So I just finished a really quick fan fiction project recently called Last Waifu Standing. You can read the entire anthology here.
Having said that, there was one section of the series that I really liked (which will probably be the first one I do quick revisions on, because I want it to be perfect), and that’s the two-part arc on “Cosplay OTP.” The premise of those chapters were that I would revisit past cosplays that I have done, roleplay the character I portrayed, and attempt to woo the character’s other half of the One True Pair fall in love with me. Spoiler: they end up giving me thoughtful advice that I may or may not take instead.
Although this was my favorite part to write, something was nagging me: unless you peruse my blog well enough, you wouldn’t have known that I did any of these cosplays! I’ll admit that I do cosplay just for fun, and wear them as conversation pieces to curious fans. But if I must draw attention to myself somehow, I might as well bring these up.
So without further ado, I will showcase each one that was featured in the ‘fic (and then some) right here. Right now!
Osamu Mikumo (World Trigger)
This is the newest cosplay to my collection. I decided to go through EZ Cosplay for this one, seeing how I’m usually on a budget, and I’m not exactly creative enough to make my own. I did have to buy a separate pair of garden gloves though, because the ones they gave me were too small for my hands.
While World Trigger isn’t exactly in my ranks for best anime/manga series of all time, Osamu Mikumo ranks highest as one of my most relatable characters of all time. It’s rare to see a contemplative thinker as the main character of a shōnen series, and as much as I know a handful of people who have thoroughly enjoyed the series, none of them seem to think that Osamu is cool. What I like most about him is that he does strategize to the best of his abilities in every battle, and does shoulder a lot of responsibility to protect his friends. One of the criticisms the show gets from fans is that Osamu never seems to stand out or win against much tougher opponents because he’s always outclassed by someone who’s much stronger. I don’t think of that as much of a fault, as it is recognition that even though Osamu is kind of a genius, he is still very much human like the rest of us.
Osamu technically doesn’t have an OTP that anyone can agree on, so I chose Ai Kitora to be his partner in the ‘fic. Even though neither of them would ever admit to it, they do have very meaningful conversations with each other, and I think they would do really well as a partnership, even if there is no romance involved. And come on, just how many times has Ai come to Osamu’s rescue on a whim? Something must be going on there!
Oh, and this is the only time I will ever legitimately do a “duck face,” because the anime and manga compels me.
Taichi Tanaka (Tari Tari)
This one was a lot easier for me to create, since I literally bought every piece of clothing here from department stores. The badminton racket was a graduation gift that came with some other backyard game equipment, which is really fun, if I ever had anyone to play with. The tie was probably the trickiest piece, as I did have to patch the design on myself, while paying close attention to detail from Tari Tari. You’ll also probably notice that given the date since I wore this cosplay, I was 20 lbs heavier than I am now. Still kind of body-conscious about that…
Long before I started getting super serious about anime criticism, Tari Tari to me was one of the best shows I had seen recently. It had a well-rounded group of characters, crossed so many different cultural references for a slice of life series, and ended on a high note that I won’t soon forget, even if it does end in tragedy (look: schools closing down due to economic recessions is a tragedy, okay?) Taichi wasn’t exactly the best character to me, but I really liked his style of shying away from the rest of the Choir (and sometimes Badminton) Club, even though he enjoyed every last moment with his friends. Now, in terms of whether or not Taichi actually did confess to Sawa, it’s never confirmed, but it’s implied at the very end of the series, as Sawa leaves to attend a university overseas. I used that moment as inspiration for the section with Sawa in my ‘fic.
Dr. Ryō Shinnai (Comical Psychosomatic Medicine)
Another plain clothes cosplay. This one was rather easy to pull off, simply because Dr. Shinnai is my kind of humorist: stoic, and always throwing punchline criticisms. Unfortunately this cosplay is also retired, because I got the wig on rent, and discovered just how itchy wearing those things can get! Apparently I have a really dry scalp.
Comical Psychosomatic Medicine remains in my top favorite animated shorts and ecchi anime of all time, and honestly the best part of the show is Asuna Kangoshi, Dr. Shinnai’s co-host nurse who acts essentially as his foil by throwing off his concentration. That, and she’s the middle child of the three Kangoshi sisters, so as a middle child myself, I have to look out for her. It’s what I do.
