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Since Halloween brainstorming is currently underway in walk-in closets across the country, we thought we’d drop a little advice. In terms of big-picture wisdom, we follow Esquire’s tweeted lead: make sure it preserves your looks, involves no makeup and can be quickly removed in passion. (Luckily, our Lord Willy costume fits at least two out of three.)

But in the interest of avoiding faux pas, we thought we might help you avoid some of the riskier costume ideas currently making the rounds. Consider yourself warned:

Balloon Boy:

Topicality is not actually a good thing, especially when it’s a week and a half overdue. Remember: you’re dressing up as a more exotic version of yourself, not just the latest news alert.

Billy Mays Zombie:

If you’re willing to go the nightmarishly disgusting route, the zombie costume is a pretty solid standby, but combining it with the latest Summer of Death casualty runs the risk of bad taste. Even more than the “decayed flesh” part of the costume.

Michael Jackson:

This one’s not a total nix, but as the Magnificent Bastard suggests, please limit yourself to early Michael. That means bonus points for ‘fros, minus points for nose jobs.

And of course, if you find yourself moved to dress your pet, you’re probably better off staying home.

—R.B.

CONTRIBUTORS

  • Russell Brandom