My 6 Favorite Batman Costumes
It’s new Batman movie week! The Batman debuts on Thursday, though a doctor’s appointment means I won’t be able to check it out until probably Saturday. But that’s a me problem, not a you problem. You get to see the movie whenever you want and read my Batman Week List of Six about favorite Bat-costumes!
I did a similar List of Six a couple years ago for Spider-Man, when one of those new Spider-Man movies came out. So why not dig deep into the world of alternate Batman costumes and see what I like and don’t like? There aren’t as many alternate versions of Batman costumes as there are Spider-Man costumes. Batman tends to get very subtle changes to his outfit while maintaining the same look. Or sometimes he dresses like a zebra. Still, I’ve got some favorites out of those subtle changes, and some favorites out of really cool alternate looks.
Join me after the jump for my favorite Batman costumes over the years, and feel free to share some of your own in the comments!
6. Capture Claw Batman
Batman is notorious for having weird alternate costumed action figures. A Batman for every emergency, mostly, even though none of them ever actually appeared in the comics. Gotta sell action figures! This strange habit of the Caped Crusader was captured perfectly in this old Shortpacked webcomic featuring Capture Claw Batman! It’s such a simple and funny comic that it has stuck with me through the years, and Capture Claw Batman will never be forgotten!
5. Batman: Year One
Year One is one of the greatest Batman stories of all time. It distills the character down into his perfect elements and is a great origin story for the Dark Knight. And there’s just something so perfect and human about his costume that it’s always been a favorite of mine. No suits of armor. No alien technology. No ultimate battle suit. Just a man cobbling together an effective outfit in order to fight crime. It works.
4. Dark Claw
I am a sucker for Amalgam Comics, the 1990s collaboration between Marvel and DC. The creative geniuses behind Amalgam really put in the work and came up with some great ideas. Dark Claw is one of their best. Combining the visuals of Batman and Wolverine makes for one badass vigilante warrior, all shadows and sharp claws. Wolverine’s claws are cool enough as is, but add a bunch of Batman stuff and they magically become even cooler! It’s simple math.
3. Batman Rebirth
Now we’re getting into he real nitty gritty of the subtle Batman changes. As you’ll soon see in the top half of this list, my ideal Batman costume is a gray body suit with black accessories. I don’t care for the all-black outfit, and I don’t like the classic light gray and light blue of old. Rebirth is special because, I gotta be honest, I really like that chest logo with the yellow outline. It’s a fun take on the classic yellow oval and is just unique enough to stand out. I also like how it carried over to the utility belt, and then there’s the purple inside the cape. I like it all!
2. Batman Incorporated
Carrying on with those ideas, I think the Batman Incorporated look is my favorite of all official Batman costumes. It takes the gray bodysuit with black accessories, adds some well-placed lines to add flavor, and features a really cool, raised, yellow bat symbol oval. I don’t really care for the classic, flat yellow oval, but apparently I love it when they fancy it up a bit. This costume is perfect, in my opinion. It’s clearly Batman, has a strong color palette and just enough unique elements that I’m quite pleased.
1. Wizard Magazine’s Ultimate Batman
Does anybody else remember this article back in Wizard Magazine, when that was a thing? I wasn’t subscribed to the magazine and I didn’t buy every issue, but somehow I lucked out and grabbed the one issue that featured this really cool design project in which a bunch of creators and artists came together to create their own Ultimate DC. This was shortly after Ultimate Marvel really took off, and Wizard put a lot of effort into this project. And the Batman costume has always stuck with me as being exactly my style.
I remain a huge, huge fan of the designs/artwork of the Ultimates by artist Bryan Hitch. I love realism in superhero costumes, from actually seeing the laces on boots to all the buckles and stuff like that. And all of that is translated into this Batman, while sticking with the color choices I already love. This design only exists in this one Wizard Magazine feature from decades ago, but I will never forget how damn good it looks!