Toys? You gotta be kidding, right? I’m a grown man! (Or woman!)
THERE IS ALWAYS A CHILD IN ALL OF US
Have you ever heard the wise ol’ saying, “There is always a child in all of us?” For kids, toys are self-explanatory. Children are emotionally attached to toys because “they intuitively believe they possess a unique essence or life force. In a study that will surprise few parents, it was found that children preferred their cherished comfort blankets or favourite raggedy bear over duplicates apparently identical in every way. The results suggested that even very young children invest in such objects intangible qualities that cannot be replicated.”3
“We anthropomorphise objects, look at them almost as if they have feelings. The children know these objects are not alive but they believe in them as if they are.” 3
If that doesn’t sound familiar, then you might have just popped out of Mother Nature as an adult without going through the experience of being a child obsessed with toys – which is impossible. When we see our old toys brought to life like new, they bring us back to the positive years of our youth – happy thoughts, awesome imagination, and unparalleled creativity. We played with our toys as if they were our BFFs long before the acronym even existed. Our world of toys was the only thing no one can take away from us, and those we love who shared their time with us playing with our toys are brought back in our minds – emotions of love, empathy, thankfulness and so on.
For adults, there are toy collectors and toy enthusiasts, whether they do it for profit or pleasure. Collecting is mostly associated with positive emotions. There is the happiness from adding a new find to the collection, the excitement of the hunt, the social camaraderie when sharing their collection with other collectors, and so goes the list of positive energies built from just collecting toys.2
INTRODUCING THE BIGGEST TOY CONVENTION IN ASIA
The upcoming 13th Philippine Toys, Hobbies and Collectibles Convention 2014 (or simply “ToyCon”) is Asia’s biggest and longest running convention for collectibles, toys, anime, comics, cosplay, gaming and everything related to hobbies and collections. The convention, slated to happen on June 20-22, 2014 has been going on since 2002. Simply put, it is the biggest pop culture event in the country. I’d probably compare it to the comic conventions (or comic con) in the U.S. where all the comic characters come to life in one single event. Yeah, comic con! Last year’s ToyCon brought 26,000 people to the event. Whoa! So, do you still think it’s just one of those Christmas bazaars? Think again!
MAIN HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS YEAR’S TOYCON
This year’s ToyCon will highlight the 75th Anniversary of Batman (by DC Comics for those who are still confused about it) by featuring a huge display area of the caped crusader, a life size Batpod, a kids’ activity area, new Batman merchandise, and a gallery of art and collectibles of the Dark Knight Detective.1
Another star of the convention is Samurai X. Warner Brothers will preview the Rurouni Kenshin live-action film trilogy Parts II and III with a display of original costumes from the sensational Japanese hit movie.
Not to get outdone by DC Comics, Marvel Comics will also unleash its latest epic movie, The Guardians of the Galaxy, with awesome displays, sneak peeks, trailers, and behind-the-scene features of the movie. There will also be special fan activities, and the Marvel roster of superstar artists like Leinil Yu, Carlo Pagulayan, Stephen Segovia, Roy Allan Martinez and Kim Jacinto.
For exhibits, ToyCon will feature the G.I. Joe 50th Anniversary exhibit, the Philippine Lego Users Group exhibit, the Coca-Cola Collectibles exhibit, the One Sixth Republic and Pinoy Sixth Scale collectors exhibit, and the awesome ToyCon gallery exhibit area which will showcase the best of the local toy group community.
The “Force is strong with ToyCon” as it unites with the 10th Anniversary of the Star Wars 501st Philippine Outpost. Enjoy a parade of your favorite Star Wars characters, Stormtroopers, Jedi Knights, droids and the Dark Lord of the Sith himself, Darth Vader.
Okay, boys and girls. It’s time for the adults to be kids once again. As always, ToyCon will feature the biggest names in Cosplay with the Philippine Finals of the World Cosplay Summit happening at the convention. Also, ToyCon’s own Cosplay Universe will present individual and group Cosplayers led by Asia’s Cosplay queen, Alodia Gosiengfiao.
“Who da heck is Alodia?” Ever heard of Mikasa? Time for Google Search!
And what’s a ToyCon without involving the gaming community in the Philippines? Gaming takes center stage with the biggest game companies like Level-Up, War Gaming, Cherry Credits and Uplink releasing the latest versions of their top games. They will all be there for you to actually try it out. Talk about being “hands-on.”
ToyCon would not be complete without the biggest exhibition floor of all pop culture merchandise, from apparel, collectibles and memorabilia, graphic novels and comics, cosplay paraphernalia, to toys, toys, and more toys!
Fine. I sound like a press release. In truth, I did copy some of the things in ToyCon’s press release but what’s important is trying to convince you to go to the convention. Goodness, man! It’s a three-day weekend event. Heck! Bring your kids, nieces and nephews, and show off what and who those (old?) characters are. I’m sure they will even know more of the toys out there especially when your world was Batman, Spiderman and Voltes V while they are into Shinji Ikari, Spike Spiegel, Goku, Astro Boy and Kenshin Himura.
EVERYONE WANTS A SELFIE
And what’s an event with friends and family without a #Selfie? Or selfies? Here is ours during the Epic Launch of ToyCon 2014 held at the Resorts World Manila last May 31, 2014. The was photo taken by Irene Enriquez, also a founding member of the Philippine Bloggers Network like myself, using her monopod.
ToyCon 2014 will be held on June 20-22, 2014 at the SM Megatrade Halls 1, 2 and 3, SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City. Tickets are 130 Pesos per day for each attendee. You may also buy online via SM Tickets.
HASHTAG = #TOYCONPH2014
ToyCon 2014 is co-presented by Collectibles Unlimited and the SM Megatrade Halls, and sponsored by Maxi Collector, Toy Kingdom, Toy Empire, Warner Brothers Pictures and Pacific Licensing. With special thanks to Big Boys Toy Store, Great Toys, Arigatoys, Authority Hoodie, Transfer It, Otaku Asia, War Gaming, Uplink, Level-Up, Cubizone, Canon, Level-Up, Cherry Credits, CIIT, Loctite, Walt Disney Studios, gaming Library and Resorts World Manila. With media partners, ABS-CBN, Flip Geeks, Reimaru Files, WheninManila.com, Chalk Magazine, UNO Magazine, Manila Bulletin, Inquirer.net and 99.5 PLAY FM. Also supported by Anime Alliance and World Cosplay Summit.
For more information, please visit the ToyCon Website or e-mail them via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sources: 1ToyCon 2014 press release | 2wikipedia | 3The Guardian
Poster and photos from ToyCon gallery of photos website, Irene Enriquez and @raffypekson.