Unbelievable. Kotaku has posted an “article” about the Ryuko cosplayer incident. I will not share the link here, because I don’t want to direct any traffic to Kotaku and give Brian Ashcraft his free hits.
I never realised that within a few hours of publishing my previous post, it would suddenly explode and be shared all across the Internet. I am staring at the analytics of my WordPress dashboard, and that number is still rising at 30,000+. I am very sure that Mr Ashcraft is one of those visitors, and it was my post that originally compelled him to write his Kotaku piece. Therefore, as a responsible writer and Mass Comms graduate, I feel obligated to write a follow-up to address all of this attention.
When I shared my earlier post, it was with one goal in mind: I wanted to let people know that the cosplayer did not do anything illegal by exposing her underboob. I had a friend working in the local police force and he verified that it was not a crime to show underboobs in public. Out of respect to my friend who was still serving his two years of National Service, I withheld his real name and used his online handle instead.
One person who commented, Courtney, requested me to take down the cosplayer’s picture out of respect for her privacy. I have decided to keep the picture up, because I want other users to see for themselves: that the costume, while revealing, was not blatantly scandalous to warrant a call to the cops. This incident happened all because one old-fashioned auntie was unable to accept the cosplayer’s revealing attire.
I absolutely, totally despise the way Ashcraft worded the headline for his article: “Cops Called for Underboob Cosplay Controversy”, because it strongly implies that the cosplayer did something wrong (which she did not, based on our country’s laws).
It also suggests that the cops actually reprimanded or possibly arrested the cosplayer. Which they did not. I asked my police friend (yes, here comes Mustapusta to the rescue again) if he knew what the outcome of the incident was, and this was his reply: “From what I heard from my other colleagues, the outcome was that the cosplayer got escorted outside of the view of the auntie so that she could continue cosplaying.”
And that’s that. No arrests, no detention, no nothing. I would hardly label this a “controversy”.
Of course, there is absolutely no way for me to verify this, because I was not there on the day of the incident and I do not know the cosplayer personally. But I DO know Mustapusta personally as a friend. He always tells me a lot of police stories on the bus rides home from the arcade, and the many nuances of how police law works. I trust his police knowledge implicitly.
So what is the moral of the story after all this?
1) Kill la Kill is awesome.
2) Be careful when cosplaying. And if you are going to expose yourself, be prepared for unnecessary attention.
3) WordPress.com (the free version), is very good at drawing hits, without you having to do anything.
4) Don’t read anything from Kotaku written by “Brian Ashcraft”.
5) Singapore policemen can appreciate cosplay.
Edit (15 Nov): Japanator has a much better news article about the incident, and their wording is a lot more lighthearted without resorting to sensational headlines. Also, they have a different closeup picture of the cosplayer that I haven’t seen before. Thank you Amber Hunt, this is how proper writing should be done.