There’s no mistaking a cosplay event –everyone is sporting luminous wigs and brandishing their odd, giant weapons like anime characters – except you.

That’s exactly what went down on 28 March when the annual J-Obsession Cosplay Competition kicked off for the 5th time with costumes ranging from your usual legion of Hatsune Mikus to a “homemade” cosplay of a guy suited completely in black carrying papers printed with Democracy and Anarchy graphics) inspired by the internet craze Twitch Plays Pokemon. The competition was part of a 3-day event organized by The Cathay to celebrate cosplay culture in Singapore.

With all the explosion of colors and “acting” going on, you’d think it’shard to stand out in a crowd this loud and chaotic but that’s exactly what the guest-of-honor and famous Japanese cosplayer Naoya Kirihara, did. Bursting on stage exuberantly in an intricate costume that probably has its roots in Indian culture, the performer from cosplay group VENaS.S (VENaS Sisters) appeared as a judge for a cosplay competition where 12 cosplayers got together all dressed up to perform and win.

Speaking of the competition, it was almost a non-affair of off-key singing and mime-dances. A trio of Kill La Kill cosplayers performing a scene from said anime won prizes worth over $10,000, which included a large-format ad of their cosplay displayed outside The Cathay.

The 3 cosplayers, who spent $100 each on their costumes, also won prizes for being the most popular cosplayer amongst the crowd.

Besides cosplay, the event also included live Japanese music performances, which included a great showcase by Malay singer Atrista singing in Japanese. In an interview with UrbanWire, Atrista said it was not unusual for people to be surprised by her choice of language in her songs.  “I’m Malay,  and I wear a Tudong [traditional Malay headscarf/veil for women] so you wouldn’t expect such a thing,” enthused Atrista, who can sing in Korean too.  Here’s to more unexpected surprises at next year’s cosplay event.