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Cosplayoff!!!

Selected Fight music to intensify your reading experience: And obviously for the final few panels:

113 thoughts on “Cosplayoff!!!

    1. Actually, the con vendor is treading on thinner ice. Both of them are trafficking in trademark and copyright violations. However, Pumpkin is just a juvie, so at worst she would get a finger-wagging from the judge and grounded by her parents until she turned 18. The adult con vendor could be entailed with some serious settlements from the IP owners, plus time in the clink if the judge was feeling like making an example out of her. Of course, small-time outfits like these are usually ignored unless someone starts raising a fuss and rats them out.

      1. Ah, true, but since said swords are likely made from foam or the like, they could be classified as parodies. And the last thing Square or anyone else would want is the PR fallout “Giant Video Game Company Sues Small Foam Sword Vendor: All I wanted was to feed my children, says vendor.”

      2. It’s not always a given that the merch con vendors are selling are unlicensed. This does appear to be a vendor room and not just an artist alley. Don’t get me wrong, a lot of bootleg merch gets into cons, but not all vendors are selling knockoffs.

        1. Well, what if she is selling unlicensed copies. What if she were the artist in question, and did make them, personally? Since that are just that, artistic recreations, that should be allowable, shouldn’t it?

        2. Technically, no. Creating unlicensed copies of IP is not allowed, even if strictly for personal use. That’s why when you buy a DVD nowadays, they will also be oh so generous and authorize you to download a digital version as well–because making your own digital backup version is a copyright violation. Pragmatically, even the big players out there will almost never go after fan-created derivative works…as long as the creator of the derivative work is not engaging in commerce. Make a Bart Simpson t-shirt and no one will blink. Make and *sell* a Bart Simpson t-shirt and you will get a Cease & Desist letter as soon as Fox finds out about it.

        3. No, I call bull on that no copy thing. You own a record, you are allowed to make a backup of it, and even transfer it to another medium like tape, CD, MP3. If you own a movie, you’re allowed to make a copy of it. If you have the VHS, you should be allowed to transfer it to either your own DVD or even digital copy. The technology for that transfer is out there. However, the infringement occurs when the individual lets the copies out of their immediate control. Like Napster or something else. Piracy perhaps.

          You already bought one copy, why should you have to purchase another copy unless you don’t want to make the technology transfer yourself. I’d run a VHS to digital transfer, but I don’t have the equipment, and I’d make the people sign a paper stating that they are showing proof of ownership and that they do not plan to make copies of the transferred work. I doubt that would fly for the FBI or anyone who could pour the GNP into a law firm and stomp on little ant people and such.

          But then, I suppose that’s why the new tech media comes out with newer features and supplemental materials, to entice the user to purchase the new stuff.

        4. “No, I call bull on that no copy thing. You own a record, you are allowed to make a backup of it…”

          Strictly speaking, copyright law originally forbid ALL digital copies, even the ones loaded into your computer’s memory to read the item in question, but the law is slooooowly catching up with this. While ‘format shifting’ media you own from one form to another is BELIEVED to be fair use by many, it’s not been fully tested in a court of law. See here for more:

          https://w2.eff.org/IP/eff_fair_use_faq.php

          Laws may vary by country. This is not legal advice and I’m *not* a lawyer.

        5. Laws may vary by country.

          Indeed they do. In Switzerland, buying a CD, movie or the like entitles you to make any number of copies in any kind of form, as long as they are for personal use. You’re even allowed to give away copies to your friends as long as it’s as a gift.

        6. The truth is sadly not that reasonable. U.S. copyright law (Title 17 of the United States Code) generally says that making a copy of an original work, if conducted without the consent of the copyright owner, is infringement. The law makes no explicit grant or denial of a right to make a “personal use” copy of another’s copyrighted content on one’s own digital media and devices. The RIAA has relented a bit on that in regards to music, but the MPAA is still all ready to nail someone for ripping a DVD.