As you can probably tell from these plain clothes cosplays, one advantage I have is just swapping out pieces to do others. It makes coming up with new ones easier, and I don’t have to pack so much when I go to conventions. I only wish that my hair gel would actually keep each style I have to do in tact! The purists know that Ratio parts his hair with one of those V-line things down the middle (I apologize for not knowing fashion mumbo jumbo). The only real problem with this cosplay is the eye patch. As I was walking around the convention, I lost depth perception and unintentionally started bumping into people, so I eventually just put it only for photo ops instead. The unintentional photo bombs on the other hand, those were hilarious!
Honestly Ratio isn’t even my favorite character from Hamatora (Three is). But since I’m not one for fashion creativity and I’m on a budget, Ratio was pretty much the perfect fit for me. Looking back, I think Ratio’s personality fits me better anyway, so it’s easier for me to get inside his head.
And yeah. I totally ship Birthday x Ratio. So uke.
Umetarō Nozaki (Monthly Girls’ Nozaki-kun)
By far the simplest cosplay in my lineup, this is literally just what I wear to school (just kidding)! But where I don’t have all the details of Nozaki-kun’s winter uniform or the talent to draw shōjo manga, I will gladly give fans a basic house, box, or (recently) tanuki.
Nozaki-kun is quite literally me, if I were a manga artist. We love shōjo manga, we’ll do girly stuff strictly for research, and we’re kind of clueless when a girl like Chiyo Sakura tries to fall in love with us! So much for romance for a guy who has written a story that so many shōjo fans love, am I right?
Gunzō Chihaya (Arpeggio of Blue Steel)
That suave, rogue captain of a harem fleet of naval ship girls… that’s NOT KanColle. Another one I bought from EZ Cosplay. This one’s hard to tell, since it is pretty much a glorified blazer, so don’t be surprised if I ever decide to just show up a formal event in a cosplay!
Gunzō isn’t so much a guy I identify with, but a guy I wish I could be. Because come on, who wouldn’t want to be smart, pragmatic, and have a bunch of android girls fall for him for no reason whatsoever? Joking aside, Arpeggio of Blue Steel did show me that there is always a third interpretation that can go into narratives about war and military shenanigans. While other series would either glorify the military or criticize the repercussions of war, Gunzō’s option was to say “To Hell with both of them” and just do his own thing. What he ended up becoming was the most unpredictable player of a post-apocalyptic conflict that acts as both humanity’s last hope, or just the start of their eventual downfall. A volatile character, but always set sight on his one main agenda: to find out who he really is in the midst of war.
Again, Gunzō doesn’t have an agreed upon OTP (although Iona is literally and humorously… cannon), so I chose my personal favorite of the fleet girls –bear form Kirishima– for the ‘fic. Sure, the two most definitely have no chemistry whatsoever, but what she says to me might surprise you.
There were other cosplays that I have done in the past that didn’t make it into my ‘fic narrative. And seeing how I don’t think I’ll ever discuss these again, I might as well do a quick feature of those pictures.
Here’s me as my original Pokemon character: Prof. Shuichi Ginkgo.
Plain clothes. Bought the pin especially for the costume. I never had detailed features about the Professor other than glasses and the trademark lab coat, so I could literally swap out all the clothes for him with just about anything.
If I go further back, I also cosplayed Ashitaka from Princess Mononoke.
I had this one commissioned. The thatched cape is definitely the most unique part of it, as well as the one that got messed up the most. I still have all the pieces in my closet, so I could do this again. I’ll probably have to clean it up a bit, as it probably has collected dust over the years.
And of course… the first cosplay I had ever done for an anime convention. Ichigo Kurosaki from Bleach.
Technically, this cosplay was a hand-me-down from a friend, and I did it frankly because Bleach was one of a few anime that I was watching at the time. Long before I started doing anime reviews! The trickiest thing about this cosplay for me was the hair. Sure, a wig would look more authentic, but again, that whole dry scalp thing. And besides, the show is called Bleach! Gotta –bleach– the hair! (Disclaimer: that is definitely not the reason the series is called “Bleach”).
So why didn’t I include these 3 fabulous cosplays into my ‘fic? It’s simple: I never reviewed them! The purpose of Last Waifu Standing was not just to play around with waifus and hasbandos I’ve discussed on my blog, only to break their hearts, but to also showcase anime reviews I have covered these past 5 years. Blogging has been a lot of fun, but lately I have felt like my material has gone stale, so I tried to do something different. Something fresh, but also give me a chance to look back at what I have done. And it has been quite the journey since I had started!
Thanks for reading this until the end. You have been a wonderful audience, if you have ever read anything from my blog these past 5 years. Looking forward to writing more content soon!