August 15, 2014

 Hello again Mix 93 readers. Apparently there has been a problem with my posts on the Mix site and they've been getting archived, so if you missed some of the past ones, I apologize. If you're new to my blog or just don't remember, I'd like to give a quick refresher of who I am and why I blog for Mix 93.

I'd like to introduce myself to you. My name is Ron and I am a member of several cosplay groups including Umbrella Corp. Denver, a parody cosplay for charity organization, and one of the founding members of KC Cosplay for Charity, a loose association of the cosplayers in Kansas City and the surrounding areas who believe in using our skills and time to raise money for charity or just to donate our time to make people smile, especially children. In the past I worked in theatre in High School, College, and some Phantom of the Opera events that led into me developing my own The Crow and Matrix costumes as well as a love for Renfest events. While I am not an expert in any certain genre of nerdom, I do have a love for sci-fi, cosplay, movies, music, comics, reading, and photography. Over the last year I have become extremely active in the cosplay scene with the development of  Vector, the Umbrella Corp. Denver character I portray, and my work in progress of Cyclops of the X-Men. I have a great group of friends in UCD, Umbrella Corp Kansas City, and KC Cosplay for Charity who will also be helping with reports of events near and far to KC and many amazing photographers such as Jon Recor, Trevor Munson, Kaela Domenico of SPC Portrait Art, Chris Dorsey, Kevin Smith, Gene Starr, and several others who beautifully capture our efforts to cosplay, entertain, and generally have fun being the nerds that we are.

KC Cosplay for Charity is a new group that is helping to unify the incredible talent that our area has produced in the cosplay world. We have everything from Iron Man and War Machine standing over 7 foot tall with their own Stan Lee to a near identical Wolverine who also contracts through Marvel plus Star Wars members of the 501st, Supergirl, Harley Quinn, Umbrella Corp, Power Rangers, Deadpool, Alien, Borderlands bandits, and…well you get the point. This group of people combines crafting abilities with foam, resin, and latex to make creations that are always pushing the limit and blowing my mind to people with costuming and makeup abilities that astound those who see them and a lot of it looks like it belongs on a Hollywood set. Not only is this group of people talented, but they're also incredibly giving. For over 6 years several members have been going to Children's Mercy Hospital to visit the patients, attend fundraiser functions, and anything else they can do to help bring smiles or much needed funds to the children at CMH.  Members of KC Cosplay for Charity also appear at movie screenings, special events, fundraisers for other organizations, comic cons, photo shoots.

So, for those of you who have followed me, that was just a refresher, and for those of you new to the blog, now you know who I am. Why did I start writing for Mix 93 though? I have been a long time fan of the station and Rocket, Teresa, and Ponch and have become friends with the show. Whenever I visited the station I tended to just drop what was going on in the cosplay world, what was coming up, discuss movies and sci-fi stuff, and generally just geek out with everyone. During a visit, Ponch suggested that I start writing a blog for Mix and dubbed me Comic Con Ron and that is my story.

So, what is going on? Well there is a lot of news in the cosplay and movie world as well as having had a lot of events lately plus Crypticon KC is this weekend. In movie news of course the main thing is the loss of Robin Williams. Mr. Williams was one of my favorite actors and I know many of us have memories of him that revolve around certain movies. As a nursing student and having just finished my mental health nursing semester, this struck close for me and is a horrible tragedy as someone who managed to make millions of people smile couldn't find his own happiness. He battled many personal demons over the years, but mental illness is a horrible fight. Please, if you know anyone who is suffering, never take it lightly and never just walk away thinking you aren't qualified or try to just pass them off to professionals. Help them, talk to them, try to save them, and don't give up hope. Not every fight will be won, but that doesn't mean that you did anything wrong or that it isn't worth trying. Robin Williams leaves behind a family, millions of fans, and a legacy that few actors or comedians ever achieve and he will be deeply missed. 

Shifting to other news, Star Wars fans can rejoice as it is reported that Harrison Ford has recovered from his leg injury and that filming will resume later this month. Ford had broken his leg in June during filming the anticipated Star Wars: Episode VII and rumors were that he could be out as much as six months. Clearly these weren't true as on Monday, Ford was seen walking the red carpet without the use of crutches and no sign of injury for the premiere of "The Expendables 3." Sylvester Stallone told Ford to, "break a leg." Star Wars: Episode VII is scheduled to release on December 18, 2015.

Okay, on to cosplay and there is a lot going on. First of all, a few members of Kansas City Cosplay for Charity partnered with members of the 501st to attend an event at GivingSolo on Saturday to help raise money for the charity and I will be sharing more information and about this charity and other charities that we support in the near future. 

After that, 4 of our members were at the National Air Guitar Championship Finals and helped to entertain the crowd, shred a little of our own air guitar, and generally just ham it up, take some photos with people, and make people smile as well as provide a bit of unofficial security. (Seriously, I can't even count the times that I was asked if I was security while dressed as Vector.) The event was held at the historic Midland theatre in Kansas City and was an amazing time. The crowd was pumped, the costumes were crazy, and the performances ranged from cabbage filled, yes someone was flinging cabbage their entire performance, to amazing and full of air guitar, theatrics, jumps, and shredding. Guests at the event could even make their own air guitar video and all four of our members, Predator, Shredder, Halo ODST, and Vector, participated to make our own videos and can be viewed at:
My personal video can be seen at:
Airistotle, Matt Burns, won the finals for a second time and will go on to Finland to represent the US as well as Kansas City's own Eric "Mean Melin" who is the reigning World Champion of Air Guitar with his win in 2013.

This weekend brings a different breed of cosplayer and fan to Kansas City as Crypticon KC will be in town at the Ramada Inn at 1601 Universal Ave, Kansas City, MO on August 15-17.Crypticon is Kansas City's premier horror convention and features 3 days of celebrities, movies, panels, vendors, and terror. More information can be found
There will be many celebrities at Crypticon KC this year including Scott Wilson, aka Hershel from The Walking Dead, plus a Monster Squad reunion, a Face Off artist, and numerous other horror related stars. 
What is the cosplay connection? Well, simply that there will be numerous members of KC Cosplay for Charity attending the convention plus Umbrella Corp Kansas City. I will be there on Saturday to report on the convention, take pictures, and attend as Vector, so come out and see me. 

I think that pretty well sums things up for right now, but there are a few more events on the horizon and during the slower winter months I plan on featuring some of our local cosplayers with interviews and pictures of their work plus revisiting some of the events of 2014 that I attended or some of my fellow cosplayers attended plus all of the exciting movie news and other related materials.

Until next time, I am Vector of Umbrella Corp Denver and remember, Umbrella – Our Business is Life Itself.

– Comic Con Ron