The Most Genius Cosplay Outfits (And Ones That Shouldn’t Exist)

One way fans of movies, books, video games, television shows, and more show their love for the craft is to dress up as their favorite character. There’s a lot of thought that goes into these costumes such as the makeup, wigs, accessories, and more. While some people are experts at their cosplay, others may need a bit of practice. One costume may look very realistic, whereas the other may look as if it was thrown together in five minutes. Here are some of the best and worst cosplay costumes of all-time.

This Joker Isn’t Messing Around

person dressed as the joker
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

When people put a lot of effort into their cosplay costumes, they want to be able to show off their work. That’s why people will travel to various conventions such as San Diego Comic-Con. This man in the photo is dressed as The Joker from the Batman franchise.

In order to perfect a Joker costume, the focus should be on the makeup. The Joker is known for his signature clown-like makeup, including a white face, exaggerated red lips, arched eyebrows, and slicked-back green hair.

Thing 1 And Thing 2 Need A Makeover

While some people prefer to spend hours on their costumes to make sure they look amazing, others don’t really give theirs too much thought. One of the simplest cosplays of Dr. Seuss’ Thing 1 and Thing 2 is shown in the photo.

The cosplayers did the best they could with a red onesie donning the Thing 1 and Thing 2 logo, messy blue wigs, and sunglasses. This is a quick way to practice cosplaying, but it probably won’t get the praise you’re looking for.

A Willy Wonka Doppelgänger

person dressed as willy wonka
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

The character of Willy Wonka from the children’s book, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, has been drastically changed in each remake. The cosplay in the photo is based on Johnny Depp’s film version of Willy Wonka from 2005’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

The person was able to add a lot of accessories to make it their own, while staying true to the film. Some of the most impressive parts of the costume include the white, bug-like sunglasses, top hat, purple gloves, “W” collar, and a Wonka bar.

A Tacky Version Of Supergirl

girl dressed as supergirl
Ryan Wing/Pinterest
Ryan Wing/Pinterest

Sometimes cosplay costumes can look one-of-a-kind, while others don’t bring the “wow” factor. This young woman decided to cosplay as Supergirl, but it wasn’t anything to get excited over. She chose a store-bought, generic Supergirl cropped shirt with a red cape.

Her costume may be good for a casual costume get-together, but it doesn’t have the pizazz that most cosplayers look for. She could have given it an extra edge by adding a bright eye mask or red boots.

This Voldemort Looks Like He Came Straight Out Of The Movie

A cosplayer dressed as Lord Voldemort from Harry Potter
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Lord Voldemort was the ultimate antagonist in the Harry Potter franchise, so it can be thrilling to see someone dressed up as him. This cosplayer could have easily been placed side by side with the real actor from the movie and it would be hard to tell the difference.

His special effects makeup looks like film magic including the flat nose, sunken eyes, pale skin, and silver-colored contacts. Even though the clothes in the costume are lackluster, the special effects makeup makes up for it.

This Ronald McDonald Doesn’t Look Right

If you look closely, you may realize that this Ronald McDonald cosplay doesn’t look like the others. Instead of adding his signature happy clown makeup, this person decided to go in a different direction. They thought it would be more unique to make him a scary clown, even though Ronald McDonald may be scary enough already for some.

There are some good parts to the costume such as the detailed makeup. Still, it’s easy to tell that their Ronald McDonald outfit was store-bought and they simply added some yellow dish gloves and red clown wig.

This Elvis Monkey Is Quite Original

person dressed as both elvis and a monkey
John Lamparski/Getty Images
John Lamparski/Getty Images

This person came to New York Comic Con in quite an unconventional costume. There are probably a dozen Elvis Presley costumes at the convention, so they wanted to find a way for them to stand out from the crowd. They did this by combining the King with a monkey.

The details on both the face and hands look very professional. This person was able to puff up the area between his lips and nose just like a chimp. They also completely changed the shape of their hands to embody a primate.

Marge Simpson Looks A Little Funky

three men dressed up as marge simpson
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Those who are fans of The Simpsons may see somewhat of a resemblance of Marge Simpson in this photo. These men thought it would be a good idea to cosplay as the matriarch of The Simpsons at San Diego Comic-Con.

Putting the character of Marge Simpson onto the bodies of three buff men isn’t what most would expect. They went all out by painting their skin yellow, wearing sky-high blue wigs, lime green dresses, and they even included her signature red necklace. It may have helped if they shaved off or covered their facial hair to make it more authentic.

A Deadpool Costume With A Twist

A Bob Ross Deadpool cosplayer painting in character
Ollie Millington/Getty Images
Ollie Millington/Getty Images

One of the most hilarious scenes in the Deadpool franchise was when the lead character dressed as famous painter Bob Ross. This Deadpool fan wanted to imitate that iconic moment by dressing as Deadpool as Bob Ross. He even set up an easel to paint a replica of a Bob Ross painting.

It can be difficult trying to perfect one costume, but this cosplayer was able to do a great job with two. His Deadpool costume is extremely realistic and he was able to match the essence of Bob Ross with the permed wig, an artist’s palette, and paintbrush.

Their Costumes Are Bananas

Attendees dressed in banana costumes stand outside the convention
Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Patrick T. Fallon/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Compared to people who spend days working on their costumes, these banana costumes should be left at home. These men are most likely trying to be funny dressed as bananas, but a large aspect of conventions are the intricate cosplay costumes.

These banana costumes are one of the most common outfits found at generic costume stores and don’t take much effort besides putting your head and arm through the holes. Then again, these guys could just really be big fans of bananas.

