How It’s Done: Superheroes in Jackets!

Note: Looks like the fine folks at Topless Robot were thinking along the same lines as we were this week, following the re-introduction of a jacket to Wonder Woman’s wondrous wardrobe with Jim Lee’s new redesign: Superheroes wearing jackets. And we’re not the only ones with the casual super-being on the brain. See here. So enjoy the following look at jackets of comics stars past and present, and be sure to click the above links for more! – Dean Trippe

Animal Man

Note: Read on for more! – D.T.

The Avengers

Black Canary

Elijah Snow

Ghost Rider (Classic)

Ghost Rider

Guy Gardner

Mr. Terrific

New X-Men

The Question

The Ray


Scarlet Spider



Superboy (Second version)

Wolverine (Film version)

Wonder Man

Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman (New version)

34 comments to “How It’s Done: Superheroes in Jackets!”
  1. Scarlet Spider’s got more of a cut-off hoodie, I guess. He just really exemplifies the thinking behind adding a regular item of clothing to a superhero uniform. “It’s supposed to look casual, less superheroey.” Sure, but he’s still walking around in feety-pants and wearing a mask. I think Elijah Snow and Starman are the best examples of getting the non-costume costume thing dead-on.

  2. well i thought about it! but including trenchcoats would’ve expanded the list whoa so much. i mean, gambit, jubilee, john constantine, grifter, i mean, nearly every 90s character threw one on at some point.

    anybody got scans of batman or superman in jackets? i tried drawing it this week. they looked ridiculous.

  3. i have to say, despite Starman’s incredibly 90s look, it’s still one of my most favorite superhero designs. As for why new Wonder Woman looks like 90s Superboy?… only Jim Lee can speak for that, and he’s got a lot of speaking to do.

  4. I think I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a fan of Superboy’s look in the Nineties, which was heavy on the simulated youth culture and which was a backwards-turned-baseball cap away from being the appropriate uniform of a mascot for some sort of “extreme” yogurt snack. Still, that being said, I kind of like his second incarnation, where the jacket is integrated into the lines and colors of the costume rather than tossed on to break all of that up.

    You know who’s been rocking the jacket since the Forties, and still rocks it today? The Spirit. Still looks classy to this day.

  5. Oh! And how about The Conglomerate? All of them had jackets.
    It was a little funny seeing Booster Gold just throw a jacket on his costume, especially with the high collar, but Chris Sprouse somehow pulled it off, I guess.

  6. Yeah, I like Mr. Terrific’s a lot. (I like his jacket and mask a lot more than the rest of his costume, really.) And Starman’s is like the mid-90s holy grail of radness.

    Great call on the Avengers jackets, Hoylus! Added. :)

  7. The Question would rock the jacket every now and then. But I always prefered the suit and fadora look.

  8. I really miss Quitely’s New X-Men uniforms…and 90s Rogue is THE ONLY Rogue as far as I’m concerned. The second version of Superboy looks like it would be a really good suit for Invincible.

    Spider-Man wore a pretty cool jacket-based suit in a possible future during Straczynski’s run. IIRC it was reversible too:

  9. I think I’m like the only guy that doesn’t like the jacket version of Rogue. For heaven’s sake she looks just like the Avengers that everyone makes fun of. Why did they all roll up their sleeves and roll down the tops of their gloves? was that a thing back then?

  10. As far as goes Rogue, I’m with Nathan regarding the jacket and gloves. By and large, I’ll take the Paul M Smith version with the built-in hood.

  11. King, I was going to mention the Conglomerate too!

    I’m glad Booster ditched that Members’ Only jacket, though. He and Animal Man look similar enough as it is.

  12. Dean:
    anybody got scans of batman or superman in jackets? i tried drawing it this week. they looked ridiculous.

    There was a single issue of New Titans near the end of the run where the artist apparently took it upon himself to re-do Nightwing’s bird-motif costume with a jacket. It never showed up again, but it actually worked on him.

  13. I’m sorry, but I still think Diana looks like she’s wearing cosplay of Superboy’s old 90’s costume.

  14. You and lots and lots of the internet, Molly. Personally, I think it borrows too much from the original Black Canary. And I don’t recall Conner’s pecs being as prominent.

  15. You forgot Hellboy. Notable if only because he seems to have one of the only Comic Book Jackets which actually rips/tears/burns etc when he is damaged in a fight. Also because he is adorable with the big trench and tiny little hoof-feet and tail sticking out. It’s an awesome silhouette which Mignola regularly uses in his comics to great effect.

  16. The worst part is that whenever I think “Starman” I think “waiting in the sky, he’d like to come and meet us, but he thinks he’d blow our minds”

    My two cents jacket-wise is that where it’s normal clothes assembled into a uniform, or a uniform composed of ‘normal’ clothes… Then a jacket is perfectly permissible. i.e. jacket + jeans is fine. Also, where a jacket is obviously an aesthetic choice, but then so is the rest of the outfit, i.e. jacket + fishnet stockings is at least interesting to look at.

    Aw hell, what I mean is, I can’t take anyone who’d wear a jacket over footsie pyjamas seriously, y’know?

  17. 90% of the superheroine’s jackets up there are too short! A jacket that ends at the bottom of the ribcage (as opposed to the waist or midthigh) doesn’t convey toughness to me. It’s too cute and it draws attention to the size of the waist rather than musculature or imposing posture. Original Black Canary’s short jacket works for her because her entire outfit looks sexy in an imposing manner, but everyone else needs jackets that cover their abdomen, stat. Also, if the costume is supposed to double as street clothes, then it’s pants, not tights.

  18. I second the Paul-Smith-version-of-Rogue-is-the-best idea. Also, Cliff Steele wore a jacket during Morrison’s run on Doom Patrol. He liked his characters in jackets back then. Because he was hip.

  19. Jesse Quick had an awkward jacket look with her first costume that carried over to her short-lived Flash costume with a jacket that looked like an open dress shirt.

  20. Good entry, I’ve always been partial to Animal Man’s jacket, and his reasons for wearing it. I’ll disagree about calling the Ghost Rider a superhero… he’s part of a superhero universe, but he’s not a superhero per se.

    Same goes for the Question, and why is it Renee there and not Vic? :) I’m with Trout, though, I prefer Vic when he wore the suit and hat.

    Dean, you didn’t include trenchoats but you included hoodies?

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