The Fake Geek Girl & Heroes of Cosplay Controversy

Photo from albinwonderland

Photo from albinwonderland

Hey everyone! Happy Wednesday!

So I’ve been wanting to chime in on this topic for a very long time now, but I’ve just been waiting until the right moment. The reason I think this moment is the right one is because of what’s currently happening in our community right now. As some of you may or may not know, the SyFy reality show Heroes of Cosplay is turning our community into utter chaos. How this show is relevant to this topic… well, just stick with me.

First off, a Fake Geek Girl is defined as a female of any age faking it in the geek culture, i.e. cosplaying characters she doesn’t know, saying she’s a gamer but has never touched a Playstation, etc. You might have seen some of these girls or know some yourself. But here’s a newsflash: Who the fuck cares?

A girl cosplaying for attention? Oh my gosh, who would do such a thing?! It’s not like anyone, male or female, dresses up in these costumes to get attention or anything! It’s not like your standing out from the crowd by wearing something different, right? Who cosplays for attention nowadays anyway?!

If you’re cosplaying, then you’re obviously trying to get noticed. I mean, THINK ABOUT IT. If you don’t want to get noticed, wouldn’t you wear clothing that doesn’t make you stand out? Let me break that down even more. If you’re trying to get noticed, you’re trying to get people’s attention. So by the transitive property that we all learned in high school, ANYONE cosplaying is trying to seek attention.

And why is that a bad thing? People make that out to be a terrible, vain factor of cosplay. If you poured blood, sweat, and tears into your costume as well as months and months of paychecks, you totally deserve to show that shit off and get recognition for your hard work. Cosplaying for attention isn’t a bad thing. It’s actually the norm. So get that out of your head that we females are doing this to get attention.

If you’re thinking more in terms with the fact that females who wear revealing outfits are trying to get attention, then so be it! Maybe they are, maybe they’re not. Again, who the fuck cares? Is it ruining your life? Is it deterring your will to live? No, so stop making it a big deal. If they’re confident in themselves to model a sexy cosplay, then let them do it! If you’re more on the conservative side and don’t really like sexy cosplay, then don’t do sexy cosplay. There’s no rule book on how to cosplay. Photographers are going to flock to sexy cosplays whether you like it or not. This is how the world works, unfortunately, but don’t let that get you down. Don’t let other people’s opinions morph your view of yourself. Strut your stuff, and be proud of whoever you’re cosplaying as.

So let me state the obvious here: most of the content creators in our geek culture, i.e. comic book writers, artists, manga artists, etc, are STILL mostly men. Therefore, they will most of the time have a patriarchal perspective on most things. If you’re wondering why most female super heroes are dressed that way, that wasn’t a coincidence.

But hello, welcome to the year 2013. Females like this shit too. I know, crazy, right? Females like anime, video games, and comic books. Some females are aspiring directors and filmmakers. Some females want to make their own comic books. If you’re sitting here reading this like this is a new concept, then again, welcome to the year 2013. Sorry your distant planet didn’t have concepts like this.

This is no longer a Boys Only club, and it never should have been. There’s plenty of strong females who are content creators and it’s only a matter of time before their work can be seen by millions of people. Call me idealistic, but I have faith.

So let’s stop feeding this outdated idea to young girls that they have to grow up and be a secretary and like Barbie. If they want to be a secretary and like Barbie, that’s totally cool! But if they aspire to be the President and like Iron Man, then that’s pretty damn cool too.

And the next time you see a girl “faking” it, just remember, we all had to start somewhere. You didn’t come into this culture being a fcking expert at Call of Duty. Let these new fans explore their interests and don’t be an asshole about it.

And how does this tie into the current Cosplay crisis? Well, a lot of fans are upset at how the show is portraying cosplayers. Apparently, the show is showcasing a very catty, egotistical, dog-eat-dog world of cosplay. While I agree with these fans that this is an inaccurate portrayal of the cosplay world, I’d also like to remind everyone that this is TELEVISION. Hi, Welcome to the year 2013 again. TV is fake and sometimes scripted. Oh my gosh, no way!! You mean the Bachelorette doesn’t really find true love at the end?!?

The producers of the show are going to edit the B-Roll as they see fit. What makes it into the show is whatever makes it into the show. A TV show or movie or any sort of film is STORYTELLING at the very core. You need a plot, you need characters, and you need a conflict. Otherwise you might as well show a live stream of a convention. And as we all know, that’s definitely not gonna get any TV show good ratings.

To me, it’s also an issue of new fans vs. old fans. Also known as elitists vs. noobs. Now these people who don’t know what the hell anime or comic books are are gonna start cosplaying and acting like they know shit. Raise your hand if you heard this argument before.

Let me repeat myself. Let these new fans explore their new interests. If a new fan discovers cosplay through this show, that’s great. Share your craft. And see this as an opportunity to be someone’s senpai.

So fellow Internet friends, what have we learned today? I hope you’ve taken something away from this, and that I’ve challenged you to think a little differently. 

Leave a comment and let them feels out.

-Alice

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