Comic Book Curious

Cosplay Corner: Lil Chaos

June 7, 2023

Cosplay as an art intertwines with various aspects of Nerd Culture and Sci-fi; it's not uncommon to see a cross-over or overlap, whether with Gamers and writers or cosplayers and gamers or the other possible permutations. This is the case with Lil Chaos, the full-time gamer who also cosplays, creating the best of both worlds. Imani, aka Lil Chaos, is a North Carolina-based Gamer and Cosplayer who has been cosplaying since 2019.

 Imani got the Nickname Lil Chaos after a high school talent show in which she break danced as her talent performance; it was a big hit and a shocker to everyone cause people didn't know she could dance or do stunts. "After the Talent show, I was approached by Y Not, which is Tony spelt backwards, and he wanted me to be a member of this group of creatives he was the leader of; they had singers, actors and the like, and I would be the first dancer" Imani Said, "I was required to have a nickname as part of the group, and I've always been a cheerleader, and my nickname on the squad was lil bit cause I was the smallest so I had the Lil part, but I was stumped on a nickname so I went back to Tony and told him what I had and he suggested Lil Chaos cause I caused a little chaos with my talent show performance" she explained. Since then, the name has followed her, and she's used it for almost everything. 

Imani started cosplaying in 2019, just before the pandemic, when she was invited by a friend to play Malina from Mortal Kombat in a Fan film. She was so in awe of the costuming process, from the special effects makeup to the costume design, that she began looking into doing it for herself. "The entire costume process was so fascinating; them doing the special effects makeup and fitting me for costumes to make me look like the character was so inspiring," said Lil Chaos.

Her first cosplay was of Nessa from Pokemon, which she dressed as for her birthday; she loves the character as she's somewhat similar to her and the only black character in a show she has loved since childhood. Lil Chaos is a full-time gamer, so she rarely has time to make her costumes, but she occasionally makes the props for her costumes to add personal elements to her cosplay.

When asked what the best part of cosplaying is, she said, " Embodying the character; Cosplaying is sort of an out-of-body experience where you get to be someone else. Taking on these characters is one of my favourite parts of cosplaying". Imani has the most supportive family and friends. "My parent's slogan is "if you like it, I love it" whenever I begin a new interest, they've been supportive throughout every phase of my life", she explained. When choosing a character to cosplay, Imani goes for characters she loves and those she can relate to on some level; character development is an essential aspect of her cosplay process.

Her favourite cosplay she's done so far is of Mitsuri Kanjiro, the love Hashira from Demon Slayer; it's a character that resonates with her deeply as she can see herself in this character on so many levels, especially when Mitsuri questions herself and her strength. A constant driving force for Imani on the tough days is the fantastic people she meets and gets to be friends with just because of cosplaying.

The 28-year-old is a force to be reckoned with in both the Gaming and Cosplay worlds. She's a fantastic cosplayer, and your eyes should be on her social media @xlilchaos.

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