Cosplay, Creators, and Community – A Look at Winter Comiket 103

The Winter Comiket 103, held at the iconic Tokyo Big Sight, attracted anime and Japanese pop-culture fans from all over the world, celebrating the end of the year in iconic fashion with its annual event. Giving attendees a slightly cooler experience compared to the years hot and muggy Summer Comiket, resulting in a huge amount of visitors!

One of the most captivating aspects of Comiket is the staggering array of booths and exhibitors that transform the convention space into a bustling marketplace of creativity. Doujinshi, or self-published works, takes center stage as always, featuring an eclectic mix of manga, anime, and gaming-inspired independent works. Attendees can expect to find unique and rare gems that are often unavailable through mainstream channels, and with a sea of booths across a variety of halls, even fans with the most niche interests can be sure to find something they’re looking for, or discover something new entirely!

Cosplay enthusiasts added another layer of vibrancy to Winter Comiket 103, being one of the event’s most anticipated aspects every year. The event’s atmosphere was alive with a kaleidoscope of characters brought to life by dedicated and talented cosplayers, many of whom chose to cosplay characters from currently airing shows taking the world by storm such as Sousou no Frieren and the new season of Jujutsu Kaisen. From iconic anime heroes to obscure gaming characters, the cosplay scene at Comiket showcased the incredible diversity and depth of Japanese pop culture, with famous cosplayers such as Umi Shinonome visiting the event as well.

Many of the cosplayers themselves are also incredibly into their character, giving fans a sense that they’re talking to the actual characters. We asked Kapo Akatsuki, cosplaying as the thousand-year-old elf Frieren, for life advice, and she told us, “It’s better to do something than to regret not doing it!”

Three princesses from the world of Mario were also present: Peach, Daisy, and Rosalina, and when asked who their ideal king would be in the Mario universe, their answers were identical yet unsurprising–the king of Koopas himself, Bowser!

Between cosplaying in the cosplay areas, many famous and influential cosplayers were also managing booths in the exhibitor’s hall, where they sell their products such as photobooks and DVDs. “Today I’m cosplaying as a general elf from Lineage 2, which is a really old Japanese MMO.”, cosplayer Peach Milky tells us at her own Comiket booth. “It’s very smooth being an exhibitor at Comiket, everyone here is really respectful”.

Yuriko Tiger, an Italian cosplayer, was also present at her own merchandise booth, dressed as an elf shrine maiden. “Next year is the Year of the Dragon, so I wanted to do a New Year’s feeling book!”, she tells us while showcasing her newest gravure cosplay photobook. These booths, where fans can interact with and support their favorite idols directly, are part of the huge allure of attending Comiket as both an attendee and a merchant.

Cosplay and independent creators aren’t the only things available at the massively popular Comiket either, however, as massive corporate booths also have their own dedicated area allowing attendees and fans to interact with their favorite studios or game companies on a much more intimate level. Studios behind hyper-popular games like Genshin Impact and Nikke: Goddess of Victory took center stage, even featuring their own dedicated cosplayers showcasing some of the games’ iconic characters.

Winter Comiket 103, as is always the case with Japan’s yearly Comikets, was an unforgettable journey into the heart of Japanese pop culture, showcasing the creativity and passion of fans and creators alike. The event continues to be a testament to the global impact of manga, anime, and gaming, and whether you’re a seasoned fan or a newcomer to the world of Japanese pop culture, Comiket remains a must-attend event that captures the essence of this ever-evolving and vibrant community.

You can experience the event for yourself and get a taste of what this world-famous event has to offer by watching our coverage video!


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