Episode #21 – “Cosplay: Sexism, Sharp Knees and Super Fun Times”

Episode #21 – “Cosplay: Sexism, Sharp Knees and Super Fun Times”

Dec 03
Lynesta in her Ranger General Sylvanas costume, drawing the string back on a bow.

Lynesta in her Ranger General Sylvanas costume at Blizzcon 2013 pre-judging.

Our twenty-first episode features Tzufit and Apple Cider as well as our special guest Lynesta talking about cosplaying in the World of Warcraft community. We cover the ins and outs of making costumes and picking characters to topics such as sexism towards women cosplayers and treating cosplayers with respect.


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Below the cut is a full transcript of Episode 21, “Cosplay: Sexism, Sharp Knees and Super Fun Times.”

Tzufit:  Welcome to this week’s episode of Justice Points.  This week we are going to be discussing cosplay and the community surrounding it, the costumes, lots of different things.  We are very, very happy to have a special guest with us this week, Lynesta, who you may have seen if you were at Blizzcon or watching the virtual stream or looked at pictures afterwards at home.  Lynesta was actually in the costume competition this year.  She cosplayed as Sylvanas Windrunner prior to her death.  So not exactly the typical Sylvanas that you usually see.  Lynesta, welcome to the show and why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself and how long you’ve been playing WoW?

Lynesta:  Hi.  I’ve been playing WoW since 2008.  I started during the Wrath of the Lich King launch event, which was maybe the worst possible time to start playing WoW.

Tzufit:  Oh boy.

Lynesta:  Yeah, that was a fun day.  I made a night elf druid and I didn’t make it out of the initial starting area, and I eventually just logged out and didn’t play again for like 2 months because I hadn’t played WoW prior to that and I didn’t know what to expect.  After that, I was kind of like, “If this is how this is going to work, I don’t want to play at all.”  But yeah, so I gave it another shot a couple months later and I made a hunter, and everything just kind of went from there.

Tzufit:  Awesome.  So what kind of things do you like to do in game?  Are you a raider, PvPer, what do you enjoy?

Lynesta:  I actually wasn’t playing for a little while, so I stopped doing everything.  I started just kind of hanging out, chasing achievements.  Then I didn’t play at all for a while.  But I’ve recently come back.  Just before Blizzcon I started playing again and I would like to start raiding again, but I’m finding it a little bit difficult to catch up to where everyone is now.  But mostly, right now I’m leveling engineering on my hunter.  My paladin, who’s my main character, is mostly geared.  I can do Looking For Raid and Siege.  But that’s about where I’m at right now.

Tzufit:  Ok.  Well hopefully you’ll be able to find a raid team if that’s what you’re looking for.  What kind of paladin do you play?

Lynesta:  I play a holy paladin.  I’m Horde-side with my paladin.  My hunter’s Alliance still.  I started Alliance, I went Horde, I kind of stayed Horde and I feel like that’s kind of where I should be.

Tzufit:  Great.  So why don’t you tell us a little bit, then, on the other side of things about how did you get started with cosplay and how long have you been doing that?

Lynesta:  I have been cosplaying – “cosplaying,” I’ll put that in air quotes – since like 2002.  When I was in high school, I started making costumes for Halloween.  So my first, I guess, foray into cosplay was I made an elf costume from Lord of the Rings.  It was pretty basic, but there’s a picture on my cosplay Facebook actually.  I look at it now and I’m like, “Man, I was strange-looking as a 14 year old.”

Apple Cider Mage:  Who isn’t, though?

Tzufit:  Yeah, exactly.

Lynesta:  Right, yeah.  But so I guess that was like my first costume.  I didn’t actually start cosplaying at conventions until 2009, and that was just a friend of mine was like, “Hey, we’re going to go to Anime Central,” which is a convention outside of Chicago.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yes.

Lynesta:  “I’ve been pretty much since it started and you should totally come with me, make a costume, and we’ll have fun.”  So I made Rikku from Final Fantasy X-2.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah, she was in X-2 and I think she was in X a little bit as well.

Lynesta:  Yeah.  So I made that because it was kind of quick and easy.  Rikku’s one of my favorite characters from that particular Final Fantasy.  So I did it and it was a blast.  I couldn’t stop cosplaying after that.  I want to cosplay all the time now.

Tzufit:  What other franchises have you made costumes from besides Warcraft and Final Fantasy?

Lynesta:  I don’t have many costumes under my belt right now, but I also made a costume from The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya, which is an anime, and I made Elspeth, Sun’s Titan, which is a Magic: The Gathering card.

Tzufit:  Oh, very cool.  So of the costumes that you’ve made so far – I guess this is maybe like asking somebody to choose who their favorite child is – but are you able to choose a favorite costume from what you’ve done so far?

Lynesta:  It’s tough, and when I was thinking about it, it took me a few minutes before I was like, “You know what?  I got to go with Sylvanas.”  She’s kind of close to my heart and I worked really hard on that costume.  I was super excited that people recognized it, even though it wasn’t the current game model or current timeline.  So it’s got to be her.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  We will definitely put up a link so that people can see either your Facebook page or I know there are several pictures around from Blizzcon.

Apple Cider Mage:  It was a really, really good costume.  I actually saw you when I was at Blizzcon and it was nice to see a Sylvanas – it sounds so terrible because I think everybody has done like a really amazing job.  They go and they dress up and go to Blizzcon, but I think it was nice to see a Sylvanas costume that wasn’t the typical costume because I think a lot of people do that.  They do Alexstrasza or they do Sylvanas and you don’t see as many costumes for other designs.

Lynesta:  Yeah, that’s true.  In 2011, when I attended – I worked in 2011, so I didn’t get to cosplay.  But there were a lot of the same costumes in the costume contest.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Tzufit:  Yeah, there definitely are.

Lynesta:  So I kind of wanted to avoid that.  Yeah.

Tzufit:  Yeah, and they were all – I mean, for example, this year it seemed like every other one on the stage was a Diablo wizard, and they all looked amazing.  They really did.  But it’s always cool when somebody has an idea that’s a little more out of the box or a little different.  So how did you come up with the idea of doing a Sylvanas who was not your typical Sylvanas?

