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I Just Have To Ask: What Is This Cosplay Stuff?

Now, before I receive any lecturing e-mails from cosplaying fans, let me clarify:

The question is legitimate. I'm asking; I'm not accusing or implying or insinuating. I freely admit I know very little about the subject at hand and I'm not in the business of passing judgment with zero first-hand knowledge. But because cosplay seems to be getting bigger - and not just in Japan - and it's also a big part of the gaming industry, I thought I'd present fans with some general questions.

I'm just not sure I understand the fascination. In truth, the concept of "cosplay" isn't new; it goes back to the early Star Wars and Star Trek days, when fans dressed up as their favorite characters and went to see the movies. Then there was the well-documented Dungeons & Dragons cosplay adventures that got some media attention in the '80s. And you know, I'll bet cosplay goes even further back, although I'm not familiar with its earliest history. But I still don't understand the desire to dress up as a fictional character. I suppose in the most basic sense, it's simple escapism and nothing more.

But is it? I mean, we're talking about people who are often considered "weird" by the mainstream in the first place. We're talking about sci-fi and fantasy and hence, the "normal" masses are bound to pass judgment. Therefore, I often wonder if cosplay is almost a statement of sorts; i.e., "yeah, I love my favorite fictional character from a sci-fi movie or video game, and I really don't care what you think." There seems to be a lot of that defiance in our culture today (I won't get into specifics), but it might fit. It could explain why so many cosplayers are so...photogenic. It's clear that at least some of them want attention.

On the other hand, it's very club-like. In other words, it's niche enough so it feels like you're part of a group, that you're mingling with those who have similar tastes. Even if you have no idea what that person is dressed up as, you know he or she is dressed up, just like you. That has to hold some attraction; we're all human after all, and we all like to fit in. And as I just got finished saying, I have a feeling many cosplayers have some difficulty "fitting in" on a daily basis. Therefore, they get what every human desires - acceptance - by cosplaying with others. That seems viable.

But maybe I'm just being too psychological. Maybe I'm over-complicating this. Maybe it's just about a bunch of people who like to dress up as fantastical characters, because they view it as fun and entertaining. If you have any other information, though, I'd be happy to hear it.

Tags: cosplay, game culture, video games, games industry

8/14/2011 9:27:05 PM Ben Dutka

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Comments (73 posts)

WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:11:21 PM
Reply

I don't really know, I've always kind of dressed my own unique way in every day life and I feel like it helps me be who I am but I've never dressed up as a favorite character. I think some people just want to get all the way into the fantasy as far as possible. You won't catch me cosplaying, but you certainly wouldn't catch me turning down a tryst with a gal dressed as an FF gal. Grrrrowl.

And people really will use any excuse possible to dress up.

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SayWord
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:31:44 PM

Oh man, female cosplayers. Yum, dang look at the dirty thoughts you put into my head. :P

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totozero18
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 6:29:52 PM

I'm just wondering how blurred the line is when referring to cosplay nowadays.
I'm pretty sure there's more than one of us here that started using teared up jeans and lumberjack jackets in the 90's when Nirvana/Alice in Chains/Soundgarden were in their pinacle. The same with leather jackets and colored mohawks if you like punk.
Could and/or should that be called cosplay? Not sure, just happens that you change your dressing to emulate whatever you like. Of course I can't see anybody going to the office dressed up as Tifa -*pauses for drooling*- the difference there is the depth of the change you're making from your daily basis clothing.

I don't cosplay but I can't see it as escapism, more like doing something different from what the genepool does, which leads to gathering with people of similar tastes, being tagged as weird, and getting abused by 'Jocks' (i don't mean to offend but that seems to be the common denominator).

Last edited by totozero18 on 8/15/2011 6:32:40 PM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 7:30:20 PM

No more of this drug conversation.

JMO, if you honestly think you'll never see health issues due to your habits, you're just being purposely naive. I'll leave it there.

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JMO_INDY
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 7:55:06 PM

Well way to single me out Ben, very mature of you. I'm pretty certain that I wasn't the only one in that post. I know the K2 and other variations are harmful. I'm saying nothing has happened to me before, though I am aware of the potential dangers. Marijuana however is mis-understood and fear mongering like you are doing doesn't help. I know lots of people who smoke daily who are successful and I know people who are failures, it's all how you control yourself. No different than with sober straight edge folks. To be completely honest, the people who take cough medicine, or pills for any other reason of self medicating daily are posing a bigger threat to themselves than any stoner.

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Underdog15
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 11:00:13 AM

Well, JMO, I agree to an extent. Oxycodine is an incredibly rampant prescription medication that is absolutely ruining the lives of people 16-29 primarily right now. And it doesn't get any criticism. There are lots of other things that don't get enough public criticism either.

The only thing I take issue with is using worse problems to deflect what you might do to seem like a non-issue when compared to bigger issues. If everyone did that about everything, we'd all do anything short of murder. It's silly reasoning.

Any other opinion I have, I've said down further, and won't repeat. The morality type just seems a little strange to me.

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JMO_INDY
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 1:44:11 PM

I just didn't appreciate being singled out is all and made out to be the idealist behind this discussion. I replied to this and your other comment further down.

