I really hate my body clock. @_@
Barely shaving 4 hours of sleep, I woke up feeling haggard and with body pains due to mine not being used to walking around for hours in a mecha costume. But instead of working on fixing the costumes (the Zakus need major adjustments, we didnt test-run them to be worn for almost two hours and the, erm, crotch armor for both kept falling off) I decided to melt off the pain by dipping in a bathroom tub full of warm water. The water felt really good, I actually slept in the bathtub for an hour! Im glad my body was too long for the tub as my head was clearly above the water and over the rim, but I ended up looking like a crinkled raisin when I got out.
Since this was our last day and our scheduled flight out of Singapore was around 5:40pm later that day, we already packed our things and prepared to check-out the hotel by lunch. With the help of Melo and Dom, along with our roomies Rotch and Rael, we carried our bags to Suntec and arrived at the designated area assigned to us backstage.
Before going backstage, we bumped into some friends who were already in their cosplay costumes like Leanne and Judith (im not sure what you guys were cosplaying, sorry ^^;;) and of course, the Tux Team as well.
|Remember I mentioned that Melo and Dom helped us in carrying our costumes to Suntec? Yes, they were already wearing those costumes. XD|
From there we met AC and Zhel of Team March Omega, who were preparing their costumes along with the other contestants. We greeted them and gave them all our good luck and cheer and even showed them our message on our shields. Since we assumed we will be first to go onstage, we told them we'll be cheering for them when we do our catwalk.
|Robocon Cosplayer - Photo by Steve Yau|
|Jale Tecson as Megurin Luca - Photo by Steve Yau|
|Kioske Kazumi as Gakupo - Photo by Steve Yau|
Turns our later he wasn't one of the finalists of the RCC Singles Competition. He was Richfield Edbert from Indonesia cosplaying as a classic toku character Skullman, and he was to my surprise, one of the judges of RCC along with Kaname and Usagi!
|Photo from http://www.popcultureonline.net|
The surprises didn't end there. Just as I was halfway done, Jewel was suddenly shouting my name and frantically waving her arms. As I looked up I couldnt believe my eyes...
|= It was like standing beside the sun, burning with Spirits of Steel! =|
When Jewel bowed and said "Thank You", Aniki's eyes widened and exclaimed "Lady?!" where Jewel nodded and Aniki smiled was so wide it looked as if it could touch his ears! He posed again with other photographers with Jewel, said thank you and left for the stage. How I wished I was already in costume then, but Im already happy with a picture of his awesome pose with my equally awesome wife.
Recovering from those few minutes of fangasm, we finally wore our costumes and waited backstage. Now something weird happened: the schedule that we expected was switched! Instead of us being first, the RCC competition went ahead of us! That meant we might be able to watch AC and Zhel's performance! While waiting we went ahead and approached AC and Zhel and gave them lots of encouragement. They had their own fears about the outcome and situation, but we told them to simply give their best. Just them being here is honor enough and expect a lot of people out there cheering for you!
Now you'd think it would be awesome being backstage as the RCC went on, but it sure does suck when you can only see the back part of the stage. But the crowd reaction was awesome as the Philippine Team went up onstage and did their thing.
Even under the armor, just listening to the music and the skit, and listening to the crowd, my skin went cold and the hair on them stood in attention. I knew right then and there, that win or lose, we gave them a hell of a show!
Right after the RCC we were next, so off we went up the stairs and waited for the hosts to announce our names. One of the hosts was Danny Choo, and I was very surprised he had a good grasp (and tone) of English. I merely speculated that he wrote good english but never expected he spoke real well and with a tinge of British accent. He actually pronounced my internet name as "Eeeeeeeevaguy-zero-one!". I was second to the last to be called on stage, and as I exited the stage I turned around and waited for Jewel's turn. But then suddenly, Danny Choo announced that the RCC Singles Category is over and that the winner has been pre-judged and selected by the judges. But good thing his co-host corrected him and said they have one more. What miffed me was that he suddenly blamed his co-host for not telling him! I felt bad for the co-host but she held herself admirably and professionally and just went on with the show. Finally Jewel was called onstage and the crowd was not disappointed by her appearance.
Then the winners were announced for the RCC Singles Category. They were to give away 3 Merit Prizes of 100 SGD for Judge's Pick and then the Grand Prize Winner of 500 SGD and a Canon G12. All of the judges and their escorts and interpreters went up onstage, including Aniki. The three winners were the Sun Shang Xian from Sangokushi Taisen video game, Kaname Madoka of Magi Madoka Magica, and Robocon! Robocon even got a kiss from Usagi and a "Good Job!" pat from Aniki, lucky bastard hahaha!
I'd be lying if I said I never wanted to win. When we first started the Zaku project two months ago, it's because we wanted to experience cosplaying overseas. We wanted to be part of the Philippine contingent cheering squad for Team March Omega, a show of support for our Philippine representatives. Two weeks before AFA, we heard about the first ever Singles Category they recently set up for cosplayers who are not part of the RCC Pair Categories, so we thought why not join since we're already there? I guess you can count it as being lucky, since in order to be a finalist, you have to be discovered first. We didnt really know the scope of the territory the secret judges would be roaming around, so we really didnt expect to be found since we only walked within a limited area (exhibition area, butler cafe, and photo booths). We also thought the territory also involve outside the AFA hall, since I hear majority of cosplayers we're there. So i guess it may be luck that found us: the judges may have simply homed in on whatever crowd would form and took a peek. I think I may have understood the limitation: with high profile VIP's like Kaname and Usagi being one(?) of the roaming judges (I dont know if there were more going around) it would be sensible to simply go around the AFA Hall instead of the very public and very accessibly halls outside. Nevertheless, whether borne out of impressive craftmanship, audience impact or just plain lucky, I won.
|Thank you Steve for the awesome photo! - photo from Steve Yau|
You can see the whole RCC Singles Category from start of catwalk to awarding in this Youtube video by Kailitang65. Thank you for uploading this! :)
Judging from the video I guess I was still elated with what was happening, bowing here and there, and realizing I couldnt grab on to the placard, much less the Canon G12 that Aniki was trying to give me but found a way anyway. It was my 15 minutes of fame, considering its been years since I've been under the spotlight. My thoughts on how I got from deciding to build the costume to what I felt when I entered a contest after the longest time can be found in my other blog Pretty Fly for a Mono-Eye. If you tried clicking it and there was no response, dont worry, it only meant im still working on it, ehe.
As I walked backstage with Jewel I was congratulated by the AFA team there, whom I thanked profusely for assisting us onstage. And then I bumped once again into Aniki! I told myself im never going to leave this stage until I get an autograph! But lacking any form of paper or pen, I was desperate for something at least! Aniki probably saw my desperation and laughed as he asked his assistant to find him a pen. When he got one, I finally asked him to sign my Zaku helmet.
|Im never washing this helmet again!!!|
So we exchanged hugs and congratulations, but we had to cut it short because we needed to go. As some news people started interviewing them, we slipped away backstage with the help of some AFA volunteers who carried our stuff. I left our two Zaku guns with one of the volunteers and asked him to give it to Songwen as a thank you and the other gun to Clive for being our gracious host. Plus its also practical because we no longer have time to chop it up again and pray it passes airport security. Along the way I met up with some last minute reunion with some of my cousins who waited for us at the Suntec lobby and congratulated us for our win.
|My cousins Mathew and Timothy at Suntec!|
|Thanks again guys for a great time! Until the next awesome cosplay adventure!|
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