Poll Position: Worst. Movie. Costume. Ever.

Enough with all this high-brow stuff that makes you think, says I, because you should never have to think! Instead we're going to keep it real simple this week folks:


Mockery and snide derision with a side of snark after the jump. It's probably going to be petty and immature, too, so scram if you don't want to put on your kindergarten Underoos and join in the fun.

Here's your list, along with commentary and visuals for reference.

  • "Batman" featuring George Clooney:
    Easily the worst of the Joel Schumacher Batman costumes, and that's saying something. Granted, the platter-sized man-nips are covered up on Clooney's suit, but that's overshadowed by the even more unfortunate and completely gratuitous use of the shiny stainless steel codpiece, particularly egregious on Robin's supplemental leather play-toy accessory outfit. Plus, what's that crap doing on his legs? And the divots taken out of the bat ears? It's rare to get a costume so bad you root for the bad guys, but this one's it if ever there was one. Unless, of course, your bad guy in question is ...
  • "Mister Freeze" featuring Arnold Schwarzenegger:
    It would be easier to talk about why this costume doesn't suck, because from top to bottom it's chrome-plated lameness. My first question would be "Why did Mister Freeze weld the grille from the Pixar film 'Cars' to his abdomen?", closely followed by a query as to why he requires a reservoir tip. Take a close look, kids, at the Outfit That Killed A Franchise.
  • "Ozymandias" featuring Matthew Goode:
    Whereas Dave Gibbons' Ozymandias makes you think about how sad and pathetic, ultimately, this uber-intelligent man is, surrounding himself in the faded tatters of a long-gone king doomed to rot in the sands, the movie version of the costume instead makes you think "WHY IS THAT PENIS LOOKING AT ME AAAAAAGGHH!" Throw in the nipples sliding out from under that collar, the sculpted belly button, and the pouty little-girl mouth Goode is cursed with and this looks more like a still from "Buttycandyass", the XXX rated rip-off feature.
  • "The Phantom" featuring Billy Zane:
    Although not as spectacularly, blatantly, utterly offensively bad as some of the other entries, I felt I should include Billy Zane's "Phantom" costume purely as a method of discouraging other would-be adventurers from sallying forth in their bathing suits and shower caps.
  • "Silk Specter" featuring Malin Γ…kerman:
    Why is a stipper fighting crime? She doesn't even have to change clothes between jobs, that's why. The yellow shiny vinyl, the garter belt holding up the thigh boots, and the radical French-cut pseudo-thong don't bother me as much as the fact that she's wearing jogging shorts beneath all of it. That's just weird.
  • "Steel" featuring Shaquille O'Neal:
    This photo combines two of the things I love to hate the most in all the world -- Shaquille O'Neal and bad super-hero costumes. This outfit looks like what would happen if someone took a seven foot tall black Genie reject, rolled him in industrial-strength bonding agent, and threw him into a junk pile. Which is not a bad way of describing Shaq's acting talent, come to think of it.

That's a lot of bad costuming, folks, picking just one isn't easy. My heart tells me to go with Shaq, but let's be serious -- no one takes that movie seriously. Similarly, Schumacher has taken so much heat for the later "Batman" films that at this point they just sort of mock themselves, so going after them feels kind of cheap.

Instead, I'm going to surprise myself and go with "Ozymandias". The whole thing just gives me the heebie-jeebies, especially whatever is going on in that crotch region. There just shouldn't be an eyeball anywhere in that region, and if that's old-fashioned of me, so be it.

I'd love to hear your take on these, or any others I might have left out, in the comments.

28 Responses to Poll Position: Worst. Movie. Costume. Ever.

  1. Jose Inoa says:

    I voted Silk Spectre, because her costume has NO SILK involved. It’s like “The Blue Raja” from the beginning of Mystery Men, absolutely NO BLUE on his costume.

  2. Hammerknight says:

    Steel was nowhere close to the comics. It was just a movie that had a famous basketball player in it that sucked.

  3. Matt says:

    I’ve found another picture of Racoon Ma… I mean The Phantom

    … And am I the only person who hates this Catwoman costume(Halle Berry).

  4. Al says:

    Well, they’re both the same pic, so we can’t really say. But I thought that Halle Berry’s Catwoman was ok.

  5. Hammerknight says:

    The Catwoman movie had nothing at all to do with the comics. It was a bad outfit, a bad movie, and the only reason any man watched it was to see Halle Berry in skin tight clothes.