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packersfan66
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:22:44 PM
Reply

My cousin and her boyfriend are into this stuff.. my cousin is also a drugged up 22 year old girl without a job

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SayWord
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:32:53 PM

As long as your cousin is just smoking weed, they should be okay. :P

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Dreno
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:55:49 PM

Firstly, let me apologoze in advance for what I'm about to write,if it offends anyone other than who its directed at, I am sorry.

Tom, I'm gonna thumbs dow your comment dude, and if I could, id do it a million times. For a few reasons :

The fact that your cousin is "drugged up" prolly has nothing to do with the fact that she likes to cosplay. By saying that not only do you bad mouth your family but your also saying that anyone who cosplays must be "drugged up" aswell.

That's your family dude, your blood. That's f***ing scandelous to say, let alone put on the internet and on a website. That's completely disrespectfuly not only to a family member, but anybody in general. What a person does is their choice and NO right of yours to go broad casting to anyone, let alone peple you don't know.

That kind of sh*t doesn't belong on a gaming website, or any website for that matter. Stay on topic, and if you write off topic, please for the sake of your family keep it atleast related to gaming.

Comming from a person who holds family in VERY HIGH regards ( me ) I find your comment to be completely disrespectfuly and nothing you say could ever justify that. If I were you dude, id seriously take a step back and rethink what's important in your life if your willing to just post slanderous sh*t like that about your own flesh and blood.

Again, I apologize to everyhone, but that stuff just pisses me off, like I said, I hold family in high regard,so I can't understand whhyanyone would bad mouth their own.

NOW, on to the topic.

Ben, I don't get the whole cosplay thing myself, although I find it interesting and would most likely give it a try atleast once, couldn't hurt.

But, I do own a "cosplay" greaver emblem ( from ffviii ) necklace/ring set. I like the necklace and ring. I always have since the first time I played ffviii, and I wanted one from then on. So to have something like that from my FAVORITE ff and video game ever, just makes me personally feel like that much more of a fan. Not that I'm more of a fan than anyone else mind you. But to be able to support my favortie game makes me feel like I'm doing my part as a fan, if that makes any sense.

And alos to ars ragnarok, send me a link to that video please, I HAVE GOT to see the girl who is rinoa. That would be awesome.

And to the person who mentioned being able to hold a keyblade in your own hands, I made a life size one in my welding class back in high school, so I can relate to what you said. It is pretty cool to be able to hold something like that. Pretty cool indeed.

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cLoudou
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 11:30:01 PM

Whoa that's a lot to read Dreno but I agree that it is wrong to imply that because someone cosplays they do drugs and don' have jobs. I'm sure Tom didn't mean to put it that way.

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Kiwi of DOOM
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 11:36:13 PM

@Dreno: Yeah, I made mine in high school too, and I did so with the intention of trying out cosplaying for myself just to see what all the fuss was about. To be honest, it's worth doing once or twice. I never got really far into it, but it's just a fun experience.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 11:37:09 PM

Damn Dreno, sounds like you got some personal issues.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 8/14/2011 11:39:22 PM

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Dreno
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 12:11:19 AM

Cloudou, my aplogies for the ginormous wall of text lol.

World, no man, no personal issues. I just really don't get how family can say stuff like that about family.

I've always had the love and support of my family no matter what, so to see something like that just really irks me. Its like this girl I know who's family pretty much lost all love and respect for her because she got pregnant, but than a year later and a half later her sister gets pregnant and her family praises her like she's the best kid ever.

And I kind of had a bad day today, work sucked donkey marbles and put me in a foul mood, so I prolly over reacted. I don't normally do that, so I. Hope we can let this slide this one time.

Damn, now I feel like an a**hole.

Last edited by Dreno on 8/15/2011 12:12:48 AM

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aaronisbla
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 12:31:03 AM

damn bro, i agree that being a drug user and being into cosplay arent related. But who are you to tell this dude he shouldn't talk about someone in his family? and its not like he said anything extremely scandalous, for all we know, she really is a drugged up 22 yr old without a job. You act as if he said something about your family. Let the dude have his say about his family if he wants, especially if its true

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Dreno
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 12:51:50 AM

Aaron,

I completely agree with you. Who am I to say the dude shouldn't say that about his family, especially if its true? Its non of my business.

But its principles bro, c'mon. Should he really be saying such things about his family? As I've said, I just don't see how a family member can say thuings such as that about their own family. If its true, that sucks man, I feel sorry for his cousin for being "drugged up" and as one human being to another I hope she can get off of whatever she's on. But its just plain not right to be saying that where thousands of people can see that.

And again, your correct that I acted as if he said something about my family, which he didn't, and I was completely out of line about it, I was rude, plain and simple. But if he's gonna say stuff like that about his family, than not on the net dude, or where hella people can read it. That's someones private life man. We don't need to know that.

Again, I apologize, and again I reiterate that I'm a person who is very family oriented, so just to seethat, honestly bums me out man.

So tom, I apologize sir, I was out of line. And I can admit that that. It wasn't my place to say anything, but really dude ... damn, I cannot think of a good way to put what I wanna say.

