The Elaborate World of Impractical Female Superhero Costumes

huntress 2
Huntress // DC Comics

A few weeks ago, I was scavenging the internet for some clear pictures of Huntress for my Batgirl movie fan cast. As I passed through images and images of old Huntress comic strips, I began to realize something hilarious and kind of disturbing. In many of these photos, Huntress’ costume does not consist of pants. Nope! Huntress catches criminals in thigh-high heeled boots, a bare midriff, and tiny hot pants. Not that this isn’t a Look™, but I have to wonder how she hasn’t been knifed in the stomach yet with all that midriff showing. So of course, I continued to investigate this strange phenomenon of female superhero costumes.

Power_Girl_Amanda_Conner
Power Girl // DC Comics

Exhibit A: Power Girl

Two words: boob window. Even though this became a joke in the comics, I still question the durability of the boob window. Power Girl looks like she needs a super, supportive sports bra ASAP! I know the pain of simply jogging in a real bra with a C-cup. I can’t imagine what Power Girl must be feeling, especially since she’s fighting off alien hordes and holding up buildings.

Starfire
Starfire // DC Comics

Exhibit B: Starfire

First, how does the suit stay together? Fashion engineering is not at this level yet, and probably will never be. Inspired by Mila Jovovich’s first outfit in the Fifth Element, Starfire’s elaborate costume gives me a headache. Why is there a high collar, but nothing as protective below it? What’s the point of the armor nipple pasties if half her breasts are out? No matter how powerful she is, Starfire would die in a moment with this outfit once the enemy realizes they can just aim at her heart or stomach and kill her without problem.

emma frost
Emma Frost // Marvel Comics

Exhibit C: Emma Frost

I know she’s sometimes a villain, but this research would not be complete without Emma Frost’s wardrobe. Emma Frost is a perfect example of impractical superhero costumes. Basically all of her outfits are from the Victoria’s Secret lingerie line, featuring white corsets and long, silky gloves. I recognize that she’s an openly sexual character, which is great that she can fight the ideals that women are not allowed to be sexual beings. But, come one, who is kicking ass in a corset? They limit your mobility and cause you to not get as much oxygen, two very important factors of fighting. Although great in that it represents her character’s personality, it loses points with the its lack of functionality.

I could continue, but then this post would be five pages longer and I want to keep it short and sweet. The conclusion to my investigation is this: no female superhero is going to be fighting evil in any of these outfits. I realize that some of them are part of their personalities and have been updated since these costumes, but the point is still the same. Sexualizing female superheroes need to stop, especially in their outfits. Also, someone needs to call up Edna Mode from The Incredibles to fix these catastrophes.

 

All Photos Property of DC Comics and Marvel Comics

 

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