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Episode Recap: Throne Off

The cosplayers must create characters and costumes inspired by Game of Thrones


Get ready for another battle for the ultimate character in this week’s Cosplay Melee! The theme for this week’s contenders is the game of all games… the Game of Thrones! The first phase of their challenge will be to create an iconic weapon, chosen at random from a Bowl of Scrolls.

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Ruth draws the shield scroll, and makes a monstrosity with a baby dragon skull as its centerpiece. Her character is an enemy to the Targaryens, and she avenged her father’s death by placing the skull of the youngest slain dragon on her shield. She gets great detail in the metallic look of her piece, but Christian notes that the weathering (sword and battle slashes) are placed in a pretty uniform pattern.

Emily, who’ll be the first to note her small stature, is not afraid to go big. She draws Flail and makes a swinging weapon with six blades that is almost as big, end to end, as she is. Her character, Goditha, is a relative of the Starks sworn to avenge the Red Wedding. The judges love how much detail she was able to turn out in just 8 hours, but they would’ve liked a little more weathering and dirtying, especially on the fur handle.

Jennifer is typically a shy, nervous person, so she loves cosplay for its ability to transform her into powerful, forward characters. When she draws Crossbow, she knows she has to realize her dream of creating an elvish character. True, GoT doesn’t have true “elf” characters, but the Children of the Forest come pretty close. Her character will take after them. Her crossbow is gorgeous and intimidating, but the judges’ critique is the same as the one she gave herself: it doesn’t totally look like it’s made of wood.

Edgar draws the ubiquitous sword, and decides to change it up a bit by shaping it to look like an alligator’s jaws. The Wildlings use animal remnants in their weaponry, so he makes this a Wildling weapon by attaching mini alligator skulls and a swath of skin. He’s a metal worker so he’s able to make the jaws open and close, and the sword expand to twice its original length. Unfortunately, the aesthetic is not really in the world of any of the GoT families, and so he’s sent home.

That means Emily, Jennifer, and Ruth will head into the next round. Emily won the first phase, and earns a little boost for that. Each contestant will spin a wheel (Yvette dubs it the Wheel of Thrones) to determine which family their character will fight for. Emily gets to spin the wheel twice and decide which of the two houses she prefers. Her first spin is Dothraki, and since she’s not a fan of baring her chest onstage, and she doesn’t have a horse, she chooses her second spin: Wildling. Ruth spins White Walker (yikes!) and Jennifer, Baratheon. Then, they get to work. Two days to knock the competition out of the water.

Ruth was initially uncertain about how to make her character a Walker, but then realized that everybody dies, especially everybody in GoT. Her original concept of a dragon slayer can hold true, even if she’s undead! The judges love how much detail she put into certain parts of her costume (homegirl cut and sanded individual foam scales and laid them on like armor on her chest plate!). Unfortunately this means that other areas, like the shoulder armor, remain smooth and somehow lacking.

Emily also manages to keep the basics of her original backstory by creating a long-lost Stark relative who just, y’know, got experimental north of The Wall. Doesn’t mean she can’t still seek vengeance. She wouldn’t be the first Stark (or at least the first person with Stark blood) to do so! She wields that flail with flair, and though she be but little, yet she is fierce. The judges could’ve sworn she was an even twelve foot up on the runway.

Jennifer’s favorite aspect of House Baratheon is the stag on their sigil, so she incorporates antlers on a headpiece, and stag symbols on her wrists, shoulders, and skirt. She is sworn to avenge the death of Shireen Baratheon, and is armored literally down to her fingers to do so. The judges were a wee bit skeptical that an elf character could fit in this world, but it looks like Jennifer made it work.

As we know, in this cutthroat world of Game of Thrones, only the strong and the lucky survive. Fortunately, this isn’t Westeros, so nobody’s dying, but two will be eliminated. The judges have a really tough time, but the amount of detail and care that Emily put into her look were stellar. It didn’t hurt that her transformation felt incredibly dramatic. Congrats, Emily! You win!