East Meets West [2016]

07 March 2017

Actually got up early on a weekend (wut?) and decided to run around to some spots I hadn’t been to in ages on the west side (west of me, anyway)! I really need to do a better job of taking pictures of the outsides of these places, lol. (Sorry for the crap cell phone quality. OTL)

First stop on my adventure was Big Lou’s, a consignment shop/slot car raceway on Sepulveda, where you can find all sorts of interesting things for sale.

From plushies to ornaments and from Hot Wheels to Transformers, there’s something for everyone here!

I’m pretty sure all those comic book standees are handmade. :O

Afterwards, made it over to Gardena’s Tokyo Central & Main supermarket, which used to be a Marukai.

Another reason to quit this hobby. DX

Here’s an entire section dedicated to Dragon Ball.

If Dollfies aren’t your thing, you can still invest in an Evangelion action figure that costs more than your car payment!

It’s a good thing I haven’t gotten into Gundam (yet)!

The Pokemon saw me coming, haha.

While I didn’t buy anything at Big Lou’s or Tokyo Central & Main, I did buy stuff at second-hand bookstore Book Off’s Del Amo and Gardena locations. I impulse bought the Nono action figure since I actually wound up liking Gunbuster 2: Diebuster the second time around and finally completed my (regular version) collection of the Japanese version of Your Lie in April — for much cheaper than what Kinokuniya was charging in-store or even at AX!

See the full album on my Fan Page on Facebook and be sure to Like The Vault on Facebook, where I’m finally caught up through 2010! 😀

2016 09 03 Sat: East Meets West


TOM LA SALE! [2016]

07 February 2017

When I heard that the Tokyo Otaku Mode (TOM) Shop was pulling up stakes and heading up north, I cut out of work early to check out their moving sale! Not sure if they’ve ever opened their doors to the public before, but I order from them all the time online. They usually have some great promos and their loyalty program (in the form of TOM Points) is an added bonus — even though they’ve reworked some of their rules regarding the program.

Most of the items were unmarked so you had to bring them up for them to check the price online. What wasn’t so cool was that the Aniplex+ items were full price (as noted) — which meant they were actually more expensive than buying them on their site!

I’m not a gamer, but all non-figure merchandise was 40%!

Happened to run into Sojian-senpai while I was down there so we did some exploring and wound up grabbing noms at Hakata Ikkousha Ramen.

This was the only loot I wound up getting — a Nendoroid of Best Girl Funami Yui from YuruYuri and a free bag of a Japanese snack that wound up being pretty meh, lol. There were a few things that caught my eye but they seemed to be a bit on the pricey side, even with the discount.

These were taken on my fixed focus cell phone, so excuse the terrible quality. ^^;

See the full album on my Fan Page on Facebook and be sure to Like The Vault on Facebook, where I’m finally caught up through 2010! 😀

2016 08 22 Mon: Tokyo Otaku Mode LA Warehouse Garage SALE!


Anime Expo 2016, Day 2

18 October 2016

I saw on Day 1 that Aniplex would be selling some of the Aniplex+ exclusive Kaori figures starting on Day 2 and my friend managed to get me the last one (like, the very last — it was the display copy!). They didn’t sell any of the other displays when they sold out, so I’m assuming this was their last batch of Kao-chans. Very happy to get one, especially since they sell for three-times MSRP now!

Arakawa Panel AX 2016

Was lucky my friend was already in line for Arakawa-sensei’s panel because I had some problems finding it (thanks, AX! :p ). The panel was already underway by the time they let us in and we wound up in the very last row, but at least we got to see it! No pictures were allowed, but I still managed to sneak a couple of shots and also recorded audio of it. ^^

Monster Hunter AX 2016

Later in the evening, I made my way back to con to complete a figure sale and managed to take some photos in the South Hall. I’m told this is from Monster Hunter. Would’ve been nice to get close enough to take pictures with it, but the whole area was cordoned off.

Cardcaptor Sakura Banner AX 2016

GSC didn’t allow photos of their upcoming Cardcaptor Sakura figure, but here’s one of the banner advertising it.

Anisong World Matsuri AX 2016

The Anisong World Matsuri ~Japan Super Live~ was actually this evening. Some of my friends went and enjoyed it.

Phantom of the Kill AX 2016

West Hall had this banner for the free-to-play tactical RPG Phantom of the Kill. Apparently there was a special event for it that night also.

Day 2 Loot AX 2016

Day 2 loots! I got the Aniplex+ exclusive Kaori figure; three YLiA posters that came free with each purchase; and two sets of YLiA keychains.

