Here is an archive of all the past top five lists I’ve one over the years.
Reader Jim S. wrote in to suggest a top five on the rather odd trend in the 1990s of superheroes being given short-lived (typically story-driven) “battle armor.” Here are the top five silliest examples of this trend..
Steve Gerber took over the Hawkeye feature in Avengers Spotlight with #30 (art by Al Milgrom and Don Heck), and his first storyline he had Hawkeye get shot and then decide to have Tony Stark build him a bullet-resistant lightweight armor. The armor debuted at the end of the issue…
This only BARELY counts as the 1990s, as it came out in January 1990. Plus it is low on the list because it really isn’t the sort of thing that I’m thinking of, as it is closer to chain mail than anything. It’s still a pretty darn silly costume, and it did not last long at all. Gerber’s run only lasted seven issues and then the Hawkeye feature was dropped in Avengers Spotlight (the book itself lasted just four more issues) and Hawkeye returned to his old costume in the pages of Avengers West Coast (after it only appearing in one issue).
Similarly, Superman’s battle armor from Superman/Doomsday: Hunter/Prey #3 by Dan Jurgens and Brett Breeding (where Doomsday returns to life and starts wreaking havoc on Apokolips, including kicking Superman’s ass), is not precisely what I’m thinking when I think “1990s battle armor,” as it is not nearly bulky enough and actually looks kind of cool…
Now Catwoman’s battle armor from Catwoman #50 (by Doug Moench, Jim Balent, Robert Campanella and Sal Buscama) is EXACTLY what I’m thinking when I think of ridiculous 1990s battle armor…
She only misses the top five because, well, there are six sillier examples and Moench also does a good job selling the whole “this really isn’t me, I’m only going to use this once because I’m up against a robotic villain who I can’t beat otherwise.”
By the way, even for 1997, $10,000 for a battle armor like that is a pretty cheap price.
I went into detail on the story behind Daredevil’s new armored look in Daredevil #321 (by D.G. Chichester, Scott McDaniel and Hector Collazzo) in this Remember to Forget piece.
The problem with Daredevil on this list is that, whether the story it was introduced in necessarily worked, it was still a pretty sweet looking costume. So it really doesn’t belong on this list, even if it COMPLETELY fits in with the “1990s battle armor” trend.
Go to the next page for the beginning of the top five!
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