Lynesta:  So I guess this is kind of funny.  We’re sitting in the crowd during the costume contest for 2011.  My brother, who – how old was he, like 14 at the time or something – my little brother turns to me and he goes, “You know what you never see?  Sylvanas before she died.”  I had already been planning on making a Sylvanas costume at that point, and I was just kind of like, “You know what?  You’re right.  I’m totally doing that now.”  So that’s where it came from.

Tzufit:  Wow.  Good job to your brother, then.

Lynesta:  Yeah, definitely.

Tzufit:  So you came up with the idea way back in 2011 at that Blizzcon.  How long did you – did you start working on it right away or how long of a process was it?

Lynesta:  I came back from Blizzcon fully expecting that we would have one the following year.  So I did kind of start right away.  I started gathering reference photos and thinking about what materials I wanted to make it out of and that kind of stuff.  Finding reference of Ranger General Sylvanas, Sylvanas before she died, is kind of difficult actually.  There’s not much.

Tzufit:  Yeah, because you really just have the RTS models, and those are not particularly detailed.

Lynesta:  Yeah, not really.  Not really at all.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  No high-res 3D, every angle possible sort of stuff.

Lynesta:  Yeah.  So I started collecting materials and kind of planning.  Then when they made the announcement that there wasn’t going to be a Blizzcon, kind of put it on hold.  I was like, “Well, if there’s not a Blizzcon then I don’t really have anywhere to wear this right now.  So I’ll just wait.  It’ll be fine.”  Then when they announced this year’s Blizzcon I was like, “Alright, let’s get back to work,” and kind of started slowly working on things.  I want to say overall it probably took me 2 months of actual work, but obviously that was spread out over – between 6 and 9 months, I want to say is probably about when I started on it.

Apple Cider Mage:  What parts of the construction were the most – what was the most fun of constructing it and were there any parts that were super complicated?

Lynesta:  So when I started Sylvanas, I had not made, I guess, armor before.  Everything else to that point had been just fabric costumes.  So I used a material that’s become really popular within the cosplay community called Worbla, which is a thermoplastic material.  So it’s a plastic that you can heat and mold and shape, and then it cools down and stays hard in the shape that you’ve got it in.  So I had never worked with this material before and I did a lot of research online.  Just various other cosplayers who had worked with the material, including especially, I guess, the winner of this year’s costume contest.  She has worked with this stuff for a really long time and she’s super helpful and has tutorials online.  She actually just released a book, which is also super helpful.  But because there was so much information, I was able to kind of figure out just from reading how to work with this stuff.  But it was still pretty tough because you’ve got to get it the right heat so it’s not too hot, but it’s hot enough that you can still shape it.  It’s a lot of trial and error.

Tzufit:  Yeah, I can imagine that would be a little bit daunting.

Lynesta:  Yeah, just a little bit.  But because I had worked with the stuff for Sylvanas, I was able to do my Elspeth costume, which I actually did kind of right in the middle right before Halloween.  It made it easier having already worked with it at least a little bit.  But that was definitely the most challenging part was figuring that stuff out.

Tzufit:  What is your favorite part of the Sylvanas costume?

Lynesta:  It’s difficult to see expect in some pictures, but I searched the internet starting in 2011 and I actually didn’t find something that I liked until I want to say like February.  If you play Hordeside and you’ve played a blood elf, you’re probably familiar with the quest “The Lady’s Necklace” in the Ghostlands.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Tzufit:  Yes.

Lynesta:  And it was really important to me to have that as part of my costume.  Like Sylvanas should have the necklace that her sister gave her.  So that’s probably the part that I’m most proud of because I actually found a locket that has – it’s not a sapphire, but it’s blue stone that looks like a sapphire in it.  It was really hard to find and a lot of people didn’t notice it, but the ones who did were super excited about it.  They were like, “Oh man, that quest!  I know that quest!”

Tzufit:  I feel so silly because I looked at the pictures on WoWhead a little while ago and there’s one that really clearly shows that necklace, and I sat there and I thought, “Wow.  That’s a really pretty necklace,” and didn’t put 2 and 2 together until you just told us.  But, yeah, that’s a such a good detail.

Lynesta:  Yeah, it’s just that little detail that kind of made the costume Sylvanas.  This is such a personal thing to her that she should have it, right?

Tzufit:  Yeah, absolutely.

Apple Cider Mage:  It definitely sounds like – and this is what I’ve heard from other cosplayers – is that one of the real big draws besides just the construction aspect, which I think is a big draw for some people because I think a lot of people like to just do and create and have something that they can point to and say, “Well I made that.”  But also a chance to embody a character, to play a characters and to be somebody else besides yourself.  It feels like details like that really do feel essential to putting the whole thing together.

Lynesta:  Yeah, definitely.

Tzufit:  Ok.  So let’s widen the spectrum a little bit here.  So one of the things that is definitely pretty cool about cosplay and something that was pretty noticeable when you watch who walks on the stage during the costume competition versus who you see walking around, you know, pretty much everywhere else at Blizzcon is that there are a lot of women in cosplay.

Lynesta:  That is true.

Tzufit:  Part of what we’re going to delve into today, obviously, is why is that?  Is it a good thing?  Is it a bad thing?  Is it both?  And what are some of the reasons that people and maybe women in particular want to get started with cosplay?

Apple Cider Mage:  That was one of the things that I noticed as – and we’re going back here.  We’re going way back.  It’s funny that you mention that you were like 14 when the Lord of the Rings movies came out because I was already in college by that point.  Yeah, women have always been in very, very high levels of cosplay.  I’ve been going to anime conventions since I was like 18, and it was always the majority of it was always women.  I mean obviously as a women, you’re kind of part of that.  But, I mean, do you feel like being a woman is an essential part of the cosplay thing, or is it just something you felt that you just had to get into or just wanted to do?

Lynesta:  I don’t think that gender really has anything to do with being an essential part, I guess, of whether or not someone cosplays.  I actually kind of wish more guys would get into it.  But I think the reason there are so many women who cosplay is that it kind of plays to that whole idea of playing dress up as a kid and being able to kind of put yourself into another character and kind of feel like someone else for a little while.  That can be maybe a character that makes you feel more confident about yourself, or maybe a character that just you really care about and want to make them real.  When I was really, really little, my mom was still making my Halloween costumes.  I really wanted to be Belle from Beauty and the Beast for Halloween, and she made me the yellow dress that she dances in with the Beast.  Belle has kind of always struck me as this character that – you know, she’s always got her nose in a book and she doesn’t want to just be the princess.  She wants to have more than that.  So being able to play that character, even as a little girl, was just something that I kind of identified with.  I was the little kid in the classroom that would sit in the corner and read a book while everyone else was playing cards or whatever they were doing.  Right?  Like I was that nerdy kid that just read books.  So for me, Belle made that Ok.  Right?

