Some take offence as cosplayers bare more

TOO MUCH FLESH? A cosplayer dressed as Ryuko Matoi of Kill la Kill sparked a dispute over the exposure of her breasts at an anime fest.


    Nov 19, 2013

    Some take offence as cosplayers bare more

    PURPLE wig, check. Fierce red contact lens, check. Clingy torso-baring red costume? Why not?

    Cosplayers have become more gutsy in imitating fictional characters to a tee with their costumes and accessories, enthusiasts told MyPaper. But the outfits have ruffled some feathers.

    On Nov 9, the second day of the three-day Anime Festival Asia (AFA), police were called in when there was a dispute between a middle-aged woman and a cosplayer.

    The cosplayer was dressed as Ryuko Matoi from the anime Kill la Kill. Her get-up mirrored the character's, right down to the now-thorny issue of the exposed bottom of her breasts.

    The police said the women acknowledged the police's advice to settle the matter amicably, and that no further police assistance was required.

    MyPaper understands that general guidelines for such events include not showing nipples for women, nor private parts.

    Online debate has been rife, with many people saying cosplayers should be allowed to dress like the characters they play.

    Mr Clive Lee, 34, who has been active in the arena for 12 years, said: "In the past, people would try to reveal as little as possible. Now, they are more willing and daring to stick as closely as possible to the character."

    A polytechnic lecturer and a judge at this year's AFA costume competition, he said Singapore is getting more open-minded to cosplayers in more revealing outfits.

    Mr Joseph Lim, who has organised cosplay events, said that as the cosplayer population here grows, participants are becoming more confident. When they are at events with people who share a common interest, they dress up to express themselves, he said.

    However, according to the law, a person who is "clad in such a manner as to offend against public decency or order" may be guilty of an offence.

    Mr Shawn Chin, AFA's executive festival director, said: "If any cosplayer is seen to break the law, the organisers may ask the cosplayer to leave the festival."

    "Ryuko" left in tears, though it's not clear if she was asked to.