From Page to Screen: The 6 Best & Worst Superhero Costumes

Published 4 years ago by , Updated August 9th, 2013 at 6:19 pm, This is a list post.

George Clooney, Chris O'Donnell & Alicia Silverstone as Batman, Robin & Batgirl Not every superhero outfit drawn in the pages of a comic book looks great on screen. Some can be replicated exactly from the printed page to movie or TV set and look great with not a hint of cheese to be found - others, not so much. Should costume designers take liberties when replicating a superhero's outfit, as they did with Elektra? She would have looked pretty funny (albeit sexy) running around the city wearing just a red bandanna cap and straps covering her womanly parts. Or should designers stick to replicating a superhero outfit as faithfully as possible to honor the comic book, as they did with Supergirl? Her outfit was almost directly copied from the comic book page - but somehow the end result looked... less than great. While all of us at Screen Rant worked together to compile this list of superhero outfits we felt were the best and worst to make the leap from page to screen, some of us didn't entirely agree with every choice. So we created a “Special Mentions” section at the end with the superhero outfits we felt could go either way.

Best #6: Batman (2005)

Christian Bale as The Dark Knight When director Christopher Nolan decided to make a more realistic, dark and gritty version of the Caped Crusader, the look of the crime fighter’s costume was very important. It had to be both aesthetically appealing and at the same time remain faithful to the world his story had created. While not an exact duplicate of the original comic suit, Nolan’s Batman looks close enough to snag our #6 spot.

Best #5: The Watchmen (2009)

Malin Akerman, Billy Cudrup, Matthew Goode, Jackie Earl Haley, Jeffery Dean Morgan & Patrick Wilson as The Watchmen Adapting Alan Moore’s graphic novel was a risky move for director Zack Snyder; even if he managed to coherently tell the story of Watchmen (which many believed was impossible onscreen), if he wasn’t able properly replicate the individual superhero outfits, then the whole movie would have been rubbish. Fortunately for fans, the outfits for The Comedian, Nite Owl, Dr. Manhattan, Silk Spectre, Ozymandias and Rorschach all turned out looking great, while managing to avoid the dreaded “Cheese Zone.” Personally, I thought Rorschach’s outfit was done the best, but I could have used a little less of Dr. Manhattan’s “big apple.”

Best #4: Hellboy (2004)

Ron Perlman as Hellboy While not technically a suit, the look of Hellboy was absolutely essential to the film. If he wasn’t the proper shade of red or his trench coat didn’t look right, then the whole character would be garbage. Lucky for us, Guillermo del Toro and his design crew were able to replicate the character's look exactly. His cool, awesome and overall bad-assery lands Hellboy squarely at #4.

Best #3: Captain America (Avengers version)

Chris Evans as Captain America Director Joss Whedon had to handle the modern version of Captain America's outfit very carefully. Done wrong it would look silly and out of place. Fortunately, he managed to achieve the iconic look from the comic books without crossing over into the realm of cheesy. All the pieces of the classic Cap outfit are present - the emblazoned star on his chest, the stripes on his on his uniform, the "A" and wings on his helmet and of course, the nearly indestructible shield in his hand.

Best #2: Iron Man (2008)

Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man Taking its cues from the Adi Granov post-Extremis version of Invincible Iron Man, as opposed to the original Tales of Suspense version, the Iron Man movie armor was made of individual pieces instead of being "micro-mesh" armor that would have looked like a red and gold Oscar statue on the screen. Considering how bad the Iron Man armor could have looked and how well it actually turned out - while at the same time remaining faithful to the original - makes it all that more amazing. For those reasons, the Iron Man armor easily takes our #2 spot on the Best Outfits list.

Best #1: Spider-Man (2002/2012)

Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire as Spider-man Spider-man has had an unfair advantage over the other superheroes on this list. Other than Superman, he has had the most chances at having his superhero costume properly recreated. The first few attempts fell woefully short - and if the attempts had stopped there, then Spider-man would be spinning his web in our top 6 worst outfits. However, both Sam Raimi and Marc Webb managed to take full advantage of their opportunities and did not disappoint fans (as far as the suit goes). They were able to make Spider-man look like he walked straight off the comic book page and onto the screen - and for that reason, Spider-man crawls his way into our #1 spot.

