Saturday, April 20, 2013

I Wish It Was Supanova Every Day - Part 2

Welcome to the second part of my Supanova Melbourne adventure!

The second day I decided I was over the cape, and more importantly, over the height of the heels on my boots. I really have to find something more wearable for the Sydney event! So I went "incognito", and spent most of the day in panels, shopping, and once again, stalking cosplayers.

For some reason I can never seem to be all of The Boy's head in joint selfies.
I mean, he has a big head, but this is ridiculous.

The first panel The Boy and I went to was Natalie Tena, who had an ENORMOUS crowd. She played Tonks in the Harry Potter movies, and also plays Osha in Game of Thrones, so her nerd appeal is ridiculously widespread. I'm not actually a huge fan of Harry Potter *dodges thrown projectiles* so I was there to see her talk about Game of Thrones, and she had some great stories about how fun a show it apparently is to film. I tend to be a bit wary of Q and A sessions with actors who have played parts in media that people get totally obsessed with, because the questions tend to be of the sort that make me want to tear my eyes out in annoyance eg. "What is your favourite spell?", "In Episode 6 of Season 3, your character says this line - what do you think that REALLY meant?", "Which other character would you like your character to hook up with?" etc etc. The actors either can't, or rightly don't want to answer these questions, and it's just furiously awkward for everyone involved. But happily, the Potter fans at this particular panel largely restrained themselves, and the questions were pretty interesting. The highlight however, was when a girl asked if Natalie Tena would be her first kiss, and she happily obliged, while the crowd went completely mental.

@lori_grimes got this great shot of the mayhem
We also stuck around to see Eliza Dushku (most famously Faith from Buffy), who we've seen before, but she's always entertaining. She's also actually really tiny in real life - not just slim, but so much shorter than you would expect! Someone asked her to do a cheer from Bring It On (because she played one of the cheerleaders), and I was very pleased when she insisted he do one first.

Apart from watching gorgeous women be witty, smart, and entertaining, The Boy and I spent too much money on too much loot from all the awesome stalls on the main floor, and I regret none of it. Here we have a stealthgeek Stargate pendant, from jewelry artistans Artitude. I love me some Stargate, but since I really love the original movie best of all, I tend to not really get along with the proper serious Stargate fans, so I didn't want something too...obvious. The detail on this is just incredible, and since I wore it to work the other day and precisely no-one got the reference, I think it does exactly what I hoped it would.

Naturally, I also got some comics. I made sure I stopped by on the Saturday so I could get my hands on one of the Liedekjin books;  I'm an absolute sucker for passion projects and Liedekjin is one which combines folklore, art, and comics - practically a guarantee they can have my money. The artists involved got together to make a "sequential art exhibition", where they illustrated an old Flemish fairy tale with  comic style art, all of which is included in the book.

In between taking our money, the lovely Ele who was running the table got a really great photo of The Boy and I in costume.

I stopped by the table again on Sunday because I wanted to get some prints of the fantastic art in the Liedekjin book, but unfortunately the range of prints available was pretty limited and they didn't have any of the ones I really had my heart set on, so I will just content myself with wearing out the book.

I also got a Dark Crystal comic, but that's not as interesting.
Because The Boy is just the worst influence in the world when it comes to spending money, I also got this gorgeous necklace from Jubly-Umph Originals. This is now the third anatomical heart pendant I own - I think I probably don't need any more at this stage.

The Boy and I always need more coffee mugs, so we couldn't pass up this set of three interlocking mugs that have a map of Westeros on one side, and three different house sigils on the other.

And because I'm always looking for new ways to pretend I haven't grown up yet, I got myself a Rainbow Brite DVD.

Now my humblebragging about my aquisitions is out of the way, let's get to the last of my cosplay pictures! First up is another picture of The Boy and I from Saturday, that I found on Rareity's tumblr.

Just as I will never get tired of crossplay, I will NEVER get tired of Disney cosplay.
This is a fantastic Cruella de Ville and Maleficent.

I really want to know where this Ursula even got that stuffed moray eel.

I actually interrupted this girl while she was having lunch, but she was super nice about it.

The second Zatanna for the weekend! I think there was actually more Zatanna cosplay at this event
than Slave Leia, which is virtually unheard of.
You might have noticed the cosplay pictures I've chosen to post have a certain...bias. As I said in my last post on cosplay, it's bothered me for a long time that girls of a certain size seem to get more attention than girls of other sizes - at least partially because I myself am on the more ignored end of the scale. I used to deal with this by getting snippy at the girls getting the attention, until it occurred to me that this is total bullshit, and wildly counterproductive.

