Now, more Lithuanians than ever are coming out as proud pop culture fans and creators. How have superhero films, videogames, comics and cosplay changed the country and the people? We raised these questions at the special NYLA Live podcast session at the Comic Con Baltics in Vilnius.
From left, clockwise: Karolis Pilypas Liutkevičius, Nanook; Agnė Juškėnaitė, YouTuber, #GeekPropaganda; Jaq Greenspon, writer, associate professor at Vytautas Magnus university; Ieva Pikutytė, video games designer at Nordcurrent; Lesya Parker and Ekaterina Krasner; producer and director of Magic First, a short film about Russian wizards; Karolis Vyšniauskas, Nanook
Agota Gudelytė-Foxtail has been cosplaying for 10 years. She joined the panel in the character of Aloy from the video game Horizon Zero Dawn
As both Ieva and Agota mentioned, Lithuanian society started to treat pop culture creators seriously when they saw financial gain in it. Ieva received different reactions when she was playing video games as a hobby. Hear our Lithuanian conversation with her in the NYLA episode on sexism in the videogaming industry.
Established in 2017, Comic Con Baltics attracts 10,000 pop culture fans in Lithuania – something that would have been impossible 10 or even 5 years ago.
Video gaming has become a significant part of popular culture in Lithuania. It created a generation gap because today’s parents didn’t have a chance to grow up with their own video games. Just like other kinds of Western culture, video games didn’t reach the Soviet block.
Podcast episode hosted by Karolis Vyšniauskas and Karolis Pilypas Liutkevičius, edited by Karolis Vyšniauskas, sound recorded by Kata Bitowt, music composed by Martynas Gailius. Photography by Mindaugas Drigotas. The studio voice over recorded at Martynas Mažvydas National Library of Lithuania.
We thank the Comic Con Baltics team for their help and generosity to make the event happen.
Further episodes (in Lithuanian):