Millennials Will Understand This Costume

girls dressed as sims characters
Shannon Watson/Pinterest
Shannon Watson/Pinterest

Most millennials likely grew up playing computer games. One of the most popular of that generation was The Sims. People could simulate human life by starting a family, building property, and more. These girls are dressed up as The Sims characters who are changing clothes.

Sims characters would always have the green diamonds above their heads, so it’s great that they chose to include it in their costumes. When The Sims characters had to change their clothes their bodies would spin around quickly and be censored very similarly to the costumes pictured.

This Costume Is “Awesom-O”

A cosplayer dressed as the cartoon character Awesom-O from the South Park series
Marco Longari/AFP via Getty Images
Marco Longari/AFP via Getty Images

Avid South Park fans will remember a fun character called Awesom-O. Season eight’s fifth episode had Butters receive a Japanese robot who sounds similar to Cartman. The Awesom-O robot gets Butters to be his best friend and has him tell him his deepest secrets.

This man crafted a homemade Awesom-O robot costume out of a cardboard box. While it looks mostly like the robot that appeared on the show, there are some details that are missing such as the robot arms, various buttons, and siren on top of the head.

This Costume Has The It Factor

someone dressed as the clown from it
Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty Images
Mike Marsland/WireImage/Getty Images

It is considered to be one of the most terrifying horror movies in existence. That’s mainly due to its antagonist, Pennywise the clown. This cosplayer did an excellent job of recreating his scary appearance, complete with his iconic red balloon.

The most impressive part of this Pennywise costume is the special effects makeup. The cosplayer was able to perfectly match Pennywise’s look by including a receding forehead, white, marble skin, dark, sunken eyes, and a bright orange wig. The clown outfit also resembles the one Pennywise wore in the most recent films.

This Cosplayer Was Pretty Brave

Pixar fans most likely have seen the film Brave. It’s one of the few Disney films where the protagonist doesn’t have a love interest. Instead, the story focuses on mending the relationship between a mother and daughter. The man in the photo was clearly inspired by the movie and cosplayed as Merida.

Although his costume was somewhat accurate to the movie, there wasn’t too much effort involved. The facial hair distracts from the overall look and the dress has some differences from the one in the movie. On the bright side, the wig and bow and arrow were a nice touch.

This Mario Can Rock A Mustache

A cosplayer poses for a photo as mario
Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images
Tomohiro Ohsumi/Getty Images

Video game and pop culture enthusiasts should easily be able to recognize this cosplay costume. The man in the photo decided to dress up as Mario from the Super Mario Bros. video game franchise. At first glance, the photo shows that he was able to get all of the details correct.

The cosplayer included his signature red hat with an “M,” his white gloves, red shirt and overalls, and most importantly his mustache. A fun Mario fact is that he wasn’t always a plumber, rather he started as a carpenter.

This Gumby Doesn’t Look Right

If the character in the photo doesn’t familiar, that’s okay. It’s actually Gumby from The Gumby Show. Gumby first appeared on Howdy Doody in the mid-1950s and went on to have several TV shows and a movie.

This person did their best with a Gumby costume, but it doesn’t quite sit right. It may have something to do with the face paint and the off-color of the costume. The shape of the outfit is also a lot wider than the character looks.

Straight Out Of Avatar

A fan cosplays as Avatar Na'vi
Paras Griffin/Getty Images
Paras Griffin/Getty Images

One of the highest-grossing films in cinematic history is James Cameron’s Avatar. Cameron first started writing the film in 1994, but it wasn’t released until 2009. The look of the Na’vi beings shown in the movie were actually inspired by a dream Cameron had.

This cosplayer exactly resembles a Na’vi from the movie with striking features such as the pale blue skin, pointy ears, yellow eyes, and tribal garb. According to Popular Mechanics, the actors had actual 3D textured pieces that they wore in the film to help the animators add detail in post-production.

No Toddler Wants To See These Teletubbies

Teletubbies was a popular show among preschool-aged children where four different-colored creatures would wander around a fantasy area called Teletubbyland. Their faces were meant to look warm and inviting; with wide eyes and big smiles. These cosplayers are quite the opposite.

These homemade Teletubbies costumes are the stuff of nightmares. Instead of resembling the cute and bubbly characters from the show, the costumes could best be described as evil and rodent-like.

Buzz Lightyear Reporting For Duty

A fan cosplays as Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story
Roy Rochlin/Getty Images
Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Toy Story was the first Pixar movie, which led to several fan-favorite characters and sequels. This woman chose to dress up as her favorite Toy Story character, Buzz Lightyear. She made sure to make it looked just like him by including his full outfit; complete with helmet, wings, buttons, and exact color matches.

This cosplayer also got creative by including a white helmet to replace his purple skull cap and adding a purple wig with matching makeup. It’s clear that she put a lot of effort into the costume because the store-bought ones aren’t as detailed.

The Off-Brand Shrek

A man stands in full
Leon Neal/AFP via Getty Images
Leon Neal/AFP via Getty Images

People who grew up during the 2000s will likely remember the popular Shrek film franchise. He was a green ogre who went on adventures with his donkey and ogre wife. The man in the photo did his best to embody the iconic ogre.

The top half of the costume looks fine with a replica of his dirty white shirt and textured vest. However, the sheer tights and shoes are clothes that would never be associated with Shrek. The green face paint and ears were average, but there are other cosplayers who go all out with special effects makeup to make it look like they’re actually an ogre.