Tzufit:  Yeah.  I certainly had a similar reaction, I remember, when I was little and saw Beauty and the Beast.  It was the same thing for me, except I think – the only thing for me is if my mom had made me a Belle costume I would have wanted the blue and white dress.  You know?

Lynesta:  I want all of her dresses.  I’m just saying.

Tzufit:  Fair enough.

Lynesta:  One day I’m going to make myself the yellow dress again and take it to a convention, and maybe the blue dress also.  The pink one that she does out in the snow.

Apple Cider Mage:  Oh yeah, that one’s the best I think, honestly.

Tzufit:  I think the yellow dress would take like all the tulle in the world, but it would be magnificent.

Lynesta:  Yeah, you’d just have to have this like giant petticoat that weighs more than you.  Yeah, something like that.

Apple Cider Mage:  Absolutely.  I think it’s actually really interesting that – and I don’t think this is necessarily just cosplay – but I think a lot of fandoms in general have a very high predominance of women, which is interesting because when we look at media and particularly World of Warcraft, there are definitely not as many women characters or prominent women characters as there are male characters.  Yet women make up quite a large majority of fandoms and are writing fan fiction and are creating like fan mixes and are doing cosplay.  So it is a really interesting juxtaposition from kind of like a nerdy culture standpoint that women would be a high percentage of that culture when a lot of the media that we consume as women, as nerds, especially as video gamers, not as representative.

Tzufit:  Yeah, and it’s interesting that especially when you get into games or genres that tend to have more men characters than they do women, it means that for cosplaying it kind of goes one of two ways.  Either you have fewer options and so you end up getting lots of people’s different takes on the same character, like we kind of talked about earlier; or you get things like some of what we saw this year at Blizzcon where people are kind of like inventing their own stuff.  Where you have people doing like tier sets that aren’t really a specific like lore character, but they’re representative of that tier, or you get like lady Thrall, who I thought was pretty cool too.

Apple Cider Mage:  That was awesome.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  Just stuff that’s a little bit – like you have to be a little more creative, I guess, with it because there’s not necessarily as many things that you can choose from.

Lynesta:  That’s actually something within the Blizzcon cosplay community specifically that a lot of people are kind of disappointed about is that there aren’t a lot of relevant female characters available, I guess.  So you’re right.  People kind of use their imagination and come up with things like the lady Thrall or a couple years ago someone did lady Illidan, and she was awesome.

Tzufit:  Oh my gosh.  I’ll have to look that up.  I don’t remember that one.

Apple Cider Mage:  Lady Illidan was really good.

Lynesta:  She was great.

Apple Cider Mage:  The one that stands out in my mind was the winner of the Miss Ironforge costume contest.  She was actually a beauty – she was a dwarf.  She cosplayed as a dwarf lady who was in like, you know, the bread vendor’s outfit and she had a sash that said “Miss Ironforge 2011.”

Tzufit:  Oh that’s too cute.

Apple Cider Mage:  And she had a full beard.  She had like a full beard and she carried around like a mug, and she had like beautiful red hair that was all like braided.  But she just had this giant beard and I thought that was actually kind of a cute way to kind of address some of the things that people actually do say about female dwarves.

Lynesta:  That’s awesome.  I haven’t seen that one, but I might have to find it now.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  I guess that’s where it is kind of strange because it’s almost – like you were saying, you wish that there were a few more men who were into cosplay – and it’s like, “What are you waiting for, guys?  You have dozens and dozens of lore characters to choose from.”

Lynesta:  Especially with like World of Warcraft, yeah.

Tzufit:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  I feel like going to Blizzcon is kind of its own special blend of cosplay.  It’s kind of odd almost.  You go to an anime convention and the majority of the people cosplaying you’ll see are women.  But you go to Blizzcon and it’s almost like an equal mix.  I think part of that has to do with the fact that maybe guys feel like they have more options, or maybe it’s just they feel like they can be accepted in the Blizzcon community.  I’m not sure what it is, but it’s great, and I wish we could see more of that at other conventions.

Tzufit:  That’s interesting.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  It actually feels like – and this is one of the things I notice about anime – is that anime in particular has a lot of women characters.  Like a lot.  Like anime seems to be very different from a lot of like Western media in that a lot of the stories are male-dominated and anime has a lot of stories that are like either chock-full of women characters or are about women.  So it feels like there is a little bit more representation.  That would be a whole other episode of discussion.  But yeah.  I mean like is there – how do you get around the difficulties of the fact that when you’re going to Blizzard, Blizzcon, which is for Blizzard properties, how do you get around the fact that there are not as many things to choose from?

Tzufit:  Yeah.  Because really it’s like when you think of, well what are people going to do?  They’re going to do Sylvanas, and Jaina.

Apple Cider Mage:  Alexstrasza.

Tzufit:  Alexstrasza, yeah.

Apple Cider Mage:  Tyrande, yeah.

Tzufit:  I don’t know.  I didn’t see any Tyrandes this year.

Lynesta:  There was one.  Two?

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Tzufit:  Was there?

Lynesta:  Yeah.  There were a couple.

Apple Cider Mage:  It’s not very friendly to people who are not – I mean I think the problem too is a lot of costumes are also really elaborate.

Tzufit:  Yeah, that’s a good point.  If you’re doing a Warcraft costume, you’re probably committing to some level of armor, and I’m sure – I don’t really know much about this, but it strikes me from an outsider’s perspective that armor must be one of the more complex things that you have to do.

Lynesta:  Yes and no.  There were several people this year who were making their first costumes and making big armor costumes.  They did a great job.  I feel like now, coming from 2009 even when I first started cosplaying, and even before that, where the information just wasn’t as readily available online for whatever reason.  I feel like we’ve kind of closed that gap and it’s so easy to find like “I want to make armor out of cardboard and fiberglass.  How can I do that?”  You Google it and there’s 15 pages that tell you how to do it.  So it’s a lot easier to find the information and get what you need to be able to do those things, which is great.  It’s wonderful.  So yes it’s difficult.  It’s challenging.  But if you’re willing to put in the time and find the information that you need, it becomes easier.

