Cross Cultural Cosplay is not a trend or a phrase that is used, but I am going to make it a trend.
I am the cosplayer known as Obejuan Quenobe which is a play on words of famed hermit and Jedi Master Obi-Wan. It all started with nickname I got in the Marine Corps. Obregon is a difficult name to pronounce if you have to read it so it was abbreviated to Obe and eventually evolved to Obejuan.
My journey into cosplay did not start with me mixing my Hispanic heritage with well known and loved characters. It started with a very simple Finn the Human costume. It was just a plastic sword and a hat bought at Hot Topic with a blue shirt and shorts from Target. I got it ready for my first trip to San Diego Comic-Con with my brother.
As I progressed in my skills I started to have a dream about making my nickname into reality. I didn’t plan to go to Star Wars Celebration earlier this year but when my heart was broken because of my lack of SDCC passes I decide to go. With a month’s time and enough money to buy the essential gear needed to be transformed into a Mexican Jedi I started work on Obejuan. What happened next was unexpected.
On Saturday of Celebration I put together my outfit for the day making sure that everything was in place and ready to go. Throughout my time on the con floor I was stopped to take pictures, met new friends, and encouraged others to express their culture through cosplay. It really surprised me that my idea that I held so close to my heart was a success.
In the following months I created Culture Bends of Spider-Man and Deadpool. Spider-Libre which is a mix of the web-slinger and a luchador and Panchopool who is a blend of Deadpool, Pancho Villa, and an East LA orange salesman. But I am not alone in this trend nor was I the first. There is a small community of cosplayers who mix together their culture with their love of all things nerd culture. It is like a fine margarita blended with the best tequila and fruit flavors to form one drink that satisfies many taste.
For my cosplays I try to grab one tradition from my Mexican upbringing and a character that will best fit it. With Spider-Libre I took his origin of being a wrestler and the lucha libre to fuse into a character that would make the Spider-Verse jealous. For one of my future cosplays I am planning on mixing Iron Man/Tony Stark and famed Mexican singer Vicente Fernandez to form Vicente Stark. This idea came to me because of both men’s showmanship and their love for drinking.
This type of cosplay drives my passion to develop new ideas for costumes well showing my love for my heritage. I keep it fun and personal so I can enjoy it. In the end cosplay is an expression of my love for all things geek. The only thing that matters to me when I cosplay is that I was able to share my vision with the world.
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