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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As noted earlier, patriotic-themed heroes were hot in the early 1940s. America was going through a strange period of both isolationism and nationalism at the same time. Americans were really proud of their country, but also didn't want to get involved in the war in Europe. Patriotic-themed heroes captured that feel, by having noble American heroes defeat villains who dared to come over here to mess with us. Things got bolder, though, when Timely Comics introduced Captain America, who broke out of the isolationist viewpoints by having the lead character punch out Adolf Hitler on the cover of the first issue, a full year before the United States actually went to war with Nazi Germany!

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When the Silver Age began, there were two particular types of characters who were seen as really cool that no longer get treated the same way in popular fiction -- scientists and test pilots. Scientists were the heroes of every other science fiction comic book from DC and Marvel in the 1950s and 1960s. Reed Richards being a cool scientist was a totally normal thing at the time. Similarly, test pilot Chuck Yeager was one of the most admired heroes in the United States in the 1950s due to his skills as a test pilot. You need to keep those things in mind when you realize how modeling Hal Jordan after guys like Yeager defined the character so much in the late 1950s.
When the great Wallace Wood took over the series early on, he came up with one of the most strikingly simple fixes of a costume in comic book history. He just made the costume red all over and it instantly made it an iconic look. The double-D had already been added before Wood changed the color, but the combination made for a striking costume that comic book artists always seem to eventually default to whenever Daredevil gets a costume change. When it comes to Daredevil costumes, we should always paraphrase Nuke from the classic Daredevil storyline, "Born Again" -- "Gimme a red."
The most famous storyline featuring Namor is actually an ongoing story with the Invisible Woman, Sue Richards. Dating back to some of his earliest appearances in the Silver Age, he has been the bad boy that Sue Richards has been drawn to but can never have. His good looks and anti-hero nature make him a very desirable character. Considering most people know him for his revealing costume, and his pseudo-love affair with Sue Richards, it's easy to see how Namor lands on this list.
Similarly, Gil Kane going for a sleek sort of flight suit look for the Green Lantern Corps costume was a brilliant decision in the late 1950s. Kane's simple but striking design has been so good that it continues to be used by Green Lanterns over five decades later and no one seems prepared to go to a different design any time soon, at least as the base look (many lanterns diversify and personalize their looks now). Scientists and test pilots might not be treated like the heroes they were in the 1950s, but this costume remains timeless.
Starfox is probably the only hero in the Marvel Universe actually defined by his sexuality, not just to outside readers, but also to the characters in the universe. Describing Starfox as an actual hero is a bit of stretch. It’s more fitting to call him a cosmic womanizer that goes around the Marvel Universe attempting to seduce female characters. He is most definitely more hot than hero.

When he was originally working on Batman for National Comics, artist Bob Kane was thinking of the character as being a brighter hero, with a costume that would have bat-wings. Eventually, Kane brought in writer Bill Finger to work on the character idea and Finger explained to him that they should go the other direction. Finger was a big fan of the shadowy pulp fiction hero, the Shadow, and Finger felt that they should take the character into the shadows with a dark costume and a cape and a cowl to make him look more like a bat. Kane agreed and Batman was born.
Harry George Peter was already 61 years old when he came up with the design for the new female superhero that William Marston was planning for All-American Comics, then called Suprema. This was 1941, when patriotic characters were a big hit in comics, so Wonder Woman definitely had a strong Star Spangled Banner take on her design. In the early 1980s, DC Comics helped create a short-lived Wonder Woman charity, the logo of which was the double W's, which led to Wonder Woman adapting the "WW" on her chest emblem. Other than the emblem, the only thing different from her classic look than in Peter's original design is that he had Wonder Woman wearing a skirt instead of short pants.

It's debatable whether Brandon Lee's portrayal of James O'Barr's tragic anti-hero would have gone down in history as quite so legendary if the young actor hadn't lost his life during filming, but The Crow's visual influence can never be denied. Translating O'Barr's striking make-up pattern and leather-clad intensity almost directly off the page, The Crow's look was simply so effective as to be almost shocking.


Namor might go down in history as the male hero with the most revealing costume. Wearing only the tiniest green speedo, Namor is the very attractive mutant who rules the seas. He is maybe the very first comic book “bad boy” dating back to his first appearance in 1939. Now, almost 80 years later, he is still known for his sex appeal, in the real world and the fictional world alike.
Catwoman has no shame about her preferred choice of action, stealing and being a top notch catburglar are at the top of her list. But when the times call for a hero, she has no problem standing side-by-side with Batman to team up and defeat the baddies. When she’s on the prowl for precious jewels, though, is sure to be the most opportune time for a quick picture. Once she takes out the vital controls of the security system, she’ll have no problem slipping into the joint and lining her pockets with a little extra cash or whatever she can find in the safety deposit box. Have her show her claws for the picture, and she can smile or look serious—either way this picture is going to be one to remember!
It’s hard to believe that a hero that's usually shown not even have normal flesh would be known for his sex appeal, but Colossus definitely is. While he’s been a longstanding member of the X-Men, Colossus has always been known for his massive frame and surprisingly skimpy costume. Unlike other “sexy” heroes known for their bad boy qualities, people are drawn to Colossus because he’s generally really sweet and caring, not only with his affection towards Kitty Pryde but also with his sister Illyana. Even with his sweet personality, comic book fans will probably never forget his “centerfolds” from those old swimsuit issues.
Here, we will take a look at the very best of the best when it comes to superhero design. Do note that we are working with at least one major caveat, that the superheroes in question have iconic costumes. It does not do you much good to have a really cool costume if no one knows who you are. As a result, we are heavily weighing in the cultural impact of the costume design when we rank them. Where does a costume stand, historically, within the medium itself? That is one of the most important questions that we address when we start our ranking of the best superhero costumes of all-time.

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