Summer is the season of cosplay thanks to the 100 or so comic book, anime and video game conventions that are occur over the course of about 4 months. Of all those cons, Comic Con is of course the big daddy of them all, where serious cosplayers will show up in Iron Man costumes so realistic they could probably convince you they’re nearly as cool as Robert Downey Jr. himself. Almost.
If you’re in the market for a kick ass cosplay experience there are a few elements that will make your costume stand out in a sea of anime characters you’ve never heard of and slightly out of shape Batmen.
Moving Parts & Lights
Back in the day you could legitimately buy a costume of a superhero that featured a picture of the superhero on the chest. Look at this silly crap.
Dr. Strange isn’t the hottest pepper in the chili, but even he’s not lame enough to run around wearing a poncho featuring his own portrait on it. You need to really advance cosplay to get away from this stuff if you want to be awesome and the most advanced thing the world of cosplay currently has in its arsenal is, oddly, moving parts and lights. You may argue things that move and light up are about as old as fire, but none of that was ever merged with the Avengers before. Check this out.
That guy is clearly the coolest nerd in the building, a title which may not mean much to the Alpha Beta fraternity, but one that means a hell of a lot to everyone else at that con and a good number of people on the internet. And remember, literally everyone is on the internet now, so that’s kind of impressive.
For real though, that’s a bad ass costume.
Few things inspire as much misplaced nerdrage as steampunk, mostly based around people’s feelings that you and I don’t understand what steampunk really is. It’s a kind of nerd hipster viewpoint. Then if you show them pictures of steampunk stuff they’ll point out how just adding some brass and gears doesn’t make a thing steampunk. It kind of does, but shh. Don’t ruin their bad time.
Basically, steampunk is a kind of subgenre of fiction that either takes place in a Victorian setting or a setting influenced by that time period, more or less. Ya know, when stuff was powered by steam and clockwork crap and a lot of nonsensical metal bits.
The reason people dig steampunk cosplay is that it takes normal cosplay and adds a bunch of weird crap to it. So you get to see your favorite characters only now they have steam engines and inexplicable gears and stuff. Just look.
Thinking outside the box gets you a lot of attention when it comes to cosplay but the problem is that most cosplayers think outside the box, too. These are people who love fiction so much they’ll spend months making their own costumes just so they can have people look at them for a day and think they’re awesome. It’d likely be considered insane in most other circumstances.
A fine way to trump those who are pulling out all the stops is to up the chromosome content in your costume by including an entirely different human being. This will make short work of those cosplayers who don’t have friends, and even impress those who do but couldn’t convince them to share a costume. Look!
Every cosplayers is a peacock when it comes time to hit Comic Con – you’re going on display against 1000 other people, all vying for attention. What makes your Hulk better than my Hulk? Why should anyone be impressed by your Spiderman Onesie? And if you’re all hardcore comic book nerds, how do you make any of them think you are the king nerd? You have to go full nerd. Full throttle nerdosity.
Every Tom, Dick and Harry is familiar with the Avengers right now, and as we’ve seen some guys are putting a ton of effort into their Iron Man costumes and whatnot. It’s hard to compete with that. So dig deeper. Don’t dress like Thor, even your grandma knows Thor. Go for the obscure and you’ll show off your nerd credentials like some kind of Nerd…guy who has credentials. I dunno, this metaphor isn’t going far. Point is, the crowd will be more impressed if you pick a costume no one else even thought of. Like so!