The Worst Superhero Movie Costumes

Nicolas Cage as Superman and Helen Slater as Supergirl Like spotting Leonid Stadnyk (the world’s tallest man) in a crowd of Oompa Loompas, recognizing bad and often silly recreations of superhero outfits on screen is easy to do. There are, of course, some really bad outfits from characters that never actually existed in comics, such as Hancock, Blankman, Meteor Man and Handi Man; but we aren’t talking about those. Check out our list of the worst superhero outfits replicated from page to screen.

Worst #6: Hawkman (2010)

Michael Shanks as Hawkman When the CW network announced last year that Hawkman would be joining Clark Kent on an episode of Smallville, the whole fanboy universe giggled in anticipation. When the first picture of Hawkman finally hit the web, the whole fanboy universe groaned with disappointment - and with good reason. He had the wings, he had the helmet, he even had the mace - but then they gave him a chest piece to wear under the straps and that’s where they lost it  (apparantly he didn't even NEED the wings to fly, they were just decorative). Poor Hawkman, he’s supposed to be a bad-ass alien-being feared by evildoers; instead people just laughed at him (and maybe that's why he was always so angry).

Worst #5: Fantastic Four (1994/2004)

Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis, Alex Hyde-White, Jay Underwood, Rebecca Staab, & Michael bailey Smith as the Fantastic Four This was a case where following the comic outfit too slavishly turned out goofy and not even close to cool. Sure they opened up Invisible Girl’s neck piece to show off her cleavage and The Thing’s “rock suit” was pretty darned good but honestly, all the characters in their sleek blue accessory-less jumpsuits just looked silly. The outfits could have been so much better but instead suffered from lack of designer imagination. Of course, Roger Corman's version of the outfits wasn’t any better (bottom right pic).

Worst #4: The Phantom (1996)

Billy Zane as The Phantom There’s not really much to say about The Phantom’s outfit except that it’s very, very purple which makes it look very, very silly on screen. On page, the costume pops to life as he gallops through the jungle driving off poachers, illegal treasure hunters and all-around bad guys. This is another case where the exact replication of the superhero’s outfit does not play well on screen. The Phantom should have been a seriously cool character to watch, but instead most people just thought it was Barney wearing a mask and wielding some pistols.

Worst #3: Batman/Robin/Batgirl (1997)

George Clooney, Chris O'Donnell & Alicia Silverstone as Batman, Robin & Batgirl There have been many attempts at bringing Batman and Robin’s superhero costumes to life, going back as far as the 1940s. Although the early renditions were very campy, they pale in comparison to the replicas in modern movies. Tim Burton’s first two films had the Caped Crusader dressed in a simple black outfit with a yellow bat symbol on the chest (cool),  but when Joel Schumacher got his hands on the outfits, it all went downhill (big time). Not only did he give us the ridiculous-looking “Chrome Knight” but he will forever be known as the guy that gave the world the infamous “bat nipples.”

Worst #2: Green Lantern (2011)

Ryan Reynolds as The Green Lantern We once pondered the question "Would Green Lantern's all CGI costume ruin the movie?" While a lack of cohesive story telling was this movie's ultimate downfall, the suit certainly didn't help. The green hued digital skin suit made Reynolds' athletic frame look anemic. Then there's the mask - oh the mask! - it could win a "Bad Award" all by itself. Apparently $200 million dollars doesn't buy what it used to. Let's hope the inevitable reboot is better.

Worst #1: Steel

Shaquille O'Neal as Steel There are so many things wrong with Steel’s outfit it’s hard to figure out where to start. His armor looked like a cross between Robocop and a medieval knight. It could have been a really cool look if the costume designers didn’t have to make it fit around Shaq’s gargantuan body. To make things worse, they made him wear a ridiculous non-fitting helmet and turned his hammer into a laser rifle with a scope. There are dozens of bad superhero outfits brought to life onscreen, but in our opinion Steel’s is the worst offender of the bunch.

The Fence Riders

Spawn, Ghost Rider, Kick-Ass The following 7 superhero outfits are ones we just couldn't agree on. Should they be considered good or bad replications? Arguments can be made for either case. Take a look at our choices, then tell us what you think.

Special Mention: The Flash (1990)

John Wesley Shipp as The Flash This is one of my personal favorites and if I had my choice it would top the "Best" list. The Flash TV show itself from the 90s didn't last more than one season, but when you compare the two outfits side-by-side, is there any doubt that the designers nailed the replication from comic book to screen? Since we all know that Michael Cera has NOT been cast as The Flash (heh), it will be interesting to see what direction Greg Berlanti and DC go with the next Flash costume.

