Thor of Oz, aka Andrew Lutomski, is Australia’s answer to Thor.
It’s pretty easy to see why that is. Andrew cosplays as Thor and has an official license to cosplay as the Marvel character. I sat down with Andrew for a chat.
I have to admit, I was quite nervous to meet Thor of Oz for the first time. For those who don’t know, Thor of Oz is a cosplayer doubled as a fitness trainer, who’s actually called Andrew Lutomski.
From what I’d heard about him beforehand, I knew two things: that he’s big, and that he’s the best Thor look-a-like on this side of Midgard. And after some casual Instagram and Facebook stalking all I was thinking was ‘damn!’
To truly appreciate my mindset before I met the man behind the Asgardian, just check out these photos of the Thor of Oz.
It was a brisk Sunday’s morning when I met Andrew and my first thought was, ‘Okay, he’s not that big’. But then he stood up.
The next 10 minutes was spent finding a café, because it was a Sunday morning and it’s Melbourne, and what else would Melbournians do on a Sunday morning?
We settled down, he got his latte, me my hot chocolate, and then we began.
Thor of Oz – Basic Facts
Okay Andrew, to start off, we’re going to do a quick-fire round of simple questions so our readers can know some of the basics about you.
First thing’s first, how old are you?
“6’1 or 186cm.”
“89kg. I used to be 120kg when I was younger though.”
How much do you squat?
“Currently 100kg, but my max was 130kg with 4-5 reps. I don’t do 1-rep sets.”
Your favourite Beyonce song?
“I prefer Katy Perry but I’d to have go with XO.”
Team Cap or Team Iron Man?
“Team Iron Man. Tony is an arrogant, know-it-all, bachelor, entrepreneur, which is great. Cap is too much of a boy scout.”
Do you know what is the airspeed velocity of an unladen swallow?
Putting on his Thor impression: “I have it written down on a scroll somewhere from my years in Asgard University, but I can’t seem to recall at the moment.”
Andrew’s Thor impression was so accurate, that I sat in awe for an uncomfortably long time with my jaw dropped.
Do you have a Darryl?
“There’s no Darryl, but I have a lovely partner – her name’s Ellie. She’s nothing like Darryl though.”
Who’s your favourite character from Game of Thrones?
“It’d have to be Tyrion. Before him Ned Stark – Sean Bean is just such an excellent actor.”
“I have a Scottish Fold called Billy.”
A search later proved that Billy is by far the cutest cat I’ve seen.
What’s everyone up to this weekend? Billy is “helping” me do a few running repairs on the Thor armour. Thanks Bill!
Inspirations to the Thor of Oz.
As Thor, you’re a big hero to hundreds of thousands of kids in the world. Who are your heroes?
“Schwarzenegger. In my early years, Arnie was a big influence on me. My ‘go to’ line that I use quite often is ‘Get down!’ But you can never go wrong with ‘Get to the chopper!’.”
And then I learnt that not only does Andrew do a perfect impersonation of Thor, his impersonation of Arnie is even better! Andrew was also inspired by Arnold’s Pumping Iron, as well as the professionals in wrestling.
The Avengers’ Thor is about to face Ragnarok as well as prepare for Infinity War. What do you do as ‘Thor of Oz’?
“As ‘Thor of Oz’, I work for several companies to provide Thor as a character for events. Marvel gives out licenses of characters which can be used at corporate events and entertainment, even kids parties. This way I can be the Official Marvel Thor.
I’m also a personal trainer, and I promote health and fitness for the cosplay community. People are often inspired by their heroes, and if they get empowered, they’ll try and become healthier and stronger. I try help people achieve that. I guess that ties back to when I weighed around 120kg and how I wanted to be healthy and disciplined, and try and become like my idols in the WWE.”
Thor of Oz – The Personal Trainer
As the scent of a soft raspberry and white chocolate muffin wafts through the air, Andrew confides with me. He’d had a cheat night the week before and ate absolute garbage. Something along the lines of one and a half pizzas, nachos, drinks, macaroons, and ice-cream. My shame stopped me from confessing that his ‘cheat night’ was my average Saturday.
