In case you’re wondering what’s going on in this picture, one of the
stormtroopers was having issues with part of his shoulder armor as he passed our section of the street. One of the other stormtroopers tried to help him but, as you might have guessed, it’s not too terribly easy for them to put things back on themselves quickly. They grabbed one of the handlers that was marching with them and he helped strap the armor back on.
It really was pretty cool to see so many people inject a little bit of whimsy into their Star Wars costumes. For instance, there was a group of kilted stormtroopers. I kind of wish I could give the person who had that idea a big kiss. Why? Well, guys who are willing to go all out with their costumes are cool enough. Guys who are going to dress in costume and
wear a kilt? So hot!
Speaking of hot…I’m sure these guys weren’t simply because it’s hard to feel overdressed when you’re basically wearing a pair of leather underoos. And a cape. Can’t forget about the cape. But other than those two things, they obviously weren’t wearing anything that might keep them warm in the event of a freak snowstorm. Good thing we were in Atlanta at the end of the summer, then, huh?
There was a moment while looking back through Maggie’s photos of the parade that I thought to myself “Huh…I don’t remember Cary Elwes being a guest at DragonCon.” Then I took a second look at the picture and realized that it wasn’t actually the original Wesley. Pretty darn good look-alike, though, right?
There was a big group of folks who marched in the parade dressed as superheroes. Naturally there was a high presence of people dressed in lycra and spandex who really could have gone without dressing in those materials. That’s one of the cool things about the convention, though. Even though certain costumes are easier to pull off when you look a certain way, I didn’t hear a whole lot of mocking as far as costume choice went. The parade – and, indeed, the convention as a whole – appeared to be made up of a number of people who were remarkably secure with their body image. Huzzahs!
There were a lot of X-Men. Some were in movie-version costumes, others in costumes that were closer to those in the comics and the cartoons. Maggie and I saw a number of movie
version Wolverines, for which I was extremely grateful. In my opinion, the movie costumes for Wolverine are some of the nicest things to see guys wearing. That and steampunk. ::innocent look:: There were a lot of Supermans and Batmans. I only recall seeing one Flash. It would have been funny if there were about four Flashes, all walking in a straight line. Sorry…that’s kind of an obscure Big Bang Theory
reference. Apparently the Batmobile is a regular sight in the DragonCon parade. I was glad to see that the driver participated again this year. I kind of wish I had gotten the chance to sit in it.
One of the largest groups in the parade can be described simply under the category “Horror.” I think they might have been the largest genre group in the entire parade. It was peopled (haha) by monsters, zombies, and goodness knows what else. There were a number of costumes that didn’t remind me of a particular movie or tv show or game. I’m sure they were simply in reference to some horror something-or-other that I haven’t encountered. Honestly? I’m not really a big fan of all-out horror films. I’m much more entertained by suspense than slasher films and the like.
By the way, when I saved the above picture on my computer I titled it “creepy thing that makes me want to cry and pee my pants.” I know it’s from Silent Hill
and I’m sure it has an actual name, but I think my title is much more descriptive.
That being said, there were a number of wonderful costumes even in this category. I classified things as “good” in this group if they made me cringe or want to hide under a blanket. Or run, screaming, down the street. Take the thing in this photo to the left here. I have no idea what it is, but it kind of makes me want to throw up. I would say that could be classified as a costuming win, as far as this category goes.
There had been a big Middle Earth group in the parade near the beginning
but it was made up primarily of the “good” characters and creatures. The orcs, goblins, Uruk-Hai, Sauron, etc. all came later. That’s where I saw this guy (to the right). He had some of the best makeup. I’m pretty sure the entire head is a prostethic. Wonderful version of a regular Middle Earth orc!
The group that seemed to excite Maggie the most (apart from the Spartans which I think, quite honestly, excited most people in the audience) was the one representing the Mad Max
movies. I didn’t actually recognize what exactly they were from until I saw the person dressed up like Tina Turner in the movie. That’s probably because I didn’t grow up with those movies like Maggie did. Yep. You heard right. Her favorite movie growing up was the Mad Max
films. I think that goes a long way towards explaining her character. I was much more likely to watch stuff like Police Academy
or Harry and the Hendersons
. Well, and Jaws
, but that’s because of my parents and, in my defense, for the longest time I just thought it was a movie about three guys and a shark. I didn’t actually realize the shark was eating people (thanks Mom, for “editing” out the scary bits). Anyway…getting off topic.
Before we came down for the convention I had done a little bit of research – well, maybe not a little bit
– about groups that would be marching in this year’s parade. One of the things I came
across was a note about signing up to be part of a specific group. The guy in charge of this subgroup was attempting to get enough people to march in the parade to represent the entire periodic table. I really wanted to participate in that group but I ended up opting to watch the parade this year. I did
cheer extraordinarily loud when I saw them come down the street, though. After my shout of “Yeah! Periodic table!” people around me chuckled. I think the guy standing next to me didn’t get it until I said something. I thought it was brilliant.
And the person who chose Einstienium was hilarious.
About 45 minutes after it started, the parade drew to a close. Maggie and I stood around for a few minutes while the crowd started to dissipate. As I mentioned earlier a lot of people in the
crowd were dressed in costume as well and there was a fair amount of photo ops taking place in various places along the parade route. There was a small water feature outside the Suntrust building, down the street from where Maggie and I had been standing. It was a nice little plaza, with a kind of ampitheatre type feel. Two women dressed in Star Wars costumes – one Sith, one Jedi – were posing for pictures over near the water. From what I could tell of their conversation as people finished taking pictures they weren’t acquainted with each other prior to their impromptu photo shoot. I believe the one in red had asked the one in blue to pose for a picture of their own, and everyone else rushed over to take advantage of the two of them being positioned together. That’s the kind of thing that seemed to be going on all weekend. You’d be walking along and stop to take someone’s picture, and then along would come another person and ask if you and the other complete stranger would mind posing together for some pictures.
Since I didn’t have my camera on me that day…well, actually, that’s not true. I had the camera. I had just forgotten the discs for the camera. Anyway, because I wasn’t equipped to take pictures I found myself directing Maggie to get certain people we passed. Occasionally I’d use my cell phone to snap a picture (thank goodness for camera phones!) but Maggie’s camera clearly has the better resolution.
On our way into the Marriot following the parade, Maggie spotted this woman
dressed as a Go’uld (I’m sure I’ve misspelled that) from Stargate. She even had a little battery-pack thingummy in her bracelet that was hooked up to her headpiece. When she hit the switch, it made her eyes glow, just like in the movie and tv series.
Next up, Day Two’s activities and NGB costume awards (that’s “Nerf Gun Bobbins,” in case you were confused). For now, I’ll leave you with a nice little image.