My annoyance at the smaller girls getting the lion's share of the attention actually turns out to be quite complex, once I took the time to really pick it apart. It's partially because they happened to be thin, and I happen to be fat, and I hate that something you can't help effects so much how people perceive the worth of your cosplay.  I hated the idea that no matter how hard I tried, a thin girl in a Black Milk swimsuit was always going to get more attention - and let's be totally honest here, everyone cosplays for attention. Not necessarily sexual attention - but you don't go out in cosplay unless you want people to look at you. It bothers me that there seems to be a cap on the amount of attention I can access, simply because of the size of my ass. It doesn't seem fair - as if anything is, I know. But still, it feels so unfair, and it makes me angry at the girls that I perceive as getting the better end of the deal. It feels sometimes like they can get away without making any effort in their cosplay (see aforementioned Black Milk swimsuits), whereas I have to try much harder to get any attention at all, because the quality of my cosplay is the only thing people will be interested in.

While rolling this around in my head, I realised something about the way I perceived the smaller girls that really bothered me - I can be more dismissive of a really good cosplay if the girl is thin. This is very not cool. The simple truth is that some of the smaller cosplayers get more attention because they are in really, really good cosplay. There was an AMAZING reboot Lara Croft at Melbourne, and I found myself getting irritated at all the people with cameras crowding around her. Sshe was really fit and toned, and quite pretty, and I felt like that was all anyone cared about. But thinking back, there were probably a lot of people paying attention because her outfit was really, really good. She had bandages in all the right places, and I'd seen her in the bathrooms touching up wound makeup on her own back just to make it look more authentic. Thin or not, she was COMMITTED. And I dismissed that just because she's also conventionally attractive. Which is quite a shitty thing of me to do, and something I am firmly kicking myself to stop doing.

But I'm still left with the conundrum that the bigger girls simply don't get the attention I feel they deserve. While I only got one negative reaction to my cosplay (to my face), I did still feel quite self conscious and very aware that I was not getting stopped as often as the smaller girls. In encouraging news, I have definitely noticed that there are more and more bigger female cosplayers at Supanova every year, and it's awesome to see so many of us contributing to visibility. After all, the only thing that will change the culture is getting out there and changing it, right? So what can I do, other than stretch clingy purple fabric over my jiggly bits in the same of fat solidarity? I don't want to hassle the smaller girls, or carry around this seething bitterness anymore. It ruins an otherwise excellent time.

At the risk of being tokenistic, I set out this Supanova to get photos of all the cosplayers I felt weren't getting the attention they deserved. I specifically scouted out all the curvy cosplayers I could find, and also started including the skinny boys as well once I realised they were getting ignored too. Cosplay is challenging, and I think anyone who makes the effort to go out in a ridiculous costume deserves at the very least a high five, no matter what size they are. I plan on taking photos with the same goal again in Sydney. It means I don't get pictures of every awesome cosplay I see - The Boy pointed out a bunch to me this trip that I agreed were awesome, but that I didn't take photos of because I'm on a quite specific mission. I worry that this is still being unfair to the smaller female cosplayers - but the fact is, someone else will be more than happy to take photos of that amazing Lara Croft, while I'm snapping Ursula from The Little Mermaid. I like to think that my little mission might help in some tiny, small way to balance the scene out a bit.

So here's your very early notice - if you're a curvy girl (or skinny boy) going to Sydney Supanova in cosplay, be sure to hit me up for a photo! I want to see if I can catch 'em all this time!


  1. I love any cosplayers! I totally agree it's about the effort. I was thinking of going to Sydney but none of the guests have me dragging myself there yet.

    1. A day pass is only 30 bucks or so, and personally I think there is plenty on the main floor to keep anyone occupied for a day :-) It's only worth it for the weekend if you're really really keen though.

  2. Hey, I was the Ursula cosplayer. Great photo (though it's a pity you can see me feet; my fault not yours). I made the eel myself. The body was just basic cotton, the fins were made out of green felt, and the eye was a painted Styrofoam ball that I cut in half. All up I think it cost me less than $20, and that includes the fluff used to stuff it :)

    1. That's so awesome! I am in awe of your sewing skills!


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