Soon Marina Bay Sands will be rolling out the Blue Carpet to welcome Joe Russo, Chris Evans (Captain America), Anthony Mackie (The Falcon) and Sebastian Stan (Bucky/Winter Soldier) to our sunny shores. As as Singapore’s mightiest (and kiasu-est) fans prepare their minds and bodies for one of the most anticipated queues in Singapore, we decided  to try and find some of Singapore’s uncanniest Avengers cosplayers.

When we caught up with #TeamCap over kopi, we spotted Spidey trying to sneak some photos for The Daily Bugle Straits Times, and invited him over for a cuppa too. It wasn’t too long before Iron Man and the Black Widow decided to crash the party. How he found out the location, we’ll never know (maybe he bribed the kopi uncle?). Fortunately we manged to prevent any table flipping that afternoon, and managed to find out a little more about what it takes to be one of Singapore’s Mightiest Marvels!


#TEAMCAP

Photo credit: Instagram @jaynewu
Codename: Captain America
Alias:  Captain America Jay Chou

How many suits do you own and are there any differences?

Currently I have four Captain America costumes and five shields. I always prepare one costume to represent each Captain America movie, and I am in the midst of preparing the Civil War version. I try to recreate Captain America’s costume designs featured in every Captain America movie. Each suit from the various movies is different. For example, the suit in The Winter Soldier movie, named the “Stealth S.T.R.I.K.E”, does not have red stripes on the front.

Why Captain America?

It started off in 2012, when I chanced upon a striking blue piece in a costume rental shop one day.  I liked the costume so I rented it for a company event. I was aware that it was the character Captain America, as I recall watching a 90s movie (with him in it). Subsequently, after cosplaying and getting into the character, I got to learn more about Captain America, and I agree with the values that he upholds. I wouldn’t say these costumes are easy to make or bring around, as wearing them can be rather tedious.

What makes your cosplay stand out from the others? 

I think it’s the consistent improvements I make, from the real metallic shield, and my sincere interactions with others. Having said that, I believe all Captain America cosplayers are equally outstanding. They contribute by promoting his values and beliefs.

What is one pet peeve you have about the costume?

It makes me hot; I mean it makes me feel hot physically.

Who would be your character’s natural rival in Civil War, and who would win the fight?

Captain America’s natural rival in Civil War is Iron Man, as he leads the other opposing group of superheroes with differing views.  I do not believe there will be a sole winner in any war, because both parties will have to make sacrifices and lose something important during the fight. But I think I would persuade Pepper Potts to be on my team. Then the fight would end in no time, because she would give Tony Stark a good scolding and instruct him to stop the fight with a pinch of his ear, LOL.

What is the most kick ass move your character has?
When he uses his vibranium shield to defend against Thor’s lightning hammer strike, which was depicted in the first Avengers movie.

Which team do you really want to be on and why?
Needless to say, #TeamCap for life!

Follow Captain America on Instagram @CaptainAmerica@SG


Ray-Hawkeye Portrait
Photo credit: Instagram @jaynewu
Codename: Hawkeye
Alias: Raymond Xperia

Why did you choose to cosplay as Hawkeye?

I’ve always admired heroes without superpowers. The costume has good mobility, and having a bow/arrow as a weapon looks cool.

Any tips for becoming Hawkeye?

Read the comics to understand the character, exercise and keep fit. Plus points if you and the character look-a-like. The toughest part is probably the voice, trying to sound like the character, and how the character would reply during a conversation. Those are tougher than posing for photos.

What makes Hawkeye standout?

His weapons. Most common weapons used are guns. Hawkeye’s primary weapon is a bow and arrow, which is probably the only one in Marvel Comics.

What are the best and worst things about your costume?

The leather jacket can get quite warm in Singapore’s humid weather, but it’s worth it when kids and fans recognise the character, and want to take pictures/selfies with me.

Do you think it’s  important  for people to physically match their character’s body type in cosplay?

Quite important, as looking like the character you cosplay helps, especially if you’re in a competition.

Who would be your character’s natural rival in Civil War and who would win the fight?

Black Widow, but she would probably win. Although Hawkeye would shoot to kill if he has to, and he can do it without looking. Haha

Why do you think Hawkeye is on #TeamCap?

Captain America would prefer not to fight if possible, to come to an agreement.

