The forces of good and evil clashed in the streets of downtown Scottsdale, as an Epic Superhero Battle rocked the city.
The brainchild of Improv AZ, this event was part flash mob, part public improvisation. Participants were asked to download an mp3 beforehand, and show up at a staging area in costume at the designated time. When the time for battle was at hand, everyone pressed Play on their mp3 players; the mp3s were randomized to divide the group into heroes and villains. Following the instructions on the file, each group made their way through old town Scottsdale, taking time to freak out the locals and pose near local landmarks, until they encountered each other near the horse fountain and met in final combat.
Unlike many of the cosplay events in the area, where professional costumers show off their skill and dedication to their craft, this event was refreshingly low-key. Costumes ranged from a medieval knight to a Roman gladiator to a banana to a woman wearing her car’s sun screen as a cape. Attention to detail and realism were far less important than silly and fun. My personal favorite was the 6-year-old boy dressed as an Old West bandito, carrying a rubber chicken instead of a gun.
As a member of the supervillain team, we tried to remain stealthy, so we had to sneak from column to column so that we could avoid detection. As we passed the jewelry store, our villainous nature got the better of us, and we paused by the windows to wring our hands and make faces at the customers, much to the amusement of the world’s coolest security guard. We stopped at the horse fountains to plot a way to steal them, and then paused again in front of the wig shop to laugh maniacally at the site of all those severed heads.
We encountered the superheroes twice in our travels. The first time we clashed, we attacked them with all of our most evil weapons, and had them on the ropes until they started blowing bubbles at us. (It is a well-known fact that villains are vulnerable to bubbles.) The second meeting was a spectacular battle, with heavy losses on both sides, until we all decided to stop fighting and go out for a drink instead.
This event was a lot of silly fun for all ages. It was an opportunity to dress up, cause some chaos in the normally boring world of Downtown Scottsdale, and point a de-evolution gun at people while yelling “Pew! Pew! Pew!” in public. Props to the crew at Improv AZ for putting this all together, and I look forward to their next event.
For more pics, check out the Flickr gallery below: