Costume Contests Must Be Destroyed

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bock...@my-deja.com

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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Weekly column found at www.athenstown.com

Big Eyed - Everything you need to know about Japanese cartoons
by David Merrill
Costume Contests Must Be Destroyed

So there I was on stage at AWA '99, last October, in the middle of the
what has been described as the worst Costume Contest in recorded anime
convention history, and suddenly it struck me. Costume contests are a
really bad idea, and it's time they were eliminated. Wiped out.
Destroyed.

They're unbearably long. They always start late. There's never
enough chairs for everybody. The people in the back can't see or hear
the skits, and the people in the front wish they couldn't. It's an
event that sucks up about five hours worth of valuable event time in
the largest room of the hotel on the biggest day of the convention.
Half the hallways are taken up with people standing in line all day,
and most
of the staff is forced to either play crowd control or run around
backstage like beheaded chickens.

The bottom line is, the things just aren't any fun - not for the
audience, not for the staff, not for the costumers, and certainly not
for the M.C., who's stuck on stage for three hours, denied alcohol or
public
restrooms, a sacrifice to the public demand for "cos-play" (as they
call costume contests in the anime world).

Don't get me wrong - I've got nothing against costuming itself. I live
with a costumer, so I understand the work involved in making an anime
costume. I like seeing people dressed up as anime characters walking
around the halls of an anime convention. Japanese cartoon characters
have some fantastic costumes - much more interesting than the ugly
Spandex outfits of American superheros or the psuedo-military look that
passes for science fiction these days. Heck, I've been known to dress
up in the odd anime outfit from time to time, even though I don't have
the hair anymore.

What I'm against is the idea that anime conventions have somehow become
obliged to stage these huge Vegas-style entertainment extravaganzas.
If I wanted entertainment, I'd go to the Catskills, where I'd be
entertained by paid professionals, not teenagers with bad skin and
foam-rubber hairpieces. If I wanted to go to a beauty pageant or a
talent show, I'd go to one of those, not an anime con. I'm against
the waste of con time and resources on an event that just isn't any fun
anymore.

When was the last time you saw a convention costume contest that was
worth sitting in line for three hours? Not to mention the three hours
the thing actually lasts. That's six hours you could be eating dinner,
visiting friends, swimming in the pool, investigating the hotel bar, or
making deals. But instead you're squirming in your seat watching
contestant number forty-five out of sixty. What is it with costume
contestants? I mean, some of them know full well that they don't
really have anything to say, and they come out on stage, show everybody
their costume, and leave. But let two or three costumers get together
and suddenly they decide they've got to do some sort of comedy skit.
Oh, never mind that the costumes they're wearing have absolutely
nothing to do with each other. If we're lucky, the "skit" will be
nothing more involved than the setup to a bad pun. But more and more
frequently the costumers decide to treat us to a wonderful display of
stage "combat". Believe me, there's nothing more jaw-droppingly
stultifying than watching four or five young adults, dressed as video
game characters, wave their hands around in the air like idiots hoping
the audience will somehow magically get the impression that they are
actually firing mystical beams of destructive force. When six-year-olds
do this in front of their parents, it's charming. When people old
enough to drive and vote do it in front of seven hundred people, it's
profoundly disturbing. And I'm not even going to mention the foam-
rubber hair, which gets more outlandish every year. How much more pain
can we endure? How long must this go on?

What finally did it for me was the cosplay at AWA this year, which was
the worst ever. I mean the worst ever in the history of the world, not
just for AWA. Trust me - I was there. I saw it. The thing didn't
start
on time (but do they ever?) The endless parade of contestants was
lackluster and uninspired. The audience was restless and full of
hecklers. The judges were restless and full of hecklers, too. The
whole
affair was unorganized, full of miscues, false starts, fumbled lines,
and bad jokes. Want to know how boring the thing was? The fan
favorite award was given to somebody who wasn't even in costume. I
think that pretty much says it all.

Even the costumers seemed bored with the whole thing. It's like they
were unwilling participants in some sort of bizarre ritual - every year
the same forty people put on the same costumes and get up on stage and
intone the same tired phrases, and every year the rest of the congoers
stand in line for hours and spend the evening performing their ritual
duty. What's the use? Why bother? Why keep this withered husk
connected to life support at all?

I think it's time to put a bullet in the head of this repeat offender
and move on with our lives. If you're a con attendee, don't go. If
you're a costumer, walk around the halls, pose for photos, and spend
Saturday
night socializing. If you're a con organizer, pull the plug. The sci-
fi conventions and the Trek conventions and the comic book conventions
have costume contests, but so what? More reason for us not to. It's
time to stop the insanity.