Follow Raymond on Twitter or Instagram @RaymondXperia


Codename: Winter Soldier
Alias: Thomas “Kouga”

How did you decide on which version of the Winter Soldier to cosplay?

I originally wanted something a little more mix-and-match, by mixing the comic and the animated style, but when the second Captain America movie came out, I found myself liking the design very much, and slowly the costume started to evolve in a similar direction.

Why did you choose this character?

If you’ve read the comics, the Winter Soldier is the next Captain America, after the death of Steve Rogers. As both a Captain America and Bucky fan, it is caused quite a headache when trying to choose between them, but Bucky was the better choice as he has some dark elements inside him

What’s the toughest part about being the Winter Soldier?

He has a very icy, cold glare, which is quite hard to maintain all the time. I wanted the costume to be as accurate as possible, from the wig down to the boots, so accuracy was a challenge as I had to figure out the fine lines between being reasonable and being anal. But it’s this accuracy that makes the costume stand out.

Who would be your character’s natural rival in Civil War and who would win the fight?

Funny enough, it would actually be Captain America. The Winter Soldier would always observe his enemies and memorise their moves, which allows him to predict their moves to win the fight. In a fight against Captain America, he would probably use a combat knife, like in the previous movie.

Why do you think on your character is on #TeamCap?

Again, contrary to his feelings and intentions, Bucky would be on #TeamCap because he feels that he is Captain America’s protector.

Which team do you REALLY want to be on and why?

#TeamCap. I’ve been a Captain American fan since young age, and Steve Rogers is sort of my idol.


Photo Credit: Tam Lum Hoe
Photo Credit: Tam Lum Hoe
Codename: Ant-Man
Alias: Ian Toh

Why are you drawn to cosplaying as Ant-Man?

I was inspired to make the costume because I felt the need to challenge myself constantly, especially after designing my Groot costume the previous year. My costume is a completely faithful recreation of the existing design, from the creation of a functioning helmet that opens up, as well as the use of pleather in the design of the costume. I even created a moving ant to go along with the costume.

How can we tell you apart from other Ant-Mans?

The amount of accuracy and life-likeness of the costume and the mechanical ant. Also the sweatiness, it can get rather hot in the costume.

Mr Brown as Ant-Man
Mr Brown as Ant-Man

Editor’s Note: We would like to point out that Singapore’s very own Mr Brown successfully cosplayed as Ant-Man during the premiere of the Ant-Man movie in 2015, and it was actually a pretty good rendition. But Ian Toh has shown that with a little effort and a lot of talent, he has proven his worth. Sorry Mr Brown. We love you, but this Ant-Man cosplayer is a better Ant-Man, hands down.

Did you have to physically prepare for your cosplay?

Yes, as I believe that cosplaying is more than just being in the same mindset as the character,  and you actually have to look the part. And if the character is fit, what better excuse then to exercise so that you can play the role better? I exercise at least 5 times a week, with two long runs and three football matches every week.

If Ant-Man were to pick a fight with someone on #TeamIronMan, who would it be and who would win?

Spider-Man, and definitely Ant-Man at his power level would be higher. Spider. Meet Boot.

Which team do you really want to be on and why?

I believe I would be in #TeamIronman. Ever since reading Civil War years back, I do believe that there needs to be a level of accountability no matter who or what you are. What would happen if someone powerful goes berserk? At the end of the day, superheroes are still liable to the people they serve and protect.

Follow Ian on instagram Iantoh


Codename: Scarlet Witch
Alias: Kie

Why did you choose the Scarlet Witch?

I’ve always liked Wanda and she’s been my favourite Avenger, although I never quite followed the Avengers so closely in the comics. This costume is a replica of the Avengers: Age of Ultron’s version of the Scarlet Witch.

Are there any pet peeves you have about the costume?

That everyone thinks it’s simply a plain red jacket and a plain black dress. It’s much, much more detailed than that. The leather jacket is tough! It’s a material that’s annoying to work with, and any references for Wanda’s jacket are very lacking, and I had to give the jacket a brown gradient. It’s so tricky.

Any tips for getting into character?

The movie version has Wanda speaking a Russian accent for one, since they changed up things from her comic counterpart, so I keep practiceing that Russian accent!

Who would be your character’s natural rival in Civil War and who would win?

