Friday, October 17, 2014

GeekGirlCon 2014: Cosplay Capers

(Image:  GGC Logo)
Costume play, or cosplay as it's commonly called, is a hallmark of sci-fi/fantasy/comic conventions everywhere.  The presence of cosplayers in a crowd is an indicator that you're in the right place--or the wrong one--if you you're trying to avoid such zaniness.

I didn't dress up for this one-day adventure.  Instead I wore business casual attire, which I regretted as soon as I entered the Washington State Convention Center (WSCC).  I get overheated very easily, so I usually wear shorts, unless I'm at work, or the temperature is below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Fortunately for me--and everyone around me--internal thermostat didn't reach the soak-my-clothes level. 

Anyway, segwaying from physiology to cosplay:  For GeekGirlCon (GGC) 2014, the "cosplayer" that was the biggest sensation this year, wasn't even human:

("Exterminate!  Exterminate!")

Okay, the Seattle woman who built this roving Dalek was certainly flesh& blood...

...but everyone was impressed with her automated creation.  

Although some of us wondered:  Where did she store it?  How does she transport it? 

The Keeper of the Dalek wasn't saying...

Science Fiction Cosplayers

While we're on the subject of Dr. Who, I ran into the Daleks' nemesis:

Even a non-Whovian like me recognized this gentleman as The Second Doctor.

After attending three back-to-back panel discussions I set out on a quest for lunch, which I whined about at length in my previous GGC post. 

While standing in line, I met these two women...

...and their Facehugger "pet."  They told me just about everyone likes to have their pictures taken with the plushy wrapped around their face. 

After lunch, and avoiding a face-hugging photo op, I ventured out to The Final Frontier. 

This young lady managed to survive the last away mission, probably because she's not wearing a red shirt:

I said her uniform seems more durable than standard Starfleet issue...

(Image from the episode Shore Leave)

...not to mention more practical: 
(Yeoman Janice Rand)
Speaking of redshirts and Janice Rand:  Check out The Red Shirt Diaries, a new webseries spoof on various episodes of Star Trek--Original Series.

Okay, now back to GGC...

Super Hero Cosplayers

Members of the Justice League, the Avengers, the X-Men and other super groups were out in force.

I ran into two Captain Americas:  The first, a young lady with a homespun knit helmet...

...while the second was this man with a World War II GI (as in "General Issue") look.

Which brings me to the subject of crossplay.  I saw lots of women dressed as male characters.  This is a fairly common during a convention like this.  Less common are the guys dressed as females.  Of the male-to-female crossplayers, I encountered one, possibly two.  I wasn't sure about the second one because I was unfamiliar with the costume and only crossed paths in one fleeting moment without getting a chance to talk to the individual. 

I didn't get either of their photos, along with scores of other cos & crossplayers. The heaviest concentration of cosplayers was among the vendor booths, but it was impossible for me to snap pictures on-the-fly, amongst such hustle & bustle. 

Although I did manage to photograph Black Cat, probably plotting her next heist:

And speaking of security, I caught Lady Sif off duty: 

I recognized her as one of the exhibitors in Artist Alley and couldn't help teasing her about how she "stood guard" at her booth.  

Her reply:  "Oh. I was wondering why we weren't getting very many customers." 

Fantasy Cosplayers:

After leaving Lady Sif, I happened to find Jeannie already out of her bottle, which I didn't qualify for getting three wishes.

And speaking of magic:  Disney movies are known for their princesses and villainesses.  However, my favorite Disney villain happens to be...

...Jafar.  I liked how the character could transition smoothly from slippery sycophant to total psycho in a matter of seconds.  

But getting back to the princesses, I crossed paths with the Snow Queen...

...several times.  Wide-eyed girls were constantly flocking to her while their parents snapped photos.  I managed to catch Elsa right after one such girl got her photo-of-a-lifetime. 

Some folks even created their own characters, rather than mimic anyone else... this elf queen, for instance.  Her majesty told me she's also a regular at Renaissance Fairs 

(Or is it "Faires?")

Anyway, in addition to clothing, cosplayers are often in need of weapons, armor and other items to complete their costumes.  Most of these props are made of craft foam, and/or various, non-lethal, styrene-based material.

But if you want the tough stuff, check out...

...Sinister Metal Works.  From what the master armorer told me, if the suit is fitted right, it's comfortable and very flexible to wear.  He even demonstrated this by doing all sorts of bends & stretches.  We then had a short discussion on how Hollywood gets history wrong.

Cosplay Pairs

Like anything else, cosplay is more fun if you can team-up with a friend that shares the same passion as you do.