F**k it, I'm done. Sorry again.

P.s. see this is one of the reasons I like this site, its full of senseable and intelligent people, who call you on stuff, make you rethink what you said and approach from a different perspective.

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Beamboom
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:13:23 AM

It's not like he outed anyone. Both he and his cousin remain 100% anonymous - they both could be anyone, anywhere. If it's true or not nobody knows but I read it more like a funny remark than anything else.

You americans and your family values... :)


Last edited by Beamboom on 8/15/2011 1:14:04 AM

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tayizfire
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 2:39:19 AM

yea that was a bit much ...i just think u took that a bit to far...attacking a man for talkin about his on family in a funny way lol have u ever been high and dressed up as leonidas ...its f**kin awesome lmaooo

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mastiffchild
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 3:44:52 AM

@sayword-I wish the perception of weed wasn't that it's this harmless drug that anyone can just take and leave and be OK. I've heard-"It's only a bit of puff!" a million times yet when it comes to causing psychological issues and making existing one worse there's little quite as damaging as pot. Only, imho, Amphetamines beat it out as a cause and aide of psychotic episodes and it's well known as a cause of acute paranoia.

I'm not anti drug evangelist(not at all-I've been an addict myself)but just have to say the laissez faire attitude we seem to have to this drug is out of keeping with the OTT way other drugs are reported. It's JUST as damaging as anything(even in it's purest forms) and unlike other drugs isn't just dangerous BECAUSE illegality makes it impure and hard to dose.Just a bit of advice-respect any drug or you WILL likely come off worst. From Aspirin to Crack it's all the same story, know what you're taking and, for God's sake, respect your warnings. I won't stop anyone experimenting and it's not my place to try but passing on a bit of a word to the (un?)wise is necessary when myths are populating our society about potentially harmful hobbies like smoking weed.

Take it from me, though, one of my best mates is now sectioned under the Mental Health Act after getting so paranoid on weed that he just can't function any more. Newer(relatively), stronger strains like Skunk just make this worse too.

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Beamboom
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 5:34:27 AM

It can happen Mastiff, but let's be frank here: How many out of the total amount of pure weed smokers do you estimate this happening to? Out of, say, 1000 weed smokers?
I know it can happen but I know a lot of guys who smoke weed for many many years, and *none* of those got these serious consequences you speak of. Everyone who I know that's gotten into trouble (and that's quite a few too, I know a LOT of drug users/abusers, since I've been the editor of a clubbing magazine for a decade. I know all about recreational drugs) are those who use a wide range of drugs. It's a mixture of drugs, the sheer amount, and the unhealthy lifestyle that follows that is to blame here.

Just for the record, I do not smoke myself and I am not pro legalization. But I do not rate it that more harmful than, say, alcohol, and definitely not as harmful as tobacco. Still, we can make jokes about getting drunk or have a cig without going all serious and start talking about tragic cases involving beer or smoke...!

Last edited by Beamboom on 8/15/2011 5:40:51 AM

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slugga_status
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 8:20:34 AM

Wow somebody spaz'd out..

I have to say..weed is not a drug. Drugs are man made. Alcohol is worse than marijuana but you can consume it legally at 21. Various drugs have side effects that can cause cancer yet they're still sold over the counter and are prescribed. Furthermore, marijuana has been decriminalized in multiple states already. Plus dispensaries for medical marijuana for people who have true medical conditions..

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Highlander
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 9:14:54 AM

Well, I'm not going to pile on either poster in this thread, I do think that trashing family is always on the poor side of etiquette, online or otherwise, and that implying a link between drug use and Cosplay is laughable at best.

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Cole
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 9:29:28 AM

@ Slugga Status

Flawed logic, dude..Drugs may be man made, but they come from natural sources. All drugs are made from various plants. And they are all harmful to the body in some way... even the medicinal ones. Substance abuse is a passtime I will never understand. Rat poison may not be strong enough to kill you, but you still won't drink it , right?

@Mastiffchild

Are you the same Mastiffchild from N4G? I mean, you have the same dog in your avatar and everything.

Last edited by Cole on 8/15/2011 9:30:21 AM

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slugga_status
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 10:49:00 AM

@Cole

My logic isn't flawed simply because you disagree. All drugs aren't made from various plants that is a fact. I agree that all are harmful to the body in some form. However, marijuana doesn't increase your risk for heart attack or heart failure. Nor does it call swelling of the mouth, seizures, etc. I could go on.

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Underdog15
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 11:06:36 AM

@Slugga
Actually, it can cause much of that. It produces many more hydro-carbons (extremely carcinogenic) than cigarettes (in fact, one ounce smoked can cause more damage in that department than roughly 2 packs of cigarettes), and it has potential to cause brain damage which can lead to stroke or various forms of heart, liver, or many other organ failures.

Chronic and/or addictive use of marijuana can have many serious consequences.

Since it is also hallucinogenic (although mildly so), anyone predisposed to psychological or mental illnesses like Schizophrenia, bi-polar depressive disorder, or any sort of identity transference disorders, risk having those illnesses worsened exponentially (yes... at a bell-curve), especially with chronic use.

