Shenanigans Cosplayers Say

Ep67Japan Weekend&ICL

October 02, 2022 La Vie Cosplay Season 3 Episode 67
Shenanigans Cosplayers Say
Ep67Japan Weekend&ICL
Show Notes Transcript

Join LVC on our trip as Team USA for the International Cosplay League at Japan Weekend in Madrid, Spain. Let us take you on our adventures, to the competition, and special shenanigans with team UK.
There is a transcript for this episode available. 
Click on the names for their instagrams. See instagram post for everyone's cosplays
Our Helper:
Eothen Cosplay
Our judges: Mistvein Akrcos Bambilashes
Poland Solo -
Assassinscreedtrip Duo - Bisz and Talon
Brazil/Mexico Solo -
Ju Tsukino  Duo - Bananacosboys
Italy Solo:
Aylinlab Duo - barubara and gabezoid
Switzerland Solo -
Nehrylka Duo Chiisana and Nijiko
USA Solo -
France  Solo:
kyuti   Duo - Neoliko and Neko_magika 
Ukraine Solo:
lauveya Duo: Cheshire and Orion   
Germany Solo:
Meruna Cosplay  Duo: Shusei and Rentao 
Portugal Solo:
Leoworkstation Duo: Nameless dreamer and mayushii
Spain Solo:
 juggernauty Duo: Destronia2plus
Amazonian Cosplay  Captain Amelia and Kerritcos 


  • 3rd Place solo Brazil
  • 3rd Place Duo MEXICO
  • 2nd Place Solo Poland
  • 2nd Place Duo Poland
  • 1st Place Solo Switzerland
  • 1st place duo France

https://www.instagram for additional listening platforms

ICL 2022 episode transcript

Due to issues with our transcription program, the time stamps after 30 minutes are incorrect. 

Ash 0:15 

Hey guys, I'm Ash.

Elle 0:17 

 I'm Elle 

Ash 0:18 

we are la vie cosplay.

Elle 0:19 

This is shit cosplayers say, the International cosplay League episode that you all have been waiting for. We're still in Spain,

Ash 0:31 

we are still in Spain, we're recording in our hotel room.

Elle 0:35 

That's right the night before we fly back to the United States, but we know better than to wait till we come back because it won't get done.

Ash 0:42 

So sorry to all of our neighbors. Yes,

Unknown Speaker 0:44 

because we unfortunately brought the wrong microphone for this. Because we should have brought our dual setting microphone and we bought our single setting microphone, so it was tiny, we have to be a lot louder than we probably would like to at this time of night into this microphone. Because otherwise, the program is not going to pick us up. So we're gonna try to do this as quickly as we can.

Ash 1:12 

I mean, it's quality over quantity.

Elle 1:15 

That is also true because we pared this down for you we will be splitting this into two episodes. So one episode just about Japan weekend and ICL, and then another episode about everything else. Because we thought all of it in one episode was just too much too much. And you don't want all the in between stuff in between all the ICL info because you really just want the ICL info. Yes. I mean, let's be honest, we know you all just want the ICL info,

Ash 1:42 

we all know why you're here. Don't lie to yourself. You don't care about our vacation?

Unknown Speaker 1:47 

No, but you're gonna hear about it anyway, because we need time to get our shit together.

Elle 1:53 

Well, you're not wrong, and it's our show.

Therefore, we get to do whatever the hell we want.

Ash 1:59 

You're also not wrong, guys. We're cosplayers, and we say shit. And thats the show.

Elle 2:06 

Show. You all know this by now you're in season three if you don't, there's a problem. So we flew in last Thursday to Spain on a between seven and eight hour flight. We arrived the Thursday before the convention at like eight o'clock in the morning. And I was very confused by the time adjustment.

Ash 2:29 

Yeah, I spent the first like three days walking around going okay, now what time is it at home before I finally decided I just don't care. So

Elle 2:38 

mistake one was made by deciding to come in the Thursday when we had requirements that evening, and an entire suitcase full of cotton to iron

Ash 2:52 

And silk it's not just cotton

Elle 2:55 

poor choices were made because we didn't realize that there wasn't gonna be any time to actually do anything with our costumes. So we arrived in a room wasn't ready for like four more hours. So we to go wander around the mall, only to find out that you cannot use the steamer in the adapter because it will blow up. Yeah. So then we had to go back to the mall and get a European steamer. So now we have a European steamer. For any time we actually come back.

Ash 3:24 

That just obviously means that we have to come back to Europe. Obviously, because we have an 18 Euro steamer now we do

Elle 3:34 

have 18 euros that we will place upon a shelf until the next time one of us does an international in Europe or takes a vacation to Europe and needs steamer. Yeah, because rather than just cutting our losses at the 18 Euro, we're going to have to justify coming back me like but we have the steamer so we have to it's also a really nice like portable steamer and I'm a little sad. I can't use it. Because it's way better than the like little chintzy ones that we usually have.

Ash 4:05 

I mean it's 220 

Elle 4:07 

Yeah, I can't use that. 

Ash 4:08 

Oh, you don't have to 20 in here. No,

Elle 4:09 

I don't. It's just gonna sit on a shelf like a trophy until we can like it's gonna hang out

Ash 4:18 

there. We need to etch it a little plate.

Elle 4:20 

Yes, yes. Yes, the ICL steamer. Yes. That saved us all.

Ash 4:26 

Oh, well. And so unlike other hotels that we've stayed in, there was also no iron and ironing board in the room. So luckily, we went down to the front desk and were able to procure an iron and ironing board, but unfortunately, it was a half sized ironing board and it had no stand. So we had to put it on top of a suitcase as a makeshift stand so we're not like ironing on the bed or the floor. So

Elle 4:54 

no, do not choose a costume for an international that has nines skirts that you have to iron and steam, because you're never going to have time to do either. If you are also in a performance category,

Ash 5:10 

well, you know, you're gonna have time it's fine.