Special Mention: The Tick (2001)

Patrick Warburton as The Tick The Tick was one of those superhero outfits that just shouldn’t have worked in real life. Bright blue and skin tight with two big antennas on his head, no one would have thought twice about listing it as one of the worst costume replications of all time. However, when The Tick made his first live-action appearance on TV, most everyone was extremely pleased with how it turned out. The only real complaint was the lack of a mask on the superhero, but that’s a minor gripe.

Special Mention: Daredevil (2003)

Ben Affleck as Daredevil The Daredevil movie stirred up a lot of controversy for making the costume out of leather and not the traditional spandex. Although the big screen version of the outfit was a darker shade of red and had the logo in a different place, the actual replication of the suit and weapon were fantastic. Too bad the designers didn’t put as much effort into replicating Bullseye’s costume.

Special Mention: Thor (2011)

Chris Hemsworth as Thor Thor's outfit should have been really dumb but director Kenneth Branagh succeeded more than failed in his replication of the God of Thunder's costume. While he is in Asgard, nothing about Thor's costume really appears to be silly. The red cape, magical chain mail armor and even the pants, all worked great on screen. The best part about his outfit, though, is his hammer the mighty Mjolnir.

Special Mention: The Punisher (2004)

Thomas Jane as The Punisher The Punisher’s costume doesn’t have whole lot going for it to begin with; all you need is some black tights, some guns and the familiar white skull with long teeth on the chest and you’re all set. The problem with the movie’s replication of the outfit was it used a t-shirt to show off the skull and the addition of the trench coat is also a little off-putting. In Punisher 2 both problems were fixed by spray painting the skull onto his body armor and ditching the trench coat.

Special Mention: Superman (2006)

Christopher Reeve & Brandon Routh as Superman Is there anything more iconic in the superhero movie world than the blue tights, red briefs and cape of the Man of Steel? I don’t think so. Any director wanting to make a movie based on the legendary hero absolutely must keep to the original concept of the suit. Any deviation, like making the cape green and the tights purple, or dropping the cape altogether, would make the character, well, NOT Superman (are you listening, Tim Burton and Zack Snyder?). Just like Schumacher gave us bat nipples, Bryan Singer gave us the Calvin Klein Superman outfit.  The blue tights were fine and the darkening of the red in the outfit really wasn’t enough to make the costume bad. What really made this replication bad were the low rise briefs, short boots and small raised “S” on his chest and belt. Take away the blue tights and it would look like Superman was ready to swim the freestyle medley next to Michael Phelps.  

Special Mention: X-Men/X-Men: First Class (2000/2011)

The combined casts of X-Men and X-Men: First Class In 2000, Bryan Singer had the opportunity to make the superheroes from comic books accessible and popular to the mainstream audience with X-Men. It was a chance for him and the studio to show the general public (other than fanboys) that superheroes could be cool and not cheesy. Putting them in their traditionally recognized yellow, blue, green and black spandex costumes would have not been the proper way to go. While he was able to achieve the goal of reaching a wider audience and set off a trend of superhero films, the look he went for replicating the outfits was way off of the original X-Men costumes, except for Professor X. However, director Matthew Vaughn proved that colorful and somewhat "comic-correct" X-Men outfit were possible in X-Men: First Class.

The 6 Best & Worst Superhero Costumes

Ozymandias, Silk Spectre II, Rorschach, Nite Owl, Comedian, Dr. Manhattan from The Watchmen Well there you have our recommendations for the Best and Worst superhero costumes brought to life on screen (big and small), as well as a few where we had both good and bad votes behind the scenes. There are quite a few superhero costumes that we didn’t mention - Ghost Rider, The Green Hornet, The Shadow to name a few - that you might think deserve to be on one list or the other. Feel free to tell us about them below. Remember though, we are talking about SUPERHEROES and not SUPERVILLIANS. That is a whole different argument. :) Follow me on Twitter @MoviePaul
TAGS: batman, captain america, daredevil, fantastic four, green lantern, hawkman, hellboy 2, iron man, spider-man, superman, the avengers, the flash, the punisher, thor, wonder woman, x-men

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  1. Really… the X-Men suits totally didn’t bug me since they were Grant Morrison inspired (New X-Men) and, let’s face it, looked more tactically useful than canonical wasp-colored tights on Wolverine, bright green on Rogue, and… well, Storm wore leather a lot so that wasn’t much of a stretch.