Since it is also a depressive substance, it has potential to cause lethargy, diminished energy, and just generally slow you down. Much like alcohol does. The difference is, however, marijuana can linger in your system for up to a year. So when you use chronically, more and more gets into your system. It's why some people need more and more to experience the same high's (their bodies are used to it since it's always there). But with increased levels, you also get those lethargic attitudes and desire for laziness even when not high. (Because of how much of it lingers)


And then there's the fact that marijuana is a red flag for people who are extremely insecure. lol

Either way... I just think it's stupid to do. If someone feels like they have to or that it's the only way to have fun or I'm lame for not smoking it, then they must have an incredibly horrible imagination or very little to no skills.

Lastly, not everyone that does marijuana does something worse eventually. But every person I've worked with that struggles or has struggled with addictions ----EVERY SINGLE ONE---- says marijuana was their starting point. It -is- a gateway. They all tell you, if they hadn't started on weed, they'd have never moved up. And I've worked with 8 addictions -this month-.

So don't pretend marijuana has no consequences (not that you specifically were. I mean people in general). Such denial is insulting.

Last edited by Underdog15 on 8/15/2011 11:10:33 AM

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slugga_status
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 11:28:44 AM

@Underdog

I've found the failures you mention tend to occur with people who already have illness. Marijuana is not a depressive substance either. Much of the effects of it comes from the user. For example I for one used to use it every single day multiple times a day and still graduated college with a 3.6 so it's nowhere near as harmful as people state.

As I said if it was then many states wouldn't be decriminalizing it. 13+ states have done so. It's natural and you don't have to add anything to it but water.

They say it's a gateway drug but it really isn't. People who try something else simply wanted to do it. I agree it has consequences but the consequences are easily outweighed by those of alcohol and over the counter/prescribed drugs. Takes a mass amount of marijuana to overdose and die but not so much with alcohol and otc drug...I just think the US laws are flawed regarding drugs and alcohol period..

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Highlander
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 12:11:44 PM

From a high level perspective, weed is about as dangerous as alcohol, yet it's illegal and creates thousands of criminals each year who are doing little more than indulging in the equivalent of a night out on booze in the form of something to smoke. In my experience it's no more a gateway drug than alcohol or tobacco, bet then I don't smoke and haven't knowingly done weed in my life, but one family member has/does and I know people who have/do. Unless they are hiding something very well, their use of weed has had little more effect on then than alcohol, except of course the legal risk.

Medically, I'm not aware of any significant number of studies suggesting that weed is horridly dangerous or significantly more dangerous than other things like tobacco or alcohol. it seems to me that the only thing that separates those three vices, is that weed is illegal and alcohol and tobacco can be bought at walmart. Alcohol and nicotine are both drugs in their own right. Why are the not controlled, but weed is? Oh, wait, alcohol has a cultural place since before Christ, and tobacco has a similarly long cultural history and was financially extremely important for a long period of time. Weed...not so much. I guess weed is suffering because people from Europe found tobacco and started smoking it in numbers before weed.

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Cole
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:57:13 PM

@Slugga

I stand corrected. There are indeed synthetic drugs on the black market. But they either mimic or enhance the effects of natural drugs. For the most part,they are highly volatile and experimental. But for the time being, there are no 'legit' synthetic drugs on the market.

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Underdog15
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 2:43:03 PM

Obviously some people are more affected by substances either way. Alcohol and marijuana are similar in that they alter perspective (although different forms of perspective). Tobacco and Marijuana are the same in that they have chronic long term effects. (It's true. They do. I'm not sure how you can pretend they don't). Alcohol stands alone in that you can -easily- (i know it's possible with the others, but extremely difficult) cause immediate damage. Any one of us could go out tonight and die from an over-abuse of alcohol.

Now, I personally, believe all drugs, (OCT, prescription, alcohol, tobacco, etc.) are a bit of a government money grab in various forms. There's more than enough evidence to put stricter laws in enforcing tobacco, for example. And I firmly believe Marijuana to be something, as Highlander said, something that in moderation, is no more harmful chronically than alcohol or tobacco.

The only difference? Not just anyone can make tobacco in their back yards. It takes a lot, and to make a cigarette, it's nearly impossible since nowadays, so much of it is synthetic. Alcohol is the same. It's far too much work to make your own various forms of alcohol from home. It's easy for government to tax and make money and regulate. But marijuana? Well, come on. Anyone could grow and produce that. -ANYONE-. Government would never be able to regulate and tax it efficiently.

And -that-, I believe, is the main reason it's so illegal in the US. (It's decriminalized in Canada, already. But still illegal. That term just means you won't get a criminal offense or jail time for it. You could still face fines if you possess enough of it.)

The point of my comment isn't about how it's illegal or 'wrong'. I was just pointing out that you're being willfully ignorant if you think that chronic use has no potential ill effects. The studies are there, I assure you. A simple undergrad test is enough to prove marijuana produces many many times more hydrocarbons than cigarettes, for example.

At any rate, the fact that it's illegal is a little silly when compared to alcohol and tobacco. But slugga, the immediate effects it has on the body is a direct definition of a "depressant". That word doesn't mean it makes you depressed. It's the opposite of a "stimulant" like taurine or caffeine.

