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Best of Comic-Con Cosplay: Sexy and surprising costumes command attention during San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Best of Comic-Con Cosplay: Sexy and surprising costumes command attention during San Diego Comic-Con 2012

The annual geek mecca that is the San Diego Comic-Con draws tens of thousands of fans each year to see their favorite movies, TV shows, video games, celebrities, and other pop culture phenomena live and in person, through exciting exhibits, panels, and presentations. But despite all that entertainment, it’s often cosplayers that grab the most attention. For many attendees of SDCC, the event is the ultimate excuse to dress up in elaborate costumes, taking on the likes of familiar fictional faces, from Snow White to Superman and everything in-between.

Throughout the 4.5 days of the San Diego Comic-Con, I kept my video and still cameras ready at all times to capture the best costumes I spotted. Whether inside the convention center, out front, or in the nearby Gaslamp Quarter, costumed attendees dominated the landscape. And while many guys dress up in elaborate outfits, it’s the girls involved in cosplay that attract the most eyeballs, both in person and afterward online, and thus my lens tended to point in their direction more often than not. That’s not to say male cosplayers don’t have equally impressive costumes, only that girls tend to flaunt their assets more effectively.

Check out the highlights of costumes I saw throughout the 2012 San Diego Comic-Con in the video below, followed by some of my favorite stills and a slideshow of every cosplayer I photographed. Then comment at the bottom and tell me which are your favorites!


Video: The costumes and girls of San Diego Comic-Con 2012


San Diego Comic-Con 2012 Cosplay

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Catwoman was purring with heat... from the metal police car's hood. She was hoping she wouldn't get arrested while posing for pictures in front of the convention center.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Just inside, Galactus towered over attendees. Note the tiny Silver Surfer off his left shoulder.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

A repeated cosplay theme this year was hipster characters, inspired by Internet memes. This pair was representing The Legend of Zelda characters with #HipsterHyrule.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

This Disney Princess duo embodied the meme by adding caption boxes around their heads.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Popular cosplayer Traci Hines showed off her hipster Snow White look one day...

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

...and her best-known non-hipster Ariel, The Little Mermaid on another.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Newcomer to the Disney Princess universe is Merida, perfectly portrayed by this cosplayer down to her Scottish accent.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Back outside, Giselle from "Enchanted" was lost in a sea of Comic-Con attendees, dreaming of her first love's kiss...

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Following Disney's "Frankenweenie" panel, this group of Tim Burton fans posed outside Hall H. I accidentally overexposed the photo, rather ironic given Burton's tendency for dark films.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012 - Preview Night

Tim Burton-produced Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter was also on-hand at Comic-Con.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Creepy costumes continued with this pair representing characters from Hotel Transylvania, not even released yet.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

On the lighter side of things, this pop art-inspired costume stood out among the superheroes and princesses of Comic-Con.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

This "Futurama" pair didn't blink when asked for a photo.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Representing "The Simpsons" was Duffman.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Regulars to Comic-Con are this pink pair who dress each year to raise awareness of breast cancer.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Waldos are easy to find at the San Diego Comic-Con, but Odlaw is far more difficult.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Where in the world is Carmen Sandiego? Well, San Diego, naturally.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Harley Quinns are also quite common at Comic-Con, though this one offered a funny expression.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

There are many variations of the Harley Quinn outfit and I particularly liked how the ambient lighting softened this shot, a striking contrast from the one above.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Video games always are a popular source of costume inspiration and this sexy cosplayer perfectly represented the outfit - and shape - of the Mortal Kombat character Mileena.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

But not every costume has to be accurate to be fun, like this female Darth Vader... posing in the oversized Darth Vader action figure card.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

And yes, of course, there were Slave Leias. No Comic-Con would be complete without them.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Leia wasn't the only one in a gold bikini, with these female characters from the He-Man universe representing the Mattel booth.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Also at Mattel was this retro-futuristic "Back to the Future" girl showing off their upcoming Hoverboard toys.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

At the nearby Hasbro booth, Jem made a rare appearance. Truly outrageous.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Watch out! Mega Man nearly Mega Busted me.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Reporting live on the scene was April O'Neil and her sort-of Ninja Turtle companion.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Also out of the '80s... Thundercats HOOOOOO!

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

I think this girl was made to be an Oompa Loompa. Perfect.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Likewise for this Wonder Woman.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

There was certainly no shortage of superheroes at Comic-Con, with the Avengers joined by their arch-nemesis Loki, in female form, looking not too pleased to be posing with them.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Unbeknownst to me, I photographed Hilly and Hannah Hindi of the Hillywood Show, in Lady Gaga-inspired attire. (I'd never heard of them before...?)

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Also musically inclined, the Star Wars Cantina band was playing their way through the show floor, with that famous song sounding around them.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

One of the most attention-grabbing costume events coinciding with the San Diego Comic-Con each year is a zombie walk through the Gaslamp Quarter. I particularly like how this zombie was nice enough to carry a cup to catch the blood she was drooling out.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

One human victim was being pushed around amidst the zombie outbreak. Apparently zombies can't spell very well.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

While most zombies are gruesome, at FEARnet's Con of the Dead party, this zombie successfully combined sinister and sultry.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

Looks like Snow White had been turned too. Must have been a bad apple.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

At the similarly-named Dawn of the Con party, this Street Fighter gang was ready to protect the night's event.

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

And at a restaurant deeper in the Gaslamp Quarter, this waiter jumped through an open window to snag a photo with Batman and, his favorite, Catwoman. He was giddy.

…and yes, I was one of the many cosplayers at this year’s San Diego Comic-Con, dressed as Marty McFly on Saturday (posing with the Hoverboard girl) and a pre-burnt Freddy Krueger on Sunday (posing with a photo op for AMC’s “The Walking Dead”):

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

San Diego Comic-Con 2012

This is just a small sampling of my favorite costumes from throughout the 4.5 days I wandered the halls and surrounding area of the San Diego Convention Center. I tended to take pictures only of costumes I found to be eye-catching, unique, interesting, or otherwise enjoyable to look at, so the slideshow below is filled with more than 200 of the best of the best of Comic-Con.

Stay tuned in the coming days for even more photo reports from the 2012 San Diego Comic-Con, recapping my day-to-day adventures across the exciting event.

Slideshow of costumes at 2012 San Diego Comic-Con:


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