Tzufit:  That’s good.  I know you mentioned, too, the woman who won this year that she has a book out and that she’s been very helpful to you.  Do you find that that tends to be the case in general in the cosplay community, that people are willing to kind of say, “Ok.  I’ve done this.  Here’s the best way to do it?”

Lynesta:  I feel like it wasn’t always that way, but yeah over time it’s become very just “let’s all help each other.”  This is about having fun.  It’s not about elitism or “I can do this better than you.”  It’s “let’s all work together and just have fun a be nerds,” because that’s what this is about.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  It’s weird because I came from an Anime cosplay convention background and there was a lot of competitiveness.  There was a lot of competitiveness because with Anime conventions, there’s so many of them and now comic book conventions by that standpoint too.  People would do circuits and they would compete for the money, and they would compete for like the titles and stuff like that.  So it did get very competitive and you had people like smack-talking.  And this was the terrible part, is it was women smack-talking other women, saying stuff about other women.  It was like, “Oh man, come on.”  There’s so many of us in nerd communities, but the idea that we’re all fighting – it was very dismaying and it was one of the reasons why I stopped going to Anime conventions.  It was very like in-fighty, and it was very weird.  I mean I really hope that that is not the case with the Blizzcon cosplay community, and it sounds like it’s not.

Lynesta:  I haven’t been to an Anime convention in quite a while, and I’ve never competed at an Anime convention.  So I can’t really speak to how their community evolves around competition, but with the Blizzcon cosplay community specifically – and like I said, they’re kind of their own like separate community, it’s kind of strange – but yeah, they’re all super helpful.  Everyone just wants everyone else to have fun and just be.

Tzufit:  Well that’s probably a good reason to talk about some of the more problematic aspects of some things that cosplayers face.  One of the criticisms that is occasionally lobbed at cosplayers is this idea that they must be “fake geek girls” because they’re not really interested in the franchise.  They don’t really play the game.  They’re just there for the attention that they receive because of their costumes.

Lynesta:  I hate that that’s an option.

Tzufit:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  But everyone’s entitled to their opinion, so.

Tzufit:  Well it’s just – yeah.  It’s pretty gross.

Apple Cider Mage:  Honestly I don’t think it’s helped by Blizzard in some ways because Blizzard does hire models to dress up as elves.

Lynesta:  That is true.

Apple Cider Mage:  Which I mean, if that’s how you get paid, I don’t have a problem with models being at Blizzcon because it’s work and if they get paid to work then that’s cool.  But I think it does kind of – do you feel like-

Tzufit:  It sets a different tone.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah, it sets a different tone.  I feel like it does kind of feed into that “fake” idea, although I think most of the “fake” idea is just misogyny.

Lynesta:  I feel like for someone – looking at this from the perspective of someone who maybe has never been to Blizzcon before, and they don’t necessarily know the difference between this is the hired group of models and this is someone who worked hours and hours and days and weeks on their costume and is here because this is what they love to do, they don’t maybe know the difference between those two things.  I can see where that may be – if their first experience with what they think is a cosplayer is someone who is kind of just there because they’re getting paid to be there.  They’re putting food on their table, right?

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  If that’s their first experience, they might be a little turned off to it.  They might say, “Well if this is what cosplayers are like, then why are they here?”  But if their first experience talking to a cosplayer is someone who’s within the community who worked really hard on their costume, who plays the game, who’s passionate about it, then they might have a different opinion.  But the idea of “fake geek girls” kind of gets under my skin because for a long time I did demoing for Cryptozoic.  They’re a game company.  They made the World of Warcraft trading card game.

Apple Cider Mage:  Ah yes.  Yes, I know them.

Lynesta:  So I have done the go to a convention, work at a booth, teach people how to play this game, and the number of people who will come up to you in a day and say, “Oh, how much are they paying you to be here?  Do you even play this game?”  It’s like, “Yes, and I actually really love playing this game and let me show you how much I love playing this game.”

Tzufit:  Let me show you how I’m probably 3 times better than you are at this game.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  That seems to be a bigger problem even with trade shows and tech shows in general too.  Yeah, the idea that all women are like “booth babes,” and that seems to kind of extend outwards.

Lynesta:  I don’t think the internet helps either, which is maybe not a good thing.  It’s both a good and a bad thing.  You can get out on the internet and get yourself out there and people will notice you, and you’re like, “Yeah, I worked really hard on this costume.  I want people to see it.”  Then of course there’s always going to be the comments that are, “Oh, you probably don’t even play the game,” or “Oh, you don’t even look like the character,” those types of comments.  But they’re always going to be there.  It doesn’t matter how good you are or how much you prove to them that you are there because you know what’s up.  The internet doesn’t really care.

Tzufit:  It’s gross that you’re challenged to prove yourself.  It’s gross that it should even be necessary.  I guess the thing that I don’t understand is that I get the desire to create a costume that’s part of a franchise you love.  That totally makes sense to me.  But if what you really love is making the costumes, then maybe – I might wander into an Anime and not know anything about the story of it whatsoever, but think one of the characters looks really cool and want to make a costume of that.  I don’t understand why that necessarily is like lower on the grand scheme of things than being someone who knows every single aspect of lore ever, because there’s still a ton of work going into the making of the costume itself.

Apple Cider Mage:  This is the double standard of nerd culture is that men are instantly accepted all the time, no matter what, even if they don’t know about it.  But because women are predominantly the ones that are partaking in cosplay, it feels like it’s an intersection.  Like a double whammy that you have to prove your cred as a nerd and that you have to constantly validate yourself because you’re doing something that’s seen as a pretty woman-dominated nerd hobby.  Then on top of that, you have to constantly validate yourself, when nerd dudes don’t.  If a nerd dude cosplays as just an Anime character or whatever – and I’ve known nerd dudes who have done this – there’s just nerd dudes that will cosplay as part of like a group cosplay.  They don’t necessarily watch that Anime or read that comic book, but no one questions them because men have the instant nerd card.  They automatically get into the club, but women get hit with that like double “I don’t care if you’re just doing this costume because it looks fun and it’s cool.  You have to automatically know everything or else you are a representative for woman nerd-kind and you are terrible and you should leave if you don’t know everything about this character.”

