Birthday suits

Because today is my birthday, I am going to take a bit of a departure from the usual "Bad Super Costume Wednesday" tradition of mocking a specific character. Instead, I give you this brief glimpse into the fashion horror that would result if actual men ran around in actual tights, which are the next best thing to their Birthday Suits.

First, the politically incorrect truth is that not every man (like yours truly, for one) has a body built for Spandex:

And yet, when you wear tights, the body you've got is the body we see.

"But, Jeff," I hear you saying, "surely super heroes would accessorize, adding different colors and boots and whatnot!" To which I can only retort:

Of course then you have your more metallic sorts of characters like Iron Man, who gad about in ostensibly more concealing garb. Which, nonetheless, always manages to look like shiny Spandex, leading to:

It's hard to walk the line between "Atomic Wedgie" and "The Complete Absence of Crack" when it comes to form-hugging fabric. How Batman does everything he does without having to stop every ten seconds to yank his tights out of his butt, I will never know.

Lest you still think I'm off-base in my projection of the horror we would all have to face in a world where our fellow man raced around in tights, I'll just leave you with this:

Kinda makes you glad super-hero costumes are only make-believe, doesn't it? As one of the aforementioned not-quite-super-model men, I for one am ecstatic I can just cover all the horror with jeans and loose shirts.

Still, whatever shape your personal Birthday Suit is in, be proud of it and take care of it, because getting a new one isn't as easy as wandering down to the Marvel Bullpen!

63 Responses to Birthday suits

  1. Dan says:

    Happy Birthday, and good god man. That last one I could have done without.

  2. Danny Beaty says:

    Happy birthday Jeff!

  3. unknownblackpaper says:

    Congrats at another year of life!!! ^-^

  4. Susie Q says:

    Happy Birthday, and thanks for making me laugh on a regular basis.

  5. Watson Bradshaw says:

    Happy Birthday Jeff 🙂

  6. Jesse says:

    “How Batman does everything he does without having to stop every ten seconds to yank his tights out of his butt, I will never know.”

    I imagine the same way gymnasts manage it. There’s a special spray they use to keep the leotards from riding up or revealing parts best left unrevealed when you have dozens of cameras pointed at you and you’re spinning through the air. I think it’s called TuffSkin or something… can’t remember…

    Either way, happy birthday 😀

  7. Trekkie says:

    Now I’m going to have to try and get all those pictures out of my head. And happy birthday!

  8. Myro says:

    Ghaaa, my eyes!!!

    Happy birthday, big guy.

  9. Me, Myself & I says:

    I’d almost rather wear a dress! Happy birthday Jeff.

  10. ams says:

    With the first pic , I thought I was on my hockey play-off site. (youtube “green man-vancouver canucks”).

    Happy Birthday Jeff and all the best!

  11. Wade says:

    Happy Birthday dude. And thanks for the bad dreams.

  12. MrMikeK says:

    Where’s my eye soap!?

    @MM&I: Please don’t do either.

    Happy Birthday, Jeff! May the Bald Avenger ride forever down the path of mighty geekdom!

  13. Captain Kicktar says:

    Happy birthday, wow, you’re the third person I know that has a birthday on June 1st, other two are Notch, maker of Minecraft, and Paul Soares Jr., Minecraft tutorial/great series maker.

  14. Jeff Hebert says:

    I’ll bet “Applying the Bat-TuffSkin for Bruce” tops Robin’s list of “Worst Jobs”.

  15. Worf says:

    Happy Birthday Jeff!
    Here’s to many more to come and a happy and fruitful long run with HM.
    And to us all being here when HM10, the psychic edition comes around 😉

  16. Gero says:

    Happy Birthday, Jeff! Though I’m not too happy about all the eye bleach I now have to buy after seeing those last two pictures…

  17. Me, Myself & I says:

    I’m with you on that one MrMikeK (12). Just saying that if I had to choose between tights and a dress . . . You know, gun to the head kind of situation and all. My primary issue with the dress is all this body hair (fur) I’ve got. 🙂

  18. michael says:

    happy b-day!

  19. Gene says:

    Happy Birthday!

    And please never tell us what your Google image search history is like 🙂

  20. John says:

    The junk! The junk! The junk is on FI-YAHHHHHHHHH!

    Egads, that’s just terrible.

    Again, my best wishes for a geekitudinously superior celebration of the *mblmblmbl* anniversary of your birth!

  21. X-stacy says:

    So your birthday present to yourself…is traumatizing your loyal readers?! Thanks a lot. Really, you shouldn’t have.

    Happy birthday anyhow!

  22. Dionne Jinn says:

    Happy birthday, Jeff!

