Get set and Pokémon Go! In just a few weeks, Hyderabad will play host to Comic Con, the world’s largest comic convention. The two-day fest promises an amazing line-up of events and celebrity guests like Afshan Azad, Nicole Marie Jean, David Lloyd and Dan Parent. So what can first-timers to Comic Con expect? Pro cosplayers in the city offer a few tips.
Which character and costume to pick?
Pick a character that does not need much time, money and effort to put together. For example, The Joker from Suicide Squad. All you need is makeup and clothes from home. However, if you want to cosplay an anime character, pick one that wears casuals and has the same hair colour. Also, go for cloth-based costumes that require basic stitching. Most important of all, love and live the character! Cosplay is for everyone, and anyone can do it.
Where to buy the costumes and props?
Costumes and props can either be bought or made, using simple to complex DIY techniques. Online vendors like Amazon, eBay and Aliexpress sell props and costumes, although these can make a dent in your pocket and may occasionally get held up or lost during shipping. The best way to get costumes and props is to make them or have them made. There are a lot of cosplayers willing to help, for a small fee. Sai Prakash and Hari Tej, members of BlueBoltz cosplay & props on Facebook, can be contacted locally for props and costumes. For props, people generally use material like EVA foam for armour, wood for swords, and also repaint and re-modify toys like guns that you find in toy stores. A little research and a million YouTube tutorials will ultimately lead you to the perfect prop!
What to expect the first time around?
You must remain in character at Comic Con because that’s what cosplaying is all about! Be prepared for a lot of attention and plenty of photos! There is no charge to participate in the cosplay competition. You register on the spot under one of 5 categories — anime/manga, gaming, sci-fi/fantasy, comic books/ graphic novels, movies/television/animated. Next, you hang out at the convention till evening when the cosplay parade is held. You might be asked to do a move or dialogue that is specific to your character during the parade. Cosplaying is all about bringing your favourite character to life!
What are the characters to look forward to this year?
Popular picks are Doctor Strange, Batman, Black Panther, Punisher, The Joker, Harley Quinn, Batman, Superman, The Avengers and other comic book characters. Also, since Pokémon Go is the current rage, a lot of Pokémon related cosplays are expected.
— With inputs from Sai Prakash, Rafi Yahya Syed and Bharath Kumar...