We absolutely love cosplay. There is something so enthralling about getting all dressed up as our favorite characters and re-enacting the things that made us fans in the first place. The best part is, the cosplay community is filled with tons of like-minded people, who are always looking for the next big gathering to show off their favorite costumes. With all of the conventions taking place each year, we get to see some amazing and inspired cosplay creations.
Cosplay can be a downright wholesome for most. You'd be amazed how much confidence it can give you and how freeing it can be. You'll likely get a lot of attention from fans, most of which will want a picture with you. Regardless of whether you make your own outfit or simply buy a pre-made costume, cosplaying can be quite the uplifting experience.
Yet, there are also moments in which cosplay can feel a bit "dark." Whether it's bullies, purists, annoying fans, or questionable decisions, there are things happening within the cosplay community that can make it less fun and more frightening.
We scoured Whisper to find 21 great examples of this darker side to cosplay. Join us on this journey through questionable morals, cosplay bullies, and some rather unhealthy obsessions.
21 Social Stigma
It's hard to ignore all of the terrible racial issues facing society in the modern age. We try our best not to bring attention and create a larger divide between people but it's been exceptionally difficult lately. Because of this, it can make all cosplayers a bit self-conscious. We're lucky enough to have an entertainment industry that is representative of all races. Sadly, the recent divide has people second-guessing future cosplay projects and costume creations.
This Whisper confessor wants so badly to cosplay as one of their favorite Disney character's, Esmeralda from The Hunchback of Notre-Dame. The only issue is that the cosplayer is white and feels like they will be reprimanded by the public for cosplaying as a popular character (of a different skin color).
20 Escaping Reality
Cosplay is a rather therapeutic thing for a lot of people. It isn't just a confidence booster, but it also allows them to enter a world of whimsy where they can forget about all of their potential problems and focus on simply having fun. If you haven't had the opportunity to dress up as your favorite character and attend a convention with many like-minded people, you might not know what you're really missing out on.
This Whisper user is a great example of that. They suffer from anxiety and depression but attribute cosplay to helping them lead a better life. Sometimes it makes us all feel better to pretend to be someone else, even if it's just for a day. Still, we're glad this person found a hobby that helps them escape some of the issues of everyday life.
19 Buster Gets Flustered
A lot of cosplayers like to show off a lot of skin. Whether it's for attention, or they're simply trying to achieve as much realism as possible, there are many costumes out there with a lot of sensual appeal. This cosplayer is not one of those people. They went with one of the most wholesome costumes they could think of. What's more "tame" than cosplaying as Buster from the hit children's television show Arthur? We don't get to see the outfit in question but we highly doubt it featured Buster showing his "adult side."
This still didn't keep the poor player from receiving some unwanted attention. They found themselves doing a small photo-op for a mother and child. Unfortunately, after snapping the photo, the mother decided to flirt a bit with the Buster cosplayer. Right in front of their child. That can't be healthy.
18 The Worst Kind Of Friendship
One of the worst things in the world is to find yourself entrapped in a conversation that you don't really want to be in. There have been countless times that I've found myself trying as hard as possible to spare someone's feelings as I attempt to wriggle away from a socially awkward situation. This next Zuko cosplayer went through a similar situation after meeting an Aang cosplayer at a convention.
Apparently, the two hit it off pretty well and began discussing the show. Unfortunately, the good times went south when the Aang cosplayer pulled out their phone and began reading from a rather lengthy (and explicit) Aang x Katara fanfic. The Zuko cosplayer was able to escape the embarrassment but that didn't stop the Aang cosplayer from hunting them down on Facebook and sending them X-rated fan art from time to time.
17 A Viral Sensation
We've done some pretty embarrassing things when we were younger. If you didn't, consider yourself insanely lucky. For most of us, we had to endure at least one agonizingly awkward moment in our lives. Thankfully, these events are usually pretty controlled. Unless you find yourself messing up during a school play or a major event, you don't have to deal with a ton of public backlash.
Unfortunately, this Naruto cosplayer made the massive mistake of uploading a video onto YouTube. They ended up "making out" with a Sasuke cosplayer (which consisted of the Sasuke cosplayer essentially biting their mouth over and over...). The video went viral, with the Naruto cosplayer even receiving "offers for money" from advertisers. Fame aside, the cosplayer eventually deleted their entire YouTube account to get away from what they considered "cringe."
16 Mr. Know-It-All
The beautiful thing about cosplay is that anyone can do it. There are no rules. If you like the way a character looks, you can show your artistic appreciation and dress up as them. It's a purely creative thing and you don't have to be particularly knowledgeable about who you're cosplaying. Most people don't care if a cosplayer has been through the game in question, as long as they do the character visual justice.
