Observer Editorial: Screw it, we’re ranking the costumes
Observer Editorial Board | Friday, November 3, 2017
As the jack-o’-lanterns adorning stoops everywhere begin to deflate and the costume box returns to the attic from whence it came, it can only mean one thing: Halloween is over, and the holiday season is approaching. But don’t fret, for there is something to look forward to before the inescapable barrage of Christmas music encompasses everything around you: Now that Notre Dame’s football team is in top form, the College Football Playoff rankings will provide ample entertainment all the way up to the championship game in January.
We, the Editorial Board, have taken it upon ourselves to celebrate both the exciting prospect of a new ranking season and the passing of Halloween with a little ranking of our own. Check below for descriptions of some of our favorite Halloween costumes from this year, ranked from first place to 10th.
1.) Millennial Snowflakes
Stirring the pot on Halloween isn’t a bad thing. There’s something admirable about a costume that pushes the line of what’s considered “PC.” This costume involved the getup of a winter goddess, complete with silver sparkles, icy-blue tulle and homemade paper snowflakes. On the front of the dress was the word “millennial,” proof that each member of the generation truly is a unique, special snowflake. And even if the costume was controversial with anyone at school, your conservative uncle will love it when he sees the pictures on Facebook.
2.) Celebrity Phases
From Taylor Swift to Miley Cyrus, there are some celebrities who have gone through plenty of phases and looks over the years. Groups of friends who dressed in the different looks of a single celebrity were not only recognizable, but also impressively creative. Recreating the “Junior Jewels” shirt from Swift’s “You Belong With Me” music video showed some serious dedication, and the throwback in her recent “Look What You Made Me Do” video made the group costume relevant today. And the evolution of Miley Cyrus from her Hannah Montana days to her 2013 VMA performance was even more astounding in costume form.
3.) Team 128 aka the 2016 Notre Dame football team
At 7-1 and No. 3 in this year’s College Football Playoff rankings, Notre Dame’s football team and its fans have put the past behind them. So what could possibly be scarier than reminding the peers at your football school of last year’s terrible, horrible, no good, very bad football team? And the possibilities were endless — some went all out, wearing last year’s Shirt while donning the beaten, bruised and bloodied look necessary to convey the feeling of a 28-point loss to USC. But for those low on effort or time, a simple trash bag with a “4-8” sign sufficed. At either end of the spectrum, the result was the same: a panic induced flashback to Saturdays everyone did their best to forget.
4.) Steve Jobs Mob
When dressing up for Halloween, an ever-important thing to consider is: What truly is scary? Is it a devil, a ghoul, a vampire, a werewolf — all things that are dangerous but may not necessarily be creepy? Or does true horror lie with what can crawl underneath your skin and send a shiver down your spine? A mass cult of men dressed in black turtlenecks with small, wire-rimmed glasses, all with straight, thoughtful faces and holding the questionable hand motion that Steve Jobs often held. We propose that the cult of Steve Jobs impersonators who caught the eye of the camera at this past week’s Notre Dame game is the creepiest costume of them all. Who are these men? What are they thinking? Why do their eyes appear to be staring into the souls of all who look upon them? It is impossible to say. And isn’t this what we as humans fear the most — what cannot be understood?
5.) Universal Health Care
There are many factors that weigh in on what makes a quality Halloween costume, yet cleverness and uniqueness have to be dominant determinants. How many people do you know who rocked full scrubs with a galaxy T-shirt to make a comfortable political statement? Certainly fewer than the number of “Risky Business” impersonators we’ve all seen. The surgical cap and mask combined with a flashy space shirt and scrub pants will capture the attention of fellow party-goers in a way that the horde of LimeBikes out there simply can’t. For this reason, Universal Healthcare makes the top 10.
6.) Darth Vader Ginsburg
Love her or loathe her, the “Notorious RBG” is iconic, so why not combine her with another icon from a galaxy far, far away to create some great word play? A judge’s robe — complete with her white frills — and glasses glued onto a Darth Vader mask make for a surprisingly recognizable costume concept, especially when paired with pearl earrings and a lightsaber (“Democrat blue” in color, of course).
What’s better than one iconic, funny, high-energy talk show host? Seven nearly identical Ellen DeGenereses! The costume itself was fairly simple — a pair of the most neatly pressed khakis with a sweater over a button-down top, completed with some fun white Vans and a blonde wig. The harder part comes with imitating Ellen’s signature dance moves all night; but no matter what, these Ellens are the life of the party, maintaining that upbeat energy wherever they go. Of course, you can’t have seven Ellens and no Portia de Rossis, so major bonus points to friends who fill in as the quintessential sidekick for the evening — full-on “Lindsay Bluth visits prison” attire or not.
Those who dressed as LimeBikes had a good handle — in contrast to the bikes — on what it took to construct a relevant Halloween costume. Adorned with green t-shirts stating the universally known and respected LimeBike slogan — whose veracity all riders can testify to — “Your ride, anytime,” the attire is simple and easily accessible. The addition of LimeBikes to South Bend may be a relatively recent move, but the innovation reflected in this ensemble ensures the costume will not be cycled through anytime soon.
9.) Toddler Touchdown Jesus and Priest
When it comes to costumes, nothing can beat the undeniable cuteness of small kiddos. Match that with some hallmarks of Notre Dame — a holy little man and an exuberant Jesus tower — and you have yourself a Halloween smash hit that can only (maybe) be matched by small puppies dressed as pumpkins. Clasp your hands in praise for the adorable heavenly duo that gained viral popularity on the Notre Dame Alumni Association’s Facebook feed.
10.) Cards Against Humanity
Who doesn’t love a good game of the Apples to Apples–variant “Cards Against Humanity?” But what’s even better than the game is the cards come to life. This simple group costume was a humorous hit, allowing friends to poke fun at whatever theme they wished through their choice of “cards.” The costume was an easy one to pull off, although some groups did so better than others — it just required each person to wear a white t-shirt with one person in a black shirt, playing the roles of the game’s white and black cards. While there were lots of different ways to go with this one, the best ones mixed it up and went with a Notre Dame-centric set of cards.
Also receiving votes:
King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard
Paying homage to one of Indie rock’s most innovative bands via Halloween costume is cool enough. Add in the fact that said band’s name incorporates three separate Halloween costumes in one — a king, a lizard and a wizard — and you have yourself a top-10 costume contender. Sure, there were probably ten people on campus total who would have correctly guessed that the hodgepodge costume was indeed representing Melbourne, Australia’s premier pysch-prog act, King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard, but c’mon, still cool.
Vincent van Gogh
Historical accuracy is the most important criteria for this committee member. But when Marie Antoinette tells us to eat cake, we give it to the very realistic portrayal of Vincent van Gogh. Grabbing a paintbrush and claiming you’re the mentally unstable, artistic genius is one thing, but to Van Gogh the extra mile and bandage one ear deserves consideration for the top 10.