I knew it wasn’t a normal trip to the library the second I stepped out of my car. I hadn’t even made it out of the parking lot before I spotted blue hair, green masks & red capes. I was there to return a book, but hundreds of others had shown up for the library’s version of Comicon.
The place was full of Trekkies, Cosplayers & Fizzleknots (okay, I may have made up that last one). There were men dressed as women, women dressed as zombies, and zombies dressed as homeless people.
All the hoopla caused me to pretty much sprint to the book drop off, as I was looking to get in and out as quickly as possible. As I was leaving the library, a man dressed in a full red and black costume walked up to the library’s automatic sliding doors. Two kids sitting out front started waving and yelling, “Hi Spiderman! Hi Spiderman!”
Only one problem…the man wasn’t wearing a Spiderman costume. He was dressed as Deadpool.
He turned to the kids and replied, “Deadpool.”
The kids kept on yelling, “Hi Spiderman! Hi Spiderman!” They weren’t giving him a hard time, they just didn’t know the difference between Spiderman & Deadpool.
And who can blame them. Look at the two pictures below. If you are not a huge comic book fan, it is easy to see how you can mistake the two.
But the man was none too pleased. It was clear that he spent a lot of time and money on his Deadpool costume. He was covered from head-to-toe and was even carrying pretend swords (at least I hope they were pretend). “Deadpool,” he kept repeating, but to no avail. The young kids either couldn’t hear him through the red mask, or had already made up their mind that he was Spiderman.
After a few more seconds of basically shouting “Deadpool!” at the kids, the man gave up and went into the library. I didn’t stick around to see what happened next, but here’s my guess…
The man entered the library and was instantly showered with compliments on his awesome Deadpool costume. He may have even won best costume for all I know, his gear was that good.
The man was finally in front of his right audience. And I am certain that those people, the ones who know the difference between Deadpool and Spiderman, would truly get him.
Our message won’t be received by everyone…and that is okay. Some people just aren’t the right audience. Often, like in the case of the Deadpool dilemma, we can do nearly everything right and our first impression can still be a dud. Spectators may think we are something else, or maybe they are confused by our message, or maybe they are just too young (or old).
For Deadpool’s sake, I hope the kids’ confusion didn’t ruin his afternoon, because I am sure he was a big hit with the rest of the Comiconers. He just needed some time to get in front of the right audience.