There’s barely a single superhero out there that doesn’t look like they’ve raided their outfit from a fancy dress store. The costumes range from the gaudy to the impractical and often the only excuse is protecting their identity. For villains there’s less of a need. The really successful ones can bribe or intimidate their way out of most scrapes with the law and for them, a costume is a matter of style.
The maniacal super-powered Latvian genius, sadist and occultist wears armour head to toe in part to hide his own disfigurement but also to enhance his strength to superhuman levels and is resistant to some of the most punishing attacks that superheroes of the Marvel Universe can dish out. Let’s face it, the armour looks cool, it’s sort of like a medieval Iron Man outfit… but with magic… and no missiles.
He may have no super powers and some serious issues with his sanity but you can’t deny his distinct fashion sense, regardless of which incarnation you pick The Joker has always worn some amazing costumes and only he could make that colour scheme actually work.
Harvey Dent has an ugly side to him; he has half a face burnt to hell and only half his wits about him as well. Good thing he dresses to reflect that, Harvey takes the usual plain suits and has them customised to match his deformity. When it’s done well it looks pretty snazzy, although there have been a few absolutely awful attempts.
Some of us may have forgotten that before she got with The Bat, Selina Kyle was a villain. She dressed for freedom of movement above all else, relying on a mix of gadgets and acrobatics to keep her from harm and get her closer to whatever precious loot had taken her eye. That’s not to say that her outfits are strictly practical, all you’d have to do is look to see that. Whether it’s her criminal alter ego or her day to day wear Selina dresses with style and sensuality in mind.
Lex, is incredibly wealthy, one of the greatest minds of the DC Universe and he dresses the part. Whether it’s something expensive and stylish for his role as President of the USA or something a little more practical for a throw-down with Superman, Lex has a suit for every occasion.
The leader of a mutant revolution, he has to lead and inspire those who follow him. Magneto’s movie incarnation more than manages to create an imposing visage with a blend of the classic super-villain style cape and bold colours combined with a more modern, militaristic suit.
When your superpowers make you impervious to even the most extreme forms of harm then you can pretty much dress however the hell you like. In the comic’s Shaw dresses in lush (if incredibly dated) Victorian style clothes as well as expensive modern suits and practically anything else that takes his fancy. In X-Men: First Class he wears more modern but no less luxurious outfits, from tuxedos to casual suits. It’s a good thing he has such good taste, select gentlemen’s clubs tend not to accept the poor and the scruffy, let alone allow them to take over.
Born into wealth, Emma left it all to make her own way, this happened to lead her to the opulent Hellfire Club where she eventually becomes it’s white queen.
Although in both the film and comics its hard to say that she’s often really ‘dressed’ when she does put on something slightly more substantial than lingerie it’s usually something pretty classy.
He’s the immortal business tycoon with a dangerous obsession, seen only in the most expensive of suits, this man doesn’t have to worry about any threat, ever. No gaudy armour or costumes are needed, the only accessory he doesn’t have yet is the witchblade. He’s had since the 1100s to refine his look, it’s a carefully orchestrated visage of wealth, power and menace that leaves enemies and competitors helpless before him.
His recent revamp for the films has all the modernised appeal of Thor’s updated space-Viking look with more regal overtones. Where Thor looks threatening in a scrap, Loki looks more the leader, what’s one man against someone with an army? As if that wasn’t enough his Asgardian look can dissolve away to reveal a less conspicuous and much classier suit and business coat.