There was a ton of news coming out of Anime NYC and one of the bigger ones was from the last two days Nov. 16-17 of the convention. Warner Bros. Japan held a panel and world premiere of popular anime “Mob Psycho 100” with Crunchyroll, which brought together fans from all around the country through a panel and premiere screening at Anime NYC, held at the Jacob K. Javitz Convention Center in New York City. Setsuo Ito, the voice actor of the main character “Mob,” made a special guest appearance on both days.
Anticipation was high from day one, as over 500 fans, many of whom were cosplaying as their favorite Mob Psycho 100 character, eagerly filled into the spacious panel room. When Ito-san arrived on stage for the panel named “Psycho Helmet Gathering in New York City”, the crowd cheered with excitement.
Ito-san started off by answering a few questions, one of which was, “What was your favorite scene to perform in Season 1?” He said, “I really liked the scene in the very beginning where my Master calls me on the phone and summons me, because I feel like it was the first time I was able to bring Mob to life with my voice. I will never forget that. I also like Episode 8, where Mob yells ‘Ritsu!’ to save his brother, because it’s the first scene where I was able to bring Mob’s feelings of anger to the forefront. It holds a special place in my heart.”
The fans’ favorite scene was announced, chosen through a poll on Crunchyroll.com. It was the fight scene between Mob and Teru, and Ito-san captivated the audience with a live voice acting performance of the scene.
Following the performance, Ito-san used his psychic powers to reveal the official key artwork for Season 2 of Mob Psycho 100. He motioned to the corner of the room and the crowd cheered him on as a large poster displaying the art inched towards the stage. He pointed out, “The three main characters, Mob, Master, and Ekubo, are depicted on separate areas of the artwork, which may hint at what to expect in Season 2.”
Ito-san was generous enough to take questions from members of the audience, and when fans lined up behind a mic in front of the stage, Ito-san expressed surprise. “Oh, the questioners are going to line up? I see, what an interesting system,” he remarked. This is apparently not a common procedure in Japan.
Throughout the audience Q&A, Ito-san showed his kindness to fans and answered the questions with sincerity and enthusiasm. One person asked if he has someone like Reigen in his life that has taught him by bad example, to which he replied, “My parents have a big impact on my life. Also, it may not be like a mentor, but I still keep in touch with my friends from high school, who always make me think and feel many things.”
Ito-san closed the panel by saying, “Thank you all for coming to Mob Psycho’s stage today. Anime NYC has just started, and there is still lots to look forward to tomorrow, such as the world premiere screening of Season 2. Let’s meet again tomorrow!”
Day two, the day of the World Premiere Screening of Season 2 Episode 1, was even more packed than the day before. All seats in the house were filled and hundreds of fans were still waiting outside, unable to get in.
As Ito-san walked onto the stage for the second time this weekend, the crowd cheered and the fans squealed louder than ever. He explained, “It has been quite a while since we did Season 1, and I was worried at first that we all may have trouble recreating the same atmosphere as before, but once you watch the first episode of Season 2, you’ll realize that you can completely immerse yourself right back into that familiar world of Mob Psycho. This first episode also features a story that I wanted to do most in this season, so please look forward to that.”
The lights dimmed and hushed murmurs of anticipation filled the room as the screening started. The fans cheered with the appearance of each iconic character, laughed together at the funny moments, and wailed at the moving scenes. When the episode ended, everyone roared in applause.
Once the audience settled down and Ito-san came back onto stage, video comments from Yuzuru Tachikawa (the director), Akio Otsuka (voice of Ekubo), and Takahiro Sakurai (voice of Reigen) were presented on the screen. In the last video, Sakurai-san surprised everyone by announcing that they will now screen the second episode of Season 2. The second episode was met with just as much positive response from the crowd as the first, and the whole room was flooded with exhilaration.
Nearing the end of the screening event, a few giveaway winners were announced and Ito-san took a group photo with the audience. Everyone held up their Mob Psycho posters that they received at the entrance, and the host shouted “Body Improvement!” followed by the crowd exclaiming in unison, “Fight on!”
Ito-san made some closing remarks to wrap up the screening. “In this room, I was able to feel in the flesh the anticipation of the beginning of Mob Psycho 100 Season 2. The show will start airing in January, so I hope you all can support us and keep building the excitement together! Thank you for coming!” The audience cheered one last time as Ito-san left the stage, concluding the satisfying and eventful two days.
“Mob Psycho 100 II” official website http://mobpsycho100.com/