Yet, there are those individuals out there who "pride themselves" on knowing as much as they possibly can about a game series. Unfortunately for this next cosplayer, they had to endure the full "intellect" of a rather pushy subject. They were cosplayed as Chell and someone felt it necessary to grill them about anything and everything Portal related.
15 Edward Gets Glomped
Glomping used to be a rather popular thing among close friends and convention goers. For those unfamiliar, it's the process of running at someone and jumping into their arms or onto their back (like an upgraded, high-speed hug). It can be a rather painful experience, especially when the "victim" is unaware that their attacker is going to rush them.
This Edward Elric cosplayer knows the feeling all too well. They decided to cosplay as the iconic character back when Full Metal Alchemist was at the peak of popularity. This proved to be a mistake as they were glomped by a ravenous fan and almost severely injured in the process. They ended up banging their head and hurting their knees. Thankfully, all this glomping business has died down.
14 Aspiring Artists
We've already established that there are some pretty seedy people that attend conventions. We're sure there are tons of individuals roaming the convention floor with backpacks filled with explicit fanfictions. This next Whisper shows us that it's not just fan fiction circulating each event. X-Rated fan art also makes an appearance and can sometimes come from some very unlikely sources.
According to this Prompto (FF: XV) cosplayer (and their friend, who was dressed at Noctis), they ran into some young aspiring artists at Anime Matsuri. These 13-year-olds proceeded to show them explicit drawings from their sketchbooks and then proceeded to describe the adult acts in excruciating detail. It's unfortunate that a lot of kids are being exposed to these types of things at such a young age. Where are the parents in all of this?
13 Unsavory Intentions
Look, we aren't here to shame anyone or tell people what type of lifestyle they should live. It's not our right (or business) to decide what a person can and cannot do. However, we can't help but feel like this person is making a monumental mistake. Going to a convention to meet potential love interests is fine in its own right, but when you're simply engaging in casual affairs, it can come back to bite you.
There's the obvious issue of potential disease or the fact that you may end up getting more than you bargained for with a less-than-moral individual. These are the types of stories that end up with crimes and victims. It's a rather scary world. Hopefully, nothing terrible like that ever happens to this adventure seeker.
12 Behind Closed Doors
Cosplay can definitely lift your spirits but that doesn't mean cosplaying in public is easy. Many of us would love to toss on an outfit and mingle with like-minded people in a fantastical setting. Unfortunately, there are many social roadblocks that prevent most people from cosplaying as their favorite character. Some are conscious of their costume design, while others are worried about looking silly. Most of us are probably concerned that we won't fit in or may embarrass ourselves.
This Whisper user loves to cosplay but isn't the least bit comfortable about going to conventions or get-togethers. They prefer to lounge around in cosplay at home, creating a judgment-free zone where they can act however they please.
11 Racial Woes
We talked earlier about a how one person felt that they couldn't cosplay as Esmeralda due to the color of their skin. This Whisper user is dealing with a similar (yet opposite) issue. They don't feel comfortable cosplaying as white-skinned characters because they believe they will be harshly judged by the cosplay community. It's a sad and unfortunate side effect of the modern world and we really wish people would focus on having fun and loving one-another rather than living in a divided world.
Honestly, though, a lot of video game characters are white-skinned. Thankfully, we've seen much more racial recognition lately but it's completely understandable why this person would feel intimidated. If it were up to us, anyone would be stress-free to cosplay as whatever character they wanted, regardless of skin color or even gender, for that matter.
It's easy to understand why most people lack confidence in the modern age. We live in a world that is populated by social media, famous people, and heightened expectations. It's no wonder many people feel inadequate when compared to others. In a perfect world we would all feel equal, but sadly, that's just not the case. We really feel for this Whisper user and we're sure a lot of people have felt this way at one point in their lives.
They just want to feel important and they do so by playing video games and enacting in cosplay. This allows them to feel like "someone who matters." It's really unfortunate that this person doesn't have self-worth. Hopefully, they will meet some people who will show them that they do truly matter.
9 Hot And Heavy
Remember all those people that spend their time writing adult-themed fanfics or drawing fan art of characters in sensual situations? Some of them take things much further. There are people out there that don't just want to write about character hookups, they actually want to have them. It's no surprise that doing the deed from a cosplay standpoint is a big thing. After all, "dressing up" in the bedroom has been around for a long time.
These people don't simply want to find someone to take to bed, however, they want to do the entire act "in character." This Whisper user isn't bashful about showing their sultry desires. They want to find someone at a convention and have a hot-and-heavy situation between the two characters. It's no wonder people make such provocative costumes.
8 The Worst Kind Of People
We aren't sure what's worse. The fact that this guy is complaining about going to one of our favorite places (a convention) or the fact that he's only there because he was invited by a girl that he's having an affair with. One thing's for sure, both of the people involved are non-good dirty rotten cheaters. We're totally fine with people having their own hobbies and living life their own way but it doesn't make cheating any less despicable.