I wasn't the only ones photographing these two Braveheart lasses:

I saw a news snippet of them on Northwest Cable News (NWCN), unfortunately, the video's not uploaded to their website at this time. 

Star Wars is a popular theme for cosplay.  This Twi'lek jedi and clone trooper seem to be getting along...

...unlike this pair:

But at least they're not "mixing metaphors" like these two...

...or these guys:

My "Oh Myy" Moments 

Even I don't own in a Starfleet uniform (yet), I can do a pretty good impersonation of George Takei's catchphrase:  Oh myy! 

During conventions like GGC something's bound to happen that will make you say, or at least think--oh myy!

My "Oh Myy Moment" occurred in the Men's Room, of all places.  As I entered, I noticed a well-dressed individual standing by one of the sinks.

As I approached the sink, this person turned to me and in a pleasantly distinct feminine voice asked: 

Am I in the Men's Room?

I was too stunned to do my George Takei impersonation, because momentary panic set in--I thought I walked into the Ladies' Room.  After double-checking the sign at the entrance I told her the bad news that she was, indeed in the Men's Room.

She apologized, explaining she ducked into the first open door she found in order to fix her tie.  At this point I noticed the tie-tying diagrams she had on the sink counter.  I was impressed that instead of fleeing in embarrassment, she remained bound and determined to stay put and fix her tie.

Meanwhile--what was I doing? 

I'll explain via our dialogue--which went something like this:

Me:  Well miss, I'd love to help you.  Unfortunately, I don't even know how to tie a tie.  In fact, my daughter had to tie my tie for my wedding last year.  Is that a costume, or are you just dressing up?

Her:  Are you familiar with Torchwood?

Me:  Um...not really.  I've heard of it, but never watched it.  (My geek cred is rather anemic in some areas).

Her:  Well, it's a spin-off of Dr. Who, and I'm playing the character Ianto Jones.  My friend is playing Jack Harkness.  They're buddies.

Me:  Cool.  Well, you look very nice.  

Ianto:  (Still trying to tie her tie) Thank you.

Me: (Leaving) Good luck with your tie and I'm sorry I wasn't able to help you with your tie.

While GeekGirlCon is all about empowered and empowering women, even the mightiest heroine has her damsel in distress moment.  And naturally, my chance to render assistance got sucked out the airlock.  Hopefully by next year's GGC, I'll have learned to tie a tie.

Later, I ran the Ianto Jones and Jack Harkness crossplayers--this time outside the Men's Room.  

(Captain Jack Harkness and Ianto Jones)
Ianto was happy she successfully tied her tie and introduced me to her friend.  I thought I was interrupting their lunch, because Ianto was holding a try of coffee cups.  So I took a quick picture, complimented both ladies on their costume and hastily made my way to the last panel discussion I wanted to attend.

What I discovered upon trolling Wikipedia and the Geek Girl Con website extensive research, the tray of coffee cups is actually part of this duet's cosplay (see Flicr Images 6216, 6219 and 6220)

Torchwood fans undoubtedly know more about the role coffee plays between Ianto and Jack than I do.

Oddly enough, this wasn't the only cosplayer bathroom encounter that occurred.

On my second visit to the Men's Room, I ran into a guy with a spot-on Iron Man costume.  Not only was the suit impressive, but the guy wearing it was Robert Downey Jr. look-a-like.  

Me:  Awesome costume!

Tony Stark:  Thanks!  I can even pee in it.  

Me:  Well that's better than the cheezy store-bought Spider-Man costume I have.

Tony Stark:  Yeah, they're like that.

Sometime later, I ran into Tony Stark and unlike Ianto and Jack, I did catch him just finishing lunch.  I apologized and offered to come back later. 

Tony Stark:  Nah.  Here you go, it's your picture.

Now here's something I've learned in the few years I've been going to comic cons:  Not only do good cosplayers dress the part they're playing--they act it.  

This guy, who I later learned to be Rob Doran (scroll down) had Robert Downey Jr's irreverence and snark responses down pat.  

In putting this blog post together, I thought I'd play around with my Comic Life program and end this with a memorable quote in honor of all the GCC cosplayers:

Be sure to check out GGC photostream of the Costume Contest (which I missed, because I had to leave early). 

If you're interested cosplay in general, or GGC specifically, here's an article by Geek Wire of newbie teamed-up with a veteran attending GGC that may give you some insights. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

As much as I love clone troopers, I'm a Mandalorian (e.g. boba Fett, jango Fett, death watch, Bo katan, Sabine, pre vizzla) not a clone. Cool pics! Fun fact: My twi'lek is dressed as a EU jedi called Rachi Sitra