  6. Matt says:

    @Al: Whoops, thanks, I didn’t notice that.
    This is the proper link…

  7. Ian says:

    I have to take issue with you over The Phantom’s costume. It is, to its credit, one of the best translations from the original source material to film. Yes, it’s a bad costume, but so was the skintight purple bodysuit of the Protector of the Jungle in the original strips. You can’t fault them for staying reasonably faithful. It’s not like they went the X-Men route and scrapped it all in favor of shiny black leather.

    Plus the movie is just goofy fun.

    I have to say the Bat Nipples did it for me. I’d like to give an Honorable Mention to the pantyhose-wearing Burt Ward Robin costume.

  8. Jeff Hebert says:

    I do give them points for staying true to the original Phantom outfit, but I’m not sure that’s a good thing considering how absolutely ludicrous that is. Zebra striped underwear over a purple body suit? Wha-ha?!

  9. William A. Peterson says:

    Should have stuck with your first guess, Jeff!
    The question, after all, wasn’t “What’s the worst Superhero outfit in a GOOD movie?”, now, was it?
    I do think the Halle Berry Catwoman outfit is a VERY close second, for more reasons than I care to think about…
    The rest of these (while none of them is really good) are FAR better than either of these two!
    By the way…
    What does anyone think of casting Seth Rogen as The Green Hornet”?

  10. Jeff Hebert says:

    I didn’t mind the Catwoman outfit, honestly. I mean, with a B-list character like that, you have more latitude in my mind, and I thought it was at least hot. Hotness covers many sins. Not all of them, as Silk Specter’s fashion disaster proved, but many.

    As for Seth Rogen as The Green Hornet, I guess that’s OK. I actually don’t know much about that character, it was before my time and I haven’t ever gone back to catch up on it. I am more befuddled as to why they would remake that particular one, but I really shouldn’t be surprised at anything these days.

  11. Danny Beaty says:

    How about the costume worn by Dolf Lundgren in that godawful 80’s version of “the Punisher”…oh, I forgot, he didn’t wear any kind of costume. Honestly, that movie sucked! Let’s also not forget that godawful costume from the first CBS “Captain America” TV-movie. Will we ever get a live-action movie that does justice to Cap? I know there are plans for a big-budget Cap movie; let’s hope all involved parties learn from the mistakes of the past.

  12. The Imp says:

    Well I happen to like stippers, so I can’t vote for Silk Spectre. Besides, that girl is smokin hot. Damn. I mean, just LOOK at her.

    Okay, sorry bout that. πŸ˜€

    Back on topic: Without a doubt, the Schumacher Batman costumes are the absolute pinnacle of suckitude.

  13. Danny Beaty says:

    I hate that Seth Rogen will play “The Green Hornet”. I have the scary feeling “TGH” is going to be made as some kind of buddy comedy.
    Am I the only person bothered by the fact that Nick Fury has been given a race change? If Hollywood wants to give major characters race changes, how about:

    Jeff Goldblum as John Shaft?
    Lucy Liu as Scarlett O’Hare?
    Fran Drescher as Cleopatra Jones?
    Cedric the Entertainer as Sherlock Holmes?
    Jackie Chan as Dolemite?

    Just for the record, I have no problem with a person of color being the head of S.H.I.E.L.D. (or any other organization), but shame on Paramount for putting a white character in blackface.

  14. Bael says:

    I gotta go with Batman. I saw an interview with Shumaker where he admitted to going with Batnipples despite not being able to explain why he needed them to Bob Kane. If you can’t even explain your own weirdness, it is time to reconsider.

    And I would kill to see a Jackie Chan Dolomite movie.

  15. Darth_Neko says:

    Was I the only one who though that Silk Specter was actually sort of hot in that costume? Then again, I have bad taste in women period.

    But on a side-note, I voted for the evil abomination that was George Clooney’s Bat-man costume. That thing still gives me nightmares to this day!

  16. Hammerknight says:

    I think they need to past a law that makes them stay true to comics if they are going to make a movie about them. Danny had a good point about changing races of characters, even the new G.I. Joe changed up Ripcord. And changing the costumes need to stop also. Most comic book lover grow up with the characters, loving them for who and what they are, then along comes Hollywood and takes that away. Hell lets make a movie about George Washington and make him an Asian wearing a pink uniform crossing the river driving a hummer. Let the people that work with the comics everyday have something to do with the movies. Not just some dumb azz that never ever seen a comic book, let along picked one up to read it. But we are all to blame for going to see them, I guess, but I guess we can all dream and hope that one day a comic book movie will be true to the books.

