David D’Angelo laments how he was “disqualified” from winning the Cosplay Solo Showdown; Cosplay.ph head dismisses allegations.
Controversy erupted at one of the contests of Cosplay Mania 2013 as a cosplayer vented his frustrations over his supposed “disqualification” from winning a category in the Cosplay Solo Showdown held last Saturday, the first day of the event.
David D’Angelo, more commonly known in cosplay circles as “Master Pogi” and the honcho of Naruto Cosplayers Philippines, expressed his dismay over his disqualification because of a rule barring participants from leaving the holding area of the event, which was held at the SMX Convention Center-Manila Function Room 5.
In a Facebook note shared yesterday, D’Angelo explained the reason why he left the holding area right after the Cyberzone Cosplay Grand Prix, owing to his stomach ulcer due to personal problems. He cosplayed as Kratos from the game God of War II.
He said that he informed a certain “Emman” and a girl at the holding area who asked her where he will go.
“I am already feeling pain in my stomach and it aggravated. Then, I decided to eat. I get my money from Ashley’s mom who was holding my wallet for me and told her that I will eat. I even informed Emman and even the girl watching at the holding area who asked me where I am going. “Masakit na talaga tyan ko kasi may ulcer ako… kakain lang ako.” (“My stomach is already hurting because of my ulcer, I have to eat”) On the way to eating I saw Don Robert Torio and even told him that I will just be eating in case the announcement was made.” D’Angelo said.
D’Angelo then went back to the event area to find out that he was already being looked for by the Organizers,
“I hurriedly went back to the event center and I was informed that the organizers were looking for me…. There I was informed by Sir Guy Singson that I won the Heroic Hybid Category but since I am not present during the awarding they have to give it to someone else.” he added.
The Heroic Hybrid category was given to Francine Aquino, who cosplayed as one of the Big Sisters from the game BioShock 2.
D’Angelo said that he was disappointed about his being disqualified, more so that his disqualification was because of leaving out in the hall just to eat.
“When the event ended, all my effort and hard work was destroyed right in front of my eyes just because I have to eat due to my ulcer” D’Angelo ended in his post.
In a message sent to ZEN Otaku Honbu, Cosplay.ph Organization Head Pablo Bairan dismissed all allegations made by D’Angelo on his note, saying that there is an ongoing investigation regarding the matter and Cosplay.ph Director Guy Singzon will release a report.
Bairan said that all of the contestants were informed by Singzon that they should be present and in full costume for the awarding of the winners or they would be disqualified even before the stage performance.
He also said that “Emman,” the marshal named by D’Angelo in his note, was not around at the venue, and he never informed any of the organizers, production team or even the staff that he will leave the area.
“He could have simply informed any one of these people (rather than a person who was absent) that he was leaving for a while because of a medical condition” Bairan said.
He also added that there were food stalls in the venue that sell affordable food for the eventgoers thereby negating the need for him to go down. He says that he “could have asked either of them to buy food for him”, adding that food such as crackers, bread and rice would be enough to calm down the pain of ulcer.
Further, Bairan said that Singzon did not tell D’Angelo about his “disqualification”, adding that his statement was always being changed.
“At first, he told me he had told an organizer that he left the area (all organizers are clearly indicated by their event ID’s). When checked with the organizers and confirmed that he did not inform them, he then stated that he actually told Donrobert Torio who was a contestant and the mother of Ashley ” Bairan said.
They are now in the process of securing sworn affidavits from the individuals involved and attendance records.
ZEN Otaku Honbu is still waiting for Mr. Singzon’s reply to the query as of press time.
EDITOR’S NOTE: The original article states that the competition was the “Cyberzone Cosplay Showdown”, but a message on our facebook page has told us that it was the “Cosplay Solo Showdown.” Also, according to the message, “Emman” was not a marshall but also a cosplayer. We apologize for the error.
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