Day 3 started with a general competition meeting where they told us the prices of the competition and schedule and stuff like that. We were the first team to be judged 8:20am. It was kind of nice, because we had rest of the day off and lots of free time with Team Germany, yey!
The prejudging was really different compared to Finnish prejudging. In Finland there’s usually 3-6 judges and they are always smiling and friendly. In this competition the judges looked really serious and they were so quiet. It was ok, but it was so different. We started by introducing ourselves and we had 10 minutes, no more, to do our powerpoint presentation. In the middle of the powerpoint presentation I realized that I’ve left my huge ribbon, that was supposed to be on my back, to my hotel room. I panicked but explained to the judges that I’ll bring it to them later. Note to self: check your costume from the reference picture part by part always when you go to the judging room. It was embarrassing to forget something like that.
After the powerpoint presentation the judges asked a couple of questions and after that there was the touching time aka the 5 minutes when the judges have a closer look at our costumes. It was so funny when you are surrounded by 10 different judges and they are all touching your costume and turning your linings around and stuff like that. Some people may consider that situation really uncomfortable, but I think it was hilarious. After touching time I thought “should I have took my jacket off so the judges would have seen the dress under my jacket? Should I have took my hat off so they could have tried it on their heads? Should I had talked more during that time?” I don’t know, but to the next team I recommend to show your costume parts bravely and tell them more about your costume. I didn’t realize it, but I should had talked more. I was so tense I just smiled and stood there and only answered the questions I was asked.
|Picture Mizuki Kawai|
After the costume judging WCS staff took our photographs and we made the intro video for the finals. They actually shot our video with just one shot. The cameraman was surprised that we were so fast. To the next teams I recommend to practice your 20 second videos before the competition so you will have more free time and you don’t need to do it over and over again in front of the cameras. After these we met a Korean WCS-Alumni TaeYeon and participated in her graduate thesis about cosplay.
After 10:00 we had free time and we spended the day shopping with Team Germany and our Omotenashi student Toshiki. During the day there was the funniest misunderstanding with Team Germany! They asked us if we like to eat crabs, but I said that I don’t really like them and Melina said that “that’s ok I don’t like sweet things myself either”. I thought “what the fuck sweet crabs, ok whatever”. When we got to the shopping center Oasis they asked about the crabs again and I said again that I don’t like them. Then I asked Kaisa in Finnish “WAIT A MINUTE do they mean crepes not crab” and Kaisa said “noooo.” I asked Melina do you mean crabs or crepes? So we went to eat CREPES! I’m still laughing about this, it was too hilarious!
When we got back to the hotel around 9PM Team Mexico and few other teams were still waiting to get their picture taken. So there are good sides in being first in line at every event.
Day 4 we spent mostly at Meiji mura(village) and this day will also be known as “get-on-the-bus-get-off-the-bus day”. The bus left to Meiji mura at 10AM and when we arrived there we got off the bus, but it turned out that the dressing room we were supposed to use wasn’t available anymore because there were so many visitors in Meiji mura that day. So we get on the bus again because it was too hot outside to wait. The organizers found us a new dressing room and we get off the bus again, we put on our costumes and then we got on the busses again and they drove us a little closer to Meiji mura entrance and then we got off the bus again. Some participants were a little pissed off but I thought it was funny.
At Meiji mura stage there were some little interviews of every team and after the interviews we were again free to do whatever. There was little audience: about 100-200 people. Meiji mura was a photoshooters paradise, but because it was so hot; me and Kaisa didn’t really have energy to shoot our costumes. It’s kind of sad because the area was so beautiful.
|Picture from Team Germanys Twitter|
Now I’m not saying this as critique but, except for the finals, the events where the teams cosplay are kind of “circus animal-shows”. Every cosplayer suffers in the heat, organizers don’t have decent dressing rooms for us, usually just empty rooms with no mirrors. You have to wait and wait and finally when the show begins it usually lasts 10 to 20 minutes. What I’m trying to say is that the people mostly don’t treat us as serious costume makers and they don’t consider cosplay as an art form, but as an entertainment and just something fun. This is not necessarily wrong or bad in my opinion, I don’t know about the other teams. This is just how I saw things.