Girls in stockings. Girls in wigs. Girls in frilly dresses. Over the weekend, the cosplaying hoard took to the streets of Osaka's Den-Den Town in the annual Nipponbashi Street Festival.
The main drag, Sakai-suji, was closed to traffic so cosplayers and people with cameras could mill about, pose and snap photos. It was, for a brief instance, reminiscent of Tokyo's geek mecca Akihabara before the tragedy that struck in June 2008.
A 25-year-old man named Tomohiro Kato drove a rented truck into a crowd of pedestrians. He then got out of the truck and began wildly stabbing bystanders.
Seven ended up dead and ten were injured.
At that time, the main drag in Akihabara was closed to vehicles, and the street had been dubbed "Pedestrian Paradise". After the massacre, the streets were no longer blocked to automobiles during the weekends. The mood in Akihabara changed forever. Security cameras were installed in Akihabara earlier this year.