As a personal trainer, Andrew needs a holistic view about you. He needs to know about your lifestyle, your hobbies, your current training and diet, the number of hours a day that you’re working.
He gets this information from a survey he’d get you to fill, and from the results he can structure your life so you can achieve your fitness goals. But it’s never going to be a drastic change, it’s always going to be small steps taken which gradually lead to big changes.
“I’m also a Brand Ambassador for ‘Bulk Nutrients’. They back me in cosplay fitness, and promoting health benefits for up and coming superheroes.”
‘Bulk Nutrients’ is a company providing pure supplements and proteins – providing products ranging from weight-loss, to gains and growth, as well as endurance training.
“There are several products which help cognition. Cognotone helps my mental performance by improving concentration and clarity of mind. It’s caffeine based but is a blend of a lot of different elements like L-Carnitene, and 5-HTP.” (5-HTP is also called serotonin for those playing at home).
Andrew says that Cognotone helps with focus for studying and exams, but also gives you the edge for 12 hour long gaming sessions. Which is highly appealing to me as I have a small habit of absolutely dominating my friends in Civilisation 5. AND NO RILEY, IF YOU WANTED THAT LAND YOU SHOULD’VE SETTLED THERE FIRST. Anywho…
The Thor of Oz costume
I’ve had a look at your costume, and I must say, it is extremely impressive – who made it?
“The original build I used has been bought at least by a half dozen people from Skylar Cosplay on Etsy. They built the current armour from EVA foam which is light, firm and has strong plasticity making it easy to transport.
From there I got the cape from a seamster/sartor and my Mjolnirs from ‘Medieval Fight Club’ who make very good hammers – they’re heavy but also versatile.”
Apparently, this makes them excellent for kids to play with, without being too hard to cause any real harm.
Having looked up these hammers, I am sorely tempted to buy one – what is $69.95 for the power of Thor?
“The pants I got from a Russian who was selling his leather motorcycle pants. He loved to ride but his wife was having none of it.”
Moment of silence for this great-Russian-pant-fashionista’s motorcycle aspirations.
The challenges of being a Cosplayer
Do you think being a Cosplayer could be a potential avenue to ‘make it’?
“I reckon so. If you think about pop-culture, TV, wrestling, that entire community, they come together at these conventions. Cosplay is a big part of those conventions. If you’re well known, you can have a huge following.”
“Certain cosplayers can have a huge influence and will bring in revenue for the brands that sponsor them. In the last two years, and this is particularly focussed on cosplay, you can see that interest and participation at Oz Comic-Cons has gone up.
What are the challenges of being a Cosplayer?
The small details that people put into these costumes are amazing. I try to stay in character as much as possible at a con, but sometimes it’ll all go when I’m looking at the details on some cosplayers. So, one of the bigger challenges I have is keeping in character when you see some of these incredible cosplays.”
I remember attending this year’s Oz Melbourne Comic-Con and being blown away by cosplays of Wolverine and Drax.
Andrew started off his cosplay career fairly recently. Having been told he looked a lot like Thor, and certainly had the physique for it, he decided to give cosplaying a go. He grew out his hair, got his cosplay ready, went to some cons and had a lot of fun along the way.
“For me I started out cosplaying because it was fun, but it takes a special person to incorporate that into a business mindset. It requires investing time into it as a business, but it is possible. Laura Gilbert is an excellent example of how you can do it, as well as Yaya Han.”
Contacting the Thor of Oz.
If you have any more questions about Andrew or want to be involved in his personal training sessions, be sure to reach out to him on his Facebook page. Andrew is also available for events, roles and acting gigs.
And as for me, be sure to follow me on twitter @ElliMiller17 to keep up with all the adventures of Thor of Oz.
Digital Fox is working with Thor of Oz as part of the Digital Fox Cosplay partnerships programme.