Our Six Favorite Comic-Con Cosplay Subjects

Over the past two-plus decades, we've witnessed the growth of San Diego Comic-Con from humble gathering for comic book lovers, into a massive Hollywood enterprise where the most anticipated movies, shows, and games have their star-studded coming-out parties.

One constant through it all has been the tremendous cosplay scene that comes together in San Diego each year to show off what it really means to be a passionate fan of something you love.

And we love cosplay too. We just love it differently than other folks.

Let us explain a bit about our favorites.

1. The Joker and Harley Quinn

When you're in love you do crazy things you never thought you'd do. You go apple picking instead of watching the Michigan-Ohio State game on a crisp autumn morning. You get legitimately excited about a trip to Bed, Bath & Beyond. And you also dress up like The Joker and Harley Quinn. It's right there in the Couple's Handbook. Page 40. Right after the chapter on "Those Who Control the thermostat hold the REAL power in a relationship." Thing is, couples that dress up as the infamous criminal duo look GREAT. It's also handy to intimidate your neighbors, especially as our country drifts into that whole "The Purge is starting to look like a documentary" phase of history.

2. Robin

Anyone can cosplay Batman effectively. There are fat Batmen, drunk Batmen, and the ever-popular Fat-Drunk Batmen. Dime a dozen, these brooding-alpha-detective fantasies. But a Robin cosplayer? There's someone who gets us. Maybe they have someone in their life who sucks up all in the oxygen during conversations. Who doesn't ever let them shine. Robin is an act of rebellion against droning middle management and mansplaining. And for that, those who wear the "R" have our undying love and respect.

3. Velma

We are students of the world and students of the Scooby Gang. But mostly the latter. As such, here's what we've learned over the years: the world is overflowing with Daphnes. Got more Daphnes than we know what to do with. Like Robin, when we see someone doing Velma cosplay, we know that's someone worth having in our social circle. And the look? Simple, smart, and sexy. Positively Velma! (Which is also the name of our failed off-Broadway musical on the subject)

4. Iron Man

Cosplay is accepting of all people. The bold and the shy. The hairy and the hairless. Or, as is the case with Iron Man, the inspired and the lazy. For sheer variety of entertainment, you can't beat Iron Man. What other cosplay outfit can be the result of a year's worth of metallurgy and weekend trips to Home Depot, but could also look like the Halloween costume your Mom quickly made for you the morning after she drank two boxes of Zinfandel at her book club. That's called range, people.

5. Stan Lee

If the gentleman pictured above is a Stan Lee cosplayer, then technically our grandfather was a Stan Lee cosplayer. Excelsi-OY! Not to say that the late, great lord of the Marvel manor doesn't deserve multiple living tributes, but there's just not that much to a costume if it also doubles as "TJ Maxx Purchase Cosplay"

6. Magikarp

Guess what? The absolute worst Pokemon character is now doing double duty as proper nightmare fuel. Not too much to describe here. You can sort out your feelings better than us. We do love this less-is-more approach to cosplay, but for all the wrong reasons.

If you want to see great cosplay like this return to San Diego in 2021, remember to wear a mask, and tell those you love to do likewise!