Well, if someone asks me if I have cosplayed before, I can officially say, “Yes!”
Over the past few weeks I have chronicled the development of my Shadow costume extensively here on NerdMerge. It has been a long but very amusing journey, and it all culminated on Saturday, March 11th when attended the Lexington Comic Convention. It was a very thrilling day, and it really was more than I had hoped that it could be.
I took my costume along with me in a cardboard box. It sat beside me in the car seat. My friend and colleague here at The MatchHead (and NerdMerge) Chris Swiger and his girlfriend took turns driving. The whole way I was bantering on about random foolishness, but I was secretly nervous as could be. What if my costume wasn’t well-received? What if people made fun of me? What if I ran into another (better) version of The Shadow? All of these questions swirled around as the miles to Lexington ticked by.
As we crossed into the city limits I began putting parts of my costume on in the car. I cinched my shirt up and put on my coat. I put the wig-cap on so that I could tuck my hair up into the hat. I seated the hat on my head and waited, patiently, for us to find a place to park.
Once we were comfortably in a parking spot Chris and his girlfriend, Brooke, helped me to finish putting on the rest of my costume. I buttoned up and belted the coat and put on the holsters with my newly-acquired rubber guns. I had Brooke help me wrap the scarf around my head the right way and I fastened the cape securely around my neck. I briefly assessed myself in the sideview mirror of the car and determined that I was as ready as I was going to be.
As we entered the convention I caught a couple of eyes looking my way. I was self-conscious, to be honest, and was deeply afraid that some part of my costume was askew. It also occurred to me that there could be die-hard fans of The Shadow lurking about in the convention and that they would find fault with my costume. Even as we checked in and got our badges my nerves were extremely on edge.
When we walked through the doors and into the convention, everything changed.
Within moments people were recognizing my costume. They were asking to take photos with me. Chris was using their cameras and his own to document the experience along the way. No matter where we went throughout the convention I was being constantly stopped and asked for photos. I found myself taking up comic poses in some of the photos as I became more comfortable with the situation. It’s like I was a celebrity! It was a great feeling, an awesome feeling, and something that I would definitely like to try again!
After we departed the convention center my adrenaline was still pumping. It was awesome to walk around and be recognized as The Shadow. Throughout the day people constantly complimented me on my costume and remarked that they had never seen anyone cosplay as the character before.
Now, I have seen pictures of other people cosplaying as The Shadow during my research for my own costume, but it would never have occurred to me that I would be the only one running around the Lexington Comic Con. It was great, and I would definitely do it again. Cosplay is something that is inviting and accepting. For anyone thinking of doing it I would definitely suggest that you give it a try. I think it’s awesome, and I’m not very easily impressed.
So, to sum up and end out this series on my cosplay of The Shadow: It was great, I loved it, and putting the costume together was time well spent. And, for the very last time (I promise): The Shadow knows!