    The X-Men: First Class was the embodiment of pure evil to me, and I’m willing to stretch. The costuming was absolutely AWFUL. They had the White Queen and Moira prancing around in costumes that should have been sexy, but looked like they were barely hanging on to those bony asses. (There was no Booty Joy in Mudsville THAT night, let me tell you.) I absolutely agree the work on the Beast was atrocious, but they mixed (again) Grant Morrison’s New X-Men with the origin story, which was an ABOMINATION against such a wonderful origin story. THAT’S why Beast looked like a damn cat… it was supposed to be (according to Morrison) his third level mutation. But that didn’t matter because it looked like someone had chopped up Cookie Monster and hot glued him onto the actor!

    Thor’s lack of helmet was a small distraction, and, really, it’s hard to add it without it being silly. But the costume for Loki was great. The actor and the costuming really made him look awesome and very close to the comic version.

    I was relieved Captain America didn’t look stupid for once. I was afraid to see the movie initially from years of being burned.

    I really like the costuming in Watchmen. They also let Doctor Manhattan be naked… although, on a giant screen, it was a bit too (blue and) long and rather scary. If they made him wear briefs all the time, it wouldn’t have been the character.

    I actually had no real problem with the Fantastic Four costuming. How could they improve on it? I’d love to know, especially since you griped about the Superman changes.

    You need to do a list for the villains, and, when you do, PLEASE put that absolutely ATROCIOUS White Queen on there. I nearly hired a Russian assassin on that costumer/casting director for that woman alone.

    Please also put Deadpool on your Best Villain list.

    • gotta disagree on the x-men, the problem is just because leather beats spandex doesn’t mean its the best choice. the leather outfits just weren’t x-men, i mean they don’t wow you and they should. beast was for me much more believable in first class than the blue Frasier…”may it die by fire”
      that said i do agree on the actresses in first class way to skinny, but in my opinion the last 2 x-movies of the trilogy were CRAP first class trumps both of them as a stand alone and i don’t have any hope for Days of Future Past if Snyder is anywhere near it. but thats just my opinion

  2. “The best part about his outfit, though, is his hammer the mighty Mjolnir.”

    I gues it looks ok, it is Stans Lee’s idea about how a hammer should look.
    And how stupid Thor is!

    But it does not like the real gods hammer, and Thor ackts like a idiot in the movie!

    Taken the sign of Norse mythology and bending it to look that different, and making a movie where the god behaves like a b****.

    Could be compared to:

    A movie staring Jesus smokking weed, and the cross was changed to a peace sign.
    In this movie Jesus and God goes around making water into win and f****** alot of unmarried virgins and saying that it was the holy spirit that did it!!

    Totaly pissing on a the base of a religion like that, is just ofencive and blasfemisk.

    • EVERYONE knows that the film is 100% going for the comics version, and not the mythology version. In the comes Thor is impetuous and prideful. Much of his behavior has its root in the mythology, where he was already running off to start a fight and was a little battle crazed (a berserker).

      Saying “he’s different than the myths! WTF!” is like saying “Dr. Who isn’t anything like the Sherlock Holmes books!” Dr. Who is only vaguely an homage to Sherlock Holmes, he’s not meant to be a 100% word for word adaptation, and they aren’t even going for that.

      Taking one thing that’s sorta related, but isn’t the target, isn’t the intent, and screaming out “look! they didn’t hit that target they weren’t aiming at” is either disingenuous or just disconnected and stupid. Which one is it for you? Are you just clueless about the intent, or are you intentionally using a false litmus to make it look worse?

      • You dont get the point i see!

        “EVERYONE knows that the film is 100% going for the comics version”
        I know this is Stand Lee’s idea, as i said!

        “Saying “he’s different than the myths! WTF!”
        Im not saying that! This story is offensive to the Norse mythology

        “Dr. Who is only vaguely an homage to Sherlock Holmes, he’s not meant to be a 100% word for word adaptation”

        Neither Dr. Who or Sherlock Holmes are in anyway a related to relogion, in witch ppl have been looking up to for hundreds of years.
        I have no idea why you bring this up??

