Cosplayers are not “fake geek girls.”

Two white women in tutu cosplays. One is the fifth Doctor and one is the TARDIS.

My friend and I cosplaying at Gally. How adorable are we? Unsurprisingly, we didn't care much about boners when making or wearing these.

Of course Cosplay Appreciation Day devolved into some asshole decrying cosplayers for being fake geek girls. Because, honestly.

Look, geek men. We’re all tired of saying this.

You are not the judge of who’s a “real” geek. Not even if you have a penis. Not even if you’re white. Not even if you work in the industry. Not even if you’ve been a geek for decades. No one crowned you gatekeeper of the geeks, and it makes you look like a pretentious douche to act like you are one.

Women who cosplay, whether they are doing “sexy” cosplay or not, do so for a variety of mostly complex reasons. I’m going to hypothesize, from my conversations with cosplayers, that approximately none of them do it to give you boners and then turn you down for the pleasure of seeing you be sad about it. Even the ones who hope to get attention from men generally have other reasons.* Those reasons? All related to being a fan. Cosplayers cosplay because of love. They love the characters, the media, and/or the fan community. They are creating something beautiful and they are performing. This isn’t attention-seeking, this is fucking art.

Lots of women are geeks. Lots of women you don’t think are hot are geeks. Just because some cosplayers have the absolute gall to be fat, small-breasted, butch, or otherwise not conventionally beautiful doesn’t mean that they are just unsuccessful fake geek girls. Again, we’re not all trying to give you boners. I’m one of those cosplayers you’d probably call “con hot,” and my cosplay has nothing to do with you. I’m not going to cons because it’s the only place I can get men to pay attention to me. I don’t think so little of geek men as to believe that they’re so pathetic, awkward, and inexperienced that they would be desperate enough to hit on women like me who they don’t find that attractive. Come to think of it, I don’t think so little of myself to buy that scenario either.

In short, the geek world does not revolve around you. It doesn’t even revolve around men. Most cosplayers are not thinking about men or you when sewing their bustles or screenprinting their costumes or combing local thrift stores for the perfect jacket. And if you haven’t met a “real” geek woman who cosplays, it could be because you’re a dickhead, and women don’t want to talk to you.



*Seriously, if you wanted to get men to pay attention to you, would you choose to wear a low cut top and mini skirt, which you could buy in a store and wear to parties afterward, or would you spend hours of labor constructing and collecting pieces for a costume you’ll wear very few times only to cons?


  1. Faith says:

    It’s good to hear how many people are saying this. I don’t cosplay, but I love seeing people do it because you’re right, it is absolutely art. Also, that’s an awesome TARDIS dress. Why are things like that NOT available in shops?

  2. James says:

    Yeah… I don’t get this at all. I’ve spent the last two days at Thought Bubble comics convention surrounded by cosplayers. They were very obviously doing it because they were enjoying it. They’d made some cool stuff and they wanted to go out wearing it. I’ve seen several Mega-City judges,a fantastic lady Two-Face from Batman, a couple of 4th and 11th Doctors, a whole lot of Jokers and a couple of fantastic Harley Quinns, Borg, a zombie Captain Jack Sparrow, a lady Lobo, Batman, more Wonder Women than you could shake a stick at and a load of characters I don’t know well enough to identify. Given all that, why wouldn’t anyone just enjoy the costumes for what they are?

  3. Anjasa says:

    Even if the women are doing it to give guys boners… who the fuck cares? It’s pretty obvious that he just has a lot of issues with women from cons who didn’t behave the way that he thought they should when meeting him, a real person in the industry!

  4. Nightsky says:

    If I ever start an all-girl filk band, I’m going to call it “Con Hot”.

  5. This whole battle is really sad. Well said. Women should be able geek out without needing validation of their geekdom. Geek is geek is geek. It’s about loving something. Maybe you even look attractive while you do so. I don’t see men chastising men for having a particularly awesome looking Han Solo costume. Double standard alert.
    Great site! I’m new to the Dr. Who Universe, so I’m looking forward to reading :D

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *