From The Archives: Who Dresses The Watchmen?

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July 18, 2014 by T. Gregory Argall

There are several questions about superhero costumes that have never adequately been addressed.

Questions such as, “Do superheroes wear adult diapers?”

It seems to me that if you’re out on patrol all night, keeping the city safe from evil-doers and the like, you may not be able to plan your bathroom breaks with the, oh let’s say, regularity that you might hope for.
What if you get sucker-punched by a couple of Two-Face’s henchmen and you wake up strapped to a water board, with crazy Harvey Dent standing over you with two days worth of coins to flip, heads for lead pipe and tails for garden hose? Eventually you’re gonna have to tell Harvey to pick a number between one and two in order to determine which bodily function to allow first. It would be good to have an extra layer of protection there to save yourself some embarrassment. The last thing you want is everyone in Arkham Asylum knowing that you guano’d in your batsuit.

Or say, you’re web-swinging your way around the city when Dr. Octopus sudden punches you in the kidneys with three of his metal arms. Sure in a pragmatic sense, you can be forgiven for having a momentary lapse of bladder control under the circumstances, but it’s difficult to remain dignified when bad guys point and laugh.

Perhaps it’s just a quiet night with no significant crime for you fight, but your neighbourhood bodega closes at ten o’clock and you’ve nowhere else to go. It just wouldn’t be right for a defender of the defenseless and hero of the downtrodden to take a whizz off the side of a building. It doesn’t matter if you’re both blind and a lawyer, Daredevil, you’re gonna get some bad press out of that.

What about athletic supporters? Shouldn’t a superhero wear a cup?

They dedicate entire episodes of America’s Funniest Home Videos to the groin punch and the crotch crash. At least 72% of the videos on YouTube involve some guy or other getting nailed in the stones. It happens. It’s out there. And those are just the accidental hits.
Superheroes fight supervillains, bad guys, evil bastards who wouldn’t think twice about winding up and slamming a bus into your berries.
On purpose.
Protect yourself and your future potential generations. You’ve got to keep your junk functional if you’re ever going to have any hope of producing children that can be written out of current continuity ten years later during the next retro-fit re-imagining.

Then there are the costuming issues with female superheroes. Do they get to design their own costumes or are their crime-fighting outfits assigned by a committee of teenage boys meeting in an undisclosed location in their parents’ basement?
Although I’m sure dressing like a swimwear model or a well armed hooker might seem like the best way to battle crime and other assorted universal scourges that my arise from time to time, it hardly seems practical to spend the night leaping from rooftop to rooftop wearing high heels and very little else.
Not that I’m complaining, of course. I could happily spend the day watching super-powered women run around in their impractically flimsy and petite costumes. In fact, I would actively consider committing crimes on a regular basis if I knew that Wonder Woman would show up to spank me (metaphorically speaking, of course).
But that’s just it, isn’t it? You never know who’s going to show up. There’s no guarantee that it’s actually going to be Wonder Woman. Or any woman, for that matter.

Let’s say you’ve just robbed a corner store and a couple of representatives from Justice Revengers Local 212 arrive. You are going to have your ass handed to you. No doubt about it.
Would you rather…
a/ get beaten to a pulp by some testosterone-soaked guy dressed head-to-toe in spandex with anger issues that compensate for his steroid-shriveled testicles, or
b/ get beaten to a pulp by a triple-D cup fantasy girl in thigh-high leather boots, a chainmail thong and screaming-eagle pasties?
Yeah, me too.
Either way, you’re going to end up in the prison hospital, but at least if she puts you there, you’ll have a mental image to dream about during the three years you spend in a body cast.
And that’s probably part of the problem.

However you choose to spend your time, either fighting crime or simply dreaming of spandex, try to be nice to each other.



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