Elle 5:15 

But we did eventually get in our room due to the amazing Ruth, who was fabulous. She was the coordinator for ICl this year. Yes. And we would not have survived without Ruth less Ruth. Bless Ruth. Ruth is fabulous. TSA did not touch our stuff. At all. They didn't open it. They didn't open the suitcase. So everything got here, fine. We'll let you know what happens on the way back, right TBD, everything got here, just fine. Nothing was messed with didn't have to worry about anything being broken outside of the wigs kind of being a hot mess. So we'll have to find a better way to transport because friction. Yeah, they, they were really hard to fix afterwards. So they definitely looked a lot messier than they should have from being folded up into the suitcase. So we're gonna have to figure out, I guess, wigs are probably always gonna have to be a carry on. And that's just how it's gonna have to be in like a hat box or something. Because otherwise they just get too messy. Being folded, even if they're wigs that like, theoretically should have been able to be folded into a suitcase. It didn't work. They were really frizzy. And yeah, really hard to fix. That's going to be a no for another time.

Ash 6:30 

 On to happier news, though. We did get to partake in a siesta on Thursday.

Elle 6:36 

Yeah, we did finally get a little sleep. But I want to say we basically got no sleep between Thursday and Saturday. So it started to get rough. Um, yeah, yeah, I was not doing so hot because I hadn't had any sleep. And then no sleep makes my anxiety worse. And I get crankier because I desperately need sleep and my body is hurting because I need sleep. And everything gets 10 times worse than So,

Ash 6:59 

um, as the person has to deal with it. I agree with all of those statements.

Elle 7:04 

Yeah, I'm pretty sure it was Gale, who called me high strung. He's not wrong. I'm working on it. Gale. I'm better when I've actually had sleep. But you know, between Thursday and Saturday, I had like six hours. So

Ash 7:18 

the ultimate decision though, is that the next time we need to come a whole day earlier. Yes. So we can get the ironing done the wigs primped and get proper rest before everything else

Elle 7:30 

that also that solves the problem and then I won't be well, I won't be able to so high strung anyway, because I understand everything works. Yeah. So it's not as like, also we won't have waited three years to go. So you don't have that pressure. Have you waited three years so you better not f- up? Because I was feeling that by like Thursday, Friday. It's fine. Of oh my god, we waited three years so we better not make asses of ourselves on stage because everyone's going to be like, Well, why the hell did we wait this long for this team USA to get on stage when they suck? Yikes? Yeah. It's fine now that's fine. That's fine. We didn't suck so it's okay

Ash 8:09 

Spoiler alert. We didn't suck.

Elle 8:10 

 So Thursday we got to have the meet and greet with the other teams at this really cute sushi train restaurant.

Ash 8:16 

Oh my god, it's adorable.

Elle 8:18 

It's adorable. There's pictures on the Instagram. It's so cute.

Ash 8:23 

It was delicious. Our booth we shared with Team France and yes sushi train we swapped candies with everybody Godzilla was there there was graffiti all over the bathrooms that was really fun bathrooms

Elle 8:36 

are really cool. Yeah, there were what do they call them capsule toys we couldn't actually get and I was mad they

Ash 8:44 

were only for display was so try it was horribly

Elle 8:47 

upsetting. I couldn't understand how they had all the really good ones until I realized it was just a display and that I was upset. Yes, I was like but I would have put money in I was like Where where are the Euros? Can I put money in here? No. And it

Ash 8:58 

said no. They also have this really neat display of Gameboy cartridges Yeah,

Elle 9:03 

that was fun on the wall. Yeah. And we got to be Gale finally the coordinator coordinator like the master coordinator of ICL who is also part of Team Spain for GICOF and is in Korea right now. Yay. Go Gale.

Ash 9:18 

Go Gale

Elle 9:20 

Gale is fabulous. And we love him. And we're going to have to bring him all the surprises. Yes, you've been warned Gale

Ash 9:30 

we're scheming All right. 

Elle 9:31 

There's things that will come back to you.

Ash 9:34 

All I'm saying is it eventually when we see you again we also need to get UK there. Yes.

Elle 9:41 

Yes. Because we have to we'll have to smuggle UK back. That's shenanigans. We need more shenanigans. So Friday. We went walking tour. It was not walking Tour

Ash 10:05 

walking we did, we did walk rather quickly, as a very large group, we had to stop a couple times when people I won't say they got lost. But stop a couple of times so people could catch up. So

Elle 10:17 

again, bad decisions were made. And I probably should have, you know, I was too preoccupied with literally everything else in life to think I should ask them how this walking tour is going to go and get an itinerary. And if it's gonna add up too much, I should find out there's somewhere else for me to go. Because the problem was, you one couldn't go to lunch, but to there was no good way to get to rehearsal unless you went on the walking tour. So we didn't want to have to try to figure out how to get to rehearsal if we didn't go on the tour. But I had been warned previously, that it was a bit of a walk. Now turns out this was much more than what they did in 2019. But had I know, and I would have been like, I'm gonna sit at this cafe and I'll meet y'all at lunch. Yes, cuz I should not have done that. It was a poor choice, because it was also extremely hot. And there was no water. So it's very hot. There's no water, and my body is killing me. Because it was on a plane. No sleep, no sleep. Now we're walking for three hours at a power walk pace through Madrid. And then I'm expected to get on stage and rehearse. So we'll be finding another option if we ever come back, because that's definitely not something I'm going to be able to do in my 40s. Cuz we can't come back before that. So yeah, mistakes were made. Mistakes were made.

Ash 11:43 

I mean, but we did go to lunch. It was at the Museum of meat.

Elle 11:48 

It was at the Museum of meat, it was delicious.

Ash 11:51 

And they just kept bringing more food. So we're all like, Oh, we're so full. They're like, that was just the first course we're like, what's

Elle 11:58 

what because they so they didn't tell us that it was a multiple course meal. So we had no idea like whether or not this like first plate of stuff was just all we were eating or not. And then we kind of find it's like three courses. And we're like, yeah, we can't eat that. Oh, my goodness, there's so much it was way too much food. It was delicious. But there was so much food it was I think team Germany agreed with us that it was just way more food than anyone could ever eat.