Lynesta:  I wish it wasn’t that way because I have a folder on my hard drive full of things that I’m like “this would be a neat cosplay, this would be a neat cosplay,” and all of them aren’t necessarily things that I’ve watched or read or played or even really know anything other than I happened to find the name of the character and it’s a cool-looking outfit.

Tzufit:  Yeah, and exactly.  It doesn’t make any sense to me that it should have to be any more than that.  It’s just sad.  It’s just sad.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  It shouldn’t have to be that way.  And I feel like there are probably a lot of cosplayers who are just like, “This character looks cool.  I’m just going to cosplay this because I want to.”  But then it gets on the internet or someone will almost inevitably say something about it and be like, “Oh well you don’t know anything about Kerrigan.  Why are you cosplaying as Kerrigan?”

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  It kind of feels like it’s just another way of just trying to discredit women in nerd culture, regardless of – because honestly, at the end of the day I don’t think half of these dudes really care.  I think even if the answer was that you did know a lot about the character, which really isn’t germane at all to you creating the costume, I don’t think it’s really about that because there’s a lot of women that I know that know a [edited] ton more about anything in nerd culture than a lot of dudes do.  It’s a very coded way of saying, “I don’t feel like you belong here.  I’m going to pretend that there’s requirements for you belonging here and if you don’t answer to my satisfaction, it’s just going to prove that to me ultimately, when I already have sort of made that up in my mind.  The criteria that you didn’t pass is that you’re a woman.  So I’m just going to keep checking you on it.”

Tzufit:  So I know you mentioned, Lynesta, that you kind of had that experience when you were doing paid work for Cryptozoic.  Have you seen that or experienced it personally at Blizzcon, where cosplayers are kind of like getting a little bit of a quiz about the character that they’re playing?

Lynesta:  I did not personally.  I had a couple of people ask if I was a hunter and ask where my pet was.  At first it was kind of like, “Wait.  I’m confused.  What?  Oh no.  Actually I’m this character.”  Then once they realized that they were like, “Oh, Ok.  Cool.”  But I never had anyone like quiz me about Sylvanas’ lore.

Tzufit:  Like what’s Sylvanas’ middle name, or something?

Lynesta:  Does she have a middle name?  I don’t actually know.

Tzufit:  I have no idea.

Apple Cider Mage:  I don’t think she does.

Lynesta:  I mean I took the time to make sure I knew which stone Sylvanas received in her necklace from her sister, because there were three of them.  That took a while.

Apple Cider Mage:  I don’t even think most people know that in general.

Tzufit:  Yeah.

Apple Cider Mage:  It’s just sad that you would have to do that anyway, though.

Tzufit:  Well I mean it’s something you wanted to do, though, in that case.  Right?  Because you were interested?

Lynesta:  Yeah.  It wasn’t necessarily something I had to do, and like I said before, a lot of people didn’t even really notice it.  But I wanted to because it’s just that personal touch to the costume for me.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  I think – and this will kind of lead in to what we wanted to talk about next – part of the sort of the scary double-edged sword aspect of the “fake geek girl” notion is that it’s kind of this weird thing that – again, speaking in generalities – it seems to happen with a lot of nerd guys where they sort of do this preemptive “I’m going to reject you before you reject me” thing.  A lot of that seems to especially come out in cosplay because the notion is that they find the cosplayer attractive, and so before this attractive girl has the chance to say, “No.  I don’t want to have anything to do with you.  You’re being creepy.”  I’m going to immediately reject her on the grounds that she doesn’t know enough about this game or she isn’t elite enough or doesn’t have enough cred or whatever.

Apple Cider Mage:  I think I notice that with nerd dudes a lot – and this is the real crux of it for me.  This is the crux of it for me and this is what I constantly hear when we talk about cosplay stuff.  This catch 22 of lack of representation, especially in video games – especially in video games – this lack of representation for women, outside of very specific character tropes.  So you already have like a lack of potential characters to play unless you really want to do something outside the box.  Then you get women getting slammed for having “sexy costumes” and “sexy cosplay.”  I just feel like there’s no winning because it feels like everybody’s got an opinion about why sexy cosplay is terrible, and I’ve even heard people say that women doing sexy cosplay are like bringing women-kind down as a whole, or they’re somehow supporting sexism by dressing up cosplay without anybody actually looking at the fact that the reason there are sexy characters in general are because men created them.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  It’s like could you put the cart more before the horse.

Apple Cider Mage:  This ties in kind of what we were talking about with the Sylvanas thing.

Lynesta:  Yeah.  I really feel like you’re right.  There is a catch 22 with the sexy costumes because a lot of the characters – Black Cat, Sylvanas, even Wonder Woman – they all wear these kind of like skimpy, very revealing, sexy outfits.  Right?  But the flipside to that is that there are other female characters that aren’t as revealing to – let me see if I can think of some WoW characters.  Lady Liadrin, from Sunwell, she is completely covered.  Fiora from League of Legends, her default skin is completely covered, like fully armored.  There are those characters out there that are not as revealing.  But the idea that a woman is just cosplaying something because it’s sexy – maybe someone really identifies with the character of Wonder Woman or Black Cat or Sylvanas, and that’s just what their outfit is.  In cosplay, you’re kind of just making a replica of whatever this drawing or 3D model happens to be.

Tzufit:  Yeah, and I think in some of the Blizzcon entries I saw this year, there definitely was a little bit more variety in terms of – because, yes, there are revealing costumes, but then there are also costumes that are form-fitting, which isn’t revealing in the same way but is still kind of revealing, I guess.  You still have to have – there’s still a body type that people would expect would go along with that sort of costume.  At this year’s Blizzcon, I did see a little bit more of people wearing kind of robes or stuff that were a little bit less necessarily form-fitting.  Not to make a value judgment one way or the other about that – it’s just nice to see any amount of variety.

Lynesta:  Definitely.  I’m really of the opinion that – especially with regard to, again, the kind of double standard with sexy costumes – that if that’s what you want to wear and that’s how you want to express yourself, then go for it.

