I’d been cosplaying for a couple of years when I did my first “joke” cosplay, which was Pokémon Go themed, and was floored by how many people wanted to hang out with me and get my picture. I’d never gotten so much attention or had so much fun at a con before, and I quickly decided that funny cosplays should be my new default. Cosplay, to me, is all about having fun and making friends, so embracing humor cosplay has really helped me with that. With the new season of My Hero Academia then-upcoming, I decided to do something from that show, and I was surprised to see that nobody had turned Bakugo’s nickname for Todoroki “Icy Hot” into a cosplay. I decided to become the change I wanted to see.

My friends roped me into my first con back in 2012. I thought the only big cons were the huge, corporate ones like SDCC, so seeing one just a 15-minute drive from my school was surreal. The sight of all these people dressed as their favorite characters, expressing their fandom shamelessly, really got to me. I’d never been so surrounded by people who like the same things I do, as much as I do. It was the most I’ve ever felt accepted in my life. My advice for new cosplayers is to just have fun. Don’t worry about having the best costume. Just pick something that you’ll enjoy showing off, and go make some friends!

Photo: audiencekillercosplay. / Cosplayer: @businessland.ig

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