What do they do in Japan? They have a convention in Japan called Comic
Market, or "Comiket". Attendance at Comiket is something like fifty
thousand over a weekend (compare to the biggest American cons that do
maybe fifteen thousand). Lots of those attendees are in anime
character costumes. And does Comiket schedule some sort of lame-ass
time-wasting "contest"? No way. Everybody wanders around, poses for
the cameras and the video cameras, and that's it. Wouldn't that be
nice? It would certainly make for a kinder, gentler anime convention.
No long lines, no failed jokes, no ineptly staged combat -to me it
sounds like pure heaven.

Will there be a costume contest at AWA 2000? I don't know. Our events
director will only say that the matter is under discussion. Now, I'm
not na久e enough to think that a popular anime con could just cancel a
(justly or unjustly) popular event without warning. So it's a safe bet
that there will be some sort of anime costume-related event at AWA next
year. But it's also a safe bet to assume that there will also be some
major changes made. My suggestions? Well, I'd rather not say, but
they involve high-pressure water hoses and rock-salt loads for .410
shotguns. See you on Saturday night!

Questions/Comments?
E-mail me at dave.m...@juno.com!

When not commuting or watching TV, Dave Merrill publishes Let's Anime,
the anime fanzine for people who hate anime fanzines. Reviews,
articles, interviews, translations, all about those big-eyed Japanese
cartoons that cause epileptic fits. Sample copy $2.50 from:
Dave Merrill, PO Box 724182 Atlanta GA 31139-1182


Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
Before you buy.

Bruce Lewis

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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As one of the heckling judges at AWA 5 cosplay...I couldn't agree more.
There HAS to be a better way for costumers to show off their work. But
if I have to watch one more idiotic Ranma skit I'm going to spray the
stage with rain of high-velocity automatic weapons fire.

If the choice is the current cosplay or nothing, I vote for nothing.

Enrique Conty

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <83absr$jsr$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>, <bock...@my-deja.com> wrote:
>by David Merrill
>Costume Contests Must Be Destroyed

Gah. I'll just do the 5 cent tour of my r.a.a.misc post:
- Fans really like costume contests, for whatever reason.
Removing them is playing with fire.
- If all your equipment and staff is provided by amateurs,
*don't* try to do a Broadway show!
- If the show is too hard for you to run, there are things
you can do to scale it down. Put a cap on the contestant count,
get rid of skits/prizes, move the MC down to the control table
where he'll be useful instead of a sweaty fanboy in a suit.

--
E n r i q u e C o n t y
co...@enteract.com
http://www.enteract.com/~conty/
Official Home of The Great Anime Sub Sale

Erik Schultz

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <83absr$jsr$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>, bock...@my-deja.com wrote:
>The bottom line is, the things just aren't any fun - not for the
>audience, not for the staff, not for the costumers, and certainly not
>for the M.C., who's stuck on stage for three hours, denied alcohol or
>public
>restrooms, a sacrifice to the public demand for "cos-play" (as they
>call costume contests in the anime world).

Well, there must be SOME appeal, otherwise there wouldn't be those unbearble
lines and crowding conditions. Personally, I don't understand the appeal
myself, but whatever.

WayneBruce

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <83b62...@enews4.newsguy.com>, er...@pond.com (Erik
Schultz) wrote:

> Well, there must be SOME appeal, otherwise there wouldn't be
> those unbearble
> lines and crowding conditions. Personally, I don't understand the
> appeal
> myself, but whatever.

Well, originally when there was only a few costumers there was enormous
appeal. The people that dressed up were different and unique and
everyone wants to check them out. But as anime conventions get bigger
and bigger, EVERYONE wants to dress up. In the beginning the costume
contest works because of the lack of participants. Now with so many
people they should get rid of it, but they can't because of tradition.
Kinda like backwards compatibility.

I think they should get rid of costume play also and save more time for
seating at special showings and premiers. People won't stop wearing
costumes, and people won't stop admiring them. It'll just be less
crowded.

WB


* Sent from RemarQ http://www.remarq.com The Internet's Discussion Network *
The fastest and easiest way to search and participate in Usenet - Free!


Enrique Conty

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <83b62...@enews4.newsguy.com>,

Erik Schultz <er...@pond.com> wrote:
> Well, there must be SOME appeal, otherwise there wouldn't be those unbearble
>lines and crowding conditions. Personally, I don't understand the appeal
>myself, but whatever.

The chance to see some young lady dressed as <insert
anime dream-babe of choice here>. Fantasy made flesh.

*That's* why fans will put up with the lines, 87 bad Ranma 1/2 skits,
and being stuck for three hours in a hot, dark room that smells like all
the old socks in the world... the hope, however slim, that the 17 year old
girl in the Naga costume will fall out of it.