Just because you weren't affected too much by it, doesn't change the fact it's a depressant. Not everyone is affected by caffeine, either, for example. Same idea. But it does linger in the body for a long long time. As I said, that's why it always takes a little more to reach the same high over time. And if you are the type of person to be easily affected by a depressant or if you have predisposed mental illness, it carries huge risk.

Obviously, if you have none of those factors, like a predisposition to mental illness or you aren't affected by depressants as much, you likely won't notice any of those long term psychological effects. Like anything else, someone predisposed to heart disease shouldn't drink energy drinks. Same idea. Doesn't mean it's bad for everyone.

But the chronic health effects are real and should be considered. Just because my great grandmother smoked like a chimney from ww1 until she died at 99 doesn't mean smoking is therefore not bad for you. Smoking weed merely increases your risk of stroke, to list one potential factor. Extensive marijuana use has been linked to brain damage. That alone can cause stroke and many other illnesses.


But as Highlander said, it's not really that different from the increased risks of abusive drinking or chronic smoking. And in terms of legality, as I said, it is a little silly how the government spends all those resources on stopping marijuana users. There's plenty of hard drug users or distributors of prescription drugs like oxy's. Honestly, I'm convinced it's only because anyone could make their own marijuana that it would be more economical to just grow your own. Government wouldn't make anything on it. And I think they know that. lol

As for my own outlook, I just think it's a silly habit, and it's one I've never understood. I don't drink to get drunk, you know? Sometimes it happens when I'm with a group of people, but I don't aim for it to happen. And I never get completely out of my mind. Not even close. How many people smoke pot without wanting to get high? I just don't understand why anyone wouldn't want to keep their own state of mind.

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Syn
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 6:08:43 PM

The lack of knowledge about the drugs we are talking about here amuses me...

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JMO_INDY
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 7:11:25 PM

In regards to the legit and legal synthetic marijuana there is a thing in Indiana called K-2, K-3, Cloud Nine, and Baked Goods that is purchasable by any 18 year old. They have been found to cause Psychosis and seizures in people low or high doses. I myself have tried all the variations listed multiple times and nothing has happened.

I have also smoked weed quite heavily as a recreational past time and never for self medicating, not once have I experienced health issues. Though I will point out I was actually laced once with shroom dust, for those of you who don't know is a hallucinogen and laced refers to the dealer mixing a drug with the weed then selling it. I believe if made legal, a regulation could help to stem the fear associated with marijuana use. people will know exactly what they are getting and be safer because of it.

I will point out that some very famous people are heavy weed smokers, I'm sure you have all head of Michael Phelps an Olympic Gold medalist. Unlike tobacco which actually decreases the amount of air and oxygen lungs can take in, weed has no such affect as the over 4,000 chemicals and over 50 carcinogens are nowhere to be found.

Here are some other wildly successful celebrities who smoke weed daily. Woody Harrelson, Willie Nelson, Seth Rogan, James Franco, Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore, Justin Timberlake, pretty much every rapper out there (Whiz Khalifa spends on average $10,000 in weed), Mariah Carey, Charlize Theron, Matthew McConaughey, Doug Benson, Sarah Silverman, and Barbra Streisand!!!

It's obviously not hurting their careers now is it? This is a censorship thing, not a "we want to protect our citizens" thing. So many people mis-informed and that's what is truly worrisome.

Last edited by JMO_INDY on 8/15/2011 7:14:21 PM

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packersfan66
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 7:35:08 PM

Well jeez.. That guy sure ripped me a new one didn't he

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Underdog15
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 11:01:28 AM

@syn
Mind to point that finger a little more directly, or are you happy to let everyone pretend you're talking about the other guy?

@JMO
speaking of misinformation, there are a couple things in your post that are misinformed. Generally speaking, though, the censorship by government isn't necessarily misguided, but it is definitely a mis-prioritized initiative. Obviously at your age, you are very unlikely to feel any side effects or suffer consequences yet. As I said before, *CHRONIC* use can cause *CHRONIC* health issues. Not immediate... Chronic. That word is -very- important.

As for using celebrities as a measurable for what is acceptable.... well... let's just say this... JMO... I know you're an intelligent guy. Why would you go by them?

Last edited by Underdog15 on 8/16/2011 11:07:14 AM

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JMO_INDY
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 1:42:04 PM

I'm going to reply to both of your replies here so were not in different places.

It's not so much that they are idols as celebrities. But to exemplify that there are a wide range of people out there (successful people) who are smokers and the fear mongering that it will somehow tear apart families and destroy your lives is completely wrong. I understand the complications and and potential hazards of marijuana.

The fact is though, that no matter what, the risks stem from people toying with the weed that dealers sell such as lacing without the buyer even knowing. Marijuana in it's fully natural state is practically harmless and safer than any cigarette out there. Mind you I say in it's natural state, not these over processed chronic strains that are out there. It is a misunderstood product and something I believe should be legalized.

I've never seen anyone who was high get into fights or even slightly angry, alcohol consumption on the other hand has brought the worst out of people and ruined many a friendships and relationships.

