One aspect of comic book culture that has its fair share of pluses and minuses is cosplay. While some costumes are terrifically inventive, others are just flat out terrible both in terms of design and respect for the person wearing it. Indeed, there are both clunkers and winners out there in the company manufactured and homemade costume departments - and we've got the rundown on both.

We at ComicsAlliance have randomly selected ten female superhero and supervillain costumes from across the World Wide Web to compete in a fashion show of sorts. Competitors are judged based upon the costume's authenticity, its functionality as a crime-fighting outfit, and a healthy heaping of personal bias. The winning costume shall be immortalized as the victor of the first ever Inadvertent ComicsAlliance Costume Contest - and the losing competitors shall be banished from ComicsAlliance Island.

Just kidding about the island -- those things are expensive. Hit the jump for the show!

TENTH PLACE: Spider-Girl
What is sexy to one person is straight up offensive to another. I fall in the latter category on this one. There's just no way that a hero could fight crime in this getup, and even though our competitors aren't actively seeking combat, it would be nice to have a suit that could withstand a surprise attack or two. It would also be nice to have a suit that isn't intentionally degrading towards its target demographic.

NINTH PLACE: Female Captain America
Stevetta Rogers has all of the same failings as the aforementioned costumed candidate, but she ranks slightly higher thanks to her shield. It's not exactly made out of vibranium, but with so many scum-bag suitors likely to flock to this embarrassing outfit, even a plastic shield is worth hanging onto for defense purposes.

EIGHTH PLACE: The Girl Wonder
How would Batman ever be able to fight crime alongside the Girl Wonder? He'd constantly be fearing for her safety due to the costume's lack of defense capabilities and the fact that she'll draw unwanted attention from male assailants - although I suppose that's something the Dark Knight could use to his advantage, despite the fact that he probably wouldn't ever want to.

SEVENTH PLACE: Alicia Silverstone's Batgirl

Authenticity-wise, this Batgirl costume scores top marks. It looks exactly like Alicia Silverstone's costume from "Batman and Robin," which is also the reason that this costume ranks so low on the list -- nobody should ever wear anything based on that horrible, horrible film. Ever.

SIXTH PLACE: Sexy Silk Spectre
Like the aforementioned Batgirl, this Silk Spectre costume is a dead ringer for Malin Akerman's "Watchmen" outfit. But in terms of functionality, I just don't see how this costume makes any sense when it comes to getting the bad guys. Still, at least it bills itself as "sexy," whereas other costumes like the Spider-Girl suit aren't even close to that self aware.

FIFTH PLACE: Supergirl
Here's an example of the same sort of costume that the makers of the Spider-Girl and Female Captain America outfits were looking for - same material, showing off some skin - but not at the expense of losing accuracy to the character's appearance. Still, does Supergirl really need high heels? Is she so badass and super powerful that proper footwear isn't a big deal to her? I guess I can get behind that reasoning, but some combat boots would make more sense to me.

FOURTH PLACE: Invisible Woman
Accuracy to Sue Storm's comic book counterpart? Check. Functionality? Sure, who cares -- she's invisible half the time, so no one's going to see it anyway. I'd rank the Invisible Woman costume a little bit higher if it wasn't for the quality of the material, including the sock-like booties. Otherwise, this isn't half bad.

Here's a glimpse at Poison Ivy in all of her green glory - and I do mean all. It's hard to argue with this one in terms of adhering to the character's appearance and functionality isn't much of an issue because, theoretically, she could just grow some more vines and cover up if she wanted to... but man, some extra clothes couldn't hurt. There's just no need to show off.

Wonder Puppy
Major tip of the hat to whoever came up with the idea to make a Wonder Woman costume for a puppy. Really, this is just about the most adorable thing I've ever seen. If I was a dog, I would run around in Wonder Woman mode all of the time. Just the idea that Wonder Puppy exists somewhere in the world is enough to make my heart sing.


As much as I'm infatuated with Wonder Puppy, I really love this Hawkgirl costume. Its animated design isn't as detailed as a more contemporary comic book look might have turned out, but the hawk wings, the mask, the mace and the adherence to the costume's color scheme more than make up for any shortcomings. Well played!

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