Redneck Gaijin

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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On 16 Dec 1999 17:34:11 GMT, co...@enteract.com (Enrique Conty) wrote:

>In article <83absr$jsr$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>, <bock...@my-deja.com> wrote:

>>by David Merrill
>>Costume Contests Must Be Destroyed
>

>Gah. I'll just do the 5 cent tour of my r.a.a.misc post:
>- Fans really like costume contests, for whatever reason.
> Removing them is playing with fire.
>- If all your equipment and staff is provided by amateurs,
> *don't* try to do a Broadway show!
>- If the show is too hard for you to run, there are things
> you can do to scale it down. Put a cap on the contestant count,
> get rid of skits/prizes, move the MC down to the control table
> where he'll be useful instead of a sweaty fanboy in a suit.

I've managed to get to a few costume contests this year (something I
don't usually do) and was occasionally entertained, occasionally
wracked with pain.

Cosplay, for Americans, is heckler's paradise. Live with it.

My objection is to those cons who don't stop to consider that the
judges may take longer than you expected to come up with the winners,
and -something- needs to be put over the decision time.

My solution: Have the ubiquitous Art Auction between cosplay
performance and prize announcements.

Let's face it, you are never going to get a larger captive audience at
a con than at the cosplay. Put your cashier down front (on the side
opposite from the stage controls), run up the items that get 5 or more
silent bids (5 instead of 3? Because you want this to be over in an
hour or so... adjust as need be), and let the auctioneer deal with the
restless crowd, perhaps with the assistance of the most comely girls
in costume showing around the artworks.

Obviously not everyone in the crowd will have registered at the art
show. Let everyone know that if they want to bid, they need to get a
number from the cashier- that way, if their check bounces, you can
send the Antignano Brothers to their door to collect.

Other suggestions:

(1) Let dealers offer their own prizes. The cosplay is one of the VERY
FEW EVENTS a dealer can rely on getting to at a convention, and a few
of them (myself included) would love to give a little something to
their favorites.)

(2) On skits: make the skit persons submit full scripts, TYPEWRITTEN,
in advance. This should prevent the worst of the unrehearsed 'hey!
nice costume!' material.

Also, make the people choose; costume contest -or- skit contest.
Costumers can have fifteen seconds to pose, say something witty, and
bugger off; skit people can have up to thirty seconds per person
involved. Allow leeway for unscheduled audience participation... you
do NOT want to drag off the Big Fire flunky in a Hawaiian shirt when
the audience is chanting 'Hail Big Fire!!'

(3) Finally, as nice as it seems to honor all the GoHs with a spot,
limit the number of judges. Five seems like a nice solid number, more
than a tribunal but not quite a committee. }:-{D

All very much IMHO.

Redneck, aka Kris@WLP


Avatar

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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Enrique Conty wrote:
>
> In article <83b62...@enews4.newsguy.com>,
> Erik Schultz <er...@pond.com> wrote:
> > Well, there must be SOME appeal, otherwise there wouldn't be those unbearble
> >lines and crowding conditions. Personally, I don't understand the appeal
> >myself, but whatever.
>
> The chance to see some young lady dressed as <insert
> anime dream-babe of choice here>. Fantasy made flesh.
>
> *That's* why fans will put up with the lines, 87 bad Ranma 1/2 skits,
> and being stuck for three hours in a hot, dark room that smells like all
> the old socks in the world... the hope, however slim, that the 17 year old
> girl in the Naga costume will fall out of it.

Gotta question for you folks... why not just SKIP THE EFFING COSPLAY?

I didn't go to the CP at A-kon 8, and didn't regret missing it. I -did-
see the one at 9 (where the staff seating was right up close to the
stage, I might add), and enjoyed it some. I attended maybe half of the
last one, at A-kon 10, but wasn't too impressed with the sound system
(somebody needs to learn the principle of RF interference when dealing
with wireless mikes) and ducked out halfway through. Had lots of fun
each time.

OTOH, getting rid of the cosplay is a stupid idea, simply because people
like 'em.

I like the no-skit idea... except that a bunch of guys from my club won
third at A-kon 10 with an Utena skit (and some good costumes), and
another guy from UH won Best Male Costume for his Gendou getup. <shrug>

My advice is to catch it on video if at all possible. That way, you can
heckle the hell out of the person on stage without offending them, or
fast-forward through that badly sung number. ;p

Avatar

Derek Sherman

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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bock...@my-deja.com wrote:

[snip]


>The bottom line is, the things just aren't any fun - not for the
>audience, not for the staff, not for the costumers, and certainly not
>for the M.C., who's stuck on stage for three hours, denied alcohol or
>public
>restrooms, a sacrifice to the public demand for "cos-play" (as they
>call costume contests in the anime world).

Apparently this individual didn't get to Neko-con this year. Mr Mifune
(God, I hope I'm remembering his name right) most certainly was not
denied his alcohol. He provided some of the entertainment all by
himself, even.