The Vision.  I think it might be a very close match, since their powers come from the same source (ie: The Infinity Stones). Although Wanda would still be trying to figure her powers out, Vision might be still trying to come to terms with his emotions (potentially, some of them have to do with Wanda). Wanda would take advantage of any weakness that the Vision has, and any moment of weakness is an opportunity to strike.

Why do you think on your character is on #TeamCap?

Wanda herself was experimented on along with her brother, on top of suffering by terrorists using weapons made by Tony Stark. And then she got used by Ultron, another Stark creation. I’d say from all the ordeals she’s experienced, and how the Avengers have stopped all those calamities, that she would find it ridiculous to be under government legislation.

Which team do you really want to be on and why?

Knowing the comic arc and how it went, I understand Tony meant well, but his methods were not agreeable with me, so I would still be on Cap’s side.


#TEAMIRONMAN

Photo Credit: Ismadi Hussain
Photo Credit: Ismadi Hussain
Codename: Iron Man
Alias: Low Chern Siong

Tell us three things we should know about you, your cosplay and how you got into the hobby:

I am introvert, totally different from the Tony Stark character. I cosplay a variety of characters, from tokusatsu to the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but I have to say that donning the Iron Man armour just feels very different from the rest. I got into the hobby basically to fulfill a boyhood dream. When I watched the 90s Iron Man cartoon, I always felt that it would be cool to have an Iron Man suit, so now I have one, andthe sense of satisfaction is surreal. That’s why I chose to do Mark VI, as it is similar to the 90s design.

What went into making this costume a reality?

It took around one year for the costume maker to make this, and I spent around S$1000 on it. Maintaining the costume is tricky, especially around the waist, as it snaps off easily.

What makes your cosplay stand out from the other Iron Mans?

What makes it stands out is that I am very stiff in my costume. In order to make the costume look, my designer made it such that I am very restricted in terms of my movements, so I can’t do pose very big poses like other Iron Mans. Also, the suit is very warm and heavy, when I wear it, I sweat a lot inside.

One tip for keeping fighting fit?

Maintain a positive mindset. You can have the best body but if mindset is not correct it won’t help you.

What do people need to know about keeping fit and cosplaying?

They always feel that when portraying superheros, you must be build like a bodybuilder, with very lean cut abs and muscles. So it becomes an obsession, and it starts to affect their daily life which is not a good thing.

Who would be your character’s natural rival in Civil War and who would win?

I feel it would be Captain America, as I feel he is too righteous, and not willing to take shortcuts when needed. Iron Man would win of course. Because Captain America just has a shield. HAHA. Iron Man would use his ability to out think and out smart his rivals, and break Captain America’s shield.

Which team do you really want to be on and why?

TeamIronman, as Tony is charismatic enough, and I would really be interested to see him talk his opponent to death. LOL.


Photo credit: Vaxzone
Codename: Spider-Man
Alias: Kenneth “Lilaeroplane”

Spill the beans on your costume and how you get into character:

My costume is designed based on Andrew Garfield’s The Amazing Spider-Man 2 suit. This is actually my second suit. My first was a Tobey Maguire Spidey suit. Beyond getting the spandex suit, I also got a dance belt and face shell, to enhance the overall look. To get into character, I Googleg images of Spider-Man, picked out a few poses and practiced them in front of the mirror, until I nailed them and the poses started coming naturally.

So, how do we know which Spidey is you?

There are a number of Spider-Man cosplayers in Singapore, and one way I recognise myself in group pictures… other than the costume version… is from my build. I’m not too skinny nor do I have a bulging belly (yes, it takes effort), and I’m actually the same height as Peter Parker, who is 5’9. I have pretty broad shoulders, and that gives the illusion of a V-body shape.

What’s the best cosplay feeling?

When kids hug me…it’s the best. The sparkle in their eyes and the smiles on their faces when they see me as Spidey really melts my heart.

How do you maintain a spandex-ready body? 

By keeping myself in shape, making sure I’m not bloated, too full, and I control my water intake. I also keep myself as flexible as possible, since Spider-Man’s poses can get pretty challenging sometimes. I go to the gym 4-5 times a week, and I plan my workout in such a way that I target every body part at least once each week. I also moderate my diet slightly, to ensure I don’t have a belly.

Any thing people should know about keeping fit and cosplaying?

