Some of My Favorite Superhero CostumesThursday, April 8th, 2010
The superhero has got to have the right kicks for the right job. Granted, some of them…well, they just don’t. Lady superheroes…I’m looking at you here. Now, I’m not trying to get anyone up in arms here. These are the costumes that I like, and I stand by them. There’s only one non-comic one on the list. There may be a couple missing that you think should be on here, and, that’s okay. No problem. It wouldn’t be a ManWithPez list if it didn’t piss off at least one person. Some of these are pretty specific to certain books, and I’ll list as is comes up. Some of my favorite costumes for superheroes after the jump.
1. Spider-Man – He’s my favorite superhero, and, to me there is no more iconic costume than Spider-Man’s. You see the man in this costume, and you know what he’s all about up front. (Well, maybe not wrestling, as that’s what the clothes were made for). Peter Parker has complained that his costume doesn’t offer a whole lot of protection, from beatdowns or the elements. At least he’s not wearing his Stark designed red and gold anymore. That was a hot mess, I thought. Before he left Spider-Man, writer J. Michael Stracynisky and artist John Romita Jr. posited that the Spider-Man of the future would have a different costume. We even saw an early design of it after issue #500, where it was introduced. Frankly, I just kinda hope things don’t go down that path, because I love Spider-Man’s look (Take THAT Venom!).
2. Superman – I’m not the biggest Superman fan around. You can ask anyone. Okay, don’t do that, because they don’t know me, and you just don’t know what might come out of their mouth on the subject. Again, this is one of the more iconic looks in all of popular fiction, and it’s a well designed costume, with Kal-El’s Kryptonian name right on the front of his shirt…you know…like a janitor would have. Frankly, the red underpants on the outside probably need a rethinking, but, I’m not above wearing such things myself, so, why wouldn’t the alien with a heart of gold wear the same thing. I had to include it here, because everyone, EVERYONE knows this costume. Even people who’ve never heard of Superman. It’s just that well known.
3. Black Cat – Switching back to Spider-Man for a moment, I’ve got to give it up to Felicia Hardy and her sexy, though oddly practical cat burgling costume. Yeah, I don’t know what the white fur on it is about either, but I know she looks hot in it. Beyond that, however, she looks like she’d boot your ass for you, too. And, probably make you feel good about yourself as she did so. It’s a nice costume with clean lines that’s just impractical enough that you know this particular character would wear it. So, I’m going with Black Cat over Catwoman in the better costume department. Just have Kevin Smith leave the character alone, and we’ll all be happy about it.
4. The Flash – My third favorite hero ever is in touch with the Speed Force, and has outrun a laser beam at one point. And, in this connotation, I’m talking Wally West’s Flash. There are differences in his and Barry Allen’s Flash costumes, but, they are subtle. At first glance, with it’s gold ear pieces and odd chest insignia, it seems like it would be the goofiest thing to wear in a fight. But, with blur lines and lightning flowing all about from the Speed Force, this costume becomes a force to be reckoned with. As does the person wearing it. And…it folds up into a compartment no bigger than a class ring. Which bears the question…when someone in touch with the Speed Force changes in such a fashion…are they just hanging it out there naked for a microsecond? Enquiring minds want to know. Okay, I want to know…and I’m not all that enquiring.
5. Mr. Incredible (Old costume) – I’m not talking about the red/black/yellow costume the whole family ends up with in the film. I’m talking about the kitschy, 60s, art deco looking thing that he tools around in the beginning of the movie in. Of course, once he wears it while overweight, it looks ridiculous, but what superhero costume couldn’t you say that about. I really like the colors on his old suit, with the black and the blue. The mask is a bit much, but, hey…you’ve got to protect that secret identity somehow. Then again, Bob Parr is HUGE! How could anyone not know it was him in that getup? Except maybe Clark Kent.
6. Wonder Girl (Armor from Wonder Girl mini) – While I’m not always the biggest fan of the character (she’s kinda batshit…literally! Take that as you will) I’ve always liked her normal costume. The oddly practical jeans and tanktop look. In her miniseries that came out a few years ago, though, Cassie Sandsmark was given a badass set of armor that complimented her without taking away from the Wonder Family she’s categorically a part of. I would love for that costume to become Wonder Girl’s go to costume, but, to date, the only thing she’s changed since getting it is adding long sleeves to her everyday jeans look. Still, a man can dream, can’t he. Wait…I didn’t mean he could dream about a teenage girl in armor…Oh bother.
7. The Rocketeer – This harkens back to why I liked the Mr. Incredible super suit so much. Cliff Secor’s getup, however, is much more practical. Leather jacket…that somehow keeps his ass from lighting up with a giant rocket mounted on his back, and that goofy looking, though again, practical helmet that looks like a hood ornament. The giant fin on the helmet is meant to be a rudder, so he turns in whatever direction his head is turned in. For all that, though, I just like the way the thing looks. It’s a beautiful costume that instantly takes you back in time when you see it.
8. Green Lantern (Kingdom Come) – Alan Stewart, the oldest of the surviving Green Lanterns, is given quite the upgrade in his look in the ultimate Elseworld tale that tells one possible future of the DC universe (since written off as occurring on an alternate earth). His armor might look bulky, but he certainly knows how to use it, and I like the idea of a Green Lantern in a knight in armor look. He even fashions a sword or lance or whatever the hell that thing was he had with him all the time. I’m unaware of the specifics of how his ring works in Kingdom Come, but typically, this GL’s ring was magic based. I’m sure there’s an explanation for all this in Kingdom Come which I haven’t read in years, but if you really want to know, ask @cootsdaddy , an old friend, comics afficionado, and forever champion of the Green Lantern.
9. Nightwing – Oh, we’re in the shit, now, ain’t we? How on earth could I include an ex-Robin on this list, and not Batman? Well, I’ll get to that in a moment. With it’s nice clean lines and given the fact that he can glide with it, it’s a nice change from his Robin days. However, that’s not to say that Dick Grayson didn’t run into trouble with the original Nightwing suit. The goddamn thing had FEATHERS on it for chrissake?! Dick is an acrobat and a fighter, and I like the look of this costume. It suits him, it seems to scare criminals in Bludhaven, and it does call to mind Dick’s history with the Batfamily, no matter if he wants to own up to that legacy or not.
10. Booster Gold – I absolutely adore the hell out of Booster Gold’s goofy costume! And, if you’re a reader of his comic book, you find out in issue 3, after Booster’s gotten a little drunk, that he once had a cape, and that asshole Superman just ripped it off him! For all that, however, I like the colorscheme, and I like the incorporation of the goggles and the star. It’s just the kind of thing you’d expect someone who used to have corporate sponsorship to wear. Along with using his costume to advertise, it also protects him. Not his sense of propiety, of course, but him, himself. Now, he’s THE GREATEST HERO NO ONE’S HEARD OF! That goes counter to the character as introduced, but it’s a nice look on him, just like his costume.
So, there’s a couple of things to think about, huh? Why isn’t Batman on this list? I’ll tell you. Everytime I see Batman, all I can think is that his costume must weigh 900lbs, what with all the shit he stores in it. In a fight, I’ll take Bruce Wayne over almost anyone on this list, but that batcostume has to be the most impractical thing in history. There are several other superheros out there whose costumes I enjoy seeing. For instance, Vigilante, Black Canary, Wolverine, Iron Man, Superboy, and Robin, just to name a few. But, I chose ten, and ten I’m sticking with. Besides, you can always write a story from another time and call is 1602, or Elseworlds, or M2 and make whatever changes to the costume that you want. It’s worked wonders over the years. Anyways…see you around!