Outdated Cosplay

Thursday, 23 June 2011, 8:00 | Author : Kricket
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“The wheel of time turns as anime shows come and go, leaving videos that become memory.  Memory fades to history, and even history is long forgotten when a new anime arises into popularity.”  (parody of Robert Jordan’s “Wheel of Time,” by James Oliver Rigby Jr.)

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Anime, as a genre, is rapidly expanding and improving.  Every year, Japan broadcasts four seasons, each containing at least twelve anime shows.   We hardly realize that these shows are coming at us like waves in the ocean with everyone looking to catch the next wave of popular anime.  And when it hits, those who are paying attention will fly with it for as long as they can, savoring every second until they drift back into limbo.  Having witnessed the Inuyasha, Naruto, Bleach, and Soul Eater waves, I can understand how newly popular anime can create prevalent trends within the cosplay community.

What is harder to understand is why there is a subset of cosplayers who chose to go “old school” and cosplay popular (though now outdated) shows from the 80’s and 90’s.  Granted, I remember when my brother introduced me to Dragon Ball Z and when Cartoon Network started broadcasting Outlaw Star and Cowboy Bebop.  I enjoyed watching these shows for a time, but as I’ve stated, newer and better shows came around.  But every year, I see remnants of these shows rippling through the cosplay community.  Are these cosplayers trying to hang onto the past – perhaps the show that got them really into anime?  Or have they just not found a new show to occupy their fandom?  Are they too lazy to make a new costume each year?  Or perhaps its because, as nerds, we refuse to follow the new “fad.”

If you decide to go this route and cosplay an obscure character, it is certainly a different experience from cosplaying along with the mass appeal.  Although you have a better chance of having a unique costume, you might barely get noticed – not that this should bother you, but you shouldn’t be surprised either.  There will be times when you will feel lucky to hear someone acknowledge your character’s name as they walk by.  If your character is recognized at all, these people will accept that your love for the show is much stronger than the average attendee and as such, you will attract the few others who share this love.  (and by attract, I am specifically referring to that one overwhelmingly excited and squealing fangirl who just can’t live without glomping you.)

To those of you who are currently up-to-date on your cosplay choices, how does it feel knowing that your costume will suffer through its own waves of popularity?  Do you love your character so much that when the show becomes “old school” you will still be excited to don the costume “one more time?”

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