  17. Runt82 says:

    I had to go with Batman, because honestly, how can you screw up a comic icon so bad that…uh…that… *cannot finish sentence because he is distracted by the shiny codpieces*

  18. Denise Adams says:

    As Jeff stated, a great many of the costumes that look fabulous in pen and ink just suck on the huge Cinemascope screen. Most of them are bad but gotta go with the worst prizes going to the Batman costumes. Like the concept — flowing cape, bat cowl — but the nipples and groin pieces — yuk. Although you didn’t ask, I liked the black Spiderman costume in the last movie SM movie. Cool. And — Wonder Woman’s top. They should market that anti-gravity garment for those of us over the age of 40…

  19. Danny Beaty says:

    @Denise: Hi Denise! It’s nice to know we finally have a chick in our HM community!

  20. Bael says:

    re: The Silk Specter costume. It’s a lousy super hero costume for many reasons, from heatstroke to the lack of silk. But it does look good on her.
    I would also like to say that the Night Owl (or was that Nite Owl?) costume in the movie worked out really well. The one in the comic always looked more like a brown penguin to me.
    Let the flames commence.

  21. Jeff Hebert says:

    On Nick Fury, they based his “Ultimates” version on Samuel L. Jackson, so I don’t mind them doing the same thing in the movie.

    Silk Specter is hot, I agree, but then, I have a thing for strong Nordic jaws. Weird, I know. I actually think she’d have been even hotter without that incredibly awkward scene in Archie where they … join forces. That was so icky it kind of turned me off the whole thing.

    Also agreed on Nite Owl’s costume looking like a big furry brown penguin in the comics.

  22. John says:

    I voted Ozymandias. But really, I should have voted Batman.

    The reason Schumacher could not explain it to Bob Kane was because he didn’t want to explain to the venerable Bat-creator that he was basically filming a gay superhero fetish movie.

    **two snaps up in the Z formation!**

  23. Whit says:

    I can say that the Batnips are NO fetish for me! πŸ˜›

  24. Kalkin says:

    Let’s see, first of all Silk spectre is okay. She’s wearing a total stripper outfit, but then again we need more stripper outfits in superhero movies, so that’s not bad. I’m not complaining.
    Secondly Ozymandias and Batman do look gay, but since both of them might be gay (in Watchmen Rorschach suspects Ozy of being gay and Batman has been accused of that for a long time), their suits just reflect that. It’s understandable, since a movie couple of hours long doesn’t have time for subtler references. Next there’s the Governator wearing glowing bucket. The suit is ridiculous, but come on, it’s Arnie playing a cybersuited villain, what else could you possibly expect? If he didn’t look ridiculous, I’d have been disappointed.
    That leaves the two final contestants: Phantom and Steel. These two stretch my tolerance treshold, but ultimately Phantom is less of an eye vomit, because his costume is apart from purple color rather faithful the original character. If only I was color blind, the movie’d be almost tolerable. Therefore the (un)lucky winner is…Steel. He just looks like a zero charisma ugly guy wearing a pile of junk. Steel just sinks into the sea of awfulness with no lift from coolness, actor’s charisma (or sexiness), camp value, cultural references, humor nor loyalty to the original character. He’s just pathetic.

  25. Bael says:

    Danny, if you’d seen the David Hasselhoff version of Nick Fury, you’d be a lot happier with the Ultimates version, I guarantee.

  26. The Imp says:

    I think his daughter filmed that drunken video of him trying to eat a hamburger right after he’d made ‘Fury’ and realized how lame it was. πŸ™‚

  27. Jigglypuff says:

    One simple rule of movie costumes is NO nipples ever. It’s easy to tell if a movie is bad if the costumes have nipples or something on that level. Any movie superhero costumes that shows a lack of sexual discretion is better off in a porno movie.

    Another rule is to try and keep the characters’ personalities and deamonors closer to the orginial. Some of the best movies kept elements of the original character’s personality intact, which in my opinion meant that the actors extensively studied for the role.

  28. Boomshadow says:

    I voted “Steel,” mostly out of spite that DC at the last second vetoed corporate sister Warner Bros. Pictures’ wish for the “S” logo from the comics, and in fact demanded all references from Superman stricken from the film, despite the fact that Superman is central to Steel’s (admittedly dubious) origin.

    Secondary is the fact that the damn thing just looks too heavy to be practical.

    As for Malin Akerman’s Silk Spectre: I gave her a pass because even though the stretchy substance used for her costume bears no resemblance whatsoever to silk, and in fact looks like she’d be sweating buckets in seconds if she foolishly tried to fight crime while wearing it, she does look kinda…nice. However, I can’t quite bring myself to call her Silk Spectre (or even Silk Spectre II). How about “Rubber Revenant,” or “Vinyl Virago”?

    And again, sorry for the absurdly late comment.