Ash 12:24 

By the time we got to the last course we're like splitting it amongst multiple people and then only taking like two bites. I mean, you're like, so it's delicious. No, I can't eat anymore.

Elle 12:33 

So then we got to go to rehearsal, which the ICL stage is actually like a real size stage. So the Europeans were very shocked by the fact that one, we don't typically have a real sized stage two, we don't get video behind us for our competitions. And three, we usually can't have an actual set, which means we get the square in the background, as they call it. Hmm. Which is usually all we're allowed to have at our contests.

Ash 13:03 

 Well, because you have to carry it on yourself. 

Elle 13:08 

Right. And that was also very mind boggling to a lot of them was the fact that like, we're expected to set our sets ourselves and there's not like stagehands to do it. Obviously. It depends on the con, but Right. So of course, you know, their regular contest was more epic than anything we've seen, at least in the Midwest, I hear the East Coast is a little bit closer to what we saw in Spain, but they also have cons that allow you to have video in the background and actual sets. 

Ash 13:37 

It's been like a decade since I've been difficult on the east coasts.

Elle 13:41 

Yeah, well, you know, yeah, so we got to rehearse. And that's about the only time we really got to watch the performances, because there was no good way to do it during the show. Yes. So we really haven't been able to see everybody's performances till we've gone back and watch them on video. Because there was just no good way to do it. And they kind of expected you to start tearing your stuff down after you were done. Which we will get to my shock of that because I missed an entire important detail that I didn't completely understand. That would have been nice to have already understood. But hey, it's okay. We did get to meet our helper.

Ash 14:19 

We had somebody assigned to us for the entire weekend. Yes,

Elle 14:23 

to just assist us with like where things were and grab us foods, we'd have to wait in the super long line and that kind of stuff. So our helper was Eothen cosplay, who happened to be half of Team Spain 2019 He was lovely and very helpful. And then we also got to watch him kick ass in the Sunday contest is the Witcher. Yes, he was Geralt with his friend. Dedaldo that was really fun. That was very enjoyable. Yes. They're both very talented individuals. highly enjoyable. He's great. He was excellent help yep and we're we were pretty low maintenance for most of the weekend. But you know, he did the important thing like get his food and make sure we got to where judging was so Hey, yes, he did the thing.

Ash 15:12 

So well and it was really nice because all the helpers and the staff members had a group chat going. So they were able to keep us apprised as to like, if judging was running behind, or it was running early, so that we could plan accordingly.

Elle 15:28 

Yeah, it it ran late and then ran early. So that was fun.

Ash 15:32 

I mean, it's all good.

Elle 15:35 

It's fine. By the end of Friday, we had the friended team UK team France, team Spain, team Mexico and solo Germany, who was also having nothing of any of this nonsense. Because one of the things that happened on Oh, that was Thursday. So I forgot about Thursday, we got stranded by our bus, our bus driver abandoned us, so we don't still know exactly what happened. But the bus so we were using a bus to get back and forth. And the bus driver claims he was there. And we didn't show up. But we were there. And then the bus company just wouldn't send anyone. Yes. So they had to get cabs for us. And there's like 40 of us. So. So um, so Meruna sees the first cab that comes up and she's like, okay, the cabs we ran, but we were first talking about hijacking the bus and being bus pirates. Yes,

Ash 16:33 

because there was a bus that was empty with no driver.

Elle 16:36 

So instead, we hijacked the taxi and became taxi pirates with solo Germany and solo Spain. Yes, because at that point, I was done with everything. It was like one in the morning. I was over it the whole time. And sitting there going, oh my god, we have so much to prep for our costumes. And now we have zero time, so much ironing, because I was very jealous of the amount of time that the solos had to pull

their stuff. 

Ash 17:05 

Well, that's because they didn't have rehearsal

Elle 17:06 

 And they didn't have to go on the walking tour.

Ash 17:09 

Right because they didn't have rehearsal, right.

Elle 17:12 

And I was very jealous because honestly, the duo costumes weren't any less complicated than some of the solo costumes so equal amounts of prep required if you have fabric I was stressed sleep is for the week. So all it tells us is don't bring so much fabric because you're not gonna have time to prep it so make sure not everything needs to be prepped because you're not gonna have time or ever. That's what I've learned do not take things that are going to require a ton of prep unless you go the day before because you are not going to have time to do it.

Ash 17:45 

I just it just needs to be small enough that it can fit on the baby sized ironing board or it can be steamed in the shower. Yeah,

Elle 17:52 

so if you bring up a ball gown, be warned that you are going to probably need to cut it and in your if you're in a duo. It's if you're going to duo and you bring a ball gown you may need to come early or you're not going to like iron.

Ash 18:06 

So the one thing I will say though is bring hangers because this hotel has the very like the theft proof hotel hangers. But if you bring real hangers you can hang things in the shower while it's running and then the steam will help get rid of a lot

Elle 18:25 

of it. That is how we solved a lot of this problem because there was just it was so wrinkled from being in the suitcase that we would not have had anywhere to start if we would have just used an iron and a steamer we had to hang them in the shower and try to pull out as much as possible because it never would have gotten done

Ash 18:44 

well and I earned all nine skirts like right before they went in the suitcase.

Elle 18:47 

Yeah, it made no difference because they were disaster because cotton

Ash 18:49 

 it might have made a difference it

Elle 18:53 

might have but just be warned with what you bring because if you are in a duo, you will not have a ton of time to prep your costume. So you will need to make sure you come in the day before if you have a lot of fabric and you are coming from the United States which is a long flight.

Ash 19:13 

Well and if you need a steamer if you go to the mall there's a store called FNAC and they sell it

Elle 19:22 

here's the deeds do not bring any appliance that does not have a temperature adjustment on it because if it does not have a temperature adjustment it will explode.

