An interesting thing happened at Gen Con this year.  The young lady in the picture above walked by the booth, and I asked for a picture of her outfit.  After posing for the picture, she approached me with a business card.  This didn’t surprise me; costume designers frequently walk through the shows as walking billboards and pass out business cards after posing for a shot.

When she handed me the card, she said “come out and see me tonight.  I’ll be there at 8pm.”  I found that odd, but then I noticed that this wasn’t a card for a costume designer; it was a card for a strip club.

I’m not sure how I feel about this.  Generally, I think it’s great when someone is getting out there and selling the soap.  That said, I know that a lot of the shows are leaning more toward PG-rated, family programming. Some of the costumes are a little revealing, but revealing clothes by themselves aren’t necessarily bad.  I think kids are much safer seeing legs than a horribly violent, bloody outfit.  Still, I get squeamish at the thought of strippers handing out their cards at these conventions.

I find it funny that, in the era of no booth babes, roaming stripper babes are fine.  To their credit, I’m pretty sure the GenCon officials had no idea this was going on.  If they did, they probably would have squelched it.

That said, perhaps that is the solution that the booths need to come up with.  Instead of booth babes, they should pay for attendee badges of models, get them into the cosplay outfits, and have them roam the show passing out cards and other materials.  I saw an attendee at Origins last year dressed in a steampunk outfit and promoting a steampunk novel, and that seemed to work well.

Maybe strippers are then next evolution.  But I certainly hope not.