See the full album on my Fan Page on Facebook and be sure to Like The Vault on Facebook, where I’m finally caught up through 2010! 😀

2016 07 02 Sat: Anime Expo 2016, Day 2

Full Coverage of Anime Expo 2016:

2016 07 01 Fri: Anime Expo 2016, Day 1: KimiUso Ver.
2016 07 01 Fri: Anime Expo 2016, Day 1: Standard Ver.
2016 07 02 Sat: Anime Expo 2016, Day 2
2016 07 03 Sun: Anime Expo 2016, Day 3
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016, Day 4
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016 Anniversaries
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016 Itasha
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016 GSC Racing


Anime Expo 2016, Day 1: Standard Ver.

04 October 2016

Even though I spent most of the first day of Anime Expo running around chasing Your Lie in April stuff, I still had time to take in the rest of the con, even taking in a lecture.

One of the other displays in the A-1 Pictures Exhibit at the Aniplex booth was for Anthem of the Heart, from the same team that made Anohana.

I’m afraid to get into Love Live! because The iDOLM@STER is already sucking up enough of my monies. ^^;

Super-deformed Disney figures (Star Wars and Avengers) on display at the Bluefin booth.

There was at least one event centered around Sound! Euphonium going on during con.

I’d imagine that this wall of original art is worth a crapton of money. :O

Saw an Ariel!

I wish they’d had these types of classes at my school!

Not sure what was going on here, but I think this is Haikyuu!!

See the full album on my Fan Page on Facebook and be sure to Like The Vault on Facebook, where I’m finally caught up through 2010! 😀

2016 07 01 Fri: Anime Expo 2016, Day 1: Standard Ver.

Full Coverage of Anime Expo 2016:

2016 07 01 Fri: Anime Expo 2016, Day 1: KimiUso Ver.
2016 07 01 Fri: Anime Expo 2016, Day 1: Standard Ver.
2016 07 02 Sat: Anime Expo 2016, Day 2
2016 07 03 Sun: Anime Expo 2016, Day 3
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016, Day 4
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016 Anniversaries
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016 Itasha
2016 07 04 Mon: Anime Expo 2016 GSC Racing


Universal CityWalk Hollywood: Part I [2015]

22 March 2016

It seems fitting that shortly after I celebrated the 30th anniversary of Back to the Future at Puente Hills Mall, I visited Universal CityWalk at Universal Studios Hollywood for the first time in ages. In fact, I’d probably walked through Universal Studios Orlando‘s version of CityWalk more recently!

This crashed spaceship and sign (way at the top) is actually from the old location of Things From Another World at the other end of CityWalk.

Things From Another World is a collector’s paradise for geeks of all stripes. They sell everything from comics to high-end collectibles.

So many cool Batman collectibles smooshed into this case!

That’s one expensive Iron Man statue!

I can’t even afford this awesome Star Trek phaser remote control. T_T

Didn’t catch the price on this Jetwing Optimus Prime statue, but I want it!

EDIT: It’s actually the Optimus Prime (Starscream Version) from Sideshow Collectibles and Hot Toys and will set you back $350! He doesn’t even transform!

For $500, I’d like to be able to go back in time and invest in Disney so I can buy this Back to the Future flux capacitor!

Dr. Doom is making sure you don’t walk off with the $25 bottle openers.

Even if you don’t buy anything, it’s worth stopping by TFAW just to ooh and aah over all cool stuff they have on display!

See the full album on my Fan Page on Facebook and be sure to Like The Vault on Facebook, where I’m finally caught up through 2010! 😀

2015 11 06 Fri: Universal CityWalk Hollywood: Part I

Full Coverage of Universal CityWalk Hollywood [2015]:

Universal CityWalk Hollywood: Part I
Universal CityWalk Hollywood: Part II


D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Cosplay and Photo Areas

12 January 2016

The final album from this year’s D23 Expo features some awesome cosplays as well as the new Photo Spots at this year’s con!

The Expo had set up Photo Spots featuring characters, props, and backdrops. From cut-outs to full sets, areas and characters you could pose with ran the entirety of the Disney universe. Disney Infinity version of Yoda? Or Clone Wars version? Or both?

Tons of people were taking pictures of the Guardians of the Galaxy spacepod, but no one was actually taking pictures with it, lol.

Since I was stuck in line for the bulk of con and trying to hunt goodies the rest of the time, I didn’t run into as many cosplayers as I would’ve liked. However, there were a few who were stuck in line with me, like this Black Widow, so I decided to take full advantage of the hours (literally) that we were trapped together to take a few photos.

This Mary Poppins family was super sweet!

I love this take on Ursula! She was out of character, though, since she was really nice!

Out in the Emporium I ran into another Black Widow, this time with Captain America!