Tzufit:  Yeah, absolutely.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  Because it’s like when I hear people bashing on sexy cosplay, what I’m hearing is that 1. It’s not Ok for women to be sexy because somehow men get to dictate women being sexy, that that’s their only value in life, but at the same time deride them for being sexy.  It feels like men just cannot make up their [edited] mind on that.  It’s like you’re [edited] if you do, [edited] if you don’t, because you’re supposed to be sexy because you’re a woman, but if you choose to be sexy – if you choose to make a sexy costume – you’re obviously just wanting attention.  So it feels like cosplay, in a lot of ways, is actually kind of radical in that way, in that it’s women choosing to pick a sexy costume.  But then again, it’s like you didn’t give us a lot of options in the first place, so why are you even complaining?  I just – if a woman wants to cosplay a sexy costume, and this is why we see a preponderance of Alexstraszas and Sylvanases because guess what?  They’re also cool characters that a lot of people think are sexy and fun and cool and get to do cool stuff.  I mean Sylvanas is a great example.  She’s a really well known, badass character that has a really cool design.  Now I don’t personally agree with how she looks, but that’s my problem with Blizzard.  That’s not my problem with cosplayers.  Because, guess what?  You took the time and the effort and the energy to put that costume together and you wore it out of your house.  I don’t think I could do that.  You wore it outside of your house, then props to you because, seriously, that takes a lot of guts.  It takes a lot of time and it takes a lot of money too.

Lynesta:  Yeah, definitely.  And body painting yourself takes hours.

Tzufit:  Yeah.

Apple Cider Mage:  Oh yeah.

Lynesta:  Like if I wanted to make myself blue, it would probably take me a couple of hours.

Tzufit:  Yeah, and Lynesta, the Sylvanas that you chose – and honestly, I don’t remember what the old models of her look like.  I’d have to look at something that’s quite old as this point to remember.  But you chose to do a Sylvanas that really doesn’t have any skin exposed.

Lynesta:  Yeah.  The artwork that I found of her – I did find she is in one mini-cinematic and I’m not sure if it’s from Warcraft 3 or if it’s somewhere in World of Warcraft and I just don’t know where it is.  But basically she’s like slaughtering the Scourge and running away from Arthas and kind of defending her homeland.  Right?  So those are the screen captures that I have and it’s an older cinematic so it’s not super high-res or anything, and a lot of it you can’t really see all of her outfit.  So I had to kind of give myself some artistic leeway and just kind of be like, “Well, this is what I think it looks like.  I can’t really tell through that zombie’s arm, but.”

Tzufit:  Right.

Lynesta:  I kind of took some elements from other places as well.  I looked a little bit at the Demon Hunter from Diablo III.  I found some fan art of her before she was dead, and I kind of mashed them all together.  The one thing that I noticed across all of those is that they were mostly covered, and I wanted to be able to represent this character who is fighting to the death to save her people and she’s not going to be running around in a bikini.

Tzufit:  No.  It does seem like leaving your midsection exposed would probably not be the best like strategic choice.

Lynesta:  Yeah.  The model from the cinematic, she does have like this blue upper breastplate looking thing and then like a brown lower piece that looked like maybe it was supposed to be a shirt, maybe it was supposed to be a corset.  I’m not really sure.  And that’s kind of where the corset came in was I looked at the Demon Hunter and she’s wearing a corset, which is restrictive but also kind of supportive.

Tzufit:  And also just looks cool.

Lynesta:  It also looks really awesome.  So that’s where that came in and then I did the blue breastplate on top.  Then the fan art that I found, she’s wearing like this very high-collared shirt, and so I wore a turtleneck.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  Like I said, I don’t have a problem with people doing sexy cosplay because a lot of times, that’s all you’ve got to work with.  I don’t think it’s terrible for women to want to look sexy or play a sexy character, like roleplay or cosplay as a sexy character, especially when there’s so many limited options.  Now the part that seems to really bother me, and I know this is on our notes, is that I have seen some unbelievably terrible things said about cosplayers’ bodies.  It’s always about women and it’s always about how fat they are or, in a lot of cases, I’ve seen people talk about like “Oh, well she’s too black to be Sailor Moon,” and it’s like “What?”  It seems like the body type thing is not only a problem when you come from the idea that a lot of characters are traditionally either very muscle or very skinny, but then the fact that people are also just very, very critical, especially of women’s bodies – surprise! – who are above a size 2 or whatever.

Lynesta:  It’s even more widespread than just if you’re above a size 2.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  The unfortunate part about how much criticism there is, especially on the internet – and this is true for cosplayers.  This is true for models.  This is true for anyone who happens to be popular online.

Tzufit:  Basically if you’re a woman and you put a picture of yourself anywhere.

Lynesta:  Yeah, pretty much.  Pretty much.  And the unfortunate thing is that you will get that criticism and it doesn’t matter what size you are.  I was watching some videos of a cosplayer that I follow last night.  She has a vlog that she does on You Tube occasionally and she was talking about – well she was answering questions from her Facebook and someone had asked “How do you deal with this criticism?”  She was just like, “I work really hard and I try to work out all the time and I try to be this way not because I feel like I have to for cosplay, but because I just want to be healthy.  And it doesn’t matter how hard I work or how good I look, everyone online will always tell me, oh I’m too fat or I’m too Asian or I’m not tall enough, or my legs aren’t long enough.”  Those comments will happen no matter what.

Apple Cider Mage:  Sharp knees.

Tzufit:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  My elbows, personally – my elbows, if I hold my arm out straight, they kind of go at a weird angle.  I don’t know what it is.  They’ve always done that.  When I was a cheerleader in high school, my coach was always super mad because she thought my elbows were bent.  They’re not.  People have said things about my weird elbows.  I try not to hold my arm out straight anymore.  It’s just the way my arm is, man.

Tzufit:  I mean, I think that’s true for – everybody has something about their body that they are not thrilled with.  And when that picture of you is on the internet and heaven forbid somebody else realizes that they’re not thrilled with that part of your body too, it’s like, “Oh god.”