If you find yourself feeling trapped in a relationship or depressed, you could always talk to your partner about it. Sometimes relationships just don't work out, and that's completely okay. What isn't okay is cheating. If you don't like how things are going, it's the least you can do you be honest and break it off clean. Don't string people along like these two cosplay devils.
7 Accidental Admission
Most of us keep secrets. Those secrets can be as small as something embarrassing or as large as our "preference." For the most part, it can be easy to keep a secret. But sometimes we find ourselves in situations where we completely forget about what we're supposed to be hiding. If you're engaged in conversation with someone and talking about something you're passionate about, you might slip up.
That's exactly what happened to this Whisper confessor. She was immediately struck by the beauty of the "booth babes" at Comic Con and couldn't contain her excitement. Unfortunately, it seems that she was hiding her preference for women from her fellow co-workers. Perhaps she should have hidden her feelings a little better when around her boss.
6 A Titillating Transformation
We've covered a variety of cosplayer types so far. There are those that cosplay to become someone else or those that wish to unwind and have fun with a group of like-minded individuals. Yet, that doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of available "cosplay causes." There are a multitude of reasons why someone might want to slip into something a little more fantastical.
Take this Whisper confession for example, which showcases a wannabe cosplayer that wants nothing more than to turn themselves into what they classify as a "cosplay bimbo." We already know that some people love to do the deed while in costume so this really shouldn't come as a surprise. Some people love the thrill and all the peering eyes that come with adorning sultry outfits.
5 Extracurricular Activities
When you're young (and forced to attend school) there are few things as embarrassing as running into your teacher outside of class. If you live in a small town it can be the worst, since everyone shops at the same places (which ups your chances of running into someone you'd rather not see outside of school hours). To make matters worse, you were likely with your parents at the time which probably made things even more embarrassing. We all know how much parents like to gush about their kids.
Unfortunately for this Whisper confessor, they ran into their teacher in a rather unlikely place. They were both attending Comic Con, which isn't that far-fetched since so many people enjoy the event each year. What makes this super awkward is that the two were cosplaying as "dating Yaoi" characters. We can't imagine the rest of the school year was fun.
4 No Regrets
Do you remember your first kiss? We suppose it depends entirely on who that kiss was with and just how many people you've been locking lips with. For most of us, we can remember the exact place, time, person, and situation that led to our first tonsil hockey experience. It was possibly something romantic like a "perfect first date," or maybe you found yourself pecking your crush in a spur of the moment situation. Or maybe it was at Comic Con with a random stranger you didn't know
That sounds a lot creepier than it is (it's still pretty creepy to us) but this Whisper user admits to having their first kiss taken by someone masked and mysterious. The two were still in costume when the kiss in question happened and according to the post, they were nothing more than passing ships in the night. We guess its sort of romantic?
3 An Anonymous Shamer
One thing that the cosplay community is constantly preaching is, "cosplay is open to anyone and everyone." It doesn't matter who you are, what you look like, or what your background is. If you plan to cosplay, then you'll be welcomed into the community with open arms. At least, that's how it should be. Unfortunately, like any "fandom and society," there are still an abundance of people who share different beliefs. The "do unto others" golden rule hasn't stopped some boisterous voices from expressing their opinion.
According to this Whisper user, people who are overweight should only cosplay as overweight characters. If they refuse to do so, they shouldn't cosplay at all. This completely counteracts the "cosplay is for everyone" mantra and deals a mighty blow to individuals who have issues with their weight.
2 Fear Of Cosplay
This confession really breaks our hearts and we knew we wanted to showcase it directly after the last entry to show the reality of the situation. No matter how far we've evolved as a society, there is still this massive rift between groups of people. Being overweight can be challenging to your health, yes, but its also a life choice (and in some unfortunate instances, a medical issue). Some people struggle mightily with their weight and it's posts like "only cosplay fat characters" that can really destroy someone's confidence and excitement for cosplay.
This person is a grand example, showing us how it feels to be petrified to cosplay any character "out of their weight class." Cosplay should be a freeing experience for everyone, regardless of weight and appearance.
1 The Wrong Kind Of Excitement
Let's end on another note regarding weight. This one, however, is from the opposite end of the scale. The Whisper user in question isn't overweight, in fact, they're as far from it as can be. This cosplay fan is actually borderline underweight, which can be just as unhealthy as being overweight. Sadly, most people believe they're "healthy," but that usually turns out to be untrue. Who knows what kind of issues this person may be developing as a side effect of their choices.
Like they said, though, they don't want a lecture. We can certainly understand that but most would probably agree that "great cosplay" isn't worth your overall health. We wouldn't give years off our life just to emulate a character as realistically as possible. To each their own, we just want people to be careful.