Batman has knife-edge spiky gloves.  Spider-Man has web pits.  Black Canary has buccaneer boots and a bolero jacket.  Each of these inexplicable accessories has no bearing on their adventures, really, but in my mind, they’re just not themselves if without them.  Jay Garrick without a Mercury helmet is just a man in dungarees, She-Hulk without legwarmers is…  Actually, that’s just fine.  That’s a bad 80s example, but New 52 Superman failed for me not because of armor or removal of red trunks but because it lacked the traditional notched boots, lead us to today’s coordinating query…

The MS-QOTD (pronounced, as always, “misquoted”) may never get over the loss of Luke Cage’s headband, asking: What inexplicable accessory is nonetheless absolutely necessary for a character to look right to you?


About Author

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. The wings on Captain America’s mask. Pointless, silly, but without them it looks wrong, too round. (Also ears must be out.) Similarly, Hawkeye’s pointy mask.

  2. Well, we got over the loss of Ben Grimm’s booties. How about all the spikey hair in Dragonball Z. Oh, speaking of pointless wings (and Golden Age Marvel), the little ankle wings on Namor.

  3. Although not every Rider has it, the “bug eyes” helmet visor look for many Kamen Riders, even when they aren’t following an insect motif. Some look fine without it, but it becomes so easily recognizable as a Kamen Rider when there are the big bug eye visor things on the helmet. Without that, the helmet isn’t as easy to tell if you’ve never seen the series it belongs to, and could easily be another Tokusatsu hero helmet.

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