        7. Steve: I don’t think you’d win a case by claiming something you were clearly selling for its recognition value was a “parody” just because it wasn’t made of real materials.

          that said, the IP owner probably won’t care unless you made a crapton of money -or- they intended to participate in the same market you’re selling unlicensed merch in. Because otherwise it’s not worth the cost of looking for you and the bad PR of a lawsuit against fans.

          Thor: You’re mostly right about IP, with the exception of making a backup. Under US Copyright law you are allowed to make a backup copy of copyrighted material you are the owner of. It’s explicitly covered under sections 112 and 117 of the Copyright Act. This includes digital IP.

          To try and help wrap this discussion up I’ve linked a US government site with the actual law and an FAQ.

          All IP: http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chap1.html (Sec 112 and 117, look for the word “archival” which the next link explicitly points out is synonymous with “backup”)
          Digital IP: http://www.copyright.gov/help/faq/faq-digital.html

        8. Wait a second, I just got the pixie field. Tails – Pumpkin, Spike – Francis, Chun Li – that unknown gender third wheel in the car, Naruto – A Christmas Story rip, happy soldier girl – ?, I’m guessing the next one is that statuette that Necro had. Inuasha – Bill Cosby, Deadpool – Professor. Link is the sword seller? And that armor fiend battle pixie, is that that one from Adult Swim, where they got mixed up with black magic?

      3. Um what?…I don’t think she will. Have you ever been to a con? I’ve gone to Sakura-con every year since 2009, and Emerald City Comic-con every year since 2010. Every year, at both cons I see at least one or two vendors selling replica swords, REAL swords designed to look like swords from Lord of the Rings, Bleach, video games. And they are awesome. I don’t know if they had to get permission from the people who own the rights to the sword designs (probably) but they sell very well. And almost all the vendors are selling ‘trademark and copyright violations’ stuff. Pictures, clothing, fanart, figures, models…are you saying the ALL should be arrested? No, to vendor items you need a booth. So the only person in the wrong here is Pumpkin.

        1. Should be arrested? No, most IP violations are civil complaints, not criminal ones. No matter how much the content companies try to equate copyright and trademark violations with theft, they are actually two different beasts.

          Anyone who makes and sells merchandise based on properties that they are not licensed to reproduce *is* breaking the law. Whether that is right or wrong depends on the moral framework of the individual judging the actions. Legal is not the same as either ethical or moral.

      4. Not really. I mean, for one the content may, in point of fact, be official merch, and even if it wasn’t, Squenix is hardly going to give a rat’s ass. Actually, I really have to give Squenix that they are really awesome with their fanbase, specially the FF crowd, so if you wanna make replica weapons and whatnot, they’re pretty willing to just go with it.

        So, without other issues intruding upon it, I don’t them raising any fuss at all. A lot of times, you’ll get people who even get introduced to various things because of the replicas. For instance, someone walks up to the booth, and is like, “Um, why are those swords shaped like keys?”

        After which, a geek (likely the booth person), will geek about Kingdom Hearts for a bit, and point the person in the direction of the person selling the KH games across the dealer’s room.

        1. Ah, that’s why I couldn’t place it either. I wasn’t expecting Tidus to be as well rounded as this iteration.

          … But then nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition.

  1. A Deadpool. With external glasses. Bravo, sir. Bravo. And the GIF count at the bottom appears to have likewise increased based on the references used. This could get interesting.

      1. True, but that actually looks like Morrigan. Oddly, there’s not a lot of cosplay that’s friendly to the bespectacled.

  2. Busted! Busted!

    Busted for what I did…

    Sorry, got carried away.

    Pumpkin is striking me as more a grifter than a legitimate business woman. Which isn’t really bad per se, but it tends to make me think she’s taking more after Juniper, Cinnamon and Anise rather than “the good” sisters.

    Also I totally want that Black Mage standup. *glomp* MINE!!!

    1. Some might say here that it’s about capital, access to which a 15 year old commonly does not have. Vendor space at a con is pricey; just ask Danny.