Ash 19:32 

Yeah, it boiled really fast and tried to shoot hot water on so things

Elle 19:36 

like a straightening iron or an iron or a hairdryer are fine because they have settings the hairdryer depends, well that hairdryer depends because I'll bring hairdryer tried to burn my dryer but it did not try to burn Oh, so like our flat iron was fine. My curling iron was fine because they have temperature settings, things that do not have temperature settings. may burn or explode. So like we dragged a bunch of equipment with that is now taking up a ton of room in our suitcase. So we can't use Word to the wise, don't even bother, because you're actually able to use it. Um, if I went here next time, yes, we'll just buy one honestly, the steamer was cheaper than an adapter. Yes. So like, and we had steamers, but it obviously wasn't working. It wanted to explode well, and my, my computer works, too, and the adapters, but that's because my computer block is coded for this level of voltage. So it's fine guess. But yeah, pay attention to the level of voltage for your item. And if it does not have a temperature gauge, don't even try. Don't bring it it's going to be a waste of suitcase space. That's what we learned. We have a lot of waisted suitcase space right now of tools we can't use. But hey, now we know. So we survived the walking tour through rehearsal with no sleep. I still have no sleep at this point. But for the weak, we actually was it Friday that we ended up taking a taxi back so we could actually like be back at a reasonable hour. I think that was Saturday. That was Saturday. Well, Friday, we chose not to go to dinner. So we could iron. Oh, yes. Because at this point, we still hadn't done it. So and I was still ironing by the time that they got back from dinner. Yes. So hours later not go to dinner so we could iron. Again, poor choice for an international never again, so much fabric, never this much fabric so much fabric. Unless you go you know for sure. You're gonna have time for ironing for hours. Don't do it. Don't do it. Don't do it. armors way easier, because they don't have to iron it. So on the day of the show, we all had to leave at 9am regardless when you're judging was. Yes, that was the quote unquote late bus. Yes. But they had places for us to be and to change and everything there. So it wasn't like we had to go over in our costumes. They just want to make sure everybody was over there and accounted for. Yes. So backstage,

Ash 22:00 

we all had our own bay that was labeled with our teams where we could set all of our stuff and our props. And in addition to that, we had like a private room that had dressing rooms and mirrors and tables and chairs and couches and beverages and snacks in it. And this was all backstage but then in an adjacent building upstairs we had a VIP room that had private bathrooms, more snacks, first aid stuff, costume Quick Fix items. We went and scouted that out with Team UK and claimed it as our own. Like the colonizers, we are

Elle 22:37 

bless whoever decided to add that VIP room because thank you Wig-Wig cosplay for warning me about the noise, I would have died. So I bought noise cancelling earbuds back in 2019 when Wig-Wig warned me that the backstage was extremely loud and I wasn't going to be able to handle it. And wig small was not wrong. I would not have been able to handle it. There would have been no way was so the con itself was so loud that I actually wore them most of the day Saturday and Sunday in general bless whoever decided to add that room upstairs. Because I don't know what I would have done. It would I would have been so overloaded that I don't even know if I would have heard our audio for performance because that has happened to me before where we've been stuck at a con for a long time before I have to perform and then I can't hear audio because I'm just too overstimulated by auditory input. At that point. It was rough. I wasn't the only one either. Multiple people had noise cancelling earbuds in it's apparently not super uncommon to do because we had a couple contestants that were running around with them in but it was that VIP room was a saving grace because I don't think I would have made it. We all went on and did the thing. We will post a link for the show in its entirety when it is posted. But Japan weekend has not added it to the YouTube yet so it is not currently existing. My understanding is the channel es cosplay which is is cosplay on YouTube has each skit uploaded individually. So you can watch them individually that way. But we do not have a video in its entirety as of today, which is the 28th of September as of right now. It's not does not exist. No, it's possible the Twitch might still be up since it was just last weekend and Twitch usually holds for two weeks. But a lot of the audio is missing from the Twitch due to copyright. Yes. So you have to go to YouTube to hear all the audio so a bunch of people's audio is missing because directly from the source material, which is common in Europe. So don't be confused. That's actually what you're supposed to do.

So yeah,

I know a lot of places won't let us do it here but it is what you're supposed to do in Europe. We did judging. Our judging time was 11 minutes.

Ash 24:48 

It went by so fast. It

Elle 24:49 

felt like it was over in an instant. My wig is very complicated. So it does take a bit of an explanation. We were surprised when it was like over already

Ash 24:58 

we got through everything though. Yeah, we

Elle 25:00 

got through thing. Our judges were Mistvein Akrcos and Bambilashes. Who we will post, everybody's who gets mentioned as usual, their handles will be posted when you tag it, all of them if it gets too long and the shownotes gets mad at me, there'll be an abbreviated version and then there will be screencaps of the list in the Instagram post as photos as we've done before because also Instagram gets pissed off when I tag too many people. So people have to get tagged in the comments and in the main body of the post because it gets angry that I'm tagging so many people the show order and what everyone did. Poland Solo was Assassin's Creed they did Ezio as zero so even though they did Assassin's Creed so Poland Solo was the main character from Assassin's Creed and their cosplay handle is Assassin's Creed trip. The duo was Bisz and Talon as a guard and blood mage from Elder Scrolls five also known as Skyrim, also known as Skyrim Brazil Solo was Ju Tsukino as Persephone from oro kingdom and then duo Mexico because we can only say Mexico like that now ever since twin cosplay went to WCS and won everything

Ash 26:35 

it was these guys was it? It was banana.

Elle 26:38 

So since we have to say MEXICO ever since banana cosplay went to WCS, and won literally every award,

Ash 26:46 

I mean, pretty close pretty close.

Elle 26:48 

So now every time I say Mexico, Mexico, like the announcer from WCS, please but um yeah, so bananacosboys was Team Mexico, who a lot of you are probably very familiar with Luis and Lalo. I would think I went around for a while, but they did Aang and Zuko from Avatar, and who acrobatics you have yet it is a circus display. It's quite entertaining short, Italy Solo was Aylinlab they did Aloy from Horizon forbidden West. The Italy duo was Barabara and Gabba Zoid they did Anna, her Pharoah skin and then soldier 76 slasher skin from Overwatch. They did some really cool things with the screen. Yeah, and like recording their shadows. So it was almost like a shadow, like, play kind of thing in the background, which was a really fun way to do something that needed to be censored, which was just really kind of cool. Yes, I hadn't seen anybody tried to do that before. So it was really fun.

