We had the good fortune of connecting with AZ Deadpool and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Thanks so much for joining us. To kick things off, we’d love to hear what makes you happy.
Being a cosplayer can seem like a fairly odd thing to those who aren’t in the world of superheroes. Cosplay is something that, in essence, allows those of us who do it, to have an escape from any sort of negativity that may be going on in both our own personal lives or things that are happening in the wider world as well. Along with that, cosplaying has the opportunity to put smiles on faces. I’ve had people come up to me and say how something like my Sailor Moon and Deadpool mashup is so awesome and fun. Just those short interactions on how much they enjoy seeing it, gives me so much joy alternatively. That in itself is such a great feeling. I love being able to put smiles on people’s faces. With everything that’s happened in the world in the last few years, it can be increasingly harder and harder to find positivity. Being able to put smiles on people’s faces or just getting a good reaction out of someone absolutely makes me happy. But what makes me even happier than that, is seeing kids reactions. Especially when I put on my Spider-Man suit. Seeing the smiles and shock on their faces of “wait…he’s REAL?!” is absolutely priceless. On top of that, if the kids are super excited, I’ll get high fives which is just so much fun. The even bigger reward though is when some of them go straight in for a hug. Man, it just melts my heart getting a hug from a kid who essentially is meeting their hero when in reality I don’t have the ability to stick to walls or web swing or anything like that. Giving kids that bit of realness, translated from the movies they’ve undoubtedly seen, is such a great feeling that makes me happy because it makes them happy. Cosplay is a lot of things to a lot of people. I love being able to use it to interact with people and put smiles on their faces.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Well, I know I’m not the absolute most creative when it comes to cosplay since there are soooo many other insanely talented people. A lot of people legitimately build their own costumes from scratch. I’ve only bought mine. Which there’s nothing wrong with that either. Whether your costume is handmade or bought. As long as you’re having fun with it. But to get back to the question, my earlier posts were pretty simple in concept. Fast forward to today and my posts have definitely gone up in quality at least. For instance, going back to 2020, I dove into using Photoshop. I had never used it before but obviously knew about it. It was definitely not easy at first, but I’ve gotten the hang of it since! Learning to use photoshop has definitely given me more creative ideas as well. A good handful of my posts are me as Deadpool interacting, in some way, with also me as Spider-Man. I’m still learning on how to get the most out of photoshop and it’s honestly a lot of fun to learn different aspects and apply that to ideas for posts.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I talked about them a little already but for entertainment purposes, definitely go to Bookmans Mesa, located off of Country Club and Southern. They have used and new CDs, games, movies, comics, instruments, etc. It’s an easy way for me to spend a lot of money. Same goes for Atomic Comics! They’re out in the San Tan Village mall, located near the Harkins theater. Speaking of Harkins, the Harkins location at Arizona Mills mall has an IMAX theater and it’s the largest screen in Arizona. If there’s one way to experience a movie, it’s 100% through IMAX. Tickets do cost more for IMAX but I completely think it’s worth it. Food. There’s a comic and superhero themed restaurant out in Desert Ridge Marketplace. It’s called ComicX and they legitimately have some of the best burgers I’ve ever had. The entire restaurant is covered wall-to-wall in pop-culture goodness and statutes of heroes as well! Plus, almost everything in the restaurant is for sale too! So if you’ve ever wanted a life-size Hulk, Spider-Man or Batman, it could be yours to take home!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I wouldn’t be here if I didn’t have support from the likes of my family. Again, cosplay is fairly kind of strange if you’re not in the world of superheroes. But I’ve never had a negative thing said to me about doing cosplay from my family. My girlfriend (@tic.tac.toad) has been an absolute shining light in all of this too as she supports me anyway she can. That means the absolute world to me. I also want to highlight two local shops as well. The first one being Bookmans. Specifically the Mesa location off of Country Club and Southern. Bookmans is a shop that has used and new books, CDs, movies, toys, comics, etc. They reached out to me a couple of years ago to help promote Will Eisner week and I’ve been back to make more appearances for their shop ever since. I absolutely love working with them and their staff is nothing but helpful and supportive. The other shop I want to highlight is Atomic Comics! They just re-opened last year after being gone for 10 years and can be found near the Harkins theaters at San Tan Village mall! Right away I knew I wanted to help spread the word that they were coming back and they were so welcoming and everything nice and I’ve been able to do some appearances at their shop ever since as well! I like to be able to give back as much as I can to those who have helped me.