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The 2012 ComicsAlliance Reader Costume Spooktacular

Ghostopher Sims: Hello, boils and ghouls, and welcome to ComicsAlliance’s Reader Halloween Costume Spooktacular 2012! And Spooktacular it is: When I put out the call for our readers to send in their Halloween costumes, the response was overwhelming. We got 60 costumes from readers and while you can check them all out below, I’ve picked out a spoooooky 13 favorites to provide commentary on! And joining me to do that is ComicsAlliance’s resident sartorialist, Bethany Fong!

Batty Felon: Happy Halloween, Chris! Thank you for letting me join in for this year’s costume commentary!Chris: Before we get started, I do want to point out that when I asked people to send in their costumes, I made sure to let them know that I would definitely be making fun of them. With a lot of these, though, they’re too good. I may end up having to actually be nice to our readers, which is one of the scariest things I can imagine.

Bethany: Chris, if you manage to stay in character in your spooky guise of a Nice Person, I would be absolutely petrified.

Chris: Ah, I see how it’s going to be. Let’s get to it with…

Joanne as Elasti-Girl:

Chris: Joanne mentioned in her email that she was worried that she’d be spending her evening explaining who she was supposed to be to other partygoers, but let’s be honest here: If your friends don’t recognize one of the founding members of the Doom Patrol, then you need new friends.

Bethany: First of all, I should note that Rita Farr’s classic costume is one of my favorite fictional dresses of all time (which is an Actual List That I Have), so seeing this Elasti-Girl costume is an absolute delight! But I totes understand her hesitation of having to explain her costume to people who just don’t ~get~ the Doom Patrol or fashion design.

Chris: No one is surprised that you have a list of favorite fictional dresses. I think what makes costume is the accessories. Without the gloves and the tiny – or, I guess, regular-sized – Robot Man, it’s just a nifty minidress. The only thing that could make it better is if she was carrying around a frame sporting Go-Go Checks across the top.

Bethany: Or she could work in a prosthetic stretchy arm into her digs! Or a purse where the strap is her stretchy arm! Side note: This is an actual idea that I had for translating Plastic Man into a dress – feel free to borrow it, Joanne (and other fashionable, yet stretchy folks!).

Philip as Bane:

Chris: WHEN THE CURTAINS HAVE MATCHED THE THROW PILLOWS, THEN YOU WILL HAVE MY PERMISSION TO DIE.

Bethany: AH, WHAT A LOVELY, LOVELY LIVING ROOM.

Chris: PERHAPS HE’S WONDERING WHY SOMEONE WOULD PLACE A DOILY ON AN ARMCHAIR BEFORE SITTING DOWN!

Bethany: Okay, living room decor aside, where did you get that arm cuff, bro? It looks great.

Chris: The costume does in fact look great, even if I’m a little more taken with the idea of Bane swaggering around someone’s grandma’s house. That might actually be the happiest thought I’ve had in my head all month. I will say, though, Bane has been an understandably popular choice for conventions and Halloween this year, but if you’re not doing the voice, you’re just some dude with a muzzle on. That’s real talk.

Bethany: Agreed – one of my favorite things that I spotted at New York Comic Con earlier this month was a group of Bane cosplayers, exchanging compliments on each other’s costumes in The Bane Voice. I can only imagine that this Bane was having a blast asking his ma for a photograph in The Voice.

Chris: Heaven help you if you give this dude candy corn when he’s out trick-or-treating. You will wake up in a prison hole.

Bethany: Hey, I like candy corn!

Chris: You do? I wonder if it’s too late to get Matt for this article…

Kevin and Bobby as Banshee and Havok:

Chris: These dudes may actually be my favorite versions of these characters in any medium. At the very least, my favorite since that one issue of Captain America from the ’70s where you find out that Banshee is really into the music of Merle Haggard.

Bethany: In all honesty, I’ve never really cared about these characters in the comics, and I only kind of liked them in X-Men: First Class. BUT THEY LOOK SO FUN HERE.

Chris: Papercraft Havok is pretty great on his own, but ’68 Comeback Special Banshee is a delight. This is the true spirit of Halloween.

