Geek Chic


Voting for Best of 2017

Best of 2017 Graphic

Another year has come and gone. The sanitation workers have hauled away the last vestiges of torn Christmas wrapping and boxes, our heads are still buzzing a little from staying up way too late and drinking way to much. And on top of that, the shirt that fit us just fine last October seems to have shrunk in the dryer or something!

But with all that, we've not forgotten that the new year brings with it the voting for the best of last year! So please take a look through the categories below, where the team at Critical Blast has suggested what we think are the Best of the Best of 2017. And because we're not infallible (rumors of selecting new staff members through white or black smoke signals to the contrary), we've got an "other" option in almost every category so you can correct us with what we should have suggested!


It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Cosplay with Our December Bombshell, Jennifer of Themyscira

Merry Christmas, Wonder Woman

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire. Jack Frost nipping at your nose. Yuletide carols being sung by a choir, and folks dressed up like...Wonder Woman?

Now that's a Christmas tradition we can get behind! In fact, some of our favorite Christmas stories involve things like Superboy and the Legion looking for the Star of Bethlehem, or Batman tracking down a thief dressed like Santa Claus. So why not put a little cosplay into your Christmas, like our Bombshell does this month. She even rescues Star Wars from the cringeworthy Christmas crossover it tried so long ago with a Star Wars holiday pose!

Get ready to hang your stockings and say your prayers, because cosplay is coming at you now, as we proudly present the...



Fall into Cosplay with our November Bombshell, Bean J. Bunny

November 2017 Bombshell Bean J. Bunny

Cosplay opens itself to so many genres for creative people who want to bring the otherworldly to reality. Many draw upon comic books and movies. But even more draw upon video games and Japanese anime films or manga.

That's the forte of our November Bombshell, who applies her craftsmanship and experience to characters like Ibuki Mioda (DANGANROPA 2: GOODBYE DESPAIR) and Cynthia (FIRE EMBLEM). And it takes quite an imagination to fully flesh out a character who exists in a 16-bit world like UNDERTALE.

So without further ado, Critical Blast is happy to present to our readers the Lead Cadette of the Super Stitch Siblings and this month's Critical Blast Bombshell!



For Movie Collectors, Sort-It Apps is Indispensible

Sort It Apps Movie Catalog

While people are choosing their content digitally in droves, there's still an enormous market out there of people who like to have something tangible in their hands when it comes to books, comics, and movies. I know my own DVD collection was getting to be something unweildy, taking up a whole wall of shelving in my house. It really became a hassle when we'd be out and see a Blu-ray or a DVD of a movie we loved, and couldn't remember if we already owned it. I've bought some accidental duplicates on more than one occasion.


For Our October Bombshell, It's "Old Fashioned" Mutants in a New Way

October 2017 Bombshell - Iceman

There are 7.4 billion people out there in the real world. Sometimes I think there are a whole lot more that exist in the fantasy realms we've created in cartoons, comics, and video games, all of whom get cosplayed to one degree or another.

And it's not that they're not all great, but sometimes it's refreshing to see someone go "back to basics," back to the classics, back to the good old-fashioned super characters that helped form the foundation of the culture.

Well, set off your signal watches and light up the Cosplay Signal, because our October Bombshell is just the guy for the job. Old Fashioned Nerd has been drawing attention on the convention circuits and on Instagram with his classic interpretation of characters like X-MEN's Iceman (seen left and below) and Wolverine (even further below, bub). So without further delay, let us introduce you one and all to our...



Introducing our September Bombshell: Brazilian Cosplayer Carolina Lino

September 2017 Bombshell

Growing up with in America with American comic books, it's easy to think that -- because comic books are such an American institution -- the comic book convention and the attendant cosplay that has really taken off over the last decade must also be uniquely American. But one of the things we are continually reminded of with the Critical Blast Bombshell feature is that the phenomenon is truly a global one, and that it's more than just people dressing up in costumes.

Brazilian cosplayer Carolina Lino (aka C-Cat) has spent half her life doing cosplay. The 24-year-old has, like many others, found a creative outlet in the process and applied it toward charitable events for children, bringing favorite characters to life and bringing smiles to those who need it very much, showing off her mischievous side with characters such as LEAGUE OF LEGENDS' Jinx or SUICIDE SQUAD's Harley Quinn.


Run, Don't Walk, to Catch our August Bombshell, The Walking Farnsworth!

