Bio: Kenway is an improviser, writer and convention attendee.
Note: One of the more infamous costumes at Fan Expo 2011 was Dominic Cobb, AKA Leonardo DiCaprio from Inception (2010). He recaps his experiences from the Fan Expo weekend.
- Costumes are hot. Wearing a suit and tie in 30 degree weather left me sweating buckets. I imagine a full cloth costume with mask must be like wearing a scuba suit on a smog day.
- Costumes are hot! Belying the stereotype of the overweight, unkempt science-fiction fan, there were more than a few attractive ladies about. The fact that they were fellow geeks made them that much more attractive.
- You will feel in over your head. While Star Trek and Star Wars will always be favourites, it is impossible for any one person to recognize every single costume. There are simply too many tv shows, movies, video games, and web series to keep track of. Embrace the sense of discovery. You might learn about an exciting new tv show to watch.
- You will feel old. There were girls cosplaying Sailor Moon characters who were not born when the show was on the air. I assume many fans of Star Trek: The Original Series feel the same thing.
- Many people take their cosplaying seriously. Some homemade costumes took upwards of a month to construct; possibly more. Their attention to detail is often staggering. Some Steampunk costumes had motorized parts that moved or lit up.
- The biggest line was not for the washrooms or for a guest of honour. The convention exhibitors will be delighted to learn that the cash machines were consistently the most popular attraction.
- Most celebrity guests of honour are fantastic interviewees. Tom “Draco” Felton was all smiles and self-deprecating humour at his panel. He even indulged a request to sneer his catchline “Potter” one last time.
- William Shatner is still the man. Truly in a class by himself, the science fiction legend took to the stage with microphone in hand, with no need for a co-host. With his booming voice, he answered audience questions with humourous anecdote after anecdote. I saw him last year and there was no repeat in material. He revealed one of his secrets of success: Don’t be afraid to look like a fool.
- Don’t take yourself too seriously. People will laugh at you and not with you.
- You can make someone’s day. An awestruck teenager struck up a conversation with me, gushing about how Inception was his favourite movie. That more than made up for the girl asking, “Are you Brad Pitt?”