As I said in my reply to Ben, anyone who even so much as takes cough drops, Tylenol, or Benadryl every day are doing much worse things to their body. Benadryl and Tylenol deteriorate your liver. While weed has been shown to cause less than a 7% decrease in lung capacity after 2 years of chronic smoking. I don't know but. I'm pretty certain cigarettes do worse than that.

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Underdog15
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 2:38:49 PM

Let me just say one thing about the OTC drugs you listed. They only deteriorate the liver in chronic users. People who abuse them or become dependent on them. Personally, acetaminophen should only be used when anti-inflammatories are not feasible (ie: you're pregnant). They directly affect your nervous system and are pretty harsh over time. Anti-inflammatories, on the other hand, do most of it's pain killing by decreasing swelling. Much more tame.

Either way, on their own, they do not cause damage. Abusers using them for the wrong reasons, will hurt themselves. There is such thing as "too much of a good thing".

Marijuana in it's natural state in a small one-time quantity is incredibly unlikely to do any sort of damage. And it isn't worse than cigarettes, in my opinion. -BUT- anytime you burn off something natural, it's going to release a level of hydrocarbons. And if it's plant life, it'll burn (in an uneven combustible chemical reaction since oxygen, nitrogen, hydrogen, and carbon-dioxide levels vary -constantly-) off tannins as well. These two things, both, at a greater extent to cigarettes. The filters alone can almost completely remove those two toxins. (Which tobacco companies are ok with since neither is addictive)

When such immensely high levels of tannins and hydrocarbons are released into your body, they have potential to cause cancer in the long term (2 years is not long enough to measure chronic effects), and more immediately, if everything is just right (or wrong), it can damage brain tissue. It almost always does in small bits. Small enough that you can normally mend. But if done often enough that mending is impossible, eventually, you -will- experience brain damage. Some faster than others.

I'm not saying it shouldn't be decriminalized. It already is in my country. I'm saying you have two schools of thought that are both wrong.

One says, it will destroy families. It has a portion of truth, as in people with highly addictive personalities or with mental or psychological illnesses, it can do just that very easily. But not to the extent the government believes. And not to the extent alcohol abuse does, either. So that camp is wrong for blowing it out of proportion.

The second says there's almost no (or will say none at all!) negative effects. That's blissful ignorance, through and through. Like alcohol, it needs to be used in moderation. People need to be aware of the potential health risks they face (they do exist!!!!) like they know about cigarettes. And they need to listen to their medical professional about use like they should when using otc drugs! (No one ever asks their doctor about otc's, but they should be.)

The problem at the end of the day is people only list the "facts" that promote their own agenda. It isn't the worst thing that is out there. Not even the worst among things that are completely 100% allowed! But it's not harmless either. That's just being naive.

As for me, I don't use. Good thing too... my life insurance would be more expensive if I did, for one. (silly mandatory urine and blood tests when you buy life insurance) But I just disagree with the idea of disorienting your mind. I never plan on getting drunk, and when I do, I'm never wasted. I always stop before I lose full control, because I know when to stop. And I never drink more. Sometimes I'll go out "drinking" with friends, and not get drunk afterall. Other times, I'll be celebrating something and accidentally drink a little much and have to stop. I'm not for or against it. I just think it's weird to feel like you have to change your state of mind to relax, have fun, whatever.

I'm just bothered mostly by people siding with one side or the other, when clearly, neither is correct.

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totozero18
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 4:21:36 PM

@ Dreno, I'm guessing it really depends on where do you come from, Unfortunately for me people in my family doesn't stand out as an example. Despite the damage they've caused on themselves and the people around them we all stick around kind of together.

My advice here: Just sit down a while and have a beer while listening to Alice in Chains' unplugged or Nirvana's, it'll all wash out mate :)

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Kiwi of DOOM
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:23:26 PM
Reply

Well, I think I can provide some insight, coming from a town named 'Vulcan' (where we have an annual festival weekend dubbed 'Spock Days'), and having both attended many conventions and made many props for cosplayers over the years. For the most part, I believe it is as you say: escapism. That carries a bit on unintended ill-meaning with it, though.

I think your right, though, they tend to have a few distinctive personalities, and though most of them don't 'fit in' with the average joe, there is a close minority that do. The thing is, there's a cultural difference there. When I spent a couple weeks in Japan, I noticed at least a dozen cosplayers that hardy got a second look as they strolled down the street. They're not part of 'the norm' but they're commonplace regardless. In North America however... not so much, and so it's not rare to find someone that's rather... shy, or even antagonistic, when it comes to their interest in cosplaying.

Now, I'm not a cosplayer myself, but I do make props, and my own interest stems from the novelty of it. Having a keyblade that I can actually hold in my hand is just kinda neat- for lack of a better and actually informative answer. Haha

Anyway, interesting question. It really is starting to become commonplace in the gaming industry, and you know, I think it's a good thing. Or harmless, if nothing else.

