A majority of people know about or have at least heard about the tragedy at the twin towers of the World Trade Center, but cosplay at Atlanta’s DragonCon 2016 had apparently taken that memory too far. To this day the September 11, 2001, attacks are known as one of the worst man-made disasters on U.S. soil, and the event holds a degree of reverence to nearly all of us.
Two attendees showed up at DragonCon 2016 dressed in Twin Towers cosplay, raising the ire of many who witnessed it. The buildings were represented by boxes with windows painted on them, and brightly colored bags mixed with darker ones at the top, resembling fire, and others at the bottom colored to look like ash. Along with these decorations, there were Barbie dolls placed around the middle, made to resemble people falling to their deaths.
— Word of the Nerd (@TheNerdOnline) September 6, 2016
Perhaps the most tasteless part of it all were the red hats they wore, bearing the slogan “Make FishCenter Great Again,” a parody on Donald Trump’s campaign slogan. After some research, it appears that the two people photographed had nothing to do with FishCenter, a popular show on Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim block, and they’d simply chosen the hats because they were red and bore the parody slogan.
Some commenters on Facebook suggested that the two weren’t dressed as the falling World Trade Center, but as towers from an anime called Terror in Tokyo. Others claimed it was a reference to the destruction wrought by Godzilla. Unfortunately, the people in the costumes admitted that their cosplay was meant to represent the Twin Towers, according to attendees including D-Piddy, who regularly shows up to dance and act out shenanigans for YouTube viewers.
Owen Smith had confronted the cosplayers and confirmed that they were dressed as the World Trade Center, sparking controversy and tons of online hate as the photos went viral. Moderators at DragonCon 2016 in Atlanta stated that they had made an effort to remove the offending parties, but by the time they had been made aware of it, the two were already gone.
“We became aware of these individuals in the evening and dispatched both Dragon Con and hotel security to find them, pull their badges, and escort them from the property for violating convention policies. They had apparently left the Dragon Con convention area shortly after the photographs were taken. Based on other photographs we have seen, we do not believe that these individuals were members of Dragon Con, meaning that they had not purchased badges that would have allowed them to enter the convention.”
The Twin Towers cosplay offenders had claimed to be promoting something for Cartoon Network and Adult Swim, and only showed up for a controversial photo op. However, according to researchers, there were no results depicting the scene they represented in any recent or upcoming animated projects. One anime fan had stated that the scene came from “a Japanese anime that centers around two buildings that are being burned by demonic wraiths and during the climax, the victims in the buildings jump to their deaths.”
There was no proof that the Twin Towers cosplayers were doing anything at all to promote anything constructive. Probably the most positive thing they could have been doing was reminding DragonCon attendees of the tragedy which will see its 15th anniversary soon. They succeeded to making us remember the attacks on the World Trade Center, and that might be the only good thing to come from their display.
It appears that D-Piddy’s dance video won’t be the biggest news to come from the convention in Atlanta. The Twin Towers cosplay may be a sign that security will be rising in the wake of it, to stop people from doing this again.
[Image via Nicola Bertolini/Shutterstock.com]