Bethany: Now that I think about it, this is the second classic Banshee costume that I’ve seen this Halloween!

Chris: Oh? Where was the first?

Bethany: It was at a Halloween party that I went to this past weekend. Sorry, your invite must’ve been lost in the mail.

Chris: Remember like five minutes ago when we were talking about how difficult it was going to be for me to not be mean? Perhaps you should take that challenge yourself, BETHANY.

Bethany: Oh, I’m sorry – did you say something? I was too busy fixing my hair.

Chase as Hawkman:

Chris: More like H-awwwww!-kman.

Bethany: My favorite thing about tiny baby Hawkman’s costume are the itty-bitty wings on his little-wittle shoes!

Chris: Chase here is actually the son of Mark Poulton, who just co-wrote a Hawkman story at DC. Clearly, that is a family that really likes reincarnated Thanagarian-Egyptian space cop archaeologists. Really though, this costume is awesome. Normally I think those weird “muscle chest” costumes for kids look goofy as all heck, but here, it just looks warm and comfy. And he has a battle-axe! Cute as an Nth metal button.

Bethany: I love his giant mask and his giant axe! So disproportionately adorable!

Charlie as Shipwreck:

Chris: I’d just like to point out that, against all odds, this is the second time you and I have critiqued the fashion of Shipwreck.

Bethany: Okay, I know that the backgrounds of these costumes aren’t technically part of the costume, but I would like to count those handles of alcohol and those free weights as costume accessories.

Chris: Yes! Like, we made fun of Bane for the floral-print curtains, but Shipwreck would totally have a baseball calendar that was still on August when Halloween rolled around.

Bethany: Oh, definitely. Question: Does Shipwreck usually wear hemp bead necklaces?

Chris: I don’t think so, but again, it’s definitely in the spirit of the costume. Besides, Charlie here gets an A+ for accessories. The gloves, the boots, the weird pirate gun, and he’s even got Polly perched on his shoulder!

Bethany: Don’t forget the impeccable facial hair!

Chris: And the Sharpie™ anchor tattoo! He’s so good that I kind of want to knock him out and then put him in a village full of melty robots in order to terrify him into revealing American secrets.

Bethany: I don’t think I ever saw that episode of Jem.

Chris: Sadly, our only Hasbro costumes this year were Shipwreck and Optimus Prime. Nobody sent in a Stormer/Kimber couples costume, which means our work as Jemologists is far from over.

Bethany: Really?! No Jem costumes this year? For shame, ComicsAlliance readers. For shame.

Jhota as J. Jonah Jameson:

Bethany: My favorite thing about J. Jonah here is that guy in the background who looks helplessly petrified of being screamed at by JJJ.

Chris: On the subject of accessories and committing to the costume, I have to hand it to anyone who dresses up as America’s finest newspaperman and ventures out into the world. Even with those three movies, you have to imagine that there are people wondering why you are choosing to rock “The Hitler.” Can you imagine having to offer a panicked expression? “No! Look at the crew cut! LOOK AT THE CREWWW CUUUUUTTT!”

Bethany: Speaking of his signature Hitler-stache, I love how his toothbrush moustache is not only a different color from his duo-toned hair, but in fact, the same color as his cigar. Now, that’s what we call color coordination, kids.

Chris: I also like to imagine that no one at this party was serving whiskey on the rocks. Jonah just showed up with it, kicking down doors and demanding photographs.

Bethany: Very much like The Bane Voice, I feel like I would be disappointed if JJJ weren’t screaming at everyone for photographs.

Peter as Professor Pyg:

Chris: And now the third in our Awesome Accessories trilogy, Professor Pyg. This isn’t quite as solid a costume as the dead-accurate Pyg that we got a couple years ago – complete with butcher’s apron and power drill – but once again, it captures the feel of the character pretty perfectly. I have no trouble imagining Pyg kicking back in what appears to be my grandparents’ living room, enjoying a snifter of brandy and reading Lolita.

Bethany: I also like to imagine that Pyg fancies facial hair and bermuda shorts when he’s off-duty.

