What draws you to a convention could be any number of things; your favorite artist or writer, an actor from a TV show or movie, or just a desire to soak in some comic, sci-fi or video game culture. But whatever brings you to a convention, there is no added bonus greater than seeing a complete stranger dressed as one of your favorite characters.
I went to Kansas City Comic Con on behalf of myself and The Monthly Spew and snapped pictures of my favorite cosplays, let’s take a look at all the contenders before going through our staff’s picks for favorites.
Josh: TMS editor & cosplayer
Simeon: TMS panelist & cosplayer
Dustin: TMS editor
Joey: TMS editor
Tumps: TMS contributor & cosplayer
Josh: There are usually two things that impress me about a cosplay, an impressive or difficult build or just seeing a favorite character, even if it’s shoddy. And a lot of my favorite characters were represented at KCCC; Casey Jones, Ash from Evil Dead, Constantine, Rocketeer, Scruffy the Janitor, etc. But I think my personal pick for KCCC would have to be Darkman. Not only because it was well done, but for the fact that I have never seen a Darkman cosplay before. Bravo, stranger.
Dustin: Looks like there was some great KCCC cosplay! I always love the amount of work that goes into the more elaborate costumes. The armored knight looks fantastic and the amount of work that goes into building that and wearing those pauldrons all day? That’s a level of commitment to the art that is just fantastic. The Deathstroke also looks great and the Sauron is fantastic- but I frankly don’t love the design of the movie version of Sauron. That’s an entirely personal reaction and shouldn’t be taken as a critique of how well that guy (or gal) pulled it off. I think Crusader from Diablo is my favorite because of all the detail in the armor and amount of effort that you can tell went into it. Also because of pauldrons.
Joey: It’s difficult to pick given 1) the volume of awesome characters among our contenders; and 2) the quality and attention to detail given all the righteous ‘stumes. But I have a soft spot for random/obscure characters because you know they hold a deep personal meaning for the cosplayer, and while I love characters like Casey Jones, Shredder, Sean of the Dead, Ash, and Sauron, I have to give it to Darkman for dedicated fandom and awesome execution.
Tumps: I would say I am thoroughly impressed with the quality of the costumes, and the nostalgia factor in play here. For instance, I have not seen a Casey Jones cosplay in years. Other costumes I found noteworthy were Redhood, Batgirl and Deathstroke. From the image it looks like a very creative use for duct tape on Redhood. Costuming on a budget isn’t easy, and making duct tape look decent is just as hard. Way to go sir! (Or lady.) Then you have Batgirl. I didn’t really care for the costume as much as the boots… Can someone tell me her secret to not dying in those heels? (Totally asking for my own future cosplay reference.) As for Deathstroke, he won my heart with his fun and slightly disturbing photobomb of Green Arrow and Arsenal.
Like Dustin, the costume I am most impressed with is the Crusader from Diablo. I am currently crafting armor of my own, and the pauldrons are quickly becoming the bane of my existence. Kudos to you stranger, for your enthusiasm and dedication.
Simeon: Whenever I cosplay I attempt the cheapest build I can while attempting to keep the quality up. I am also not investing the majority of my hobby money into cosplaying, so that is my main limiting factor. When I look at cosplays it is really easy for me to make jokes and snide remarks about the quality of an outfit and I try not to because I remember that money can be an issue for some of us.
That being said it’s hard not to appreciate a good cosplay regardless of how expensive it was. You can tell by looking through these photos that there are several fairly expensive builds in here. My favorites were the Tolkien-verse characters. That Radagast was really well done, but all others pale in comparison to the Dark Lord Sauron. The Crusader from Diablo lady is impressive and I wish I had seen the cosplay in person, but my brain hurts just thinking about how many hours went into that.
For the Inexpensive Cosplays I really think that the Ash cosplayer nailed his outfit. It doesn’t look like a tough build but sometimes you just go with what you’ve got. Speaking of what people have, major credit to Zangief I have seen few street fighter characters that are as well done as his was and all it took was a bit of body paint and some tight red trunks(not to mention the years spent in gyms). Overall I have to give my vote to Crusader from Diablo. That much dedication deserves it.
But this is just a small snapshot of the amount of cosplay that went on at KCCC, to see more KCCC 2015 cosplay pictures check out Kansas City Comic Con’s official page, ComicBooked.com (where you’ll find pictures of Simeon as Waldo and myself as Hooded Justice), Project Nerd, and Worst Comic Podcast Ever.
When not taking photos of strangers Josh runs his travelogue, where you can find additional Comic Convention coverage.
This article originally referred to the Crusader Armor from Diablo costume as a Warcraft cosplay. One reader caught our error and helpfully corrected us. They even provided the providence of the armor: Immortal Props. Check them out! They make some great stuff!