Ash 28:01 

Switzerland Solo was Nehrynde as Turon de from World of Warcraft. The duo was chisana and Nijiko as Drizella and Anastasia from Cinderella.

Elle 28:13 

This made me so happy so happy because I figured out exactly what they were doing just by like the back of her dress and I was like, Oh my God, they're gonna use Cinderella please,

Ash 28:23 

plays and they were adorable. Yes. Obviously, we were USA duo our teammate was see at thingamabobs as the Hannah Alexander artwork of Zelda number six. France solo Solo was kuyti cosplay, as thorough as the Abyss Walker from Dark Souls. And the duo was neoliko and Neko Magica. They were a bard and an orc from World of Warcraft. And they did the 15 year anniversary song and, it was amazing, 

Elle 28:58 

This might be the best performance I've seen in a long time. It was so good.

Ash 29:04 

It was well and they're just such fun and animated people

Elle 29:08 

well, and I'm pretty sure they're playing their playable characters from the game, which is just better. It just makes it 10 times better. But this might be the most perfect blend of a performance that I've seen in a long time. It was

fabulous. Yes.

So Ukraine, the Solo was Lavinia as Lagertha from Vikings Valhalla. The duo was Cheshire and Orion. And they did Sakizou's, Alice in Wonderland. The one dress was literally as big as the stage.

Ash 29:40 

Oh my goodness, it was so big.

Elle 29:42 

It was humongous. They're

Ash 29:44 

putting hoops skirt together in the back and I was like, Oh my God.

Elle 29:47 

I think it took them like multiple hours just to get dressed. And then the poor girls couldn't move. So they just had to sit backstage. Yes, they had the stools that you sit underneath of your dresses, but both guys odds are absolutely stunning but literally the Queen's dress took up the entire stage. It was quite impressive Germany Solo was Meruna cosplay as Yuriah from Dark Souls three, that duo was Shusei and Rentao as Bert and Mary Poppins from Mary Poppins. And we of course sing along during rehearsal. Entire song because we had to so US Mexico and UK are sitting there singing along because we obviously had this when we were little, and all three groups are just like singing the song with them as they're dancing on stage is pretty hysterical Portugal. The Solo is Leo workstation as Varusabarosu from Monster Hunter. So my understanding is this monster hunter armor is from one of the older games. But it's kind of like a big red demon armor. It's it's very detailed. 

Ash 30:59 

I think it's technically a wivern. 

Elle 31:00 

Is it? 

Ash 31:01 

Yeah, like a dragon. 

Elle 31:02 

Oh, it's a dragon. Okay. That makes sense. Given the design. Yeah. Unfortunately, we didn't get to see a lot of everybody's stuff because you're very busy in this whole process. So you and I didn't want to sit backstage all of Saturday because it was too loud.

Ash 0:05 

Well, and there was no live stream so we couldn't watch it while it was happening.

Elle 0:09 

Well, there was a live stream, there was just nothing streaming to where we were. Well, yes to be able to.

Ash 0:14 

There was no live stream to our greenroom. Right.

Elle 0:17 

So the Portugal duo was nameless dreamer and myushii and they did Bioshock. Two, they were big sister and then little sister, and they were scary. And they were, I was scared.

Ash 0:30 

Spain Solo was Juggernaughty, who wore a heavy infantry Mandalorian from Star Wars. And the duo was just Destroniatwoplus and they did gothel and Rapunzel from Tangled. And I believe these were the designer doll version.

Elle 0:49 

Yes, these are the designer dolls. So they were the like extra fancy version.

Ash 0:54 

Yes. And you guys commiserated over giant wigs that we

Elle 0:57 

did. Apparently, Spain's was extraordinarily heavy, but mine was not. So everyone was very impressed by how little my wig weighed.

Ash 1:06 

Yes. Our last team was UK, and the Solo was Amazonian cosplay, as Maria from the Assassin's Creed movie, and the duo was Captain Amelia, and Kerritcos as Obi Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker from Star Wars, The Clone Wars,

Elle 1:27 

you should definitely watch this one they're fighting was quite smooth. They did a really good job, please stop hurting each other. No, they definitely will talk more about UK. Obviously. This this one's a must watch. Definitely go watch it. The surprise that l got was that I misunderstood that when they said award ceremony on Sunday. They meant they weren't going to tell us who won on Saturday. Right?

Ash 1:55 

Which is not what happened in 2019. Right, where they did the awards on stage after the concert. 

Elle 2:03 

So Gale eventually explained to me. But basically because the con was going to close like less than two hours after we were done. They decided this year not to try to announce them right after because it would be rushing the judges too much. But I misunderstood. Being my only basis for ICl being 2019 that I thought we were going to know. And then we did not and it was super confused. Yes. I had no idea what we're supposed to do. I was like, Why is everybody taking their stuff down? Why is everybody getting dressed? Like are we supposed to get undressed? What is happening? Like I was just so confused. But it's one of the many, many, many, many, many, many things we missed, given that we had so many other things that weren't this to focus on in life. So you know, well that just happened Sunday, we found out who won

Ash 2:48 

third place solo went to Brazil, third place duo went to Mexico, Mexico, and they got let's see, they got cell phones. Yes. And well, embroidery for embroidery thread. It was a real me eight. I hope they work

Elle 3:11 

they work in in Mexico and Brazil and Brazil. I don't know that's the thing or not

Ash 3:17 

second place. They got Bernina sewing machine. Yes. And there's so big boxes are giant massive box massive boxes. So second place, solo went to Poland. And second place duo went to Poland.

Elle 3:36 

Poland skit was really fun. They did a lot of screen tricks to match with. They're like the mage trying to trick the guard kind of thing. So it was like it was very clever. Oh, they did it. You should watch. Yeah, we're not going to tell you too much about these because you go watch, just

Ash 3:53 

watch them. But I do not envy the fact that they had to take no giant sewing machine.