But lest we forget - the #1 rule. DON'T VISUALIZE. Just don't do it.

And watch out for them darned chickens.


If you were at the Neko-con cosplay this year, you know what I'm talking
about <shudder>


Derek

Enrique Conty

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <385948C5...@pdq.net>, Avatar <ak...@pdq.net> wrote:
>Gotta question for you folks... why not just SKIP THE EFFING COSPLAY?

No, no... this is not an attendee complaining that cosplay sucks.
This is a convention organizer (Dave Merill) who doesn't want to
do the cosplay anymore...

>I like the no-skit idea... except that a bunch of guys from my club won
>third at A-kon 10 with an Utena skit (and some good costumes), and
>another guy from UH won Best Male Costume for his Gendou getup. <shrug>

So get rid of awards, too.

Enrique Conty

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <385584ff...@news.detnet.com>,

Redneck Gaijin <red...@detnet.com> wrote:
>My objection is to those cons who don't stop to consider that the
>judges may take longer than you expected to come up with the winners,
>and -something- needs to be put over the decision time.

You know, I think you hit on something good here! See below...

>Also, make the people choose; costume contest -or- skit contest.

Make it just a costume contest... walk in, say a few words or pose,
walk out. Then have a short, *prescreened* selection of skits while
the judges select their winner... what do you think, sirs?

Avatar

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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Enrique Conty wrote:
>
> In article <385948C5...@pdq.net>, Avatar <ak...@pdq.net> wrote:
> >Gotta question for you folks... why not just SKIP THE EFFING COSPLAY?
>
> No, no... this is not an attendee complaining that cosplay sucks.
> This is a convention organizer (Dave Merill) who doesn't want to
> do the cosplay anymore...

<chuckle>

> >I like the no-skit idea... except that a bunch of guys from my club won
> >third at A-kon 10 with an Utena skit (and some good costumes), and
> >another guy from UH won Best Male Costume for his Gendou getup. <shrug>
>
> So get rid of awards, too.

Too subtle, then. My point was that said club members would seize me by
the whatchamacallits and whirl me overhead until I ended up imbedded in
a nearby wall with a voice two registers higher, if I actually endorsed
that policy. ^_^;;;;

Avatar
"ow! owowowowowowowow!"

Stephen Tsai

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <83absr$jsr$1...@nnrp1.deja.com>, <bock...@my-deja.com> wrote:
>Weekly column found at www.athenstown.com
>What I'm against is the idea that anime conventions have somehow become
>obliged to stage these huge Vegas-style entertainment extravaganzas.
>If I wanted entertainment, I'd go to the Catskills, where I'd be
>entertained by paid professionals, not teenagers with bad skin and
>foam-rubber hairpieces. If I wanted to go to a beauty pageant or a
>talent show, I'd go to one of those, not an anime con. I'm against
>the waste of con time and resources on an event that just isn't any fun
>anymore.

Even worse...overweight teenagers with bad skin...:-)

No, this isn't a slam. I'm overweight myself. It's just
that almost all major anime characters are in such *impossibly
perfect* physical shape, it's quite a shock to see them
represented by someone with a set of love handles...

>worth sitting in line for three hours? Not to mention the three hours
>the thing actually lasts. That's six hours you could be eating dinner,

The longer and longer lines are why I stopped attending them a few
years ago. Expo recently tried to simul-cast their on the hotel's
CCTV system, and that was mixed (late as you pointed out and
not very good camera work, but at least I was watching from
the comfort of my own room).

>nothing more involved than the setup to a bad pun. But more and more
>frequently the costumers decide to treat us to a wonderful display of
>stage "combat". Believe me, there's nothing more jaw-droppingly
>stultifying than watching four or five young adults, dressed as video
>game characters, wave their hands around in the air like idiots hoping
>the audience will somehow magically get the impression that they are
>actually firing mystical beams of destructive force. When six-year-olds
>do this in front of their parents, it's charming. When people old
>enough to drive and vote do it in front of seven hundred people, it's
>profoundly disturbing. And I'm not even going to mention the foam-
>rubber hair, which gets more outlandish every year. How much more pain
>can we endure? How long must this go on?

What we need is some state-of-the-art holography! Yeah, that's
the ticket! Either that or people should learn some
real magic; that'd I'd line up to see...:-)

Stephen Tsai
--
Kimagure Productions| http://www.geocities.com/Tokyo/Ginza/1604/
--present-- | http://www.dhc.net/~stsai/koc/
Orange College #39 | http://www.dhc.net/~stsai/bssr/
Sailor Ranma #21 | Stephen Tsai st...@netcom.com

WayneBruce

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <385584ff...@news.detnet.com>, red...@detnet.com
(Redneck Gaijin) wrote:

> My solution: Have the ubiquitous Art Auction between cosplay
> performance and prize announcements.

