Saturday, October 8, 2011

Literary Halloween Costumes: Comic Strip Edition

Although the highs in Boston are in the upper 70s and lower 80s this weekend, there has been a definite chill in the air signaling that fall is indeed here. Before the usual Thanksgiving-Christmas-New Year's rush, we have to get through Halloween, which means another post (or two or three) of literature-inspired Halloween costume ideas. As always, I'll try to keep it fairly cheap, low-key, and easy.

For this edition, I was inspired by a comment on one of my early literary Halloween costumes posts from MovieMan0283, who mentioned Peanuts and Calvin and Hobbes. With this in mind, I realized that not only are comics and graphic novels a form of literature, they are also full of iconic and recognizable characters that would make for fun (and easy) costumes. Without any further ado, here are some ideas (please feel free to add your own in the comments!):
  • Calvin and Hobbes (from the comic strip of the same name) - I love Calvin and Hobbes. Bill Watterson did a wonderful job balancing the heartwarming moments with plenty of mischief and humor, usually caused by Calvin's desire to thwart his babysitter, torment the girl next door (Susie), or find a shortcut to doing schoolwork. For Calvin, black and white sneakers (Keds or Converse would be perfect), black pants, and a red and black striped shirt are all that you need. That said, the costume would be much improved by having Calvin's spiky blond hair. For Hobbes, you would need a tiger costume, but an orange sweat suit with black electrical tape stripes, white cloth on the stomach section, and ears could also work in a pinch, Of course, if you don't have someone willing to be your Hobbes, you could get an unlicensed (but still adorable) stuffed Hobbes to accompany you on your misadventures.
  • Linus van Pelt (from Peanuts) - Of course, all of the Peanuts characters lend themselves to easy costumes, but Linus is one of my favorite characters, so I'm going to feature him. Like Calvin, you would need a red shirt with black stripes. He also wears black shorts and sneakers. However, the most important accessory for the costume is the blue blanket.
  • Sally Brown (from Peanuts) - Okay, since my first costume ideas were for male characters, I figured I better include some female characters too. Sally is the perfect character for the girly girl in all of us. She usually rocks a cute pink dress and white sneakers (you could get away with feminine flats too) that highlights her blond hair. If you would like, get someone to go as Linus and you can call him your "Sweet Babboo" all night.
  • Betty and Veronica (from the Archie comics) - I honestly never understood what both Betty and Veronica saw in the rather pallid Archie. Both girls (the rich vamp and the girl next door) were American archetypes, and I always got the feeling that, once they got away from Riverdale and met other guys, they would realize that Archie wasn't worth the competition. These characters make for easy costumes (as long as you have the right hair color). Besides her trademark dark hair, Veronica needs to dress in trendy, expensive-looking clothing. Betty should wear her blonde hair in a ponytail and wear more down-to-earth clothes (think jeans). Betty was also a cheerleader, so you could go that route.