Critical Blast Bombshell August 2017 - Green Arrow

August is the month when things traditionally heat up. Despite that, our August Bombshell, The Walking Farnsworth, exudes cool as he portrays some of the coolest customers in the comics continuum.

As a member of the Midwest cosplay group, Another Castle Creations, TWF makes cosplay a family affair, attending conventions with Mrs. The Walking Farnsworth and generally shaking up the Kansas convention circuit. His designs for Green Arrow, Doctor Strange are both highlighted here -- and how could we resist including a pose of Bruce Wayne -- from DC Comics' own BOMBSHELLS series? So let's get on with the show, shall we?

Critical Blast Bombshell, August 2017

The Walking Farnsworth

What is your interest in cosplay, and why do you do it?


You Will Believe a Cosplayer Can Fly -- at SDCC!

Richard Browning - Iron Man

We'd love to tell you all about how freaking cool it is to see Richard Browning flying -- yes, you read that right, flying -- over the pavement in his homemade Iron Man suit at the San Diego Comic Con.

But we think you'd be much more impressed in seeing it for yourself. So for all you folks who couldn't make the SDCC scene this year, we present the following video so you can see it for yourselves.

He lives! He walks! He conquers! But best of all -- he flies!



Ars Gratia Cosplay: July Bombshell Kayley Marie Finds Artistic Niche

Hayley Marie as Angela; photogray by Rick Currier

All imagery is by Rick Currier Photography (FB: Rick Currier Photography IG: @rickcurrier32)

Cosplay has come a long way -- but it still has a long way to go. If you don't believe me, witness the debut of this season's BIG BROTHER on CBS, where the admission of one of the houseguests, Ramses Soto, that he was a professional cosplayer was met with blank stares and crickets. (The silent message of derision from CBS did not go unnoticed.)


June's Bombshell, Victoria Avalor, Embraces Her Inner Princess

photo credit: Victoria Avalor cosplay with Green House Photography
This month we bring to you a highly talented cosplayer whose charity work exemplify the love promoted by her favorite character, Wonder Woman. While we are fortunate to spotlight such a wonderful cosplayer during the release of Warner Bros WONDER WOMAN movie, it's important that we don't lose sight of the other princess she portrays.
Victoria Avalor's Princess Leia cosplay is a wonderful tribute to the late Carrie Fisher, who hopefully is smiling down on us from a galaxy far, far away.

It's a Photo Finish for May Bombshell Florencia Sofen

Captain Marvel Salutes - Florencia Sophen

photo credit: Clint & Jillian Cosplay and Photography with Fali Ruiz-Davila

A moment of honesty is called for here. I could not just dive in and give a simple, glib introduction with something clever about our monthly Bombshell's representation or about whatever holiday might be coinciding with the timing of our publication.

Florencia Sofen's story, just as much as her skills, put me in a position of awed admiration. Her courage to leave her country for one halfway across the world, and her passions that drive her cosplay journey are inspirational.


Talking Cosplay with SuperKayce

Super Kayce Wizard World St Louis

Look! Up near the sky boxes! It's a Raven! It's a Viking!

No, it's all those things and more -- because at Wizard World Saint Louis, fans got to meet professional cosplayer, Super Kayce!

During the mayhem that constitutes a media convention like Wizard World, I was able to meet up with Kayce for a few moments to ask her about her art. The exchange has been recorded for posterity and presented for the readers (in this case, viewers) of Critical Blast.


Talking Cosplay with Ashe Lynne Cosplay

Ashe Lynne Cosplay as Captain Marvel

One of the real pleasures of attending a convention is to take in all the cosplay -- the good and, yes, the bad. And among the most impressive cosplayers this year at Wizard World St. Louis had to have been Ashe Lynne, who spent Friday saluting the fans as a stunning Captain Marvel.

We caught up with Ashe on Saturday, when she had transformed herself into X-Man Jean Grey in her White Phoenix of the Crown aspect.

Offline, we spoke more about her Disney experiences, so if I'm ever in a parade, I know exactly how to get the wave correct. ("Wipe the window. Get the spot.")


Subtle as a Spring Shower: April Bombshell Momma Kawaii

April 2017 Bombshell Momma Kawaii as Yui from Diabolik Lovers

When participating in the fandom of cosplay -- particularly when you're participating in it from the vantage of a spectator -- it's easy to get caught up in the intricate props, the ostentatious costuming, the unreal weaponry and accoutrements.