Lynesta:  Like great, I can’t actually fix this because that’s the way my bones are structured.  Awesome.  And it’s not even that you need to fix it.  Right?  Like you should be happy, especially if you’re cosplaying.  You put that costume on because you thought, “Man, I look awesome in this, “ or “Man, I make a good this character.”  It shouldn’t matter what people say, but it does because people are really mean.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah, and it always seems to fall under like a lot of people seem to hide it behind the whole like authenticity.  Like, “Oh that character is X, Y and Z.  You need to look like X, Y and Z.”  You know that like half of these characters are not even humans.  How are you supposed to be – like especially if you’re doing something from like Warcraft.  “Oh, she’s not actually an elf.”  You can be a human cosplaying an elf, but it’s usually a very clouded, veiled sort of way of saying, “You shouldn’t do this character if you’re anything other than white, if you’re fat in particular.”  But then you look at it and you’re like, “Well guess what?  There’s not a lot of characters who aren’t white or are a certain body type.  So are you saying fat people just shouldn’t cosplay?”  You can kind of definitely tell that that’s kind of really what they have a problem with is that they feel that certain kinds of people shouldn’t dress up.  That feels so rude to me because it feels like it’s like if you want to put the time and have fun and sink the money into it or just put together a costume and go do something fun, you should be able to do it no matter the character or whatever.  I’ve seen a lot of really cool fat cosplayers do characters who were definitely not a bigger body type.  Guess what?  If they’re having fun, who the [edited] cares?

Lynesta:  That’s kind of how I feel about it.

Tzufit:  Yeah, and that’s why it was nice to see things like having a woman Thrall, that kind of stuff, where people are really taking a character that we know in our heads this character looks like this, and really turning that on its head.  I think that’s important to do because it doesn’t make sense that only people who look exactly like a character are able to cosplay as that character.  How many comic book women or video game women are even realistically proportioned in a way that any woman would be able to fulfill?

Lynesta:  They’re not.  I was actually talking to someone about the Sailor Scouts.  They all have these like ridiculously long, un-human legs.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  And it’s actually impossible for any human person to have legs that long.  And there are things that if you want to try and make your legs look that long, there are things that you can do.  You make the skirt hit up a little bit higher on your waist so it looks like your torso’s maybe a little bit shorter and your legs are longer.  That’s not to say you need to make the skirt shorter.  You just make it sit higher on your waist and have it the length that you want.  Right?  Or maybe you wear heels so that it kind of elongates you leg a little bit.  But even if you go to those lengths to say, “Look, my legs – because of the things that I did, kind of the trick of the eye things that I did with my costume to make my legs look like they are about 6 inches longer than they should be,” people will still say, “Oh, your legs aren’t long enough” or “Oh, your chin’s the wrong shape for Sailor Moon.”  “Your boobs are too big for that costume.”  It’s just so dumb.  So dumb.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  I’ve heard many people argue about the boobs too big / too small, and I’m just like, “You watch Anime right?  Have you seen Anime boobs?”

Lynesta:  Have you seen Anime?

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah, like have you seen it?

Tzufit:  I mean, here’s a radical idea.  Maybe everybody has different body types and maybe everybody finds different body types attractive?

Apple Cider Mage:  And it’s like – or maybe it’s just about doing fun stuff.

Tzufit:  Yeah.

Lynesta:  Yeah.  Cosplay should be about having fun.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yes.  Yes.  I think a lot of people feel like it’s for their entertainment.  I think that’s kind of where we get a lot of the problems is a lot of guys – in particular nerd guys – feel like cosplay is not for the person cosplaying.  It’s for them.  It’s a show.  It’s something that they feel like it’s a piece of entertainment that exists solely for them to critique and to judge and to participate in on the same level somehow, which again leads into our other point.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  So one of the last things we were going to talk about was kind of the way cosplayers are treated by other con-goers.  So in terms of things like consent for photographs, consent to walk up and touch your costume, or the cosplayer themselves.  Is that something, Lynesta, you’ve had any issues with or seen any problems with either at Blizzcon or elsewhere?

Lynesta:  For me personally at Blizzcon this year, I found that people – and this is kind of in sharp contrast to my first cosplaying experience in 2009 where I was kind of mostly exposed.  I was wearing like a bikini top and a short skirt.  The difference – and I don’t know if it’s the costume or just the difference in the way that the community has evolved to kind of build awareness of the issues that exist.  For me personally, if anyone wanted to take a picture of me, they asked.  If I was sitting down eating, I didn’t really get bothered.  No one was trying to like sneak a picture of me while I was eating.  I didn’t have, with the exception of one person, I didn’t have any issues with someone like touching me inappropriately or being too rough with my costume or anything like that.  I had one guy who asked for a picture and had his friend go to take the picture and he slid his arm around my waist and like pulled me super close to him.  I was just kind of like, “Whoa!  First of all, I don’t know you.  Second of all, what the hell?”  Thankfully, the camera wasn’t working correctly, so he had to like go fix the camera with his friend.  So my friend who I was with, who was liking carrying snacks and stuff for me most of the day, I kind of leaned into him and I said, “Hey, can you keep an eye on this guy?  He’s kind of like creeping me out.”  I think the guy saw me whisper to my friend and he was less enthusiastic when he came back.  But these are issues that a lot of people talk about all the time where people will come up and just touch them without saying anything, or they’ll come up and like randomly hug them.  Conventions are kind of a breeding ground for germs, and I don’t necessarily want every single person to touch me because they’re taking a picture with me.  That was something that I did notice was that a lot of people, even if they’re kind of like pretending to wrap their arm around you just so it looks like they’re standing with you, they didn’t touch me, which was in sharp contrast to my experience in 2009 where people wanted to hug me or stand with me or wrap their arm in my arm or take pictures of me while I was sitting down eating or taking a break or like adjusting my wig.  That didn’t happen at Blizzcon, and it might be, again, because Blizzcon is kind of its own like special cosplay universe.  But it was a nice change.  There are, I guess, organizations within the cosplay community especially for raising awareness and kind of helping cosplayers that might be in trouble.  I am friends with several cosplayers obviously, but I’m friends with specifically their Facebook page is Arms, Armor, and Awesome.  They put on a dinner for the cosplayers at Blizzcon and kind of as a help raise awareness type thing they had these purple ribbons that you could attach to your badge.  It’s the Backup Ribbon Project, and it’s a purple ribbon and it’s just basically you wear this ribbon to say, “If you see a cosplayer in trouble or if a cosplayer sees you and they are in trouble, they can flag you down and you can help them.”  It’s kind of one of those like you swoop in and you’re like “Oh hey, I’ve been looking all over for you.  Let’s go,” just to kind of get them out of a bad situation.

Apple Cider Mage:  Oh yeah, yeah.  There is a similar backup project for conventions that I’ve heard of just through feminist groups too as well.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  We’ll have to put a link to that on the show notes for this one.

