We love Spidey. He’s Spectacular, Amazing and a pretty responsible hero. High off the news that the upcoming Spider-Man 3 movie will see past Peter Parkers Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield reprising their roles as the friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man, together with the recent news that he’s donning a new (again) costume in the comics, we’ve been doing a lot of reflecting on some of the suits Spidey’s worn.
His original red and blue is an iconic classic, and so is his black costume and over the years, we’ve seen some incredible ones, from the gorgeous reimagination in video games, more recently seen in Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales, to the downright silly but unforgettable Paper Bag version, and of course, who can ever deny the Sam Raimi suit.
But let’s face it – we have seen a few that well, tries too hard.
Here are some Spider-Man costumes that don’t really measure up, or are otherwise, straight up ugly.
Andrew Garfield’s Amazing Spider-Man Movie
Starting it hot with a costume that’s not so hot is Andrew Garfield’s Amazing Spider-Man suit. The suit may have been close to what we see in the comics, but it was too painful for the eye in real life. The glossy yellow mirror-like eyes are horrendous and the suit looked like it was made out of a basketball. There was no belt, the gloves had an overly complicated design and how can we forget the shoes? Our eyes.. Our eyes! What a monstrosity.
Glowing Neon Suit
Otherwise known as the ‘Stealth Suit’, this one doesn’t resemble our friendly neighbourhood Spider-Man at all! We’d like to have a chat with the designer of the suit because who takes a look at Spider-Man and thinks – “you know what would work? NEON LIGHTS.” Worst yet, it doesn’t just stay green. No, this neon number sometimes turns red or blue. This looks like something right out of the Tron Legacy and it’s not something we quite fancy for our spectacular superhero.
Silver Armoured Spider-Man
This 90s suit was made so that he could go up against the New Enforcers and their arsenal of high-powered weaponry. Which is, great and all that, but the armoured suit takes away some of the things we love about Spidey – his agile fighting style. Instead of doing somersaults and flip kicks, all he could do is hurl his body weight at enemies. Not to mention, he looks like a disco ball. Pass.
This is where things get a little sticky. Some people love it, some people hate it. This suit was made by Tony Stark for Peter Parker and we see a live-action variant of it at the end of Spider-Man: Homecoming and later again in Infinity War. It’s basically an Iron Man suit with the spider logo stuck on the chest and whilst the movie version was definitely a step up from what was rolled out in the comics, some people feel that the iron man colours – red and gold – was a bit too much and gaudy for a young sixteen-year-old. It definitely aged Peter quite a bit. Lastly, the robotic arms. We see the concept, we do – but looking at the long, skinny and sharp spider-like legs popping out of Tom Holland’s back really made us realise the slight arachnophobia we never knew we had. Apart from that, we understand why some love the suit too. It was a gift from Stark, and if there’s anything we are all weak to, is the father-son relationship Stark and Park have.
Sorry but – is this Ghost Rider? Wait, Silver Surfer? Oh, no, it’s just Spider-Man. Looking hella unfriendly. We don’t know this man and we never will. It is undoubtedly a very cool look but it feels like we’re dealing with a whole other character and personality here. This isn’t the Webhead we love.
Cyborg Spider Suit
Literally, what is so wrong with a classic Spider-Man suit? Sure you can mix up the colours every now and then or make some bits shiny and some bits not. But the Cyborg Spider suit looks like something Spidey threw on at the last minute for a Halloween party. Nothing seemed like it was intentionally added or designed. The bandana, the ugly yellow belt and the piece of cloth tied around his thigh (why?) – it’s all too much. In fact, this is a little bit insulting to Cyborg whom we think has a pretty sick suit himself.
This suit was made to protect himself from Electro (or any other electrified villain) and whilst it isn’t a suit that tries too hard, this suit doesn’t try at all. There are various reiterations of this black suit with brown, sometimes orange accents or a blueish-grey suit with red patches as seen in the Spider-Man PS4 game. It is a fashion no-go and incredibly unmemorable.
This one takes the term spider all too seriously. We get it, he’s Spider-Man but giving him 6 eyes is something that will cause us nightmares. The helmet makes him look like a Bob The Builder wannabe and the extra four arms resemble phalluses that not even a tentacle erotica-fan would want close to them. And why are his vambraces so gigantic? We’re just glad this isn’t the Spider-Man we grew up watching. Good luck kids in the 2200s.
2099 White Suit
Just to clear the air – this suit isn’t that bad, it just isn’t Spidey. Spider-Man 2099 was a 90’s take on the hero 100 years into the future. It’s not Peter Parker, but Miguel O’Hara and it’s a white suit. The issue isn’t that it’s white. It’s the fact that it looks like a random droid you’d see in a tech-heavy futuristic game or movie. The suit loses the classic Spider-Man shaped eyes for something that looks like a deer when you look at it straight on and there are thunderbolts attached to his vambraces. Did Spider-Man gain Thor like powers in the later 2000s? Who knew. The classic spider emblem is not as visible and could easily be confused for a complicated design. This suit would still have looked great if it kept the most recognisable bits of the webslinger.
Not sure if the Brits went crazy for this suit, but this suit was meant to feature the Jack Union logo ever so famous in the land of the United Kingdom. Whilst the designer’s heart might be in the right place, the suit is incredibly weird. Spidey looked like he’s wearing spandex overalls over his regular suit. The design looks abit like a lazy afterthought, and if you didn’t know that this was meant to be a UK special suit, it would most likely remind you of the time you bought a bootleg Spider-Man action figure for a secret santa gift and then got too embarrassed to gift.
Spider-Man has donned way too many suits, and there are definitely more that are uglier, or cooler than what we’ve got down in our list. We applaud creatives for their innovative thinking and for gracing us fans with multiple versions of our favourite hero. That said, most suits do come and look in a certain way with good reason – whether it’s an in-book or in-game justification, though we can’t say so for all (cough, Spider-Man 2211). Maybe one day in the future we’d learn to appreciate a neon Spider-Man suit, but today is not the day. Today, some of these suits try too hard and we just can’t find a place in our hearts to like it.