    In role playing conventions I have seen worse stuff live, so this isn’t overly traumatizing. I found it funny! Especially the piece about Batman.

  23. ajw says:

    Happy Birthday! “Let’s name him oatmeal.”
    Frosty reference in June. +2pts

  24. Vampyrist says:

    Happy Birthday

  25. Laridian says:

    Happy Birthday, Jeff! 🙂 I don’t comment much but I visit your site a few times a week. Thanks very much for this site, it’s a regular source of fun and interest for me. Here’s to many more happy birthdays for you!

  26. Whit says:

    Happy birthday! And how many issues of Undergear and International Male catalogues did you have to go through to cull those images? 😛

  27. PapaKrok says:

    Ha! Wow. Makes one lean toward battle armor, aye? HBD Jeff!

  28. Zaheelee says:

    I’m a girl, and I have to wear tights with all of my skirts and dresses when its cold out. It’s torture. I think these pics prove my point 🙂

    Happy Birthday, Jeff! And let you be fortunate enough to never go to New York Comic Con and have to see so many people wearing spandex who really shouldn’t.

  29. William A. Peterson says:

    And, just as a Special present for the Birthday Boy…
    I don’t remember the name of the thing, but Rob Liefeld is getting another comic, with even more to mock than his art usually provides! 😀
    {Somehow, they got Kirkman to write it…}

  30. Anarchangel says:

    Happy birthday Jeff. Hope you have a good one. I’m off to tear my eyeballs from my head 🙂

  31. McKnight57 says:

    Happy birthday, Jeff. I’m gonna go back and revamp a few characters so their costumes are a bit more street smart. Don’t want every criminal you run into laughing at your bulge/crack/waistline/beer gut/man boobs. And with that thought, I’m gonna find a way to un-see all of this and look for something to make my eyes stop bleeding.

  32. DiCicatriz says:

    Happy Birthday, Jeff! I call histrionics on this board, those men are actually in pretty good shape. Could have been far worse 🙂

  33. Joshua says:

    DOOM: Believe it or not, Hebert, between Plan #3726-T (Destroying Richards via billions of nano-Doombots altering his telomerase enzymes as a means of creating a cybernetically enhanced neoplasm.) and Plan #3727-P (Creating a Broadway show to discredit the reputation of the Wall-Crawler), Doom has given consideration toward “celebrating” your birthday.

    Maybe utilizing my time-machine, I, Doom, will travel into the past and prevent your conception. Yes, an “un-birthday” as it were. But erasure from existence seems rather painless. Bah! You live for now, Hebert! Consider that your birthday gift!

    Happy Birthday, Jeff!

  34. Jeff Hebert says:

    I never had an un-Birthday before, thanks Doom! Er, I mean, I tremble before your awesome might!

  35. Jeff Hebert says:

    I agree, DiCicatriz, it could have been MUCH worse. It could have been ME in one of those costumes. Those guys are all in good shape, but despite that, they look ridiculous. Which was my point — it almost doesn’t matter how buff you are, you’re going to look bad in tights. It’s just the way they are.

  36. punkjay says:

    totally disturbing!!

  37. punkjay says:

    Oh and happy birthday! For your birthday I must tell you with these pics your b-day present is sticking a pen in my brain so I can forget the image of men in leotards!

  38. NGpm says:

    Happy birthday!

    I’m reminded of that guy that scared my childhood years running around in the tights painted like internal organs … neither super nor hero.

  39. Reader Kate says:

    Speak for yourselves, gentlemen! I found that last photo rather hot.

  40. The Imp says:

    Happy birthday, Jeff!

    And now I must find a fork with which to pluck my eyeballs out.

  41. Umm.. happy birthday and all that. But… this is akin when I parted ways with “That 70s Show.”

    Loved it all until Laura Prepon went blonde. Yeah, I’d feel more comfortable imagining Mila Kunis as a blonde than Jeff Hebert as a… sorry, my happy place is Laura Prepon dressed as Han Solo. Which is a step up from shiny things and string.

  42. Jessica says:

    Happy birthday, Jeff!

    And now I need to go to the storage closet and suck my eyeballs out with my vacuum! Disturbing!

  43. Rhinoman says:

    Happy Birthday Jeff! Better late than never!

  44. Malfar says:

    Happy Birthday!

  45. Whit says:

    @NGpm (38): Mr Goodbody, yeah, he had spots on Captain Kangaroo, as I remember. Yeah, a bit odd.

  46. Legatus says:

    Happy Birthday!!!

  47. Blackjack says:

    I’m with Kate, bring us more yum!

    Happy Birthday, Oh Jeffmeister on high!

