Tag Archives: heroes of cosplay

Photos – A Comparison… (Unlike pictures I post, some of these from the news are NSFW in my opinion)

I was called by the press today because of “complaints” about the cosplay pictures I post.  I presume the reason has nothing to do with my writing career and more to do with my current day job.  As a result, I pointed out that my pictures are the same or calmer than the Arizona Republic, the East Valley Tribune and Prime Time TV.  So, I decided to pull some samples.  I only showed pictures from Heroes of Cosplay, which was shown in prime time with no warning that it was inappropriate to people of any age.  God forbid I would post prime time photos on Victoria’s Secret, the coverage of the Sport’s Illustrated Swimsuit Issue on TV, or pictures of anyone at the beach or Arizona nightclubs…

You decide if any of my pictures are worse than our top two news websites in Arizona and prime time TV…

Arizona Republic Cosplay Pictures found in Arizonacentral.com:

Heroes of Cosplay on TV during Prime Time:

Arizonacentral.com Nightlife and “Super Bowl” coverage of the Playboy Party.  Not in an adult only area, under “Things to Do”:

East Valley Tribune coverage of cosplay:

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Cosplayer Pictures for Your Weekend

Cosplay is a combination of the words costume and play.  People dress up as characters from comic books, film, TV, games, anime, steampunk or even create their own characters.  It is dressing up and having fun.  I get thousands of these pictures from my friends in the science fiction community that I see at Phoenix Comic Con and other events where I sell my novels.  If you wish for your picture to be posted, just send it to me.  Otherwise I randomly select out of the 5,000 or so on this flash drive.

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Update on Heroes of Cosplay – Ya Ya Han and Jessica Nigri Release Video Message

After Ya Ya Han looked to be putting down Jessica Nigri on Heroes of Cosplay, many were upset, including me.  The result is the following video, in which Ya Ya apologizes and the two jointly appear to say they are friends.  I also like that they both make it clear than cosplay is about having fun, not about the crap drama the show tries to portray.


post 2

L-R, Monika Lee, Ya Ya Han, Jessica Nigri


L-R, Jessica Nigri, Ya Ya Han


Action photo, Monika Lee, Ya Ya Han, Jessica Nigri as Wonder Woman, Catwoman and Harley Quinn.


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Heroes of Cosplay – Episode 2…commentary

Ok, several pressing things to say about Episode 2 of Heroes of Cosplay.

1) Victoria the bitchy drama queen – I am so tired of hearing her whine and take credit for Jinyo’s work.  A Tron dress?  I have seen a good dozen of those very similar and it’s not ‘Jinyo’s design’ anyway.  Not original and Jinyo should dump Victoria.  Seriously bro, get a pair and find a gf that is not crazy.

2)  Ya Ya Han telling Monika Lee not to dress sexy like Jessica Nigri?  That’s because Ya Ya Han never had fake boobs installed and pushes them out for everyone to see in every costume?  Did I miss something?  Ya Ya Han sells sexy cosplay pictures for a living just like Jessica Nigri.  I’ve met both of them, and Jessica is much nicer and much better known.  I sincerely hope they paid Jessica Nigri for her appearance and did not just trash her without permission.  What a really mean thing to do.  Does Jessica make her own outfits?  Yes she does.  Recently gaming companies have put together some for her, so what?  Monika Lee came off as a spoiled brat in that episode.  If I were her, I’d be pissed at the producers.  We don’t need to create conflict in cosplay -it’s about fun.

ya ya han

Yeah, Ya Ya never does sexy cosplay and shows cleavage…whatever

Do we really need to classify ourselves as ‘real cosplayers’, real outfit makers, sexy cosplay, booth babes, in it for the money, in it for the competition, or anything else?  All these classifications do is make someone feel superior over someone else.  If you show up and have fun – you win.  If you show up and act all caddy and put down others – you’re a loser.


Monika Lee in her Steampunk Poison Ivy did not come across well on TV.

3)  The best and by far the worst moment – Thank God for Chloe, the cute but anorexic show host who said everyone should be able to dress however they want.   Chloe Dykstra is 5’9′ and weighs just 122 pounds.  That is a body mass index of 18 which is underweight and not allowed to model in certain countries that are enforcing BMI standards to reduce anorexia.  And yet, she is the only one defending normal or overweight cosplayers.  Chloe’s father is John Dykstra.  He invented the first computer-controlled motion sensor to film Star Wars.  At the bottom of this post, I will list just his visual effects movie credits.  Check him out on IMDB.  So Chloe’s nerd credentials have to be strong growing up with her dad.  With a background like that and great looks, it was really refreshing to see her be down to Earth and really get that cosplay is about having fun.

