlight of the trip. This time, it was definitely all things related to Promare, the newest original anime movie from Studio Trigger.
My friend Audrey took me to the interactive 4DX screening while fellow Promare fan Megan went to the pop up cafe with me, and I spent multiple days hunting Promare merchandise, which was challenging. The merch was rare and expensive at second-hand shops, and new stuff isn’t coming out until December so it was slim pickings overall. I ended up biting the bullet and bought more blind packs than I ever have at the Promare cafe, until I got the elusive chibi Lio acrylic stand.
This is the sort of stuff you can’t do anywhere else but Japan. They make you jump through a lot of hoops to be in a fandom, from random lottery tickets, long lines, exclusive merch you can only get at elusive collaboration cafes or limited events, and those stupid blind packs. I really dislike blind packs lol
However, all this makes being a fan incredibly thrilling, as you have to work for it and it really makes you evaluate your dedication to a fandom. Do I want to get up at 6am to go stand in line for the CHANCE to get a time slot at an anime cafe to then spend a ton of money on food/drinks/merch? Do I truly love this anime enough to do it? Then, after all the uncertainty and wait, it feels like a true victory when you can get into an event or pull out that prized character from a blind pack, even if it takes 35 tries.
I love Promare even more now that I have devoted so much time to the fandom on this trip, so good job Japan?? All this is to say - go watch Promare if you have the opportunity! It’s one of the best anime movies I have ever seen and there is nothing like it out there. The concept, story, characters, design, animation and music are all incredible. It is slated for theatrical re-release in the USA in December!
And now I want to know: What fandom would make you get up at 6am to stand in line all day for?