Last edited by Kiwi of DOOM on 8/14/2011 10:24:13 PM

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Underdog15
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 11:11:07 AM

What do I get if I kick your avatar? :)

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Ars ragnarok
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:23:27 PM
Reply

I saw a video of a compilation of girls playing as rinoa from FFVIII and there is this one girl who absolutely IS rinoa,she is not just dressed like her but her facial feature are so exactly like rinoa its uncanny.

If i wasn't in a relationship my life's mission would be to find that girl & tell her i am her squall leonheart XD..oh and ask her to marry me XD

Last edited by Ars ragnarok on 8/14/2011 10:24:47 PM

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WorldEndsWithMe
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 10:53:25 PM
Reply

I do like to have stuff from games and even occasionally wear it. I use Cole's sling pack cuz it's awesome, I have a Darkwatch badge on one of my leather jackets because it's perfect and I used to have a Buster Sword. I got Squall's necklace too, but I'm allergic to it so I can't wear it.

Last edited by WorldEndsWithMe on 8/14/2011 10:54:07 PM

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cLoudou
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 11:34:16 PM
Reply

I like this cosplay stuff. Its awesome seeing people come up with accurate costumes of their favorite characters. I don't do it, I would like to but I just can't. More power to the cosplayers, don't hate.

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FM23
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 11:45:19 PM
Reply

I never new this random activity had a name. It's interesting they do it, but like most artistic oriented people...these type of people do come off as weird. I would do it for fun, but I don't know anyone who's into games enough to even bother doing it with me just for fun. But yeah, people who purposely do this to escape reality are out of touch with reality. But hey, if it makes them happy...I say do them...it isn't hurting anyone

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chilker
Sunday, August 14, 2011 @ 11:47:10 PM
Reply

Strange, on my trip today to all my favorite websites, I read your article today about cosplay, then a few minutes later I found this on Japancinema.net
http://japancinema.net/2011/08/12/cosplay-corner-episode-8-ejen-chuang/
it talks a lot about cosplay, particularly here in the US. Check it out. It should answer a few questions and give you an idea of what it's all about.

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FxTales
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:05:56 AM
Reply

Some people put a lot of effort into their costumes and they look pretty cool, very dedicated fans. Not for me personally though I appreciate the comic con expo gallery pics. There was a pretty sweet looking Garrus.

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Beamboom
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:16:13 AM
Reply

... But if Ben was a cosplayer, what would he dress like?

Conan the Barbarian?

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WorldEndsWithMe
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:26:31 AM

Paint that dude green and watch him go.

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Beamboom
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 6:11:27 AM

LOL! Omg the mental pictures you paint sometimes. :D

Last edited by Beamboom on 8/15/2011 6:11:50 AM

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 3:19:54 PM

I suppose if I was forced, I'd be Cloud.

Someone better get me a realistic Buster Sword, though. ;)

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Mog
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:16:21 AM
Reply

I went to the Smash a few weeks ago in Sydney (anime/gaming festival). It was awesome but I realised that cosplay was a colossal part of the whole event. 80% of people were dressed up us gaming/anime characters. There was a cosplay competition, cosplay chess, cosplay races, cosplay fashion show and more.
I even say Lucy from Elfen Lied, that girl even had fake blood all over her. Yeah....it was scary... but AWESOME.

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WorldEndsWithMe
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:30:44 AM
Reply

Gamers live in a peculiar duality. Watching movies and reading isn't quite the same because you don't take part in what happens.

Gamers go to work or school, pay the bills, take care of the kids and housework, hang out with friends and try to get by like anybody else. But we also spend our off hours saving the world.

If someone can feel a little of that world saving "I actually matter" fulfillment in a world where it's hard enough to survive by dressing up as their favorite character I say go for it. I sure as crap don't have the guts to.

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ZettaiSeigi
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 1:33:38 AM
Reply

I don't really mind people who cosplay, particularly if they do a terrific job at it. I mean, whatever rocks your boat right? Sure, there could be some deeper reason why people cosplay, but maybe if we just ask ask the cosplayers themselves, I think they'd just reply back that they find it fun. Whether they do it to escape from reality or other reasons, I guess it shouldn't be a concern to those who do not appreciate it, particularly if they're not causing anybody harm.

And oh, if I am going to see someone (or something) cosplay all day, then I'd NEVER mind this: http://bit.ly/r7Z0v0 :-)

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Vivi_Gamer
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 3:10:37 AM
Reply

It's just a bunch of posers... I can let them off if they're dressing up for an event like comic con, but I saw a bunch of people dressed up like anime characters (which unfortunatley one thought Cloud from FF7 was an anime character and failed at his costume too.) in the park. Thats when it becomes sad.

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ceedot
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 7:22:42 AM
Reply

Answer : 'But maybe I'm just being too psychological. Maybe I'm over-complicating this. Maybe it's just about a bunch of people who like to dress up as fantastical characters, because they view it as fun and entertaining.'

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maxpontiac
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 9:01:01 AM
Reply

If it's just someone playing pretend, no harm, no foul right?

However, it is strange to me that adults do something I did when I was a child.

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gumbi
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 9:22:23 AM

I still do lots of things I did when I was a child, they're fun. Like playing video games!

