1001 Black Men #819


This drawing comes from the way, way back machine known as last summer’s sketchbook. I was sitting across the aisle from this brotha, on the San Diego Trolley. This was during Comic-Con 2014. We were both riding from the Double Tree Mission Valley to the Convention Center, and I couldn’t take my eyes off his hat. It looked a little like the hat Fred Flintstone and Barney Rubble used used to wear to their meetings of the Water Buffalo Lodge.

In preparation for doing this post, I spent a few minutes trying to track down the meaning of this hat. I knew this brotha was doing some kind of cosplay thing, but I have looked at this drawing at least 20 times since I first made it, and I could never figure out the meaning of this costume. It wasn’t until a few days ago that I was finally able to track down the name of the character the headpiece in this picture was supposed to represent.

I have to share with you my process, because it’s just more evidence that the internet hive mind is smarter that us all. I did a simple Google image search for “furry blue hat with an x on it.” This brotha’s hat came up on the second screen of results.

It turns out that this hat is worn by the Japanese manga and anime character Tony Tony Chopper, human/reindeer hybrid who also happens to be a physician for the Straw Hat Pirates. The x on his hat is a medical cross turned sideways.

The brotha in this drawing goes into the Black Cosplayers Hall of Fame, with special honors for shameless commitment to a shape-shifting, child-sized genetic experiment. Huzzah!

Ajuan Mance

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