Elle 3:58 

So like I don't quite know how they got them back. But I'm assuming they did. So

Ash 4:03 

first place solo, which was 1000. Euro went to Switzerland. And the first place duo, which was 2000 Euro went to France. And it was really cute because they didn't hear their names called. And they're just like clapping. Like for whoever won.

Elle 4:25 

I'm sitting on the floor below them because there were too many of us to fit on the stage. And obviously at this point, we've become very good friends with France, and we'll talk about France. But at this point, we become very close with France. And I'm sitting there and I look at Neo lico and I'm like you won go

 like Oh my God. Yes. Because they didn't think they had won.

Ash 4:47 

 Well, and it was just the cutest thing because of course us and some of the other teams had talked about it during rehearsals, and we're all like, France is going to take this

Elle 4:57 

 we put our money in France right away.

Ash 4:59 

Yeah, we put our money out of France. We were like if right?

Elle 5:01 

 And I if they can move like that in their armor?

Ash 5:04 

Yeah, gold No, no question before we left.

Elle 5:08 

On Sunday, we had shenanigans at the UK because for somehow we ended up at the convention really

Ash 5:16 

late. That's because we just didn't want to leave,

Elle 5:19 

I guess. Also, another thing we would change is we would book another night in the hotel that we were at for ICl instead of going to a new one, because a lot of people stayed. And so a lot of people got to get together afterward. And we did not because we did not stay, but it worked out and it did work out, we'll get to it. So we were kind of running around. And, you know, we got to like actually, like, say hi to our judges, you actually say hi, and be like, Hey, thank you. Yeah, you know, we got to thank them. You know, we were trying to run around and see people before we left, we were trying to find the UK because we knew they were there. And we ended up going up to the VIP room and finding them and then they were like, Okay, let's go get our stuff. So we walk back down on to the floor and Amazonian looks and goes and wonder if we could have our banners. You know, when you go to cons and they put those big, like vinyl banners up. Ours were like, what, 10 feet tall. They're super tall. They're huge. And we, UK and US shared one Yes. With like the sponsors in the middle. So most of them are split into three, but we had to sponsor them and all right, and I just look at Amazon and I'm like, well, it's not gonna hurt if we ask Gale, they're gonna throw them out. And she's like, What, and I'm like, cons these out, they don't keep them. Like, in my experience of working for cons, we throw them out, like we just ask. So she asks, and Gale goes, if you can figure out a way to get it down, you can have it. Well, I happen to have my huge scissors in our bag, and Amazonian, as her name suggests, is quite tall and was able to cut down our banner, which we then cut down and currently have packed in our suitcase. Yes, yes, we do. The UK also took their banner. My understanding is Gale fully expected the UK to take this because he's aware of their shenanigans. But we still got a good WTF out of him. Yes, yes, we did. But then the best part was when Poland realized you could take our banners Poland solo comes running and goes, I need a a knife. So I handed him my scissors and he went running to the con floor to cut the banner down because they were taking things down and like taking stuff apart so that they could take it was great. It was good. It was great. It was it was we have a lot of very silly photos of us in the space where our banner was yes.

Ash 7:48 

And we also did sign angels we did. On the floor on top of our sign.

Elle 7:53 

I definitely have a video of Amazonian cutting the banner down. Yeah, quality shenanigans we're had we have a lot of

Ash 8:00 

good bonding time stealing things with the UK. 

Elle 8:03 

Apparently the UK likes to steal things.

This is a thing they informed me of oh, they also have nonsense points of ridiculous things that you do.

Ash 8:13 

I will I will preface that it's not stealing if you have permission. That's true.

Elle 8:17 

This was not we I mean we did hijack our banner, essentially. Yeah, we were banner pirates, banner pirates, Banner pirate sign pirates. I mean, that's basically what happened. Honorable mentions to the people that we fully befriended this fabulous weekend team UK. What can we say about the UK? This weekend would not have been the same without you. 

Ash 8:40 

Yes, I miss you already.

Elle 8:42 

 Like your level of chaos is what we needed in our lives to break the tension that we had from waiting three years to do this. So thank you for being there to give us shenanigans.

Ash 8:54 

It was very memorable.

Elle 8:55 

They were very memorable the duo. So Captain Amelia and Kerritcos you guys need to keep an eye on them. Because they already do amazing things. And they're going to do super amazing things. And they're going to be people to watch keep keep an eye on them. They're going to be doing extra. I feel like in the near future. They're both pretty young. They've got a lot of time ahead of them. So I expect some super amazing things because they already do amazing things. So

Ash 9:20 

Amazonian is the UK representative for crowd championships, which are going to be held at MCM London. By the time this airs this month. It'll be towards the end of October. So now we have two friends in

Elle 9:36 

the contest. It's right which means we have to buy the past so we can watch it. Yes, because we need to cheer on for both our friends so we can cheer for the UK and the US and now we have multiple internationals where we have multiple people to cheer for. Yeah, because Gale is part of Team Spain for GICOF. Yes. So and then we still have our Team USA.

Ash 9:57 

Yes. So in our team USA one As our organizers for ICL Yes, because

Elle 10:03 

when we went to ICL Luna lady of light was still the organizer. And now she's back as the organizer again. So yeah, it's wild. It's small world, small world, we finally get to meet Spain. I had been chatting with Spain for a long time online, they were also selected when we were selected. So we kind of commiserated throughout this period of time, they have an energy that can be unmatched. They are a lot of fun. They bring a lot of joy wherever they go. We hope that we will see you again. But it was just nice to be able to see you finally we got very excited at the greet when we could finally like see what each other look like. Right?

Ash 10:40 

Like, oh my gosh. Well, then I just I feel like this is not our last trip across the pond. Oh,

Elle 10:46 

we'll get to that. Yeah, but no, it's we're hooked. We're Yeah, we're completely hooked now. So it will not be the last time Mexico. So Mexico was one of the video selections, which was UK and Germany, who we not would not have had without that, which I think would have been a disservice to this contest, honestly, travesty. But it was so wonderful to finally meet banana cos boys. You know, they make me hope that maybe ICL will do like at least one online selection, because I think it really adds an important element to the contest for those that might be limited by a convention not be not being willing to have ICL

Ash 11:32 

Yeah. Sorry. Hey, UK.

Elle 11:36 

Yes, hmm. MCM. What are you doing? REEDPOP WHY. But yes, so it was really nice to be able to talk to them. We've watched them for a long time as performers. You know, I had a really nice chat with the boys about performance. And they had some really lovely things to say about our performance skills. And it's always just nice to get that feedback from other performers. Yeah. You know, it's great to get that feedback from everyone.

But you know, from other performers, it's always really nice to 

Ash 12:09 

Yeah, it's really nice to get that kind of validation from people that you respect.

Elle 12:13 

Exactly. So obviously, we just have to take a vacation to Cancun. I see no problems here. So we can see the boys again. I hope you're enjoying Paris, because they went to Paris after they came here. Maybe why not? Because why wouldn't you? You're already over here. Solo, Germany. So Meruna, we will miss you. We have been pointing out all the good dogs for you. Yes, as still in Spain, but you are just such a welcome addition to our adventures. And like our almost like our little voice of reason that went everywhere with us. 

Ash 12:45 

I feel like she's probably scoffing at you. 

Elle 12:47 

Right? She is probably scoffing at me right now. But she also takes no shit. And I have great respect for her. Good good for that. She also made me realize how terrible the United States treats its employees. But hey, 

Ash 13:01 

you just now figured that out. 

Elle 13:03 

It's really bad when someone in like Denmark explains to you what out of the shit they get in Denmark, and then you're just like, we get nothing we will talk about in our Spain episode how Europe is superior to the United States because it is let's be honest, it is. It just did. But of course, this trip would not have been the same without France who by some bizarro luck ended up at a hotel three minutes from ours.

Ash 13:29 

Yes. So we switched hotels to a completely different part of Madrid, which was actually close to where the walking tour was. And Elle happens to like, take a picture at our window and post it on Instagram and gets a message. It says, Hey,

I think we're by you. And we're like, what

Elle 13:46 

 they were and then we went to a cafe and we had food and then we chatted and then we felt like we all need to sleep. But we don't want to leave each other. Yes. It was very much a Midwest goodbye.

Ash 13:57 

It was very much a Midwest goodbye. But it was so nice, because we didn't get to say goodbye at the contest. And I thought that I maybe started a really long drive on. Yeah,

Elle 14:05 

because they drove so we thought maybe they had already started driving because they had like a 10 hour drive. Yeah, it was really long. But yes, Neoliko and Neko Magica this weekend would not have been the same without you guys. Oh, yes. Like, these two are an absolute delight and have like the biggest hearts I have ever seen. 

Ash 14:28 

Very, very refreshing. 

Elle 14:29 

They are so positive and so welcoming. And they just want to have fun. They definitely were that one of the highlights of our experience. Absolutely. So we just have to go to France because otherwise we're going to miss them. 

Ash 14:45 

Again I see no problem.

Elle 14:46 

There's no problem with this. Right? We can go to France. Technically it was cheaper to come here to Spain than some places in America.

Ash 14:55 


Elle 14:55 

so our flight here was actually cheaper than some of flight I had to take to the east. coast a couple months ago. So, I mean, and honestly stuffs cheaper here might be a thing. Well, we'll just go to Paris on a vacation. Oh, no, no,

Ash 15:10 

no, let's be friends. I could go live my miraculous dreams

Elle 15:14 

in terms of the contest. I know a lot of you were very concerned for us that we did not win, but like, we're fine, guys. Oh, yeah,

Ash 15:22 

they're fine. This is the most fulfilling contest experience I think I've ever had.

Elle 15:27 

It's, it's totally okay. Like, we're not upset. It's, I can't say I don't care is the right word. But it's more just, it's fine. Like, I don't feel a loss, if that makes sense. 

Ash 15:40 

I think it's more not that you don't care. It's more of like, acceptance. Yeah,

Elle 15:45 

it doesn't bother me. I guess I should say, Yeah, I agree with the judges. Like it's, we did what we could what we had was what we had probably the best choice for this contest. No, but it is what we had, given the lives that we have, and what was available to us. We didn't do a bad job. People enjoyed the performance. Yeah, no one had anything super negative to say to us, we did not make fools of ourselves. The judges thought my wig was cool. Yeah, the contestant thought My wig was cool. Ultimately, our goal here was to put on a good show. We still did. Absolutely. But you have to consider that this entire show of basically best in shows.

Ash 16:26 

Everybody's good, right? Like everybody already essentially won to come here. Yes,

Elle 16:31 

everyone is really high quality. So you've got high quality people competing against each other for three spots. But I like it. Yeah, because there's a challenge here. Like it's pushing you to do more, and look at what you're doing and see what you can change to do more and to be different and to do better. And we have not had that ever, because it's been so long since we've been challenged. And granted, we stopped competing for a long time because pandemic, but like it's been a long time since we've felt that kind of fire and that challenge to create something new, instead of sticking to our old format that we have, that tends to work in an American setting.

Ash 17:13 

Well, and I just, I know we're going to talk about this in the other episode, but I just like European style content. From, from all the videos, I've watched of pretty much any of them. I'm like, Why can't our cons be like this in the States? And maybe maybe there are cons in the states that are like that, that we just haven't been to? Because obviously there are hundreds if not 1000s of conventions with cosplay contests. But

Elle 17:41 

if you know of a contest in the United States that takes performance seriously, and has any similarities to European contests, please let us know because we might be interested. Because yeah, I need I need something different than we get in the Midwest. And this was definitely it. So of course, now we're completely hooked. Yes. Are we going to try to do another international course we are? Absolutely, we put stupid amounts of effort into this stuff. It might as well take it to an international first. If it doesn't work that will take it somewhere else YOLO, YOLO 2023 is the year of YOLO, because we don't try. You're never gonna know.

