Last time I talked to my sister she was all like, "Halloween costumes have gotten really skanky." Apparently she and the bf were at a mall somewheres in California and they killed time waiting for a movie by browsing the Halloween store. It's been ages since I really looked at Halloween costumes, so I decided to visit a few of the evil major retailers' websites.
WAL-MART's "Playful disguises for Adults":
Now I'm not a big fan of monkeys. They are a little too close if you know what I mean. Nothing bums me out more than seeing a monkey in a diaper. Suffice to say that I am not a fan or the Adult Aloha Gorrilla Costume. Yikes.
But truth be told, I was expecting to find more offendoplex worthy items at ye olde Wal-Mart. But the gorilla was the only one that raised my eyebrows, and that's mostly because of my monkey-phobia. Yeah, there was a sort of risque Elvira costume, and a tacky santa's helper costume (for 98 smackers!), but nothing else particularly notable.
So I moved on to TARGET: Target has more costumes on their website than Target. But I can't say that I found any of them particularly offensive. Stupid and ugly, yes. But not offensive. Of course I could see how one might take issue with the boy toy costume but c'mon, she looks like old school Madonna!
The most annoying and obnoxious costumes I found were of the "trailer park" variety. There's a whole cluster of trends -- "white trash parties" and "kill whitey" parties (recently discussed over at you're nobody 'til somebody loves you) and all the classisit snark directed at Britney and K-Fed (who I'm not trying to defend, but . . .) and also in the "fashion police" backpages of most tabloids. Yeah, celebrities are goofy and over-rich, but is the funniest way to take 'em down always to say that they look poor? At times I see a subversive element in the "she looks like a bag lady" rhetoric (especially when it sorta gives props to the bag lady and makes the rich celebrity look silly), but other times it really comes off sounding, well, just wrong. Anyway, the semiotics of these things are too difficult to untangle on this blog right now because I've had an entire six pack of diet grape soda and my brain feels like glue, but we hope you get what we're sayin'