Actually, that's not a bad idea. You can have it this way too. Have
the costumers be Vanna Whites! Have them walk out bearing the auction
item. If they want to strut around a little, even better. Maybe a
higher auction price. Someone should suggest this to all the auction
manager.

Thomas Cardwell

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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Bruce Lewis wrote:

> As one of the heckling judges at AWA 5 cosplay
>

"Heckling Judge"
You Utterly Disgust me!

--From the members of the COSP ML!

Brian Love

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Dec 16, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/16/99
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In article <83boml$5i1$1...@nntp2.atl.mindspring.net>, st...@netcom.com
(Stephen Tsai) wrote:

>
> The longer and longer lines are why I stopped attending them a few
> years ago. Expo recently tried to simul-cast their on the hotel's
> CCTV system, and that was mixed (late as you pointed out and
> not very good camera work, but at least I was watching from
> the comfort of my own room).

^---Heckling

at least in my case.

It was much more comfortable in the comfort of my room though :-)

--
Brian Love
Blizzard Entertainment

Mark L. Neidengard

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Dec 17, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/17/99
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In article <01ebce32...@usw-ex0107-043.remarq.com>,

WayneBruce <waynebru...@yahoo.com.invalid> wrote:
>In article <385584ff...@news.detnet.com>, red...@detnet.com
>(Redneck Gaijin) wrote:
>
>> My solution: Have the ubiquitous Art Auction between cosplay
>> performance and prize announcements.
>
>Actually, that's not a bad idea. You can have it this way too. Have
>the costumers be Vanna Whites! Have them walk out bearing the auction
>item. If they want to strut around a little, even better. Maybe a
>higher auction price. Someone should suggest this to all the auction
>manager.

Um, this has two major weaknesses. The first of which is the Masquerade is in
the middle of most anime conventions, whereas most people would want the
silent-auction bidding to continue as late as possible. I doubt people would
like that much.

Secondly, forums like AX that have a charity auction too would get thrown into
turmoil. Even the fanart part of the auction takes a seriously long time to
go through (and didn't the detractors of Masquerade want it over fast?) And
the charity portion can be even longer, and holding _that_ before people had
decided all their purchases would bode no god for the proceeds.

Not a bad idea, but has some problems...
--
/!\/!ark /!\!eidengard, EE Grad, VLSI. http://keyframe.cjas.org/~mneideng/
"Fairy of sleep, controller of illusions" Maigo no Daigakuinsei, Cornell U.
"Control the person for my own purpose." "Don't mess with the Dark Elves!"
-Pirotess, _Record_of_Lodoss_War_ Shadowrunner and Anime Addict

bock...@my-deja.com

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Dec 17, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/17/99
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I like the idea of turning the whole Cosplay thing into a Poetry Slam
affair. NO JUDGES, NO AWARDS, NO MC, NO TECH SUPPORT. Just give 'em a
mic and a spot on a stage, then the Cosplayers can try to run the whole
damn thing themselves.

Thomas Cardwell

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Dec 17, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/17/99
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bock...@my-deja.com wrote:

Most anime con cosplays are organized and ran by Veteran Cosplayers.
So I guess they do.

Bruce Lewis

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Dec 17, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/17/99
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Thomas Cardwell wrote:

> You Utterly Disgust me!

And a very Merry Christmas to you, too, Thomas.

Mike Shogun Tatsugawa

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Dec 17, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/17/99
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In article <m34sdhf...@peorth.gweep.net>,
Stainless Steel Rat <rat...@peorth.gweep.net> wrote:
>-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
>Hash: SHA1

>* "Ryan Mathews" <math...@ix.netcom.com> on Thu, 16 Dec 1999
>| I'm convinced that at least some of these skits are written when people
>| meet in the line at the masquerade. Suddenly, these people are friends,
>| so they must find some way to put Princess Mononoke and Evangelion in the
>| same sketch.

>First, it is called "cosplay", not "masqerade". Some kind of skit is
>required to get any kind of award out of the judges; walk-ons rarely rate
>more than polite applause.

I would argue the opposite. Most of the impressive costumes at AX are
far too elaborate to do anything more than walk on and walk off. But
that's also why you have awards for best craftsmanship and best skit.

Mike
--
Mike Tatsugawa (sho...@spja.com) SPJA dba Anime Expo
http://www.apricot.com/~shogun 7336 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 640
ICQ 34717192 (626) 582-8200 Hollywood, CA 90046
AOL P TATSUGMI http://www.anime-expo.org

Veronica

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Dec 18, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/18/99
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"Derek Sherman" <dopple...@pipeline.com> wrote in message
news:38595157...@news.pipeline.com...
> bock...@my-deja.com wrote:
>
> [snip]

> >The bottom line is, the things just aren't any fun - not for the
> >audience, not for the staff, not for the costumers, and certainly not
> >for the M.C., who's stuck on stage for three hours, denied alcohol or
> >public
> >restrooms, a sacrifice to the public demand for "cos-play" (as they
> >call costume contests in the anime world).
>
> Apparently this individual didn't get to Neko-con this year. Mr Mifune
> (God, I hope I'm remembering his name right) most certainly was not
> denied his alcohol. He provided some of the entertainment all by
> himself, even.