    2. Anice is one of the good sisters. She has a successful tattoo parlor.

      And I can’t see Juniper or Cinnamon putting forth the effort to attempt any thing like this.
      And Steve is right. Just going to a con is expensive. Getting table space? Even more so. Maybe she could have done an artist alley thing though.

      1. Well, not only that, but she is putting the con event coordinators in a pickle. Especially if she doesn’t have a vendor’s license. Her dad should know about that stuff. And since it’s not in the same town, who knows how much business Pumpkin’s pulling off and not paying for in terms of taxation?

        1. Yeah, in any con I’ve been to, selling without a table, period, is against the rules, and you will likely have your badge taken away and ejected from the con.

      2. I think I lumped Anise in there because she was part of the “median” from the last storyline.

  3. Was Pumpkin selling Sonic hoodies last year? Or did she steal the Tails hoodie idea from somebody else?

    Also: I am at a conference this week in Orlando, and can see the OCCC from my window directly across the street. Crazy!

    1. Also, an idea for a background gag/costume, since you were asking last week: Patricia Wagon from Mighty Switch Force.

      Also also, but too bad you didn’t think of it sooner: every page at the convention should have had a different girl in the background dressed in some version of Harley Quinn costume.

        1. It would have been a nice reference to Rusche’s post a while back with all the con pics where half of them were Harley Quinn.

    1. “We’re a clearly complementary market! You’re not going after the casual gamer at all! This is an RPG / fantasy heavy booth! My product line is clearly going after Sonic fans only and you KNOW they don’t want huge swords! Remember “Sonic Adventure?” No, of course you don’t! There’s a reason!”

      1. I thought Sonic and the Black Knight was the Sonic game with swords. Granted, I remember more about Sonic Adventure 2 for the dreamcast and Sonic Adventure 2 Battle for Gamecube.

        Twenty years ago, my two year old played Sonic the Hedgehog on the Sega Genesis. He’d push the button to make Sonic jump, and jump along with Sonic. It was adorable.

        1. That could be. Honestly, I haven’t played many Sonic games, so if I’m a bit off in the continuum, it wouldn’t surprise me.

      2. To be honest, people usually go into these cons with a limited amount of money to spend on goodies. If another vendor shows them a shiny they want before they get to your booth, it still means something you won’t sell, even if the items aren’t remotely related. I can certainly see why they wouldn’t want random vendors around.

  4. That Sonic is friggin’ adorable.

    Panel 3 is my fav. Tons of detail! I didn’t immediately recognize the sword from Shadow of the Colossus until someone else mentioned it. I am giving myself a pass on that because most of the time I was playing the sword was either reflecting an absurd amount of light or buried in some giant monster’s soft spots.

    Is that cashier a female Cloud Strife? I swear I recognize the outfit but I’m not sure who wore it.

      1. I believe you’re correct. I only watched someone play that game; for some reason I thought that was an alternate outfit for Cloud. Perhaps I was just projecting, heh…

  5. For some reason, deadpool with glasses highly amuses me.

    And pumpkin should really look into doing a booth since her stuff is awesome! I’d buy.

    1. That definitely looks like a costume Deadpool would try to pull off. :)

      DP: “Why no good sir, these are not swords at all, these are my…urm…precision cheese knives, yes quite right.”
      SS: “…And your name good sir?”
      DP: “Dr. Wilson; Dr. Wade Wilson to be precise…”
      SS: “…Reeeally…”
      DP: “…….Aw beans!!”

  6. …She’s cosplaying Tidus? Ewww…I hate her already. *cringes*…Well…as long as she doesn’t ‘laugh’…but it does strike me as an antagonist. Don’t take no shit Pumpkin! Even if you are not following con-rules…>> <<

  7. I was wondering if this issue would come up. But I thought maybe if Pumpkin operated fast, she’d get away with it.

    Also, I have worked a sword booth at conventions. They never look that nice. Good job other Chris.

  8. Damn, I’m liking all the sprites at the bottom of the page here.

    Also, is that vendor a relative? The blonde hair and blue eyes makes me suspicious. I know she’s probably just a familiar vendor rather than a relative, but you never know with this comic.

