View Full Version : Worldcon Masquerade Review (CHRISTIAN SAUVÉ)

10-14-2003, 10:25 PM
Hello all!, Here's a snippet from a Christian Sauve's Worldon report. I found it both sad and humorous in several respects. But before I make any of my own commentary I'll let you read it yourselves, (especially interested in what those of you who submitted your costumes think of it). Cheers!

Christian Sauve: The Masquerade didn't rank as a must-see event given my general lack of interest in costuming, but I'd been told that it was worth the while. I'm still not completely convinced that this is always true given the uneven quality of what we saw at Torcon3, but it certainly had some interest. Depending on the presenter, craftsmanship, concept and sophistication, costuming can be flat-out impressive, or head-scratching. Fortunately, the able performance of Gord Rose as the sarcastic (and libidinous) Master of Ceremonies more than tied everything together. I wonder if the sarcasm was unique to Torcon3 or just a general shtick? (Update: Trusted sources say it's his usual shtick, and they hate it.) In any case, there were interesting things among the tediousness of some costumes. I recall a fairly good dry-ice-breathing dragon, a number of red or white dresses (no points for complexity there), an impressive group effort based on Roger Zelazny's Amber series that may have made more sense had I actually read the series (it did garner the best-in-show award) and a really really really long tribute to Canadian costuming. Many of the presentations were structured as humorous sequences; some good gags here and there ("The Canadian Scientist") and some lame ones ("Captain Torcon") as well. My chosen seat wasn't the best one (thanks to a tall video-camera-wielding moron blocking even the giant projection of the proceedings.) and the length of the presentation started to annoy me by the end (especially given the late start of the event), but what do I know? It was the first masquerade I attended.

(On the other hand, one thing that did make the masquerade worthwhile was the special presentation of, I believe, a 1973 CBC news report on Torcon2. Many howlers ("This is a... computer."), outdated hairstyles, a bit of nudity, a glimpse of Isaac Asimov and plenty of other assorted oddities in this time capsule...)

His complete report on the Venue, the City Of Toronto, His fellow fans, etc is posted Here:: http://www.christian-sauve.com/texts/worldcon-2003.htm

10-15-2003, 06:53 AM
I think that's a pretty reasonable take on it from a non-costumer's point of view.

10-15-2003, 04:36 PM
yeah... most of it irks me but i think most of it has to be chalked up just that - a non-costumer's point of view. there seems to be two camps of non-costumers - the ones who are like "wow, i could never do that, way to go them" ones, and the "pff, half of them look lame and this is all taking too long" hard-to-impress ones - THEY'VE never bothered to try and put a costume presentation together so they don't really appreciate it. le sigh.

ok i dont' have anything useful to say... i'm just poking in before i go take a shower before the radiohead concert... *rushrush*

Christian Sauve
10-15-2003, 08:05 PM
Hello, Christian Sauve typing...

I'm both thrilled and scared to have part of my con report being discussed here. I will not make any attempt at disguising the depth of my ignorance when it comes to costuming and masquerades. (Are those the proper terms? Eek.) As suggested in the snippet above, my perspective was one of a complete newcomer to the field. While I may be sympathetic to this hobby (or is it a way of life? Please don't shoot.) in much the same way I expect other people to tolerate my particular obsessions, I don't have any specific exposure, understanding or affection for costuming. This is not a put-down; merely an admission of fact. I'm blessed with friends who were heavily involved in masquerading years ago (those "trusted sources" mentioned in my con report), but wasn't lucky enough to be sitting with them during the masquerade itself. Chances are that my report would have been very different if that had been the case.

To xiola, I would apologize if the perception was one of a non-costumer who can't be bothered to appreciate the effort; I don't even have the tools to properly measure what I can't do in this area, but I have a lot of respect for those who can. (in large part thanks to those "trusted sources", again.) But the con report was written for visitors, friends and family members who are so "mundane" that even the concept of a convention is strange to them. My perspective reflected that, in much the same way that a mixed review of a film isn't necessarily a claim that I could do much better by myself.

Once again, with deep admiration and further apologies if necessary,

10-15-2003, 08:19 PM
Well, while it'd be a knee-jerk reflex to jump to the defense of cosplay, costumers, masquerades, and what have you, I think there are a lot of valid points in there. Even as a costumer, I find a lot of masquerade presentations and contests overlong and occasionally confusing. Especially at large, general sci-fi/fantasy/genre events such as WorldCon. I think you gave a very balanced view of things from a non-costuming, first-masquerade perspective, Christian. It's nice to be reminded that the world, even the fannish world, is not solely made up of cosplayers and cosplay-bashers.

10-16-2003, 03:56 PM
no, no extra apologies neccessary ^_~ i get defensive alot but i'm generally not so deeply offended as i seem - i can fully understand the movie-review analogy.

as for being over-long, however... i find any such comments amusing, after sitting through the heinously long ANorth masq 2 years ago - it started two hours late and had over a HUNDRED entries (if i remember correctly it was something like 102 entries, but 3 of them dropped out so it was 99 entries... and you can imagine, with that many entries, not all of them are going to be spectacular...! >_>). my legs cramped, watching that one. but i imagine it was even worse for the people in the green room. =_=

personally, i tend to find that the boring entries are worth it for the REALLY GOOD ones though. in a way, you can sometimes count on anime north for having more amusing skits due to the youthful fanbase and plethora of silly in-jokes to be made, but unfortunately that's *exactly* the same reason there are so many BAD anime skits too ;P

10-16-2003, 04:19 PM
I say buuu to your trusted sources. Everybody loves Gord!

But yes, boring and annoying skits are part and parcel with masquerades. You have to take the bad with the good....

10-17-2003, 03:19 AM
and yeah. everyone loves gord! i mean, sure he can be an ass, but it's, err, part of his charm ;PP

aww i miss con season... :(

10-17-2003, 07:30 AM
Gord IS the most charming ass you'll meet.
I agree.

Ninja Sensei
10-17-2003, 11:33 AM

Leave my ass out of this! :untrust:

Oh ... I'M an ass ... THAT'S what you meant. I see.

Well ... umm ... at least I'm apparently a charming ass! ;)

At least Christian enjoyed the show. :)