Posted on March 15th, 2014
Here’s a short piece I gone done. It’s based on a true story. A regularly-happening true story. Technically, it’s not so much a story as a thought I have every so often. Apologies to any kids offended by it, but you know I’m right.
It’s also notable for featuring one of my few drawings of myself. I’d say the drawing is fatter than I am in real-life, which surely means I’m doing it wrong.
Click here or on the picture above to go to it.
Posted on March 14th, 2014
Or: How I learned to Tolerate Cosplayers
Tomorrow I’m off to the London Super Comic Convention (that Super in the title feels superfluous to me) at ExCeL (which I remain convinced was the inspiration for all the boring indoor bits in Mirror’s Edge). I’m looking forward to it having missed last year’s one, but having enjoyed the inaugural one two years ago.
On that day, when I reached ExCeL I had to immediately join the world’s longest queue. I’m exaggerating slightly, but it did run almost the entire length of the ExCeL concourse back out to the front of the building. Of course, being a comic book convention, it was full of cosplayers. A massive collection of people, all in a variety of different guises (all I remember was a woman dressed as Ramona Flowers, complete with massive hammer).
I’ve always had an ambivalent relationship to cosplay. I’ve never really understood the appeal, but then I’ve never been comfortable leaving my own skin (Lord, I fucking hate fancy dress). I understand that it’s a way to bring superhero designs to life, that it’s a community of like-minded individuals who like to celebrate their love of genre fiction in their own way, but it’s always struck me as a rather long-winded way of going about it. To be completely honest, I’ve tended to think that cosplayers are probably a bit weird.
That was, until I saw the Zumba convention next door.
Holy fucking shit, now there was a bunch of lunatics in brightly coloured garb. All in teams of matching neon monstrosities, with tight-fitting tops and ridiculously baggy trousers. And zips! So many zips. Neon zips. All because they’ve gone too far into a cult which charges a fucking bomb for some over-zipped cargo trousers. The sheer amount of people in officially branded Zumba gear (and the price of that stuff, for there was a massive portion of ExCeL devoted to becoming a Zumba store). You could totally write a Batman story in which The Joker was a Zumba Instructor (a lot of them already had the right colour scheme).
At least the cosplayers weren’t part of some crazy cult. At least they still seemed to have a remnant of personality left. At least they were doing it out of a sense of personal fun, rather than because an exercise program told them to do it. At least they had managed to retain a sense of individuality. At least the amount of neon in their outfits was kept within respectable totals.
Am I being a little overzealous in my anti-zumbarism? Probably. They really weirded me out though. And their fucking ludicrous sound system meant that it really difficult to hear any of the talks in the convention room.
Cosplayers: not as bad as Zumba.