My HeroesCon Experience Cosplaying With My Daughter

I decided to Cosplay again this year for HeroesCon. If you’ve never gone to a convention in costume, you should. I’m not saying that you should compete in the costume contest. That adds a level of competition to it, and for beginners, I wouldn’t recommend it. The first time that you cosplay, the focus should be on having fun, and it can be fun. Last year, I cosplayed as the Time Trapper, taking my daughter in her Katana costume. It was fun, but I learned that cosplay that involves fabric dragging the floor can be a hazard on escalators and stairs. This year, my daughter wanted to go as Supergirl, which led to an idea for my costume, Giorgio Tsoukalos, also known as the Ancient Aliens Guy. It’s meant to draw attention to her outfit and compliment it.

This involved a couple of months of preparation for me, as I needed to grow a beard, and let my hair grow a bit. I’ve only worn a beard once before when I was in college, and this was the part that I hated. I’m not used to a beard, and it led to another bit of preparation needed before completing my costume, dying my beard. While I don’t sport much gray hair at all, my whiskers come in almost white. I opted to wait until the day before the convention to dye my beard, just to save time the next morning, but immediately wished that I had been dying it the entire month before.

Because Charlotte in June is incredibly hot and humid, I opted not to try and go with a suit for my cosplay, despite Giorgio showing up on screen in suit, vest and tie most of the time. He also shows up in normal clothes. When not sporting a tie, is usually wearing some type of beaded necklace with a large stone. My wife made this for me, as she’s the craftier of the two of us. I think she did a respectable job of it. I went with a khaki dress shirt, jeans and hiking boots. It mimics a look Giorgio usually sports in location segments for Ancient Aliens. If my hair wouldn’t be the most recognizable aspect, then the last bit of the cosplay would.

Assembling The Cosplay

My wife and I assembled a sign to wear around my neck to mimic the meme Girgios has become a part of, where his answer to any mystery is “Aliens.” We opted to go easy and assembled it out of wood letters from Hobby Lobby and hang it from my neck with a string. I’ve seen people cosplaying a meme attach it directly to their costume. Having bought the shirt specifically for this cosplay, I wanted to eventually wear it again. Going with a hanging sign seemed the better option.

I know I haven’t mentioned much about my daughter’s cosplay. I never want to put much Internet focus on her, aside from her influence on me. That’s why you won’t see her picture in this article. Her cosplay for the past two years has been store-bought Halloween costumes from the DC Superhero Girls line. I must say that they’re terribly accurate, and I was really impressed by the Supergirl costume. My daughter being blonde didn’t hurt the cosplay at all. Everything assembled, we went to day one of HeroesCon and I immediately realized the mistake that I had made.

The Experience At HeroesCon

I distracted from my daughter’s costume. last year, she was the focus of attention and she loved it. This year about half of the time people were stopping us to complement me on my cosplay. I felt a little guilty, but she didn’t seem to mind. At least, as long as I bought her toys, she got to play a little in the Star Wars area and do the Quick Draw Challenge

Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate people complementing my cosplay. A few times, I felt my daughter feeling a little bored. We’d be on a mission to go see something, and someone would stop our progress to tell me how much they liked my costume. As a parent, I think acknowledgement of kids, especially of kids in a costume is necessary. It should be just a courtesy at conventions. We run the risk of making conventions a place where kids feel bored by all of the things Dad and Mom want to look at and do if we fail to create places that they can feel welcome. We also need to welcome them, and acknowledge their effort. This last one, I’m going to try to do a little more of on Saturday.

As an aside, I must recommend the Quick Draw Challenge, especially for kids. I detest the idea of making art a competition, even though many times in the professional world it is precisely that. As a parent, I strive to teach my daughter that winning isn’t everything. I think it’s important for something that you love to do. This was an opportunity to teach her something. It gave us time to stay on the convention floor for another hour, waiting for the opportunity to get our drawings back. At five, she wants to keep everything she creates. Also, I’m an artist that hasn’t seriously drawn anything seriously in over a year, I was proud of my MCU Scarlet Witch. We also got the opportunity to get a balloon animal from Jason Szabo, whom you should totally take your kid to see at HeroesCon. For five bucks he will make any balloon animal, even my daughter’s request for a Espeon. He looked at a picture from my phone, and produced an excellent balloon Pokémon, that my daughter wanted to take to bed that night. If we hadn’t done the Quick Draw, we would have missed her favorite part of the convention.

Thanks to D.J. Spider, my daughter wants to go back for a second day on Sunday, a first for her. Usually one day is enough. She was entertained by the exhibitors using games to draw in attendees. It’s a useful attraction. She loved the plethora of vendors offering merchandise for kids as well as collectors. She was also impressed by Sonic artist Tracy Yardley and has explained to everyone how the poster we bought of the cover to IDW’s Sonic the Hedgehog #1 can be turned upside down. Overall, for a first day, we had a fantastic time. I feel like Fridays may become daddy-daughter day for future HeroesCons.