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The Avengers Costume Ideas

Updated on September 3, 2012

Be One of the Avengers this Halloween!

You have to hand it to Marvel Entertainment - they seem to know exactly how to dress their superheroes! Ever since a tights-wearing caped crime fighter first walked on screen (not Superman, believe it or not, but 1941's Adventures of Captain Marvel) filmmakers have struggled to transform the magic of comic book flare into iconic motion picture montage.

The costumes on screen have, of course, become licensed costumes for Halloween. Read on to find out what type of costumes, outfits and accessories are out on the market, and learn some fun trivia about The Avengers and each character along the way!

Superhero Costumes From the Page to the Big Screen

Less Silly Tights, More Rugged Suits

It's not as easy as you might think to pull the mainly spandex costumes from graphic novels to the big screen. Batman struggled for years until Tim Burton and Christopher Nolan finally found him a breathable but menacing bat suit. The first X-Men movies by Bryan Singer would forgo the bright yellow spandex costumes altogether, and instead put Cyclops in leather and Wolverine in a badass T-shirt. As recently as The Watchmen, the challenge of bringing outrageous costumes to the big screen and letting those big strong men keep their machismo has been a troubled journey.

So the greatest compliment we can give The Avengers, a universally acclaimed blockbuster, is that it pulled off the nearly impossible and made some of Marvel's most colorful and bizarre costumes work brilliantly. No one was snickering at these costumes. The outfits made the men, and made their superhero identities larger than life. Let's relive some of these out-of-this-world fashion statements, shall we?

Gone Are the Days of Cheap Plastic Costumes!

With high attention to detail and comfort, today's superhero costumes are as imposing as those on the big screen!

Captain America

Sleek, Patriotic, Rugged

Captain America's sleek new soldier design, a less padded version of his WWII costume, made him the All-American "straight man", a perfect foil for Robert Downey Jr.'s interpretation of the incorrigible man-clown Tony Stark.

Captain America, played by actor Chris Evans, is perhaps the most classic hero of the bunch in terms of fashion (he is technically wearing a unitard, even if it has been reimagined for 2012)-but it's all true to his character, as a super soldier who has just woken from a 70-year slumber.

The costume ranges from a padded polyester muscle jumpsuit to a higher quality and more detailed sculpted jumpsuit. The package includes the helmet - the shield (and gloves on the basic costume) are extra accessories.

Captain America Costume

Captain America Costume For Kids
Captain America Costume For Kids

Go as the Red, White and Blue! Get it at Buycostumes.com

The Avengers Characters

Marvel Movie Poster
Marvel Movie Poster

Ego, brawn, authority, skills ...

Who Is Your Favorite Avengers Character?

See results

Iron Man

Meanwhile, Stark's Mark VII armor, upgraded from Iron Man 2, is on full display in The Avengers, featuring a laser-scannable pattern reading system, four additional thruster systems, upgraded plasma chargers, and 92 computerized micro-missiles. Stark is not just a hero in a tank-he's a human Transformer and moves fluently, even while being protected behind layers of titanium and nitinol. (Or so speculates the Marvel website, insisting that simple iron just isn't capable of this power and flexibility)

Iron Man's costume works because it celebrates human technology as well as the excess of celebrity. Indeed, Iron Man is the only hero cocky enough to admit who he is to the public! We don't pity the guy for dressing up - we want that suit just like we want to drive a new car! Just witness some of bizarre and fantastic feats the Mark VII does in The Avengers; at one point, it smoothly wrapped around Stark's body after Loki threw him off the top of Stark Tower. Any more advances than what it has and the costume's going to end up falling in love with Tony - just saying!

The costume is a single padded Iron Man printed suit, with great attention paid to detail. Also includes the mask, but not the gloves, which you can buy separately. Make sure to buy the Mark VII Avengers suit, which brings back the circle to the power generator - the suit used in Iron Man II is a triangle.

Iron Man Mark VII Armor Costume

Remember to look for the suit with the circle - the triangle is the model from Iron Man II

Thor

Thor has been around for a while, and has appeared on screen before. However, replacing the angelic imagery of the Asgardian god suit and making it slightly more “techy” has worked well, and given actor Chris Hensworth an almost alien presence - something much more exotic than just a man in metal and fur, like the Eric Allan Kramer portrayal in the Incredible Hulk Returns TV movie. (Oh wow, we just showed our geekdom AND our age!)

Thor’s heavy metallics and cloak go perfectly with the modern hero look - dark, brooding and godlike in physique.The officially licensed costume is a high-quality replica from the movie

Thor Costume

Highly detailed, comfortable and padded muscle suit. Thor's Hammer is sold separately.