Chris: And that he’s partial to Instagram filters.

Bethany: Wait… I’m partial to Instagram filters too. WHAT IS HAPPENING HERE?

Chris: And I have distinctly heard you say creepy things about Robin. Bethany… are you Professor Pyg?

Bethany: I guess that would explain my bizarre doll collection

Chris: Ugh, your doll collection is legitimately terrifying.

Bethany: Chris, they can hear you when you don’t speak kindly about them.

Chris: (Shudder)

John and Jim as Batman and Bane:

Chris: It warms my heart that even in the era of swaggering musical theater movie Bane, there’s still room out there for Old School Luchador tank top Bane.

Bethany: Yes, in what appears to be a costumed marathon!

Chris: Yep! According to the email, John and Jim were repping Knightfall at a local Halloween-themed charity run called the Monster Bash.

Bethany: I wonder what was on Bane’s running mix.

Chris: It’s not visible in this picture, but the iPod was standing in for Bane’s Venom regulator. There was a tube that went from it to the back of his mask (which also could’ve provided a nice way to hide his headphones).

Bethany: Man, I can’t decide if I’d rather wear a luchador mask or a Bat-cowl whilst running a marathon. I feel like both would be hot and could potentially obscure my vision.

Chris: As someone who has both lucha masks and Batman cowls on hand, I can assure you that the masks are a lot less restrictive than you might expect. They’re designed for the noble art of grappling, after all.

Bethany: I’ll be sure to cheer you on when you run the Superhero Marathon in your Bat-lucha mask.

How I Became The Bomb as the Original Avengers:

Chris: This one was a pretty awesome group costume: A band that played a Halloween gig in costume as the original Avengers. The photo was sent in by the lead singer, Jon, who described his costume as “Leisure Suit Tony.”

Bethany: I really love it when musical acts dress up for Halloween, and I especially love Ant-Man on the keys!

Chris: Same here, although I could probably do without Disturbingly Translucent Body Stocking Hulk over there on guitar. You’d think Hulk would be the drummer.

Bethany: I agree – I think that Captain America and Hulk should switch instruments!

Chris: Unless the cymbals and the kick drum are painted to look like Cap’s shield. In that case, Hulk thrash.

Jack as Starman:

Chris: I’m having a hard time figuring out why anyone would let their kid dress as Andy Khouri for Halloween.

Bethany: Now I’m upset that other parents didn’t make their kids dress up as the rest of the ComicsAlliance staff.

Chris: This photo was sent in by Jack’s dad, who mentioned that his son is actually named after Jack Knight. Throw that in with the costume – and that coat hanger Cosmic Rod is awesome – and I wonder if he’s an 11-year-old who’s obsessed with Bakelite and plays superhero with his friends by actively looking forward to the day he retires.

Bethany: I’m still astounded that this is one of two Starmen costumes submitted for our Halloween post – I’ve never even seen a Starman cosplayer at a convention! Regardless, this kid sells it.

Chris: He really does. Compared to all the other kids in his neighborhood, he’s Chris Isaak.

Ted as Mr. Freeze:

Chris: Long-time ComicsAlliance readers may remember Ted as the creator of the amazing Kingdom Come Bat-Sentry costume that we saw back in 2010. With that under his belt, it’s no surprise that he did something equally awesome this year.

Bethany: This costume is definitely worthy of Best Cosplay Ever (This Week)!

Chris: The glowing armor would be awesome enough, but when you throw in the Freeze Gun that appears to shoot dry ice fog, it gets even better.

Bethany: Also, I like that Victor is about to unleash his freeze gun at an arcade (or at least, deter people from playing Big Buck).

Chris: Maybe it was Nora’s favorite game.

Bethany: But really, what a cool costume.

Jen as Juliet Starling:

Chris: Jen and Ted sent their costumes in together, which means that Mr. Freeze and the star of Lollipop Chainsaw were hanging out together, blasting people with dry ice and swinging LED chainsaws around. Potentially the best Halloween party ever.

Bethany: Where was my invite, guys?!

