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Top Five Best Storm Costumes

Storm has had a pile of costumes over the years, and if I were to pick the five WORST costumes, I think it would be a bit easier. So let’s go for a challenge! Here are what I feel are the top five best Storm costumes! Thanks to UncannyXmen.Net for their amazingly complete costume gallery (it’s only until the end of 2004, but luckily, Storm hasn’t really done much since then, costume-wise, at least as far as picking better costumes go).

Let’s begin!

5. The Team Uniform Period

storm-bigcostume5.jpg

I am partial to this period in X-Men costumes, because I think going with the school uniform motif was a very interesting artistic decision on Jim Lee’s part that really tended to highlight each member’s unique personality, as we got to see how much of their look leaked out through the costume.

Still, it IS basically just a school uniform, so it’s not ranked highrr (but the costumes below it…yuck…some major Ron Frenz Rule violations).

4. The Outback costume

storm-bigcostume4.jpg

I like the basic idea behind this costume (who designed it? Silvestri or Leonardi or someone else entirely?), in that it does have a lot of the elements that I think are important in a great Storm costume (i.e. a cape), but at the same time, it seems a BIT too generic of an outfit.

3. Alan Davis’ Storm costume

storm-bigcostume9.jpg

Alan Davis pulled off one of the most interesting tricks an artist can pull off – he gave Storm a new costume in 1999. Then, five years later, he returned to the book and gave her a new costume….the same one he used in 1999!

I understand there were extentuating circumstances (I do not believe Davis was informed whether he was ALLOWED to change Storm’s costume or not, so when push came to shove, he just went with a costume he was familiar with), but it is still pretty freaky.

I like how much this evokes the old costume, just very stream-lined and neat looking. One of the best Alan Davis costume designs I’ve ever seen (and that may be damning with faint praise, a bit).

2. Jim Lee’s Storm costume

storm-bigcostume6.jpg

When the X-Men launched their second title in 1991, Jim Lee was given free reign to design new oufits, and love them or leave them, his designs had major staying power, which is rare for ANY costume designs. His Cyclops design lasted about eight years. His Rogue about seven. His Jean Grey about eight. And his Storm about five.

I like how this is slightly more stylized than the one with the lightning bolt in the middle of the chest. It looks a lot less cheesy, and it passes the Ron Frenz Rule with flying colors.

1. Dave Cockrum’s original Storm costume

The original, and still champion.

storm-bigcostume1.jpg

So simple, yet so refined.

If it wouldn’t be such a major step backwards for the character (like someone wearing their high school clothes), I would love to still see Storm in this uniform.

It was even FUNCTIONAL, as Storm had lockpicks built into the costume!

What a great job by Cockrum.

Well, agree? Disagree? Let me know!

30 Comments

Pedro Bouça

July 17, 2006 at 4:07 am

Funny how the Jim Lee costume (black with white
highlights) turned into a white one over time. And the
“staying power” of most Jim Lee designs was due to the
fact they were used on the cartoon, not by any inherent
quialities. Some were quite ugly, but most were just
hopelessly generic (just look at Rogue and Jean Grey’s
uniforms!).

The original Storm uniform is really good and I would
like to see it back. Of course, it may just nostalgia
talking…

The Alan Davis design is very close to the Cockrum original — and although the Cockrum is #1 for me, too, I think it’d look a bit odd if Storm reverted to a costume that’s just like the one she was wearing five minutes ago, only showing more skin and with a simpler border on the cape.

I prefr the Davis costume to the Lee one. Actually… I think I prefer the “Outback” one ot the lee costume as well. Just something about it that I like.

Call it nostalgia for me, too, but I’ll vote for John Romita Jr’s “street punk with mohawk” look for Storm. It was (considerably) different than the usual super-hero costume, to the point that Romita sometimes penciled Storm wearing it in “civilian” scenes. That was from a period when JRJR was “kinda, sorta” de-emphasizing traditional costumes for the X-Men in favor of more subtle costumes that could almost pass for street wear (this was in Uncanny X-Men from the 160’s to around 200 or so). That look really set the X-men apart from other “team” titles at the time.

I’m a mohawk fan too. I think that look and the original Cockrum costume are the only two costumes Storm’s had that have been any good. I like the school uniform too, but since the whole team was wearing the same thing, I don’t know if it can really be considered a Storm costume.

i’m going to agree that mohawk & vest storm is my favorite.

the original is just awful, imho. maybe it’s becaust the bathing suit & tall.boots look has been done to death on so many characters that it leaves storm looking rather unrefined. i prefer my storm’s thighs unexposed.

If there isn’t a mohawk then it isn’t Storm in my world. Mostly I just wanted them to shave Halley Barry’s head for the movies.

Yeah, I agree that the original is still the best.

I’ve always felt Dave Cockrum is one of the best costume designers the comic book biz has ever had. I’d make a list of his all-time greatest character designs or re-designs, but it would probably be too long. Maybe you could do a “Top Five Best Costumes Designed By Dave Cockrum” list.

The “street punk with a mohawk look” debuted during Paul Smith’s run. Credit where it’s due.

I like the street punk look too. The original is fine, but that ring in the center always bugged me, because it just looked weird and didn’t seem terribly functional. And the Mohawk outfit, as others pointed out, can pass as street clothes. Plus, Storm was never cooler than in those days!