The Avengers on Amazon

Black Widow

The Black Widow, aka Natasha Romanoff, wears a black cat suit and with all due respect to Nolan and DC, it was definitely the sexiest cat suit of the year. (Anne Hathaway’s supposedly ultra-real cat garb owed more to Julie Newmar than Michelle Pfiefer)

The Black Widow’s femme fatale sex appeal was certainly played up, as her costume was formfitting (a practical “wetsuit”, Scarlett Johansson told Jay Leno) and included all the trimmings, like guns, knives, gadget belts and fiery-headed locks that are slightly shorter than her first appearance in Iron Man 2.

In fact, Scarlett Johannson is so hot and the Black Widow is such a mysterious and glum character, that it’s almost hard to remember that the Black Widow actually kicks butt in the movie more than she looks pretty. She’s the one who activates the failsafe and closes the portal and who interrogates the truth out of Loki - not to mention beats up a gang of terrorists led by Georgi Luchkov with, literally, her hands tied behind her back and her body tied to a chair!

Black Widow Costumes

Faux leather jumpsuit with all the trimmings - Polyester and spandex

The Avengers Movie Trailer

The Hulk

What’s most amusing to us about the Hulk, besides those trendy cut-off jeans, is the fact that he has been “programmed” in CGI to look like actor Mark Ruffalo. The actor bears a striking resemblance to both Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno of the original Hulk TV series.

He also has a body resemblance to male stripper Steve Romm, who as we learned from The New York Post, lent his figure to the Avengers’ animators. No detail is left out!

The Avenger's Incredible Hulk

You won't like it when I'm angry ... includes a padded polyester jumpsuit and mask. Color your hands green or buy "hulk hands" to complete your angry outfit!

Hawkeye

Subtle is the key to appreciating supporting cast members The Hulk, Hawkeye and Nick Fury of SHIELD. Hawkeye, portrayed by Jeremy Renner, actually did get a costume upgrade based on his Ultimates comic line, a great change from the spandex Hawkeye comic book fans may remember.

Jeremy’s muscle-bound arms are eye candy for the lady’s, while the rest of his body hides behind a combat vest with a silky purple T in the middle—a shout out to the original color scheme fans fell in love with.

Hawkeye Costume

Comes with Hawkeye's sleek vest, a gauntlet and boot covers. Complete with black jeans and, of course, a bow!

Avengers toys from Amazon

Nick Fury

Nick Fury has to convey great power, as he is in charge of not only babysitting but leading a team of outcasts who just happen to have godlike powers and monster egos. It’s not surprising costume designers nixed the old Nick Fury costume, featuring either skin-tight spandex or even lifeless military garb.

Instead, Fury (infused with Samuel L. Jackson’s bold bravura) wears all black—black shirt, black pants and black trench coat - even his pirate eye-patch we all know and love looks awesome. He's a cross between Morpheus from The Matrix and Shaft, and it’s precisely what the team and the movie needs for a centralized authority figure!

Nick Fury

Costume comes with a faux leather long trenchcoat and an eyepatch. Wear a grey shirt, black pants and a Samuel L. Jackson-attitude!

Loki: Villian Extraordinaire!

It’s easy to root for the good guys when the bad guy looks like, say, the Waldo-esque “Russian Behemoth” in 2004’s The Punisher. However, when the bad guy looks like Loki, Thor’s handsome, charismatic and fashion-conscious half-brother, it’s hard to stand up for what is right.

Loki’s costume is Gothic royalty, appealing not only to young girls who love the emo look, but also to older audiences who might liken his appearance to something out of German cinema or perhaps even a modern vision of wild-eyed Zod, whom actor Tom Hiddleston credits as an inspiration.

Loki’s fashion is also upgraded from Thor, as his royal robe looks not only battle-ready but battle-hardened with all the pauldrons and the occasional golden horn crown one might expect from an earnest God, volunteering his iron-fisted universal rule for the good of mankind.

Loki, Banished Prince of Asgard

Go with the battle-hardened costume, or the stylish cloak with green and gold accents. Comes with a detachable cape, a cloak and the horned crown.

Why Superhero Costumes Work

All superhero movies are judged based on how well they present the fantastic vision taking place in reality. While it might be hard to fathom an air-bound leviathan destroying the city in real life, it is fairly easy to picture these heroes in person, wearing costumes that accentuate their powers and bring out the best in their altruistic and yet flawed egos. The Avengers doesn't just celebrate teamwork - it celebrates the strut, the chutzpah, that make superheroes believable.

The fact that Avengers costumes are taking the Halloween costume industry by storm is a testament to Marvel's vision. We can't wait to see all those trick or treaters representing our favorite Marvel superheroes and villains, not to mention those big kids at Cosplay!

Avengers Links

Here's some great sites that talk about the Avengers - the movie, the comics, and the costumes

If so, who are they going as?

Are you or your children dressing as Superheroes?

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