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Photo by Daman Singh

Cosplayers pull out all the stops at this year’s Calgary Expo 

By Ansharah Shakil, May 1 2024—

Calgary Expo, which took place this year from Apr. 25-28, is an annual opportunity for fans of all kinds to dress up in their favourite cosplays. Over the course of the weekend, attendees of the convention were able to see numerous single and group cosplays, with some unique takes on costumes and some straightforward, detailed homages to characters from movies, TV shows, games and books. The Gauntlet captured and interacted with some of the most impressive cosplays of the weekend. 

Link (The Legend of Zelda: Tears of Kingdom) by Ash

Photo by Daman Singh

This detailed cosplay definitely did justice to Link, the protagonist of the series The Legend of Zelda. Playing with LED lights in this cosplay for the first time, Ash sought to highlight the crafting and problem-solving to bring the character to life with cosplay. 

Fearne Calloway (Critical Role) by Mishaela 

Photo by Daman Singh

Plenty of cosplayers get into the art of cosplaying because of their experiences admiring the outfits and props of media that they enjoyed, such as anime and comics. This was the case for Mishaela, who explained that the cosplay community — seeing other people do cosplay — was encouraging. This cosplay of Critical Role’s Fearne perfectly captured the essence of the character.

“I always wanted to make my own outfits and props and I just decided to [do it] one day,” Mishaela said.

Mr Knight (Moon Knight) by Andy

Photo by Daman Singh

One of the versions of Moon Knight that derives from Marc Spector’s alternative persona Steven Grant, Mr. Knight has been portrayed differently in Marvel comics and in the current ongoing Disney Plus series Moon Knight, but Andy’s portrayal of the character is unmistakable.

“My kids got me into cosplay,” Andy said. “They really enjoy dressing up so we like to do it every year, [and] I love the creativity.” 

Dot Matrix (ReBoot) by Raquel 

Photo by Daman Singh

ReBoot, the animated Canadian series that began airing on YTV in 1994, was a milestone for being the first made-for-television CGI shows. A love of pop culture is what got Raquel, dressed as one of the main characters Dot Matrix, into cosplaying.

“I wanted to give respect back to the creators that make the things that we love, and this is my love letter to them,” Raquel said. 

Patty and Selma (The Simpsons) by Melissa and Beth 

Photo by Daman Singh

Identical twins Patty and Selma from The Simpsons are iconic figures, and Melissa and Beth fully committed to cosplaying as them, from their painted-yellow skin down to the distinctive, gravel-voiced chain smoker voices of the characters. They explained that they like coming up with unique things in cosplay. 

“[Cosplayers like] Jessica Nigri inspired me to make my own costumes and dress up year-round instead of just one time a year, and then I had this lovely friend [Beth] who was a hair artist by day and she decided to be just as weird with me,” Melissa explained.

Beth said she joined Melissa because of her love for drag in any and all forms, showcasing how cosplay can be not only entertaining, but a form of expressing yourself with self-confidence and freedom. 

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