Although I have two young children now too, so I get a free pass to act like an idiot with them. I'm just being a good dad and playing with my kids right? ;)

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Cole
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 9:32:16 AM

Heh heh. True. You don't stop playing because you get old. You get old because you stop playing.

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Highlander
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 9:44:20 AM

Max, we play video games.

PLAY

Just like kids...

Oh, wait, being ironic?

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maxpontiac
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 10:34:37 AM

Gumbi -

Hey, you are talking to someone who used to have lightsaber fights with his sons all the time. Good times.

Cole -

Agreed. It's why I still play video games.

Highlander -

Ouch. Excellent point. Never looked at that way.

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Highlander
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 9:31:31 AM
Reply

Cosplay is no different to Trekkies and Star Wars fans dressing up like their favorite characters or even type of character - eg the bazillion Klingon warriors you'll see at a convention. It's little different from the Ren Fair folks, nor is it much different to going into Home with a costume on. It's simply another form of play, another way to enjoy your favorite game or anime - or whatever. You're pretending to be part of that universe, that character, you're playing the part, but you're also simply playing. Part of it is the whole clique/club fun and exclusivity, part of it is about making the best costume, and part of it is just plain silly fun.

I think this is both something that could use more analysis, and something that really doesn't require over-analysis. If you look beyond the obvious reasons I think you're missing a lot of it, because it really is about having fun. Of course it never hurts when Cosplay is being done by cute girls...which is part of it too.

BTW, the girls in the picture are Cosplaying Panty and Stocking from Panty and Stocking with Garterbelt. the one with the dark hair is playing Stocking, and the blond is Panty. That particular anime is like the PowderPuf girls crossed with Invader Zim, the devil may care attitude of the very best South Parks and a couple hundred grams of crack cocaine. It's absolutely hilarious and very much a spoof/tribute to some of the new Wstern Cartoons - which of course themselves are inspired by anime. I can't even begin to explain the show, but it's laced with enough outright adult language and situations that only grown ups need watch it, it's strong stuff that can cause major outbursts of uncontrollable laughter, but it is absolutely guaranteed to offend many people.

For further information on why cute cosplay girls are...cute, google Alodia Gosiengfiao...

Oh, cute girls cosplaying at conventions is probably the core of what gets this into people's heads in the west, but in Japan, I think it's a combination of that and a sort of street fashion phenomena where people wear casual clothes themed or styles after their favorite characters. It need not be a full costume, but often is. CosPlay is currently very big in Japan.

Last edited by Highlander on 8/15/2011 9:34:17 AM

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maxpontiac
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 10:35:49 AM

Thanks for the explanation. I think I was doing the exact thing you mentioned.

Over-analyzing it.

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 3:19:05 PM

I figured I'd get a decent explanation from Highlander. Thanks. :)

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ZettaiSeigi
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 6:08:45 PM

Highlander, color me surprised that you know Alodia. She does wicked cosplays, doesn't she? She has a TV show over here where she wears some of her cosplay stuff.

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Highlander
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 10:23:34 PM

Oh, I know of Alodia, who by the way, ROCKS!

Oddly enough she's one of my wife's facebook friends...

I'll have to see whether her show is available anywhere, CrunchyRoll perhaps...

Last edited by Highlander on 8/15/2011 10:25:26 PM

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ZettaiSeigi
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 6:42:00 PM

Well, the show she's on is not necessarily one you'd be interested on. It's like a practical jokes show, so I'm not sure if that's even a fit for her. Ahh well...

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Underdog15
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 10:34:49 AM
Reply

I don't cosplay, but I loved Halloween as a kid. My top 2 favorite costumes were when I went as Mega Man X, and another time as Enzo from "Reboot". (Anyone remember that show?)

Yeah, my mom rocked at making costumes.

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SixSpeedKing
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 4:11:33 PM

Dude I loved Reboot! I wish they still made it. Btw those sound like sweet costumes man.

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Claire C
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 2:41:04 PM
Reply

Ben should cosplay as Ramza Beoulve!!!!!!!!! =D

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Ben Dutka PSXE [Administrator]
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 3:18:33 PM

That...wouldn't work.

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Claire C
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 5:18:06 PM

Cosplay for us in your next PSXE Home Episode!!! lol

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cLoudou
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 7:36:10 PM

Claire as Faye Valentine, yes!

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Highlander
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 10:25:50 AM

Claire,

Home is cosplay. Last time I showed up as an anime like character, before slipping back int my usual avatar. But one of the things I like about Home is the potential for Cosplay.

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Underdog15
Tuesday, August 16, 2011 @ 11:09:44 AM

Ben! You could cosplay as TG Cid! You could pull that off.

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Warrior Poet
Monday, August 15, 2011 @ 6:16:35 PM
Reply

I don't really cosplay, but I've put together some elaborate Halloween costumes lol. I'm not really an anime fan as much as an animation fan, but 90% of the good stuff coming out today is Japanese.

I'd cosplay if I was going to the right place with the right friends. I actually look pretty similar to Link, so if I happened to find some green leather that would be awesome. Cosplaying is fairly hilarious in the right setting, but it's also the kind of thing I don't mention when I'm at a mosh pit (which is a totally different kind of hilarious).

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