Not nagging, but just stating for the record. The MC for Neko-Con's CP
was Toshifumi Yoshida from Viz. (Yes, that Toshi) And as for him not being
denied his....beverage. I hardly doubt a simple thing like being Cos-Play MC
would keep that from happening. ^_^
Our Attendees, Guest, staff and the Cos-players want him to do it again
next year. ^O^

>
> But lest we forget - the #1 rule. DON'T VISUALIZE. Just don't do it.
>
> And watch out for them darned chickens.

It's not the chickens, but the person was fu------ nevermind. ^_^;;;
Rule #1....repeat the mantra with me...

>
> If you were at the Neko-con cosplay this year, you know what I'm talking
> about <shudder>

You loved every minute of it...It was wrong, but you laughed, ADMIT IT!
^_-

> Derek

Derek Sherman

unread,
Dec 18, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/18/99
to
"Veronica" <ant...@usit.net> wrote:

>
>"Derek Sherman" <dopple...@pipeline.com> wrote in message
>news:38595157...@news.pipeline.com...

>> Apparently this individual didn't get to Neko-con this year. Mr Mifune
>> (God, I hope I'm remembering his name right) most certainly was not
>> denied his alcohol. He provided some of the entertainment all by
>> himself, even.
>
> Not nagging, but just stating for the record. The MC for Neko-Con's CP
>was Toshifumi Yoshida from Viz. (Yes, that Toshi) And as for him not being
>denied his....beverage. I hardly doubt a simple thing like being Cos-Play MC
>would keep that from happening. ^_^

Whoops. I figured I had the name wrong, and I didn't feel like digging
through this mountain of papers on my desk to find the Neko flyer....
shows how good my memory of names is, I suppose.

> Our Attendees, Guest, staff and the Cos-players want him to do it again
>next year. ^O^

Oh, Lord, I'll definitely have to bring my video camera, then.

>>
>> But lest we forget - the #1 rule. DON'T VISUALIZE. Just don't do it.
>>
>> And watch out for them darned chickens.
>
> It's not the chickens, but the person was fu------ nevermind. ^_^;;;
>Rule #1....repeat the mantra with me...

I shall be scarred for life from that event.

>> If you were at the Neko-con cosplay this year, you know what I'm talking
>> about <shudder>
>
> You loved every minute of it...It was wrong, but you laughed, ADMIT IT!
>^_-


Oh, I freely admit it. It wasn't until later that evening, when my
friends and I wandered down to the nearest restaurant and I spotted
"Creamed Chicken" on the menu that the trauma really set in.....

Bet the group of Goths in the corner wondered what I was screaming about
^_^

Derek

Old Red

unread,
Dec 18, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/18/99
to

Enrique Conty wrote:
>
> Make it just a costume contest... walk in, say a few words or pose,
> walk out. Then have a short, *prescreened* selection of skits while
> the judges select their winner... what do you think, sirs?

That's not a bad idea at all (I really enjoyed the in-between act at
Neko-con this year, though - they captured Steve Bennett's personality
to a "T"). Another might be to have the cosplay filmed for showing the
next day for those who don't have the inclination to wait in line.

Having only attended 3 (Katsucon, Anime USA, and Nekocon-R) out of the
past year's multitude (I'm not going to comment on any before, as
they're fairly much ancient history now), my only problem is that some
of the players can't be heard by the audience.

R. Bruce

Matthew High

unread,
Dec 19, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/19/99
to
>> But lest we forget - the #1 rule. DON'T VISUALIZE. Just don't do it.

And Rule #2: Have another drink!

--

No doubt about it - cosplays are a parade of the good, the bad and the ugly.
In general, they *all* need more control and tighter rules.

I am very much in favor of *two* contests wrapped up into one. The first would
be a COSTUME CONTEST, where the participant(s) essentially just walk on,
display their costume, and walk off. 15 seconds, no muss, no fuss. The
contestants are judged by the quality of their costume, not their acting
ability. The second would be a COSPLAY -- in order to participate in the
cosplay all members must attend a pre-cosplay rehearsal so they can get their
act together before flubbing their lines on stage.

I'm also very much in favor of stricter time limits, limiting the number of
players on stage (so you don't end up with these endless, meaningless group
things with a dozen characters crowding the stage), and limiting the number of
entries to the first 30/40/50/whatever to sign up. Shorter cosplay contests
are much better than three-or-four-hour marathons.