        But creating a comic, where the name and story is stolen from mythology and then twisted to end op pissing on the mythology/relogion is blasphemous, not mater what relogion!

        If Stan Lee had done this, with the christian or muslims god, all hell would break out, rantings in the media, riots, flagburnings and fanatics would propperly try to kill him.

        There is no difference on what religions are alowed to piss on, it is never acceptble.

        • No, he hit it on the head. I seriously doubt that those people who worship Thor (if there are any, really) are going to take offense at the comic book version that’s been around forever and never really claimed to be a gospel-version of the fellow. Aside from that, Thor WAS generally a meathead in the mythology. That’s how Loki tricked him ALL the time. ALL THE TIME. Then Thor would figure it out after the fact and fur would fly.

          Secondly, Norse MYTHOLOGY is generally considered to be a dead religion. Same as Greek MYTHOLOGY. I don’t see you getting yer knickers in a bunch over any of the other supposed religious figures in movies or comics. Please tell me you whizzed yourself while watching Xena and Hercules.

          Honestly, calling “RELIGIOUS REPRESENTATION” here is like is ridiculous as thinking Captain America is real and helping out the Marines. Frankly, it makes you sound C-R-A-Z-Y.

          If I followed your logic, I’d never play video games, watch cartoons, or read Neil Gaiman. Hell to the ever lovin’ NO.

          • I think you need to lay off the caffeine and get out more

            • Yo Thor was awesome and the first 3 X-Men movies could have been done better, and jesus can suck on a skin flute

              • By saying that you’re implying you believe He exists. In other words, “Shut up, Jiggles” – don’t try to talk while your mouth is full of skin flute.

                • The Thor character has always intrigued me because he so often disobeys his father, yet constantly quotes family unity and honor whenever somebody suggests he simply snap Loki’s(whose adopted) neck one time.

          • Neil Gaiman reference, I didn’t catch that before. Well played Shadow.

        • Actually, I haven’t seen any riots due to “Battle Pope” or any of the old Chaos comics, and they are, in my opinion, an out and out slap in the face of Christianity. Personally, I enjoy a good story no matter who gets insulted.

      • Although the Flash costume is pretty spot on, the character is supposed to be the fastest man alive, not the most muscular hero alive. It’s kind of like watching Ahnold running reeely reeeely fhast!

    • Jesus turning water into win is epic…..WIN….

    • I take offense to this because I enjoyed the movie AND I grew up reading Norse Mythology to the point that it is my religion. What was done was the MARVEL (get it — MARVEL) version of this mythology. They can take what they want and do with it what they want (hey they did that…wow). I could get real picky about how Odin lost his eye-he lost it for knowledge not in a war, Sif’s role in the movie-she is Thor’s wife and a harvest goddess, the Warriors Three (or whatever Thor’s friends were called)-not around in the mythology, how Bifrost was depicted…list goes on but I was able to suspend my disbelief and enjoy the movie because it is fiction. It is not “ofecive” or “blasfemisk”.

      And check out Jesus Christ Superstar, ya know, the rock opera about the last days of Jesus…

    • The “real” god’s hammer?

    • The comments about Thor being shown as a bit of an idiot in film goes back to the Hulk TV series specials, ‘The Return Of The Incredible Hulk’ where they jumpstart with Thor made him a beach bum.

    • The movie is not based on the mythology, it is based on Marvel’s Thor which is quite different. Your comment just made you sound like the biggest tool mate, I think your on the wrong site.

    • lol

    • ? Put down the bong and pick up a book because your not making any sense my friend.

    • Put down the bong and pick up a book because your not making any sense my friend.

  3. Dude?
    Norse MYTHology is being pissed on? Which denomination of Norse MYTHology is worshipping Thor?
    Sorry, I didn’t realize Norse MYTHology was an actual religion and that people were being offended…
    bet there were riots in the streets over Wrath of the Titans…
    Oh, and see if you can run your posts through spell checker next time…gives me a headache trying to interpret your words…

  4. ummmm dont know how to tell you all this…..but the norse religion is going on as it always has for thousands of years, quietly and secretly in the background. it got us through the witchburnings and such so its all good. my grandparents brought it with them to north america when they immigrated and faithfully and secretly taught it to us as we grew up. i have talked to many relations from the old country and a lot of nordic people still follow the faith. i wasnt really pissed about the movie cuz i have read all the mythologies and have heard all the stories passed down in my family and thor was a bit of a block head who always initially gets tricked by loki. but he is the good guy(or as good as any god is) and so he always wins out……good and evil are different for us as is heaven and hel….very different from christian ideals.