You know that we’re delving into complete geekiness with stuff like this, don’t you? This is really the ultimate in nerd culture!

I liked the black/grey/gold Kubert (I can’t remember which) did when Claremont came back for the first time.

Also, anyone else think Storm dresses like a drag queen?

*black/grey/gold COSTUME

What? No mohawk goodness!?

Ugh, four of your top five would be in my bottom five. Only one I agree with is your choice for #1. First time I disagreed with you so strongly, Bri. I agree that Lee’s designs stayed mostly due to the cartoon rather than any inherent quality. His Storm costume was particularly hideous, I pretty much hate any full-body storm costume since it’s pretty established that she finds too much clothing to be restrictive and suffocating (guess it ties into the claustrophobia). Whenever I see her in head-to-toe nonbreathing leather it just seems so wrong. On the Uncanny X-Men site you put up, I’d go with the #7/#8 that I believe was done by Kubert or Madureira as one of the best.

Street punk look was awesome too. It did originate with Paul Smith, although I think Romita did it the best and made it his own. I’d put that in my top 5 as well. I love all Smith and Romita’s costume experiments.

I never knew what to think of either the outback one or Jim Lee’s. Really, what’s with those shoulder pads? I realize that the artists probably remembered 1985 pretty well, but still… not cool.

The Street Punk/Mohawk is hands down my favorite, and I always thought the Jim Lee costume was just a clunkier version of the Outback duds.

Funny thing is I was never really into the X-Men as a kid, but I’d look at them for the art and I gotta be honest, Storm was a reason why. X-Men didn’t really click with me until the movies and I even agreed with the decision to not give them costumes so much as slightly practical uniforms.

Still, I have to go with number one here based on the design alone as a superhero costume combined with Storm/Ororo’s character design. A breathtakingly beautiful black woman with this mane of long white hair.

I like the original costume. It’s not practical at all but there’s a lovely lyrical quality to it which was something that I feel like Dave Cockrum really excelled at. Of course it didn’t *always* work but when it did you got that important thing that superhero costumes do that I think is often overlooked. Ideally at least, they use a positive glorification of the human form (male or female)to convey a sense of power and nobility with a iconography that expresses who they are.

I feel like the original Storm costume does that because it expresses alot of the goddess vibe that is associated with the character.

To me, this is why you don’t fret over the realism of it or wring your hands about the trunks on Superman or get uptight about Wonder Womans costume. I will add however, that this glorfication of the human form can be either easily messed up or just outright abused, especially where costumes for female characters are concerned. Be it in the design of their bodies or their suits. Certainally Wonder Woman is no stranger to it either. It’s the difference between her iconic costume vs. drawing it in such a way that one one tiny star can fit on the back because the suit has become utterly thongtastic.

I have to say I think the mohawk is the worst look. It totally destroys the characters visually in my opinion.

Well, “destruction of the character” was kind of the point…

Cockrum’s original is the best Storm costume. Instantly recoghnizable, simnply designed but with enough detail to lift it from the realm of the generic, the Cockrum look is the classic.

I’m also a big fan of the mohawk look. I liked that it was light years away from the original look- it really showed the character changes Claremont was bringing out.

Other than those two, I’ve never really liked Storm’s costumes.

Definitely a good top 5. The original Storm costume is without a doubt the best one she ever had. I really hated the mohawk/punk outfit…made Storm look like trash. Thankfully that’s when she lost her powers so the X-Men didn’t have to suffer it for too long. I also like the Jim Lee designs and the later costumes that borrowed from the original. Another possible contender for the number 5 spot would be her purple/silver outfit that was really shortlived. Maybe not the most popular, but it definitely was original.

I’m a big fan of the original, too. The ring *is* non-functional. It’s there because the original (#1 here) is a clone of Cockrum’s Saturn Girl costume, changed to black and with a cape added. The ring is a slight variation on Saturn Girl’s Saturn symbol, and is likely derived from rings used as a standard design element for women’s swimsuits.

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i must say that i really like the pictures except for the ones at at the being

The original makes her look like a prostitute.

The original by Cockrum has always been one of her least flattering in my eyes. However, Davis’ update is sleek, classy, and more practical. What’s the point in a poncho if all you’ve got is a bikini under it? Plus, the image featured on Storm’s Wikipedia page displays her with this outfit, and it’s simply perfect. Check it out. It’s pretty cool.

I cannot agree more with your #1 choice (I also find the comparison to ‘high school clothes’ amusing as Storm was in her early thirties when she finally stopped wearing it); it always silently gave reference to her origins while at the same time displaying her new role as a superheroine. The headdress and stylized bikini spoke of someone used to an African/hot environment, while the thigh-highs and heels just scream ‘classic superheroine who doesn’t have to walk anywhere if she doesn’t want to’! ;)

I also think the cape is a necessary staple of any proper Storm costume, as it catches the wind in many artistic ways and really states her title of ‘Wind-Rider’ (in some video games, she’s even used it as a sort of parachute!).

hands down mohawk storm, i honestly thought when i saw the link for the list to see it either 1st or 2nd…….i think an edit of this list would be fine by all

Mohawk Storm for me, as well. That’s how she looked when I read my first ish of X-Men, so it’s always been my favorite.

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