The celebration of Japanese animation, comic books, video games and geek culture in general packed the hallways and conference rooms of the downtown hotel.
Woo said anime can be a place where strong female characters shine.
"Most girls are seen as gentle and girly. I love how my character is the opposite of that," Woo said. "She's very ambitious and strong and she likes to be independent."
Hundreds of people -- from new babies (sporting
Many of them were sporting a costume of some sort -- as simple as a face mask or as complicated as body paint, horns, tails or elaborate capes, robes or the hand-crafted ensembles the Woos were wearing.
Lines between classic and modern American animated movies and Japanese imports new and old blurred in hallways.
He grew up watching anime, he said, and cut his teeth on "Pokemon" (plenty of
But he never really knew how many people were fans as well or how strong of an event
"I just discovered 'Attack on Titan' last night," he said. "I didn't expect all these people. I didn't expect the big anime base here."
French and Chavez said they believe American animation has grown up as Japanese story-telling -- sometimes darker or more mature than American animation had been -- grew in popularity.
"The style has been getting a lot better," French said.
French said she identifies with Raven, who is an introspective, reclusive character, and Chavez said she picked the light-hearted, bombastic Beast Boy for his sense of fun.
The pair said Bak-Anime felt welcoming.
"If we were out on the street we wouldn't fit in," Chavez said. "Here we can be ourselves."
Woo had similar feelings about the convention.
"This whole con is like a family," she said.
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