    • Regardless, it is, for 99.9% of the world, a dead religion. Like people who worship Greek and Egyptian gods, it is a such a small percentage, your desire to voice protest STILL sounds silly and crazy. And I know there are people who worship Greek and Egyptian gods, and that they also call themselves ‘witches,’ and occasionally ‘druids.’ Would not stop me from using Bast or Osiris, or even Ares or Apollo, as a comic book character. In fact, it’s amusing.

      At least you acknowledge that Thor is a meathead. I give you props for at least that… and most of the time he was a good guy, when he wasn’t being a jock and/or losing his temper.

      Now, I HAVE seen Jesus and the Buddha as comic book characters (all the time), and as mainstream book characters (Christopher Moore? Herman Hesse? Hello?), and, really? Who cares? The only ones who get their knickers in a bunch about stuff like that are people who get homicidal over the portrayal of Mohammad. And… again… to USA’s SANE population, they seem CRAZY. Like people who see the Virgin Mary in a grease stain and decide to worship it-type crazy

      SO – I still say, just because you worship Thor, it does not mean you can claim “Religious Representation.” Heck, 99% of paintings and representations of Jesus in the USA are of a WHITE man. I don’t think that, in Jesus’ time, there were many of those wandering about in the Middle East.

      Your whine falls on deaf ears. Go tell it on Asgard. Or Valhalla, if the Valkyries come and fetch you for being a good soldier and dying on the field of battle.

  5. It is surprising that many of these comic movie write-ups fail to mention, “Blade.” Blade reintroduced the comic book movie-in a real and palatable way. I posit that the first X-Men movie reviewed Blade with respect to style, cinematography, and action sequences. I’d argue they (X-Men) also borrowed some cues from the the first Matrix movie.

  6. This whole rank system is a big ‘blergh’. Every of the Marvel movies were great and got overall great scores and view rates. Personally I liked all of the Marvel movies. Just because a suit doesn’t look ‘EXACTLY’ like in the comics doesn’t mean the movie or a character is bad. Those who can’t adjust to change stand still. Just allow other non-comic-reading people to enjoy the world of Marvel without having to hear the geek speech please.

  7. I didn’t think Hawkman’s costume in Smallville was that bad at all.

    I had completely forgot how bad Billy Zane looked in The Pahntom.

    Alicia Silverstone looked HOT as Batgirl.

  8. This is a great list. I didn’t care too much for the X Men oufits, Daredevil is okay and Fantastic Four is great to me. Get your favorite movie recommendations on http://www.myreks.com.

  9. You forgot the very worst offender: Witchblade
    Comic Costume: http://cdn.screenrant.com/wp-content/uploads/witchblade.jpg
    TV Series Costume: http://i.ytimg.com/vi/R2Nq0blmoGE/0.jpg (Yes, it is not mislinked. Check it up on youtube if you do not belive it).

    Was there ever a even more polar opposite of how a costume was translated to the screen?

    Yeah, the original IS as covering as a bikini BUT if you want to create a film/TV series after a comic you either stay true to it or leave it completly if you chicken out at the most defining brand of every supe: The costume.

    • Um, if I remember that TV show correctly, that TV costume was shown once and it was flashing between reality and the “imagined” version… but… it’s been awhile, so I don’t remember it well… I do remember it being seriously disappointing, though…

      • Since I had nothing new to watch (and only watched the pilot partially back 10+ years ago) I decided to give it a try and saw all 2 seasons finishing a few hours ago. The witchblade manifestation comes either only as glove with whatever casual wear Pezzini wears or variations of medival full plate armor wich mostly flashes on and off like you said but in some rare cases stays (example: big fight at the end of last episode of S1). In nearly all episodes, not just once.

        That stuff makes Batmans nipple armor the truest interpretations of the Dark Knight in comparison. At least there you know its supposed to be a Batman costume (a bad one, but recognizable).

        The show itself… uh… have seen worse; lots worse. If you don’t see it as Witchblade (kinda tough, i know ;) ) it has its entertainment value. Maybe a channel like HBO could give it a second chance and stay true to the source when/if they do (And keep the actress of the booze this time :P).

