16 Incredibly Impractical Superhero Costumes

By Rob Bricken in Comics, Daily Lists
Tuesday, December 29, 2009 at 8:00 am
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By Teague Bohlen and Kevin Mahadeo

Let's be completely honest here: comic characters usually never make the best decisions when it comes to their superhero costumes. Sometimes, it's simple color clashing. Other times, the character adopts a rather ridiculous gimmick and ends up running way too far with it (see recent Caveman Batman for taking motifs to a level of completely fucking nuts). Then there are complete fashion travesties. And we get it: times change and fashions change. It's why the X-Men wore bell-bottoms for a while or why Superman sported a mullet during the '90s. But every now and then, a comic character includes in their getup something that makes no goddamn sense.

We're not talking about a guy running around in a banana hammock -- and nothing else -- for no apparent reason other than some loose connection to water. We're not talking about a character that simply looks ridiculous. No, the people on this list apparently decided one day to completely forgo practicality and don a costume that defies logic, impedes the wearer in some way or makes no sense whatsoever... or a frightening combination of all three.

[Ed's note: I didn't write this, Teague and Kevin did. I just can't list two authors on an article yet. So don't blame/praise me, it's their damn fault. --Rob]


16) Wonder Man's Safari Jacket
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Simon Williams seems like a nice enough guy -- although he's a guy with terrible taste in clothes. His early costume, back when he was a barely reformed bad guy, was a pretty awful combination of red and green and the letter "W," but this was the early silver age, and so allowances were made. Not so for Simon's more characteristic togs from the majority of his Avengers years: the red safari jacket era. Besides restricting movement, trying to fight in that thing must be like trying to fight in a winter coat; you'd keel over from heat exhaustion and Ultron would eat your face. Besides, not even people on safari wear safari jackets.

15) Cable
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Oh my god, the pouches. Look, there's no fucking way Cable remembers what's in all of these pouches, and that's a liability (admittedly, Cable could have a secondary pouch-memorization mutant ability, but until Marvel says it out loud, we're assuming he doesn't). Surely there's been a few times when he's tried to find more ammo for one of his ridiculous guns and he's pulled out his car keys instead of bullets. There's a reason why Batman has a utility belt, Cable.

14) Vibe
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Ignoring the fact that Vibe is a complete Hispanic caricature named Paco Ramone, his street gang was called El Lobos, and he used to sell tamales for a dollar outside the Hall of Justice (okay, we made up that last part, but seriously). He is wearing parachute pants -- better for his breakdancing hobby, we suppose -- and a red bandana around his neck. Superheroes wear tights because it allows them unrestricted movement; parachute pants do not. And they only way Vibe could be carrying more of his own choking hazard is if he wore a chained sign around his neck which read "SUPERVILLAINS PULL HERE."

13) Rogue
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Spider-Man. Black Panther. Iron Man. All superheroes whose outfit completely covers their body. Note that none of them are cursed cursed with the ability to drain with a mere skin-on-skin contact, unlike Rogue, who carelessly runs around with her deadly noggin completely exposed. Hell, even an all-but-the-jaw mask like Batman and the Flash would be better. She's supposed to be a hero, but heroes don't steal your memory of 9th grade history if you accidentally graze her cheek while reaching for a hand-strap on the subway.

12) Jericho
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Most superheroes wear spandex, which is fine. It's also fine to go against that, and have them wearing something a little more realistic. But to dress them in something that would look garish at a Renaissance Faire? Yeah, that's Jericho. There's nothing in his backstory that makes him dress like the lovechild of Prince Adam from He-Man and Lemmy Kilmister from Motorhead, he just... does, and his blond muttonchops only exacerbate the problem. His outfit is so hideous it has to be a constant distraction to teams, which could be deadly during a battle.

11) Dazzler's Roller Skates
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The disco era was not kind to anyone, it's true. But seriously, for superheroing, the silver jumpsuit with the neck plunging down to your belly button should have stayed in the closet, along with your official Studio 54 coke spoon necklace (no wait, that's a disco ball, even worse). But the real problem is the roller skates, of course. All any supervillain would have to do to defeat Dazzler is to commit their crimes on shag carpets.

10) Tyroc
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It's a man wearing Dazzler's outfit, except without the leggings. This is the very definition of impracticality.

9) Razorback
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There's a reason that college mascots and theme park employees do not run around saving the day. That reason is a huge forty-pound fake head. Not only does it make it hard to see when it's on right, it's terrifically easy for a bad guy to simply turn it around, rendering you effectively blind. So this, too, is incredibly stupid. Yes, even if it has an electrically charged mane. Actually, especially if it has an electrically charged mane.

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