But cosplay can include far more subtle aspects. Not every worthwhile character out there requires all the baggage that serves as their calling card; not every anime girl is defined by her accessories and not every superhero boy is defined by the size of his sword.

As subtle as a spring rain comes our April Bombshell, Momma Kawaii, a cosplayer who can do as much with just her eyes as many do with a whole garage full of flexible foam and reams of fabric. Whether portraying Yui from DIABOLIK LOVERS (left) or Noodle from GORILLAZ (below), Momma Kawaii is the definition of "less is more."


In Like a Lion: March Bombshell Michael Bruener is Ready to Blow You Away

March 2017 Bombshell

It seems no matter what convention you attend, there's always a joker running around. No, literally, a Joker! Sometimes more than one.

But few can carry it off with the panache of our March Bombshell, Michael Bruener! Not only does he have the perfect bone structure for the lanky clown prince of crime, his tailoring skills deliver a tuxedo that you just can't pick up off the rack or a costume shop.

We were also impressed with Michael's John Constantine, someone who doesn't get a lot of cosplay attention. So as the winds of March bring in a blustery Spring, we hope you'll take a moment to enjoy Michael's unique cosplay and follow him on Instragram.

Critical Blast Bombshell, March 2017

Michael Bruener


The First Ever Critical Blast Bombshell of the Year is...




Not a hoax! Not a dream! Not an imaginary story! Yes, we're unveiling here and now the winner of our first ever Critical Blast Bombshell of the Year!

The Critical Blast Bombshell of the Month was an idea we had in an editorial brainstorming session that involved no alcohol. Starting back in July, we said we wanted to devote attention to some of the great cosplayers out there -- but we were going to be a little different about it. We weren't going for cheesecake (although we understand that you can't dress up like a fantasy character without running up against that), but for <i>people</i>, regardless of gender or body type. If you want that, there are too many other places on the Internet you can go to get it.


Valentine's Bombshell Lady Zero Will Stop Hearts

Lady Zero as Zero from Drakengard 3

February is a month that may be short on days, but it's big on heart (it does have Valentine's Day in it, after all!) And in addition to the holiday of love, we at Critical Blast want to make the month big on cosplay as well, and we can't think of a better way to do that than with the extremely talented and dedicated Lady Zero.

Drawing inspiration from video games like FINAL FANTASY, Lady Zero brings us her versions of Zero from DRAKENGARD 3 (seen left, photograph by Lexa One Photagraphie) and Kaine from NieR (below, photograph by Narcisse), this Canadian-based Poliish cosplayer puts her whole heart into her work, and it definitely shows in the results!

Happy Valentine's Day, everyone!

Critical Blast Bombshell, February 2017

Lady Zero


Ring in the New Year with Our First 2017 Bombshell, Dallas Bryant!

Dallas Bryant as Ram from Re: Zero Kara Hajimeru Isekai Seikatsu

New York may have dropped thet ball, but not us here at Critical Blast. It's a national holiday, but we're still set to continue bringing out cosplayers who deserve to have a light shined on their creativity and hard work.


Gallifrey Gift Guide 2016

Doctor Who Jacket

Who is coming for Christmas!

That is not a question I am asking you, but a statement I am telling you.

As traditional as a Doctor Who Christmas special and as equally looked forward to, a Doctor Who Christmas gift under the tree says you care about that person throughout time.

One gift in the DW gift catalog this year is a very trendy and smart looking, all material Women’s Navy Varsity Jacket.


Ho Ho...Whoa! Our December Bombshell Aidan Jay is Truly Explosive!

December 2016 Bombshell Aidan Jay: Rapunzel

Tis the season for cosplay! Don't believe us? Visit any of your local department stores and take a look. There'll be elves all over the place, not to mention a saint! And just because they're not carrying bows, arrows and swords doesn't mean they're engaging in any less respected version of cosplay. Heck, they're even getting paid for it, so that's something to aspire to!

To round out the year, we wanted to set up a bombshell who would truly blow you away -- someone who would explode off your screen. And we believe we've found just the one to make the end of the year pop!

Our December Critical Blast Bombshell, Aidan Jay, demonstrated a range of cosplay capability, from the demure princes Rapunzel (inset left) to the wise-cracking explosives nut from OVERWATCH, Junkrat (below). Check her out below, then follow her social media connections.


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