Keeping fit is a lifestyle. You can’t workout once a week and expect to see any difference. You need at least 3 times week, and it’ll take about 3-12 months for some satisfactory changes. Running may burn calories, but weight training actually burns more. Girls shouldn’t worry about building too much muscles either. If it was that easy, everyone could cosplay a perfect Rambo.

How important is it for people to physically match their character’s body type in cosplay and why?

Cosplay is for everybody, regardless of gender, ethnicity, race, religion and body shape. But I think it’s  very natural (fortunately or unfortunately) that people will judge. Some cosplayers are perfectionists when it comes to details on their costume, and it may apply to creating the ideal body shape for the character of their choice, in order to do the character justice. Is it important? Not necessarily. Cosplaying is also about portraying a character, to be as close as possible to the source material, but its also about having fun. Afterall, it’s a hobby. If Jack Black cosplayed as Batman to a con, everyone would shit bricks and go, “OMG Jack Black is the coolest guy and so down to earth!”. But if he were to be cast as Batman for a movie, everyone would shit bricks and say, “NO! NO! NOPE!”. However, I would always encourage getting into shape anyway, because its damn good for your health anyway!

Who would be your character’s natural rival in Civil War and who would win?

Iron Man would be my rival in Civil War. Although it’s seen in the trailers that Spider-Man is on Team Iron Man, it is well-documented in the comics that Iron Man is a douche bag.  As to who would win… SPIDEY OF COURSE!  Spider-Man may not have the wealth of Iron Man, nor the resources, but he has natural agility, superhuman strength, his Spidey-sense, as well as an intellect that is above the average bloke.

Which team do you really want to be on and why?

Hehehe. Ironically, #TeamIronMan… imagine the penthouse parties LOL. Spidey could use some funding too.

Follow Kenneth on Instagram or Facebook @Kenneth_Lilaeroplane


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Photo credit: Yuen Xiang Hao
Codename: Black Widow
Alias: Hana

Tell us about your new suit.

I followed very closely to the art work and Hot Toys figurine, with some references from the movie. I changed up the sleeves from the movie stills, as the sleeve fabric seems to have no stretch. So I decided to add a scuba fabric panel on the underside, making it is easier for me to move about. I also referred to the Black Widow costume from Age of Ultron and Captain America: Winter Soldier, for little bits here and there. It always has been, and always will be, that I have to be in love with a character so much that I would cosplay her. I  love strong female characters who are strong, and would kick ass if she wanted to.

Did S.H.I.E.L.D give you your suit, or did you make it?

I tend to be a perfectionist in the costumes I make. I never liked the idea of doings things half-baked, or making it look half-baked. Planning and sourcing start as early as a year to 6 months, then at the last two months, I will start to fabricate everything.  The most challenging part is props making for sure. I tend to be too hard on myself, but I can’t let go knowing there is a flaw somewhere on the prop.

Is it tough being the Black Widow?

I  love strong female characters who are strong, would kick ass if they wanted to, so I don’t think it is tough for me as long as I put my heart and soul into it, and tried my best to be that character for a day. I think I stand out from other Black Widows because I pay a lot of attention to hair and makeup, details and accuracy. Right now, I am trying to work harder on the martial arts aspect.

What are your best moments in costume?

Mostly having a great time with friends, networking and getting to know more people. And having great photos taken is a good bonus! But I don’t always expect that. The human connection is always more important.

How do you maintain your action-ready body?

I used to do Muay Thai a bit. I usually do weight lifting, and work on areas which I need to pack on more definition, like my legs and glutes. I also take a lot of protein, and subtract the sugar.

Who would be your character’s natural rival in Civil War and who would win?

Personally, I feel no one. From watching the trailer, Natasha seems to have taken on a neutral stand. But if there was a fight, she would win by keeping her enemies close, by observing, predicting, strategising and striking when it is necessary.

Which team do you really want to be on and why?

I love everyone of them. It would be better that they would work everything out . But if I was forced to pick I would be on Captain America’s side

Follow Hana on Instagram or Facebook @Hanahearts


So, who’s side are you on?

Photo credit: Instagram @thisishowstanrolls

Top feature pic by Instagram user @jaynewu


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Victoria

Victoria

Victoria is a consummate dragon trainer fueled by ice cream and cake. A huge cartoon, tokusatsu, bronze and modern age comics fan, she aims to one day use her cosplay skills to become a spy like Sydney Bistrow.