Skip to main content

Women of Color & Horror/Sci-Fi Cosplay

By Takima Bly (@emma_fRhost2)

One of the most popular parts of sci-fi, fantasy, and horror conventions is the cosplay competition. People from all over the world create their own costumes from their favorite characters to compete for prizes, money, and sometimes just for the recognition. It’s like being a big kid, with a bunch of other big kids! For any black girl nerd who ever considered cosplay, the issues arrive when considering who to dress up as. Many women of color do in fact cosplay, but end up portraying the “black version” of superheroes, anime, and video game characters.

Many blacks also receive a lot of racist backlash for dressing up as characters that are white or Asian. Racism should never stop anyone from the joys of partaking in the cosplay festivities. Cosplay is for all walks of nerd life. However, for the black girl cosplayers, future cosplayers, or just Halloween party goers, I have brainstormed women of color to be considered as costume ideas from sci-fi, horror, fantasy, and comic books. Women of color would enjoy seeing more diversity in these fun filled competitions.

Queen Akasha- Queen of the Damned

If the idea and look you’re going for is a blood sucking vampire, Queen Akasha is your girl! She has an ancient and unique look of royalty to match her royal personality.

Nyota Uhura- Star Trek

If you’re in the mood to play a futuristic action character, this might be for you. Zoe Saldana felt passionate enough about Nyota Uhura to play her in both updated movies of Star Trek.

Sheva Alomar- Resident Evil 5 

Looking for a video game heroine full of zombie hunting action? Look no further! Sheva was the first woman of color introduced in the video game franchise set in a world filled with viral experiments and disease.

Storm- X-Men

Our favorite weather witch is one of the most commonly cosplayed characters among black women. Who wouldn’t want to dress up as one of our favorite super heroes?

Michonne- The Walking Dead

A fan favorite who is killing the superhero game, Michonne is an excellent choice to cosplay! If you’re looking to portray a strong and action packed heroine, Michonne is for you. With her katana and walker pets, she makes for an exciting costume.

Maybe one day I’ll step outside of Halloween costumes and upgrade to cosplay!



K. Bly is an expert on book reviews that spotlight girls and women, of color, characters in the horror, sci-fi, and suspense genres of literature, in novels and comic books. You can find her on both Twitter (@emma_fRhost2) and Instagram (@game_of_rhos)

Popular posts from this blog

How MIDSOMMAR Utilizes and Subverts Horror Movie Tropes of People of Color

By Mary Kay McBrayer (@mkmcbrayer)

For a film that could have been easily white-washed, Ari Aster’s Midsommar does have an inclusive cast. Before our characters are even taken to Sweden where most of the film's dread fueled action takes place, we meet them in their college town. Dani (Florence Pugh) stresses about her sister’s scary email while her boyfriend, Christian (Jack Reynor) drinks at a bar with his buddies, only one of whom is black named Josh (The Good Place's William Jackson Harper).
I have watched enough horror movies to know—and I’ve been brown enough long enough to know—that this setting does not bode well for a person of color. The token minority, say it with me, tends to die first. Because of this ratio, I expected a few other established tropes of the horror genre in Josh’s character, too, and I have to admit, I was delighted and surprised that nothing played out the way I expected.

DARKLY: At The Heart Of Goth, Is Blackness

"Horror has always been used to illuminate cultural anxieties and gives a voice to our collective fears. So, what to make of the gothic in America, a place which by the very nature of its founding is predisposed to a culture of anxiety? The dread knowing the enemy at the gate is understandable, but in America the enemy has already passed through it, and has been brought inside. The call is coming from inside the house."
-words by Leila Taylor