Pick a random issue of “Witchblade” prior to the last year or so of its run and you’d be hard-pressed to find a cover that didn’t feature the main character sexualized. Obviously, the biggest reason for the sexual nature of the covers is the fact that the character’s costume is basically the most unrealistic armor ever seen. Basically just enough armor to cover her arm, her nipples and only the bare minimum below the belt, Sara Pezzini’s costume is pretty ridiculous. It’s no surprise when most people would define the character based on her appearance than on her actual heroics.
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Vampirella is a character that is almost entirely defined by her looks. While she has been in comic book series regularly since her debut in “Vampirella” #1 in 1969, the character has largely been known for her incredibly skimpy outfit. Even in her very first comic, the cover is drawn by the legendary Frank Frazetta and shows Vampirella front and center with her legs spread and one hand placed suggestively on her hip.
In the 1950s, Joe Simon and Jack Kirby, the same guys who brought Timely Captain America, had worked on some comic book ideas in the 1950s and one of them ended up becoming the Fly for Archie Comics. When Stan Lee asked Kirby to come up with a new spider-themed hero, The King of Comics adapted some of the design ideas that he had for the earlier spider hero and used them for Spider-Man, including a gun that shot webs. Lee was not a fan of the look and asked Steve Ditko to try to do a take on Spider-Man. Ditko dropped pretty much every element of Kirby's design, including turning the web gun into webshooters that Spider-Man had on his wrists.
Everyone, especially in America, loves Captain America. This character, unlike all others in Marvel, was created during the Second World War period to fight against the Axis powers in the comics. Towards the end of the war, Captain America fell through ice and remained trapped and in suspended animation until the military found and revived him decades later. Captain America is one of the leaders of the Avengers and is an amazing soldier, disciplined, and committed to protecting human beings at all costs.
Like most things in this world, superhero costumes did not just pop into this world out of thin air. There was a long history of costumes that predated them and influenced their creation. There was the colorful armor that knights wore in the Middle Ages. There were the fantastical outfits that some of the characters in pulp fiction novels and adventure comic strips wore. Perhaps most notably, there was the over-the-top attire that circus performers wore in the many traveling shows of the early 20th century. All of these previous ideals helped to influence the direction of superhero costumes in comic book history.
But some female heroes haven’t been so lucky as to get more practical makeovers. Take for example Elizabeth Olsen's cleavage-baring Avengers: Infinity War look, which Olsen says isn't exactly her personal cup of tea for a character wading into battle with Mad Titans. Even she'll admit it's a step up from Wanda's comic book look, but in her words costumes like hers aren't "representing the average woman."
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Arguably, Iron Man has the coolest costume out of all the comic universes, because it's both beautiful and functional. It's not just the little kids who want to grow up to be Iron Man, even grown men would love to fly around and shoot at stuff. If the Iron Man suit was real, people would sell anything they could to purchase it, because it turns an ordinary guy into a powerful superhero with the strength and firepower to defeat a whole army of superhumans.
Originally what started as slightly extended cleavage somehow moved to the middle of Peej's chest, giving readers a view that honestly doesn't do her any favors while slugging it out with the likes of Despero. Her first "New 52" costume was the first time she was completely covered, but she soon reverted back to her more famous (and impractical) look.
The comic book version of Thor has never really been a sex symbol. Sure, he’s incredibly good looking, as the God of Thunder probably should be, but he’s never been viewed as sexier than, say, Wolverine. However, when Thor debuted on the big screen, anyone with eyes saw that Chris Hemsworth’s Thor is most definitely a sex symbol. It’s become so much of an issue that the recent Thor shorts directed by Taika Waititi even poked fun at Thor’s big muscly physique. His looks are so vital to the character that when fans saw his new look in “Thor: Ragnarok,” they obsessed over his haircut more than anything else.
Characters like Tony Stark and Diana Prince are more than just good looks, however. When you read the adventures of Captain America, you don’t think about how sexy Steve Rogers is. Well, maybe you do, but that’s not all you care about. Unfortunately, for some characters, their appearance trumps most everything else about them. Let’s take a look at eight male and eight female characters in comics who are viewed as being more “hot” than “hero.”
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Artist Dave Cockrum had already famously re-designed most of the members of the Legion of Super-Heroes, giving them modern revamps to their rather staid older costumes. His Lightning Lad re-design was particularly good, as while many of the character got later revamps over the years, Cockrum's Lightning Lad look became a standard one for the character for decades. Essentially, Cockrum was so far ahead of the game that when the team was revamped in the 1990s, his early 1970s design fit right in. While working on the Legion, Cockrum designed a new team of heroes called the Outsiders who were set to team up with the Legion. DC passed on the concept.
If the threat of facing off against two of S.H.E.I.L.D.’s top heroes isn’t enough to stop a villain in his tracks, maybe the head-to-toe look of a detailed superhero costume will make the bad dudes think twice. We recommend having Captain America pairing up a big ol’ fist along with his Vibranium shield , and when Iron Man stands by his side, the high tech armament courtesy of Stark Industries is sure to give the most villainous threats a pause before they attempt to enact their diabolical plans. Pose your children side by side to achieve this shot, and even if their sights are solely set on filling up their trick-or-treat bags, they’ll be able to make the neighborhood rounds like true Avengers.
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We found out in a hurry after the hit films, Iron Man and Captain America: The First Avenger, that our brand new cinematic heroes were going to need a little help saving the world. That’s why fans were prepared when The Avengers took the world by storm! With a bevy of films under the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this group has become a fan favorite for those watching and wanting to pay homage to them by going in costume. When you can find a friend to go in a Hulk costume or Thor costume we think you’re going to find that your group has the chops to get the job done. And if you have a femme fatale to be the Black Widow? Well, then you’re going to be downright unstoppable in your Marvel costumes!