I was SHOCKED that the other superficial participants perpetuated the opinion that only skinny women can play parts and only fit, muscular men can play superheroes.  Little tiny anorexic girls condemning normal plus sized people.  Welcome to the Ambercrombie and Fitch gutter of superficial trash.  Where do you think cosplay, geeks and nerds started?  Was it size zero sixteen year old girls?  Hell no!  All of us normal and overweight people started cosplay and sci-fi.  Yes, we like it when someone looks good, like any other part of society, but if you don’t want above size 2, you will have crickets chirping at your self starved events.


Chloe Dykstra at 5’9″ and just 122 pounds was the only defender of normal and plus-sized cosplayers.

I was so offended.  Unfortunately, instead of sticking with her guns, Chloe thinks she is ‘over her head’ with the professionals. Not even.  There is nothing professional about putting down other people.  Chloe thankfully picks a real outfit, not one to show off she is really pretty.  She picks a Betelgeuse cartoon cosplay that involves dead face paint and a bulky outfit.  Good for her.  Don’t get me wrong, I like all types of cosplay – from Jessica Nigri modeling fanboy friendly outfits, to people dressed as gigantic blobs.

4)  Jesse needs to stop saying every five seconds he is looking to quit his job and become a full time costume maker.  We get it – you are asking the whole audience to employ you.  Even your girlfriend is bored with it.

5)  Jesse is also not ‘a loser again’ because he did not get a top three prize.  Last week, and this week, his costumes rocked.  Steampunk Stormtrooper was great.  Comparing and selecting winners over so many different genres is pretty random and subjective.

6)  Riki did a great job on her Hell Girl cosplay.  I know women who do full body paint instead of the body suit.  But you have to get sprayed and you can only wear it for so long.  I didn’t care and I don’t think the judges should have.  I was surprised just how tiny she looked next to Monika Lee, given that Monika Lee is not very big.

7) I wish they could leave the petty crap out of it, but I guess that is reality TV for you.  I also wish they would not end every show with a contest, as if that matters.  I would be happy just to see the preparation that goes into their costumes and then see the final product.

8)  The scene missing from every episode – Where the cosplayers actually have fun at the convention.  That is what I see at cons, lots of happy people having fun.  Not people stressing out over their costume in a hotel room.  If you go to the events to get stressed out, you are really going for the wrong reasons.


John Dykstra – Video Effects Movie Credits

Seventh Son (visual effects designer) (post-production)

2012Django Unchained (visual effects designer)

2011X-Men: First Class (visual effects designer)

2009Inglourious Basterds (visual effects designer)

2008Hancock (visual effects designer, visual effects supervisor)

2004Spider-Man 2 (visual effects designer)

2002Spider-Man (visual effects designer)

1999Stuart Little (senior visual effects supervisor)

1997Batman & Robin (visual effects)

1995Batman Forever (visual effects supervisor)

1990Spontaneous Combustion (special effects consultant)

1988My Stepmother Is an Alien (supervisor: special visual effects)

1988/IISomething Is Out There (TV mini-series) (special visual effects designer)

1988The Unholy (special effects director: Apogee – uncredited)

1987Out on a Limb (TV movie) (effects supervisor)

1986Invaders from Mars (special visual effects)

1985Alice in Wonderland (TV movie) (special visual effects)

1985Lifeforce (special visual effects)

1983Starflight: The Plane That Couldn’t Land (TV movie) (special effects)

1983Digital Dream (director of photography: special visual effects)

1982Firefox (producer: special visual effects)

1980Caddyshack (supervisor of special effects)

1979Star Trek: The Motion Picture (photographic effects supervisor: Apogee, Inc., special photographic effects supervisor)

1979Avalanche Express (supervisor of special effects: Apogee)

1978Battlestar Galactica (TV series) (miniature and effects unit supervisor – 1 episode)

– Saga of a Star World (1978) (miniature and effects unit supervisor)
1977Star Wars (special photographic effects supervisor)

1972Silent Running (special photographic effects)

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Heroes of Cosplay on TV – What They Got Right and Wrong

I was anticipating the new Heroes of Cosplay on SyFy with fear and trepidation.  Reality TV in general focuses on the sickeningly self-centered attention seekers in each aspect of life.  I don’t want to ever watch a show where people manipulate, form factions and backstab to get others voted off for money.  Other reality TV shows revel in making the viewer feel better by watching the shallow and meaningless lives of others, whether it be Real Housewives or Jersey Shore.  So I had expected Heroes of Cosplay to focus on shallow people, conflict and to make fun of cosplay.