Found an Ariel! ❤

This Cruella De Vil was so awesome; she stayed in character the whole time! When I asked for a photo she was like, “I suppose”, and then when I showed it to her, she said, “That’ll do”. At least, I hope she was in character. ^^;

The one thing that seemed to be missing was the PhotoPass system that is featured at the Disney Parks and which used to be at Expos of years past. Guess they finally caught on that most of us Disney nerds prefer to bring our own photomakers and to spend the 20 bucks on other things!

See the full album on my Fan Page on Facebook and be sure to Like The Vault on Facebook, where I’m finally caught up through 2010! 😀

2015 08 16 Sun: D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Cosplay and Photo Areas

Full Coverage of D23 Expo 2015, Day 3:

D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Expo and Pavilions
D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Emporium and Shopping
D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Cosplay and Photo Areas


D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Emporium and Shopping

15 December 2015

While D23 Expo allows Disney to flog their new and upcoming projects (as seen in the previous post), it also allows you to fill in the gaps of your collection!

This Three Caballeros figure at the Disney Dream Store was huge and also reasonably priced for a limited edition of 50 ($150); there was a color version as well. I was tempted to get it, but I’m not really a fan of the film. If it were from DuckTales, though, I prolly would’ve bought both, lol.

Since the corporate vendors tend to pump out advance pieces before general release as well as limited edition exclusives, the wait times just to get inside those shops tend to be pretty terribad (and is where I spent most of my time at con). Still, this can be the only place you can get some items before they hit the aftermarket and start fetching exorbitant eBay prices. Took a shot of “The Big D” restaurant from the Mickey’s of Glendale line. Waiting in line for two and a half hours just to spend money, I feel like I already got the big D. :p

Finally inside Mickey’s of Glendale, the Imagineering-exclusives store! … Only to wait in another line to look at the exclusive pins. :/

Made it out of Mickey’s of Glendale with about 30 minutes to check out the rest of the con, including the Emporium (formerly the Collectors Forum). The Emporium, split into three areas throughout the exhibit hall, also has its share of limited editions (generally of the original artwork variety, like this X-Wing Fighter from Star Wars), but tends to be more easily navigated and is the best place to find things that were released many moons ago. Most of the time things here are overpriced (this is, after all, the aforementioned secondary market) but you can sometimes find some great deals if you luck into a seller who is willing to haggle.

Eric Goldberg, lead animator for Genie from Aladdin (see the first post for shots of some of his work on display in An Animator’s Gallery). A huge line formed but apparently a friend of mine managed to get a sketch from him before he even started. Lucky duck!

The wall at OI Collectibles featured over 500 maps from over 15 locations. I love this style of art, which is by Brittney Lee. She was there over the weekend and the same friend who got art from Eric Goldberg also got a sketch from her! So lucky!

Not familiar with the brand Uniqlo, but they apparently make t-shirts. Hope they make some Ariel shirts for boys!

I can actually ID all of these, haha. To this day I have never bought a Hallmark ornament, and to be honest I used to do most of my shopping there when individual stores were going out of business and they still carried the Walt Disney Classics Collection. ^^;

The New Zealand Mint had silver and gold Princess coins as well as this quite appropriate Scrooge McDuck coin. This one came with an exclusive certificate of authenticity (which might be that slip of paper in the lid) only available at D23; wonder what you get if you buy it elsewhere?

Lots of Snow White items; I’m assuming it’s in preparation for the upcoming 80th anniversary.

That really looks like Angelina Jolie’s rendition of Maleficent, but tbh I don’t really feel it for Enesco’s stuff; even the Walt Disney Classics Collection kind of felt weak after they took it over. (Apparently I’m not the only one who felt that way since the WDCC line folded not long after they took it over.)

Ariel from the Jim Shore Disney Traditions series. She actually has a pretty accurate face, but the castle dresses in this line just don’t do it for me.

Loots!

Everyone got a guidebook and a super-thin tote bag that can actually be worn on your back! (Ignore the Nendoroid sitting inside; it was just to get the bag to stand up, lol.) Event Guest badge courtesy of a cast member friend of mine.

Also got some exclusive Shanghai Disneyland mugs and a t-shirt as well as a Disneyland Diamond Anniversary pin and Star Wars Land concept art pins from Mickey’s of Glendale.

Between the corporate Disney vendors (the Disney Store, Mickey’s of Glendale, and the Disney Dream Store) and the mom-and-pop sellers in the Emporium, you can be sure to find things you’ve been missing as well as things you never even knew existed!

See the full album on my Fan Page on Facebook and be sure to Like The Vault on Facebook, where I’m finally caught up through 2010! 😀

2015 08 16 Sun: D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Emporium and Shopping

Full Coverage of D23 Expo 2015, Day 3:

D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Expo and Pavilions
D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Emporium and Shopping
D23 Expo 2015, Day 3: Cosplay and Photo Areas


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