Kobe Bryant’s helicopter crash costume sparks anger as it pops up at comic convention in China

Stephen Nartey June 06, 2024
Kobe Bryant/Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

One of the attendees of a comic convention in Hangzhou, China, has sparked outrage in the United States by wearing a costume depicting Kobe Bryant’s helicopter crash.

The unidentified man used plastic bottles, cardboard, and a Lakers uniform, and completed the ensemble with a Kobe Bryant mask. The costume has been widely condemned as crass and offensive, according to TMZ.

Despite the offensive nature of his costume, other attendees at the Hangzhou comic convention seemed unbothered as the man walked through the venue.

Outside the event, he reenacted the January 26, 2020, tragedy, drawing giggles from the crowd and prompting one attendee to snap pictures.

Reactions have been overwhelmingly negative since the video of the incident went viral. Fans of Bryant were outraged, condemning the imagery as gross and insulting.

“That’s vile. It honestly hurts my heart to see this. I hope the person feels shame and regret for this ‘costume,’” one user posted Tuesday.

“Nothing is funny about any of the women, men, or children that lost their lives in that helicopter crash. I have nothing else to say that would be remotely positive regarding this,” a separate user wrote.

One X user also expressed: “Out of line and disrespectful for this mockery of Kobe.”

The helicopter crash, which occurred four years ago, claimed the lives of Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and seven others, deeply affecting the NBA community and society at large. In the wake of the tragedy, tributes to Bryant, his daughter Gianna, and the other victims emerged nationwide.

Bryant is survived by his wife Vanessa, whom he married in 2001, and their daughters Natalia, 21, Bianka, 7, and Capri, 4. In February 2023, Vanessa and her family were awarded $28.85 million in a lawsuit over crash site photos taken and shared by responders.

Bryant, a five-time NBA champion and 18-time All-Star, retired after the 2015-16 season. The Lakers unveiled a statue honoring Bryant and plan to erect more in the coming years.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: June 6, 2024

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