Oh, and heckling is half the fun!


----------
"Matt! Come into the light" "No! I like the darkness!"
Distributor/Retailer Liaison Radio Comix http://www.radiocomix.com
Promotion/Sales Cold Cut Distribution http://www.coldcut.com


Derek Sherman

unread,
Dec 19, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/19/99
to
Old Red <old...@mindspring.com> wrote:

>Enrique Conty wrote:
>>
>> Make it just a costume contest... walk in, say a few words or pose,
>> walk out. Then have a short, *prescreened* selection of skits while
>> the judges select their winner... what do you think, sirs?
>
>That's not a bad idea at all (I really enjoyed the in-between act at
>Neko-con this year, though - they captured Steve Bennett's personality
>to a "T"). Another might be to have the cosplay filmed for showing the
>next day for those who don't have the inclination to wait in line.

After seeing the "Anime Deathmatch" skit at the last two conventions I
had gone to, it was a bit old. It was an amazing feat to choreograph
andstage all of it, I freely admit to and am humbled by that, but when
they came out on stage my initial reaction was along the lines of "Oh,
man, not again...."

>Having only attended 3 (Katsucon, Anime USA, and Nekocon-R) out of the
>past year's multitude (I'm not going to comment on any before, as
>they're fairly much ancient history now), my only problem is that some
>of the players can't be heard by the audience.

That's a problem that all conventions have - it's difficult to set the
sound up properly for everyone. Although I have to wonder if some
shotgun mikes and an amplifier wouldn't help. But I'm not one of the
guys who work with the A/V stuff at conventions, I just watch them. I'm
sure they've tried various ways to combat that problem.

Derek

S.t.A.n.L.e.E

unread,
Dec 19, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/19/99
to
On Sun, 19 Dec 1999, Derek Sherman wrote:

>
> >Having only attended 3 (Katsucon, Anime USA, and Nekocon-R) out of the
> >past year's multitude (I'm not going to comment on any before, as
> >they're fairly much ancient history now), my only problem is that some
> >of the players can't be heard by the audience.
>
> That's a problem that all conventions have - it's difficult to set the
> sound up properly for everyone. Although I have to wonder if some
> shotgun mikes and an amplifier wouldn't help. But I'm not one of the
> guys who work with the A/V stuff at conventions, I just watch them. I'm
> sure they've tried various ways to combat that problem.
>

Why not use those "fishing pole" microphones
Hollywood uses when filming? ;-)

Laters. =)

Stan
----------
_______ ________ _______ ____ ___ ___ ______ ______
| __|__ __| _ | \ | | | | _____| _____|
|__ | | | | _ | |\ | |___| ____|| ____|
|_______| |__| |__| |__|___| \ ___|_______|______|______|
__| | ( )
/ _ | |/ Stanlee Dometita sta...@www.cif.rochester.edu
| ( _| | U of Rochester Lost...@optonline.net
\ ______| _______ ____ ___
/ \ / \ | _ | \ | | www.cif.rochester.edu/~stanlee
/ \/ \| _ | |\ | uhura.cc.rochester.edu/~sd005e
/___/\/\___ __| |__|___| \ ___|

S.t.A.n.L.e.E

unread,
Dec 19, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/19/99
to
On 19 Dec 1999, Matthew High wrote:

> >> But lest we forget - the #1 rule. DON'T VISUALIZE. Just don't do it.
>
> And Rule #2: Have another drink!
>
> --
>
> No doubt about it - cosplays are a parade of the good, the bad and the ugly.
> In general, they *all* need more control and tighter rules.
>
> I am very much in favor of *two* contests wrapped up into one. The first would
> be a COSTUME CONTEST, where the participant(s) essentially just walk on,
> display their costume, and walk off. 15 seconds, no muss, no fuss. The

And use the catwalk.

".... too sexy for the catwalk.... "

David Christopher Asher

unread,
Dec 19, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/19/99
to
Derek Sherman wrote:
>
> >Having only attended 3 (Katsucon, Anime USA, and Nekocon-R) out of the
> >past year's multitude (I'm not going to comment on any before, as
> >they're fairly much ancient history now), my only problem is that some
> >of the players can't be heard by the audience.
>
> That's a problem that all conventions have - it's difficult to set the
> sound up properly for everyone. Although I have to wonder if some
> shotgun mikes and an amplifier wouldn't help. But I'm not one of the
> guys who work with the A/V stuff at conventions, I just watch them. I'm
> sure they've tried various ways to combat that problem.

It's not just the difficulty of running sound that can pick up what the
costumers say. This year, OTAKON had an array of 6 floor mics on the stage,
and two shotguns. If you faced forward, and spoke a little louder than normal,
the system worked great. However, most people DON'T face the audience when
they speak, DON'T project their voice, and DON'T pay attention to the cosplay
staff who is telling them that if they want to be heard, they should do these
things.