  48. spidercow2010 says:

    HB, JE, b.l.t.n!

  49. spidercow2010 says:

    I meant JH, of course.

  50. logosgal says:

    Happy belated birthday, Jeff!

    MMI, Zaheelee (9 & 17, 28): I’ve heard that in some cultures, skirts have actually been a macho thing because they are so uncomfortable when it’s cold out. They figured women couldn’t handle it or something like that.

    I thought the pictures were mostly ok. The guy in green from the first one was unfortunate, as were the colors and the lowest eighth of the last one, but it’s not like I’m about to pluck my eyes out. Why do guys freak out so much when they see other guys like this? I’ve never really understood that…

  51. Jeff Hebert says:

    logosgal, I think there are a few probable reasons.

    First, the scene from Seinfeld where Elaine is asking George if a guy at the gym is good looking or not about sums up what you’re commenting about:

    Elaine: You know, just admitting that another man is attractive doesn’t necessarily make you a homosexual.
    George: It doesn’t help.

    To be “guy” you have to (alas) still react with exaggerated revulsion at the sight of another naked guy, out of some kind of deep-seated sociological imperative to not be seen as gay. I’m not saying that’s a conscious motivation or that anyone here is at all anti-homosexual, I just think that’s how our society has conditioned its males for a long, long time.

    Second, to be completely honest, the male figure in anything but the Adonis-like perfection of a super hero comic or Michelangelo statue is pretty gross-looking to those of us unfortunate enough to have to live in them. It’s just not very aesthetically pleasing.

    And finally, I think seeing a nearly-nude form of an average guy reminds most of us how much worse we’d look in the same get-up, which probably drives some of the revulsion as well. Self-shame and negative body image are not exclusively female problems 🙂

  52. Me, Myself & I says:

    logosgal (50) I think Jeff (51) summed it up pretty well there. I think we over exagerate out true perspective.

    OK Too Much Information (TMI) time here so anyone not wanting to be scarred for life; stop reading now . . .

    With no word of exageration, I would rather walk around naked than in spandex like this. Spandex shows EVERYTHING so really if I’m going to let it all hang out, may as well go all the way. At least that would be more confortable. Fortunately, living in Canada, the climate doesn’t really lend itself to such public displays.

    Sorry for the TMI everybody but I did warn you. 🙂

  53. Me, Myself & I says:


    I think we over exagerate out true perspective.

    should have been;

    I think we over exagerate ouR true perspective.

  54. logosgal says:

    Jeff (51): Yeah, that makes perfect sense, sad as it is.

    MMI (52): I would argue that there is in fact a significant difference between an average man clad in Spandex and an average man going around nude: the guy in Spandex will cause most men to run and most women to look; the guy in the nude will cause will cause most men and a large percentage of women to run. So if you want something that’s not pants and is less constricting than tights, go with the skirt.

  55. Me, Myself & I says:

    logosgal (54) Not to mention the issue with the police showing up and all. 🙂

  56. Kytana says:
    Better late than never.
    Happy bithday!

  57. The Imp says:

    @Kytana: That’s awesome!

  58. Zaheelee says:

    This whole conversation reminds me of how everyone at my biking camp wears bike shorts daily. For those of you who don’t know, bike shorts are just very tight spandex shorts with padding in the butt area so you don’t die when going on long rides. Oh, and did I mention that, on guys, they can be very akword looking? No? Well they are. I will restate one of my earlier points and say that not everyone looks good in spandex, and if you don’t look good in them, it is advisable not to wear them.

  59. Cliff says:

    Actually I like the red metalic and the purple and the blue. But then who here is surprised by that? And I used to have a subscription to Undergear and International Male, and still et Modo emails about current underwear no on ereally wears but I would like it if they did. And its no worse than what White Witch, Shadow Lass, Storm or others have worn. Its just skin and I for one, love the male bod. Yeah I know, who’s shocked? And nope, not trying to change any of you, just stating my case. 🙂

  60. Cliff says:

    And a VE#RY Happy Belated Birthday Jess.

    (Was at my wife’s Doctor in Dallas all day yesterday, and Dialysis today, which is why this is late,)

  61. GLofsector2814 says:

    For the record, most superheroes wear spandex. And-I have a
    green lantern costume that has tights/leotard and it’s perfectly
    comfortable and does not ride. Then again, I’m a girl so it may be
    different from a guy’s point of view.

  62. punkjay says:

    GLofsector2814: (61) Well let me put this as delicately as I can… men are way more 3 dementional in the lower half of the body!

  63. knight1192a says:

    Thank you for giving us new teletubby nightmares with that first pic.