  9. I guess the neat thing about hanging out in the chat room is I know what’s coming and I know all the hidden details. Of course, seeing it happen is just as exciting as the anticipation.

  10. Additionally, the new art of Anise is as hot as its predecessors. It’s beginning to look a lot like an Ellie Christmas, I figure.

      1. This…this is a point. There are awfully few tattoos. Even the hand tattoos are not present, though possibly hidden by hand position.

      2. Give her time, boog. As soon as she gets a book idea or starts networking, there’s gonna be a rippling tide of upside-down text starting from her collar and expanding downward.

        We’re in a pen famine, after all.

  11. I thought I saw Zelda in the first panel, and the gif below just proved it. Im really enjoying the Easter eggs Rusche!

  12. well you know someone could always dress as one of the boys from Meganebu its an anime all about boys who love their glasses

  13. For Seuth, say I.
    For Serious, or not to be For Serious,
    THAT
    is the signal for Pumpkin Tails to high tail and RUN!!!!!

    Alas, poor Merch, I knew it well.
    ‘Tis better to have shilled and gained,
    Than to never have sold at all,
    For the gold contained within doth enrich a hearty mind and soul

    And makes for a good video game and con-fusing post comment as well.

        1. You should. It’s a cool series. We watched it while the kids were in bed though. It has some less-than-kid-friendly moments. Though most of them would probably go over their heads.

        2. Farscape is brilliant; the catch is the first…oh, 2/3rds? of the first season is the weakest, so if you start there you have to press though (it’s not BAD, just not as GOOD) to the First Big Story Arc at the end of the season.

          But from there out…well, I’d take it over either “Star” series any day of the week.

        3. Really? I thought the last season or two were weak. I loved the first season because the characters mostly hated/mistrusted each other. You get to watch them learn to get along and grow over the first three seasons. It made their relationships seem more real since you actually watch them develop.

          On the flipside, I can appreciate your point of view since the first season gets better when you know you’re watching a progression, rather than just seeing a dysfunctional group of convicts blunder through space.

  14. Haha, wow. Am I a hardcore nerd for knowing EVERY weapon there? Eh, who am I kiddin? I’m definitely a hardcore nerd. :)

    1. Little Al Elric, the Buster Sword (Crisis Core variant), the Buster Sword (Kingdom Hearts variant), Squall’s gunblade, Seifer’s Hyperion gunblade, a Master Sword, Minecraft diamond swords, the Wishing Lamp keyblade, the Keyblade of people’s hearts (unofficial name), every type of materia, Auron’s giant katana (the shimmering blade), Sting, the Sword of Shadow of the Colossus (the Ancient Blade?), the sword of Demise, another Master Sword, blitzballs, and an 8-bit black mage Only thing I don’t know is the sword Pumpkin is in front of.

  15. I love that Tails Hoodie!
    and I like seeing Pumpkin, in it too!
    It’s nothing less Than Too Cute!

  16. By the way, that is an awesome booth, Chris! Vendors would kill to have booths that awesome!

    You know, just in case you weren’t sure that it’s awesome. It is.

  17. That’s quite the booth, and I’m pretty sure I’d leave it free of cash, and with more game themed swords than you could shake a game themed sword at.

    I like that it isn’t even all RPG swords, but you’ve got the soul edge in 2 of it’s forms, plus the row of material on the table. This is the kind of detail O was talking about last week. Love it.

  18. I feel the need to show Female Tidus how to slot some materia, ya know what I mean? *puts hand up for high five*

    1. Wow, thank you. Your comment made me realize that the normal Sonic at panel 1 and the Super Sonic at panel… erm… 21 (or 23 if count those sword slashes as separate panels) are the same boy!

  19. You know, I’ve read this through at least three times now, and this is the first I’ve noticed that the guy in the first panel asking for 50 rings actually does go Super Sonic.

  20. Seriously, it’s been years and no one has put together Pumpkin having 9999HP together with Vegeta’s scouter exploding?

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