Fuelled by advertising and the expansion of nerd culture, cosplay has quietly but comprehensively taken over Halloween.

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Once was a time that people would only dress up as spooky shit. Ghosts, monsters, that kind of stuff. Which made sense, since Halloween has its roots in remembering the dead! These days, that adherence has given way to a desire to dress as whatever the hell anybody wants, which tends to mostly involve characters from pop culture. As this Owl Turd comic perfectly illustrates.

Not that there’s anything wrong with this! Some folks might get a little misty-eyed at a change in customs, but let’s be real: Halloween as Americans celebrate it has been a commercial celebration for years. It’s not like a bunch of kids running around in Transformers costumes—or celebrities dressing as characters from Space Jam, Marvel comics and The Simpsons—is desecrating anything.

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One of the coolest things about cosplay is that it’s not only open to everyone (from kids to adults), but that it allows for limitless expression of creativity and ideas. So don’t let anybody tell you that dressing as Rick, Morty, Captain America or Princess Leia instead of something supernatual is a bad idea, or somehow wrong.

Just...if you are, maybe realise that by recreating the costume/appearance of a fictional character, you’re not just dressing up, but you’re technically cosplaying. And you don’t need to wait until October 31 every year to do it!