A recent run through the MSP archives had me listening to a conversation with Major Spoilers EIC Stephen and Doctor Peter Coogan (here) which turned a lot of switches in my head, some of which concern the traditional superhero costume.  Barry Allen (and his follow-up Flashes, Wally and Bart) have been wearing the same togs with minor tweaks since 1959, while Iron Man, thanks to the technological nature of his powers, is in a constant state of upgrade and change.  Heck, since the turn of the century or so, it seems the only constant in Tony Stark’s superhero attire has been his unattractive faceplate.  Heck, Chris Evans changed his costumed look in each outing as Captain America, leading us to today’s quick-change query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) won’t even bring up the sartorial history of Janet Van Dyne, the wonderous Wasp, asking: Do you prefer a character who remains visually stable or one who regularly changes his or her costumed look?


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Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. Malone_hasco on

    It mostly depends on character. I like old, iconic designs to remain same for long periods of time but on the other hand, with characters that change makes sense, like ones wearing some sort of armor or uniform, I’d like to see it evolve over time.

  2. Robert Hulshof-Schmidt on

    I agree, it depends. For most characters, a steady look (perhaps with minor adjustments) makes the most sense. That said, if the changes fit the character, it can be fun. I’m a big fan of the every-fourth-issue Janet Van Dyne costume changes of the early 80’s. (And, yes, I LOVE the blue and white one-sleeve outfit!)

  3. I don’t mind a constant updating of costume design, so long as the colors remain the same. Iron Man, for the most part, has always remained red/gold/silver, with a few forays into stealth suits, space suits, etc. Batman’s got redesigns every 5-10 years, but has always stayed in that gray/blue/black zone. But something like Daredevil’s godawful 90s redesign, or Superman’s electric boogaloo period really put me off.

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