Ash 18:18 

Yes, you miss 100% of the shots that you don't take. So we're also going

Elle 18:21 

to stop trying to make sure that things are absolutely perfect. Because nothing really can be. But if you just don't go, you definitely can't win. And I want to win another trip somewhere to meet more cool people. Ya know, now that I've done this, I have lost a lot of interest in regular contests, because it's just so different and so positive. You know, nobody's bitching at each other. Nobody's attacking each other is really nice.

Ash 18:49 

Yeah, there's no like that underhandedness and that like, snarky, passive, aggressive nonsense. Like, there was none of that here. It was all just like, everybody was like, so excited to be here. And so just like honored for the privilege of representing their country, and excited to meet all these other people and see all these other crafts and performances, and to like, learn and grow from each other. And it was just the whole thing was super wholesome.

Elle 19:20 

Yeah, it was, it was very different from most of our experiences in the state. Yeah. And it doesn't mean that we're not going to do non international contests. We're just going to be more selective about what we do and what goes where which I guess we always have been, but show order, so to speak, has to be a lot more specific now than it used to be because certain things can't be entered as certain things have won awards and the so we don't want to enter something that we'd like to try and international first, if it wins something and then gets barred, which the internationals don't care because one things in Europe is they don't care if you've won an award. I don't care. You can enter it anyway. Yeah, yeah, they don't care.

Ash 20:02 

They're they're very much of the mindset that it's a contest. And it's about what shows up. And it doesn't matter if that thing's won an award somewhere else,

Elle 20:09 

that'd be so nice because then we could like be on stage more, because right now you make something and you put tons and tons of time and money into it, and then can use it once. But it's very hard to get on stage, I'm losing a lot of to go to regular contests right now. But I can't imagine why I can't imagine why. But I'm sure other people will also start to like to go to these, but I see no reason to not take something to an international first. And if it doesn't get it, take it somewhere else. Like, because you only lose the shots you don't take

Ash 20:38 

well, and we are both in a very privileged point in our lives. Yeah, we're even though time off in the States is terrible, we obviously are able to manage it. And we both have good paying jobs where we can afford to go to these contests and these qualifiers, and to extend our holidays out past the initial like, Hey, we're flying you in for this contest. On this day, you have to come home on this day, which I know a lot of people don't have.

Elle 21:08 

Well, the other problem is this. And we'll probably talk about this more in our Spain episode, the schedule, we were adhered to at this contest really brought to light, how disabled I actually am. And I kind of feel like I'm on borrowed time. So I feel like I don't have a lot of time left to do these before I physically won't be able to because I just turned 38 In September, that's also kind of a reasoning for our switch to focusing on these is I don't know how much time I have, which is a little depressing. But hey, or I just have to be better about asking conventions before we go what their expectation is, so that I can ask for accommodations, but I can't really logically see pushing this much past 45. So I'm really limited on how much time I have left, well, and then the kiddo is gonna get older too, which is gonna make things hard. Yep, we don't feel like we have a lot of time left to do these, I have a feeling we would have done at least one other one of the pandemic hadn't happened by now. But the pandemic took three years of our lives away. We are very behind on everything that we would have preferred to do. You know, to round it up, it doesn't mean we won't be at any regular contests. But we will probably be looking at other internationals in the future, we were going to try to compete more but possibly competing less so that we can focus on the internationals is. So we're basically gonna go back to our old competing format, where you see us once a year, because we're going to be trying to hit the International Circuit. However, I'm also considering entering contests with things that might not be perfectly designed to enter contests just to enter, which is something that we've always avoided doing. But I'm starting to think that that's silly, because why does it matter if I don't win, I think one of the biggest things I got out of this contest was if you do the right contest, there is a benefit besides winning. And sometimes, because we could only do one contest, one or two, one, every one to two years, winning became so important because we couldn't do so many of them. But if you pick the right contest, and there's enough other things you're gonna get out of the contest, then it becomes less important. I mean, I almost jumped on a contest in a couple of months here, and I started breaking it down and I went, the literal I think I'm gonna get out of this is winning. And if I don't win, I'm going to be super pissed off, because I had to take off the all this time and spent all this money and didn't win. If there's literally no benefit to this contest outside of me winning that is not healthy, and I'm not going and it was a hard decision to make, because my instinct is no go, go get another one. But if that's the only thing you're gonna get out of it, it's, it's not good for me. So we're also going to try to pick contests that have some sort of benefit outside of just winning an award. And I think that's going to make a big difference in the stress that we get from contests and what we're willing to enter in a contest, because we used to only enter things that were perfectly crafted for contest. But what says I can't enter something that I just made XYZ contest because I'm at this con, right? Like, if I don't win, doesn't matter. We'll see what happens. We definitely restructured every single plan we had

Ash 24:23 

after this. Yes, lots of them went out the window because

Elle 24:27 

we learned a lot about the format we need to start looking at, or formats. You know, we learned that some things are included in performance that we don't include in America that we missed. So we need to work on looking at their format a little bit more and incorporating that more in order to translate to a larger audience. So some things that we thought were going to be major competition pieces have been thrown out, because they won't work for these contests. But now we know that that's okay. Yeah, I mean, now we know and things that we tabled like two years ago are now being brought to the forefront because it does work at an American contest. It may not have worked. The best advice we got this weekend was go and watch the exact contests you're going to try to compete in and see what works, which we unfortunately do to our lives did not have time to do because we knew we weren't gonna have time to switch this anyway. So there was no point like we tried to switch this to something else it it just didn't work. So life did not let us but we still went and we still did fine. So all in all, we didn't make fools of ourselves. It was a very rewarding experience. Yes, but now we have lots more knowledge than next time should be smoother. We have more knowledge about what we need to do. That should help for the future. But it is very late here and we have to get on a plane in the morning so we're going to cut this off so I can edit it when we get home so I can post an episode by Sunday. 

Ash 25:50 

Tada that's how much I'll loves you. 

Elle 25:53 

We haven't posted anything for like three to four weeks. So gotta get those downloads.

Ash 25:57 

Well I am ash 

Elle 25:58 

I'm Elle 

Ash 25:58 

We're La Vie Cosplay 

Elle 25:58 

And this is Sh*t Cosplayer's Say