Apple Cider Mage:  Definitely.  That sounds really cool.  I know that there’s also Cosplay Consent or something similar to that.  Really does a great job enforcing the idea that you need to ask people to take their pictures and to touch them, and to not assume that cosplayers are just like mannequins with a character that you like on them.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  That’s like the overarching thing it seems like is not understanding the cosplayer is here for themselves to participate in this convention, just like you’re here for yourself to participate in this convention.  They’re not here for you to stand there and stare at or come up and be creepy with or whatever.

Lynesta:  Yeah, and over the last several years – when I first started cosplaying, reading forums and just participating in different groups, I heard about it a lot where people would get asked for photos while they were eating or get asked for photos while they’re waiting in line for the bathroom.  Just like weird things like that where you would think that this is clearly someone is taking a break from their day and they’re maybe not wearing all the parts of their costume or they just don’t want to be bothered right now.

Tzufit:  And that’s Ok!

Lynesta:  Yeah.  That’s Ok and it’s become – it’s sad to say that it’s become Ok for a cosplayer to say, “Oh, not right now.  I’m sorry.  I’m on my way to something,” or “I’m actually eating right now.”  Before, I used to hear these stories about how like, “Oh I was sitting down eating and this guy just started taking pictures of me,” or “I was on my way somewhere and I had to be there for the costume contest and I was late because no one would let me just say no, that I had to get somewhere.”  I mean I did that with panels at Blizzcon.  I was like, “Sorry.  I’m on my way to a panel.  If you see me later, stop me,” and people were really cool about it.  They were like, “Oh, Ok.  Sorry.  Have fun!”  Again, I don’t know if it’s just Blizzcon, but I feel like over the last several years it’s gotten better.  There’s just more awareness about, “Hey, I’m a person and I need to take a break sometimes, and if I’m taking a break you need to understand that I’ll be around later in costume.  I promise.”

Tzufit:  Yeah, exactly.  I mean especially like it’s a 2 day convention.  You can certainly set a time to say, “Listen, I understand you’re on a break now, but I would really love to get a picture with you.  I think you have a great outfit.”  I think most people are going to respond to that versus, “Listen.  I have no other time.  You’re at lunch.  I don’t care.  I need a picture.”

Lynesta:  Right.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.  I’m actually really glad that it’s getting better because I’ve heard some horror stories from like convention people, cosplayer people that I know of like just really terrible things, or like creepy dudes with cameras and [edited] like that.  Or the thing where people take your picture without asking you at all.  That’s really weird.

Lynesta:  I’ve been extremely lucky in that I almost always have a friend with me who’s not in costume who will kind of like stand on the side and make sure that no one’s doing anything.  But he told me once that he caught a guy trying to get his camera at an angle where he could get a picture up my skirt, for example.  This is years ago.  The only thing I had was this guy was kind of like rough with me and touched me, which was weird, at Blizzcon.  But like no one else.  They would just kind of like hover their arm around my back.  No one else touched me.  That threw me off.  It was weird.  But even myself personally, just out of costume, making sure that other cosplayers can get to where they need to go and that kind of stuff, escorting them to the bathroom.  I was at GenCon a couple of years ago and we were headed back to the hotel and one of my friends was in costume and she got stopped for photos.  GenCon is a huge convention, so one person stops for a photo and suddenly you have 500 people stopped for a photo.  But there was this guy who like came up behind my friend and he was just kind of standing there, but he was standing kind of close.  I was like, “That’s kind of weird.”  Then he started making like lude hand motions and like air-humping.  I got up in his face and I was like, “You need to go away right now before I call security.”  He was just like, “What?  What’s going on?”  Like I think he was a little bit surprised that someone actually got up in his face and told him to leave.

Apple Cider Mage:  Yeah.

Tzufit:  Yeah.

Apple Cider Mage:  They don’t expect you to do that, which is awful because – hello – you’re being a weirdo creep dude.

Tzufit:  Yeah.  You’re being terrible.  Why is it surprising that someone calls you on it?

Lynesta:  You are standing uncomfortably close to my friend and being rude.  I’m sorry if you don’t like that I’m uncomfortably close to your face and telling you to go away.

Tzufit:  Yeah, so like the combination bodyguard/snack-bearer friend sounds like a pretty essential part.

Lynesta:  Not necessarily, but it does come in handy on occasion.  That’s not to say that someone can’t do that if they’re also in costume, but it does become a little bit more difficult if you get stopped for a photo and you’re trying to make sure that your friends are safe, but also still make sure that you’re safe and get pictures taken.  It’s more difficult to watch the area around the photo-taking, I guess.

Tzufit:  Well and I’m sure just depending on what type of costume you’re in – some of them are obviously quite heavy or kind of cumbersome – and it might just not – they’re not necessarily the kind of thing that you can make a quick movement in if you need to.

Lynesta:  Right.

Tzufit:  So it might be helpful, if you’re both in costumes that are relatively lightweight and maneuverable, then fine.  But if it’s something that’s a little bit harder to move around in, then it might be better to have somebody not in costume with you, I would guess.

Lynesta:  Yeah, definitely.  One thing that I do want to mention is that for anyone who’s maybe not super familiar with cosplay or even if you are and you haven’t seen this before, on PBA.org, there is a kind of mini documentary called Cosplay: Crafting a Secret Identity.  I encourage anyone who might just be interested in cosplay or wants to learn more to watch it, because it’s pretty awesome.

Tzufit:  Great, thank you.  We’ll definitely have a link to that and we’ll make sure we get a link to the Facebook group you were talking about as well, the backup group.  Can you tell us a little bit about where to find you on the internet?

Lynesta:  I don’t have a personal website.  That may be coming in the future.  But right now you can find me on Twitter @lynestawow, and also on Facebook.  My Facebook cosplay page is facebook.com/lynesta1.  Yeah, that’s where I am.

Apple Cider Mage:  Thank you so much for coming on the show and talking about cosplay, because it’s definitely not something either myself or Tzufit do, but we really wanted to tackle it after Blizzcon.

Tzufit:  Yeah, and we appreciate you being really open with the experiences that you’ve had, both good and bad.

Lynesta:  It’s been a lot of fun.  I really appreciate the opportunity to come on the show.

Apple Cider Mage:  Thank you very much.

Tzufit:  Thank you to Lynesta and we’ll talk to you all next week.

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