  10. Capt. America’s uniform in his own movie was FAR better than the Avengers version, imo.

    Smallville Hawkman – This was one of the BETTER adaptations that show had, esp when compared to the other JSA’ers’, and even the “SpeedoBoi” hand-me-down from Routh that WELLING NEVER WORE. I let the chest armor slide, if only to have something to attach those giant wings to.

    F4: again, one of the better “real world” adaptations, eps compared to the X-Men’s and even Daredevil’s stitched leathers, which were admittedly “en vogue” at the time thanks to the Matrix. ugh.

    GL: probably the easiest to transfer to screen and they CGI it all up into the glowy green Coppola-Dracula muscle suit. what. the. FREL?

    Flash: this was good at the time, but JWS admits it was too influenced by Burton’s Batman and what I recently learned about it from Shipp, himself? EW. Even HE hopes they were all burned as soon as the cancellation notice came in!
    (One may assume that Warburton’s Tick was pretty much the same story inside. shudder.)

    “Punisher 2″? do you mean War Zone? because that was actually the THIRD Punisher movie, counting Dolph Lundgren’s 1989 “masterpiece”.

    The Watchmen costumes were MEANT to parody the Schumacher and other superhero film costumes a bit, as the original story was a self-examination of super-hero comics in general, but the story and themes had become so used and infused in the intervening years, it did seem like a rehash of all that had gone before.
    Fun fact: Heroes used the basic plot of scattered heroes coming together to stop a threat to NYC, and the head Props guy is married to the Watchmen costume designer! I even ‘corrected’ James on twitter for saying that they were her “original designs” and reminded him that Watchmen artist Dave Gibbons was the original designer, not her.

  11. Flash’s suit is amazingly good for a foam muscle suit. As compared to the Brandon Routh padded suit which just made him look puffy. He’s also too effeminate looking in the arms across chest pose. I can’t remember if the Christopher Reeves Superman was padded, but you can see in the picture that his arms were that of a fit (unjuiced) muscular man.

    Micheal Shanks doesn’t have the extreme superhero physique to pull of a leather strapped bare chest.

    • Routh’s suit wasn’t padded, just airbrushed to enhance muscle definition (a common practice for superhero costumes in film).

      • Brandon Routh’s suit was padded. You can watch the making-of documentary on the costuming on the DVD. At one point, the costumer shows several of the muscle suits hanging.

  12. Captain America in the best list!!? I wasn’t expecting much, it was always going to be hard, but that helmet/mask was terrible. Much, much better in his own movie.

  13. a los amantes de los super heroes le solicitamos un gran favor nos colaboren informandonos sobre una compañia en estados unidos que nos pueda fabricar un traje de super heroe nostrpo tenemos el render del disfraz favor comunicarse a edgarbomo@yahoo.com Edgar Bonilla

    • lolwut.

      • He’s asking for collaboration on a superhero site (more or less). Nothing to see here… move along…

    • This would work better if it were in English… So, you need help finding a company in the US to make a superhero outfit for you?

  14. Hmmm Paul Young takes shots at Hancock, Blankman, Meteor Man and Handi Man (two of which are just parodies and not even super heroes / plus they all have “something” else in common)) & THEN names Shaq’s Steel as #1 worst!?? How’d the Flash not make this list? If he’s gonna randomly take shots at black comedian’s superhero parodies & name Steel as the worst, then he should mention Kevin Smith’s Bluntman & Chronic or Abed’s costume on Parks and Recreation! Phantom should be number 1 as the worst!

    • @Hmmmm – Um, you’re not seriously going to tell me that Hancock, Blankman, Meteor Man and Handiman all had good costumes are you? Besides, all of those were disqualified from this list because they never existed in comic book form BEFORE their respective movies were released.

      Thanks,
      Paul Young

      • Haha, But most aren’t even serious costumes… It’s just funny how you pick THOSE 4 out of all the other actors and costumes out there. If you put a blurb about “Handiman” you might as well talk about Quailman, Captain Planet etc… Bluntman & Chronic exist in comics and was in a movie ;)

  15. The article is wrong on Superman’s 2005 costume’s faults. The “speedo” isn’t that different from the Reeve’s version. Nor the boots are really bad. What really make it bad is the dark/wine red (which makes him look like the “drunk superman” from superman 3) and the small S shield, which makes he look smaller, like a child in a costume. Here’s a photomanipulation that fixed various things: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v325/ReaperFett/SupermanPSComparison.jpg

    The boot and the overwear were changed as well, but what pops up the most as, “ah, that’s superman, not some guy on a superman costume” are the bright red and the bigger S shield.