Here is how the first episode went, right and wrong:

Things They Got Right

1) Not all cosplayers are glamorous with large chests on skinny bodies.

2) Cosplayers spend a lot of time thinking about their characters.

3) Cosplayers plan costumes way in advance.

4) Cosplaying costs money, time and effort.

5)  Cosplayers make their own costumes when they can and spend a heck of a lot of work on it.

6) Cosplayers want people to notice their costume, and to give positive feedback.

7) Cosplayers put a lot of focus in their life on their hobby.


Things They Got Wrong

1) Cosplay is about competition.  WRONG.  I have never seen anyone act like a beauty pageant contestant and worry about someone else’s outfit.  In fact, every cosplayer really appreciates everyone else’s cosplay.  It is rare to have a competition and even rarer to have cash prizes.  The cash prizes are so low that they never cover the cost of the conference much less hotel, travel, food and the costume itself.  I have been in several “costume contests” and usually there are more contestants than audience.  We all line up in categories, have fun cosplaying, and cheer each other.  It is a very positive, non-nerve wracking, non-competitive process.

2) Cosplay is time driven.  WRONG.  There are no deadlines in cosplay.  There are cons all over the place.  I don’t know anyone who is “not ready” to go.  Most cosplayers have multiple outfits and know when they will get to a con and what they are going to do months in advance.

3) Cosplayers are bitchy.  WRONG.  They made all the cosplayers look weird, demanding, controlling, stressed out and unreasonable.  The men in their lives were all suffering.  Cosplayers are fun-loving people comfortable with who they are.  The men in their lives have fun with them and join in.

4) Cons are all about a contest.  WRONG.  At the last six cons I attended, if there was a competition, I did not know about it, nor care about it.  Cons are about walking around, seeing cosplayers who are cool, being cool yourself, looking through great vendor stuff, meeting people from shows, comics, etc., spending time with friends, and socializing.  Cons are like Disneyland.  Lots of things to see and do, everyone is there to have a good time.  In the TV show, the little time they spend not about the competition is stressing over meeting the judge and then partying too much at a bar.  Ok, the latter part does happen…  But partying at the bar does not keep you from being in costume the next day, after about 1 pm.

5) The ending – who will be the winning Cosplayer and get the Title?  WRONG  What title?  What winning?  The winning in cosplay is the one who has the most fun.  It’s only about fun.  Friends, dressing up as a cool character, roleplaying, making little kids happy, appreciating each other.  They are trying to turn cosplay into faceoff, or iron chef, or the great race.  That misses the whole point.  Most of the cosplayers I know all participate in charity events for little kids, are they going to show that?  I hope so.

6) The heroes…  I met YaYa Han at a con where she was cosplaying Jessica Rabbit.  I did not know who she was at the time.  I have never heard of any of the others cosplayers.  Where is Jessica Nigri?  Seriously?  They show her in the opening credits, I hope they compensated her.  Where is Toni Darling?  Cara Nicole/AZ Powergirl? Katy Mor? LeeAnna Vamp?  Brianna?  Ivy Doomkitty?  The ladies of LT3?  There are some famous cosplayers out there but not in the show.


7) All women?  There is only one male on the show with very little screen time.  In my opinion they should do one with all women, one with all men, or one with an even numbers.  I don’t think it works to focus all on women and one token guy.  There are a lot of cosplayers out there of all races, genders, and ages.

Why not Jessica Nigri?

Why not Jessica Nigri?

In summary – So far they have not made cosplayers look like social rejects and idiots.  They have not made out like people are making fortunes in cosplay and have huge corporate sponsors, and they have shown some of the effort that goes into costume making, which are all good.  However, the show focuses on stress and competition, neither of which should be part of cosplay in my opinion.  I hope the show does not influence a new generation to come into cosplay with the attitude of “being the best”.  That has no place in cosplay. 



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