Chris: You were busy hanging out with Banshee and the Macho Man. This is seriously a great costume, though. Dead accurate clothes, a fun prop in the form of Nick’s severed head, and the additional touches of the light-up chainsaw (with the clear plastic blade, no less!) make it really fun.

Bethany: Juliet Starling was one of the most popular costumes that I’ve seen at conventions this year, so I’m glad to see one in this bunch. The light-up chainsaw is a great accessory for Halloween. Severed body parts and large light-up weapons are really in this year.

Chris: I’ve seen a lot of ‘em too – which is fine with me, because it combines cheerleading and dismemberment of the undead, two of my favorite things – but it’s the chainsaw that really sets this one apart.

Grace and Rich as Jill Valentine and Chris Redfield:

Chris: And finally, we have my personal favorite costume of the year: Grace Allison (artist of Monkeybrain’s Wander) and Rich Ellis (artist of IDW’s Memorial) as the stars of the original Resident Evil. From now on, I will only be referring to Grace as “The Master of Unlocking.”

Bethany: This is an amazing couples costume for Halloween AND for a convention! All of their holsters and accessories are spot-on – they look ready for an impromptu zombie apocalypse!

Chris: Or to throw down against Mega Man, Cable and Mike Haggar in Marvel vs. Capcom. She’s a member of STARS!

Bethany: Thank goodness no one dressed up as any of those characters in our Halloween submissions this year.

Chris: I’m dressed as Mike Haggar right now, Bethany. Anyway, my favorite thing about this costume is that they also included a Senior Prom picture, taken while they were still holding their guns and knives:

Chris: It is the best thing.

Bethany: This is what true romance looks like.

Chris: And with that, we’re done with our commentary, but we’re not out of costumes! Check out the rest of our reader submissions below, and believe me, I wish we had time to write jokes about all of them. You guys did an amazing job this year!

Bethany: I’m already looking foward to next year’s costumes! Happy Halloween, guys!


Mike as A Member of the Crazy 88:

Avry as New 52 Joker:

Brenda and Ray as “A Generic Superhero” and Marvel Girl:

Orion as Clark Kent/Superman:

RooBee and Casey as Batman and Robin:

Jay as Batman:

Hazardous Ace as the Joker:

Sean as Hipster Robin:

Roberto, the Toronto Iron Man, as Iron Man:

Roberto (again) and Amanda as Ben Reilly and Wonder Woman:

Cody and Kristen as Beetlejuice and Miss Argentina:

Josh as D-Man:

Matt and Jacob as Shaun and Ed:

Paul as Starman:

Chris and Cheryl as Marty McFly and the Dark Phoenix:

Adam, Jeff and Meg as Commissioner Gordon, Two-Face and Harley Quinn:

Reilly and Denny as Billy Lee and Jimmy Lee:

Christopher as Marshall Lee:

Alex as Mr. Zsasz:

Robt as the Flaming Carrot:

Jay as Nick Fury:

David as Robin:

Caitlin as Thor:

Sam as The Question:

Allison, Jaime, Steve, LeAnne, Nicole and Erin as Poison Ivy, Joker, Catwoman, Riddler, Two-Face and Bad Horse:

David as Dipper Pines:

Ellen as Poison Ivy:

Neil as The Scarecrow:

Asa James as Thor:

Brian and Stacey as Raphael and Donatello:

Anna and Hannah as the Monarch’s Henchmen:

Vincent as Merriwether:

JB as Optimus Prime:

Spencer as Daryl Dixon:

Alex as Wolverine

Scott and Katlyn as Wolverine and “Budget Iron Man.”

Matthew as Mr. Freeze:

Rachel and Kory as the Wanderers:

Aaron and Vivian as Peter Parker and the Black Cat:

Lindsay as Freakazoid:

Steve and Katie as the Shadow and Princess Leia:

Greg as Grunkle Stan Pines:

Chris, Kim and Zuko as Zuko, Katara and Appa:

Patrick as The Cover of Fatale #1:

Bryan and Caitlin as Finn and Fionna:

Godfrey as Razorback

Will as Parkour Spider-Man:

Thanks once again to all of our readers for their amazing costumes! Happy Halloween, everyone!

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