  16. Yes! Finally someone writes about halloween 2011.

  17. Shut your FREAKING DOOR. I LOVE Green Lantern’s costume. They made it alien and thus, believable. Death to earthly costumes that DONT GET DAMAGED! (Green Lantern’s downfall is the SCRIPT, and BLAKE Lifeless, I mean, Lively…)

  18. Wrong image to compare thors costume to. its more a replication of the 2 most recent of thors costumes. (one is the usual thor and the other is the one where he had a beard and “modern/futuristic” outfit)

  19. I thought Ghost Rider’s look was perfect. The movie sucked no question but GR himself was pretty awesome.

  20. Good read. I like the overall objectiveness, as “comic correct” doesn’t necessarily work on screen. Other mentions that should have been brought to light:

    - The Joker (1989/2008): Both were good, followed the comics fairly well, and done just a bit differently helped make the difference between a colorful villain and a creepy creeperton from creepyville).

    - The Mask: Might have been a tad over-the-top, but amazing for mid-90′s makeup and effects.

    - The Riddler: I liked Jim Carrey as the riddler, but exchanging a custom “Zuit Suit” with an LED-Question Mark-covered spandex suit showing his junk hanging out turned every Riddler scene into an awkward locker-room moment.

    - The Hulk (2003): An example of how the wrong shade of green, and poor CGI can affect a perfectly good movie.

    - The Spirit & Sin City: Examples of how use of color and good CGI can make a really difficult Comic Book to Movie transition happen.

    - Green Arrow (Smallville): I’m sure many people are on the fence about it, but I actually dig what they did with him. The leather hoodie and compound bow work much better on screen than a Robin Hood costume would have.

    Those are just a few thought from an independent dweeb.

    • I think that Green Arrow’s leather hoodie was actually an adaptation of the more recent comic book versions of the character’s outfit. Googling ‘Green Arrow Comics Pictures’ produced several pictures of the character in a very similar outfit to the new ‘Arrow’ series on the CW, which I assume is close to what he was wearing in Smallville.

  21. Am I the only one who watches the Elektra movie just to see Jennifer Garner in that amazing outfit. That is the #1 costume whether it looks like the comic book Elektra or not and I say it does though Ms Affleck doesn’t look that greek.

    The Daredevil movie is the absolute worst followed by Ghost Rider, both are unwatchable. In the Daredevil movie which features three ordinary human beings, they fly around the church when they are fighting. What??

    It was horrible, horrible, horrible.

  22. Nicholas Cage looked terrible with that costume thank god it didn’t happen

  23. The Shadow’s costume is one of my favorites as it compares to the pulp comics. The Flash and Batman suits are spot on (excluding B&R and BF).

    My only complaint about the Shadow’s costume was the jacket seemed too puffy but other than that it was spot on.

  24. Really? I don’t really get why all comic book fans want their favorite heroes and villains wearing the exact same outfit as in the book. It’s the director’s choice not the people who are going to see the movie’s choice. The director is allowed to make twists and turns in their movies as well as the costumes. Sometimes they decide to make their superhero outfits different to express the character’s personality rather than just following the comic book creator’s costume ideas. What matters more is the plot line and the main events in the movie that sort of follow the book. The plot line can be either bad or horrible.

  25. I think the Juggernaut’s movie costume(depiction) belongs somewhere on top 3 WORST costumes..

    the X-men first class was brilliant in pulling of the close to traditional x-men look.. almost making it more trendy and cooler than the black leather type ones..

  26. … and not a mention of the designers or shops that built them. Sigh.

  27. that is definatly one of the worst incarnations of batman

  28. Seriously, no one else thought Cap America looked silly? Without changing the costume entirely, it was never going to look good.

    Keeping it short on the fence riders then:
    The Flash, Tick and all Superman… Supermans? Supermen?… look bad, really lame. But you can’t change Superman.
    Daredevil and the young X-Men were inoffensive.
    Thor and X-Men I liked.

  29. I love the fact that this doesn’t name many of the actual costume designers.
    Just kidding, I hate that. It bothers me so much.
    Also I should add that I loved Thor’s costume. And Spiderman’s costume in the newest movie.

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