The One About Cosplay

Making a misshapen and horrific abomination of a felt doll is the extent of my sewing skills, I’ll tell you that right at the start here. That doll, man, it was like Phantom of the Opera all up in my craft room for a while until I finally put it out of its misery.

The point is, I can’t sew. I am surrounded by fantastic seamstresses – no less than three  of my dearest friends, my mother, some lady at work. . .and yet it is a talent that forever eludes me. My fat little hobbit fingers can’t work the needle and I end up with a yard of taffeta sewn to my thumb.

So that, in part, is why I am amazed by excellent cosplays. I firmly believe that cosplay should be for anyone – any size, any gender, any race, any skill level – but damn if it isn’t satisfying to see a really well-done cosplay.

I am particularly fond of Warcraft cosplays, because I played WoW from about 2006-2010, with occasional bouts since. It holds a special place in my geeky little heart. The lore does, too. I don’t strictly play games for the storyline OR the gameplay – they’ve really got to have a perfect mix of both for me to enjoy them; ie, the Mass Effect series, Red Dead – oh lord don’t make me cry about cowboys – Redemption, the first twenty Final Fantasies or whatever. Now if you know anything about Warcraft’s lore, you know that it can be shoddy at best in parts, there are retcons everywhere, characters are seemingly forgotten about, almost all of the female characters are either vilified or marginalized. However, there are some really good story hooks in there – like the Scourge and the fall of Prince Arthas Menethil and his transformation into the Lich King.

It’s not an original story. Fallen heroes abound in literature and other media. I don’t really have a problem with that, though. Almost everything has been done, these days. Just. . .you know, do it well, and most people are not going to have an issue with it.

Here’s a short version of the story: Plague is attacking Arthas’ homeland of Lordaeron. It’s turning people into ravenous undead ghouls. It’s called the Scourge. Arthas goes a little nuts, burns down a town – even the innocents – to keep the plague from spreading, follows who he believes is the mastermind behind it into the snowy wasteland of Northrend, finds a magic sword that steals his soul, becomes a death knight, becomes part of the Scourge, goes back to Lordaeron to butcher everyone including his dad. And in addition to destroying his own homeland, he pretty much obliterates a kingdom of elves, which makes the survivors all bitter and sad of course.  It’s pretty grim!

I digress, though. What I would like to show you is an excellent Arthas cosplay created by Chris Vernel, a French crafter. I’ve seen plenty of Arthas cosplays before, but they all looked kind of cheap. This guy has put a lot of effort into his costuming and appearance – and it shows. When I first saw the pictures, I gasped. To me, this is exactly what Lordaeron’s fallen prince should look like.

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Here are the rest of his Arthas pictures. He’s done plenty of other great cosplays too, including an especially nice Lestat.

Vernel’s deviantart page is here, and his Facebook is here. Do check both of them out because it seems like there are slightly different pictures on each one.

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