This year we're going to have an even more sophisticated audio setup in live
events, but if the costumers won't cooperate, it'll go to waste.

Dave
http://www.otakon.com

Ryan Mathews

unread,
Dec 19, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/19/99
to
S.t.A.n.L.e.E <sta...@roundtable.cif.rochester.edu> wrote in article
<Pine.BSF.3.96.99121...@roundtable.cif.rochester.edu>...

> On Sun, 19 Dec 1999, Derek Sherman wrote:
> > >my only problem is that some
> > >of the players can't be heard by the audience.
> > That's a problem that all conventions have - it's difficult to set the
> > sound up properly for everyone. Although I have to wonder if some
> > shotgun mikes and an amplifier wouldn't help.
> Why not use those "fishing pole" microphones
> Hollywood uses when filming? ;-)

A "boom mike" is precisely what they do use at Anime Expo, and it works
well. AX has one microphone on a stand, one extra mike on the floor for
costumers to pick up, the MC's mike, which often gets borrowed, and the
boom mike. Of the three cons I attend (AX, Katsucon, Anime Central), AX is
the only one where the participants are consistently audible.

Of course, the other two cons have a microphone or two, but many costumers
refuse to use them. They seem to think working with a mike cramps their
style. If not for the boom mike, AX would have the same problem.

Hey costumers, here's a clue: It doesn't matter how inspired your acting
is during your skit. If we can't hear you, *you suck*! Use the damned
microphones!
--
---------- Ryan Mathews

Email: math...@ix.netcom.com ICQ#: 11539925
Fanfic archive: http://soyokaze.biosci.ohio-state.edu/~mathews/
Read my web review page, "Last Exit Before Toll"
on the Anime Web Turnpike http://www.anipike.com/lastexit/

Basara

unread,
Dec 20, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/20/99
to

S.t.A.n.L.e.E <sta...@roundtable.cif.rochester.edu> wrote in message
news:Pine.BSF.3.96.99121...@roundtable.cif.rochester.edu...

> On 19 Dec 1999, Matthew High wrote:
>
> > >> But lest we forget - the #1 rule. DON'T VISUALIZE. Just don't do it.
> >
> > And Rule #2: Have another drink!
> >
> > --
> >
> > No doubt about it - cosplays are a parade of the good, the bad and the
ugly.
> > In general, they *all* need more control and tighter rules.
> >
> > I am very much in favor of *two* contests wrapped up into one. The
first would
> > be a COSTUME CONTEST, where the participant(s) essentially just walk on,
> > display their costume, and walk off. 15 seconds, no muss, no fuss. The
>
> And use the catwalk.
>
> ".... too sexy for the catwalk.... "
>
Stan, you WOULD have to bring back memories of THAT cosplay....

At ACen 98, the crowd drowned out the takeoff noise from O'HARE AIRPORT, not
to mention the loud rock band in the next ballroom over (which made nearly
all the other acts near-inaudible) when they got into the Panda's act,
especially with Amanda Winn's ad-lib.


--

"One should always be wary of a | Stan Bundy (sbu...@kih.net)
scientist speaking out of his narrow | Author of "The Freeman Chronicles"
field, or those invoking their name | and the "Riftech" Campaign Setting
outside their fields. Scientists are | Maintainer, Palladium Fan FAQ
human too, and are just as prone to | Gaming files, the FAQ and
cling to "causes", just or frivolous,| "The Freeman Chronicles" fanfic at:
as the rest of our species." | http://www.users.kih.net/~sbundy/
- Peter Wykoff Walker, 11 Sept 1997, | or http://members.xoom.com/Basara/
rec.arts.sf.tv.babylon5.moderated | AIM: RftchGM ICQ: Basara (2878324)


Kawaii Amy

unread,
Dec 22, 1999, 3:00:00 AM12/22/99
to
Great Idea!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


<bock...@my-deja.com> wrote in message news:83chfa$3dr$1...@nnrp1.deja.com...


>
>
> bc...@airmail.net wrote:
> > As one of the heckling judges at AWA 5 cosplay...I couldn't agree
> more.
> > There HAS to be a better way for costumers to show off their work. But
> > if I have to watch one more idiotic Ranma skit I'm going to spray the
> > stage with rain of high-velocity automatic weapons fire.
> >
> > If the choice is the current cosplay or nothing, I vote for nothing.
> >
>
> I like the idea of turning the whole Cosplay thing into a Poetry Slam
> affair. NO JUDGES, NO AWARDS, NO MC, NO TECH SUPPORT. Just give 'em a
> mic and a spot on a stage, then the Cosplayers can try to run the whole
> damn thing themselves.
>
>

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