By now, you’re familiar with Monster Wars, thanks to the steadfast work of my hotdog colleagues. When I was introduced to Monster Wars, I said I felt like I could write an entire article just on the costume choices these maniacs made for their monster truck personas. Sadly no sane website would pay me American cash dollars to do that. Wait, I don’t work for a sane website! We’ve devoted a full week to Monster Wars! So, without further ado, I give you Monster Wars fashion police: a fashion article from a woman who owns multiple harem pants jumpsuits. Let’s start with the Carolina Crusher.
It’s difficult to build a personality around crushing. The concept they went with was a construction worker designed by someone who wasn’t a hundred percent sure what a construction worker does. Basically, in each appearance he gets a new tool and makes a lot of puns around that tool. At one point, they have him hold a drill, and they’re like, “he’s also a little drill sergeant this episode. Let’s add a special army hat.” Adorable!
He’s also got a chain that he wears as a belt, and sometimes he holds a big novelty wrench. My favorite accessory is when they give him a little 1930s tin lunch box to eat tiny sandwiches out of because he’s “starving for a victory.”
Carolina Crusher is the simplest Monster Wars look to cosplay. While those studded Hot Topic boots are fire, and jeans with a black tank top are a timeless look, I can’t rate this highly fashionable ensemble very well because I don’t think the stylist understood who the Carolina Crusher was as a character. Is he a drill sergeant or a construction worker? Decide before you hard launch the character—two and a half monster trucks.
Now I’d like to turn our attention to two characters with very similar looks. The bad wig and worse shirt depicting a cartoon animal combo of Predator and First Blood.
They’re very similar looks, but one is executed far better than the other, in my opinion. First Blood’s studded cape collar is iconic. The dark eyebrows and blonde hair looks fearless, and can we talk about the fact that they even made his lipstick bat shaped? There’s only one thing that could make this outfit better, and it’s a pair of red studded arm cuffs. Also, it would be great if they ditched the bangs. I don’t see a deranged blood-drinking vampire man having the attention to detail required to maintain bangs.
Oh my gosh, it’s the perfect outfit! That wig got significantly better between episodes. Too bad they didn’t do the same thing for Predator, the monster truck whose extremely problematic premise is what if Nikki Sixx were cast as the new Black Panther.
It’s a ballet unitard, some face paint, and styrofoam claws. The Carolina Crusher is low effort, but he also looks effortless. You can tell they were trying so hard to make Predator happen, but they spent his costume budget on VFX of a panther. Why did they paint on the mask, and why is it red? He’s supposed to be panther themed, but this thing on his shirt is in no way a panther. If you told a panther this was what it looked like, it would maul you, and you would deserve it.
It looks like a Scooby Doo villain that didn’t want to put in much effort. They very clearly didn’t like the first draft and added the fangs on top of an already-drawn mouth to give the potato some menace. In short, Predator is a dollar-store version of First Blood. He gets one monster truck, while First Blood gets four, and one is on fire but in a radical way.
Next up, we have a man who is definitely not Captain America, The Equalizer. When he speaks too emphatically, his motorcycle helmet slips down over his eyes and blinds him. His gloves also appear to be twice the size of his arm, making me think they cast a bigger actor who couldn’t show, so they shoved a cameraman into a bodybuilders costume and hoped no one would notice. This is a child in his dad’s Halloween costume. Luckily, he’s simply an actor portraying the personification of a monster truck in a sketch and not someone who actually needs to move at all in that costume because he wouldn’t make it two steps before eating shit on his own, I’m going to assume, clown-sized shoes.
While The Equalizer’s outfit isn’t practical, his shield is probably the highest-quality accessory in the show. The idea is thought out– it’s Captain America plus absolutely nothing. They made enough changes to keep Marvel from suing them and called it a day. He’s a solid middle-of-the-pack character that I’m giving three monster trucks for good execution of a boring idea.
Invader is such a missed opportunity. He’s a beige strapless gown at the Met Gala, a painting of a single triangle hanging in the Louvre, a drag queen impersonating Anthony Fauci. The costume is actually too good. It would have been so much more fun to paint a muscle man green and wrap him up in tinfoil like a sexy baked potato.
Where’s the drama? Where’s the emotion? Where’s the bad wig? My kingdom for a mullet. I can’t fault the construction, but if they had even just added a little color to this so he doesn’t almost completely fade into the black background in his black costume, that would have been dope. It’s a near miss that I’m throwing three monster trucks for the construction alone. Also, why is there an air hose going into his arm? If this thing’s mouth is on its shoulder, I feel like the Earth has a pretty good fighting chance.
There’s no other way I can put this, Grave Digger fucks. I hate to objectify Skeletor, but my god, those thighs look like he’s smuggling two cartoon hams into a movie theater. That’s one thicc skeleton man.
I can’t say enough good things about Grave Digger. I could also have written an entire individual article about the hot person energy he exudes through a skull mask. I would totally let this monster truck take me to dinner and a movie. Look at how he sits in a chair.
It’s a known fact that hot people don’t sit in chairs; they drape themselves across them casually. Look at him reading the newspaper because he’s an educated king. There were occasionally episodes where they didn’t mic him underneath the mask, and his dialogue all came out muffled. However, I can forgive that because he’s so damn dapper.
His accessories are on point, playful, and perfectly in tune with his character. Whether it’s a jaunty bowtie or a statement vorpal staff, his look is always carefully crafted. While I hated the across-the-board reliance on unitards for a costume base, Grave Digger elevates the unitard. Most people would say a skull mask and a skull belt buckle are too matchy, but I disagree; the face/crotch symmetry of this costume is part of its charm.
Monster Wars knew that Grave Digger was their Justin Timberlake. If a personification of a monster truck had the ability to go solo, he would have, and he would have been crushing cars in America’s hearts forever. Five flaming monster trucks for zaddy Grave Digger. He’s perfect.
Any character forced to follow up the Grave Digger is going to be a disappointment, so I guess that’s the end of the article. There’s a lot of Anti-Skeleton Man propaganda in the world, and I’m so glad that Monster Wars didn’t fall into the same boring tropes. They made their panther man hilariously unsexy and their skeleton guy the hot one. Who would have ever seen that coming? Truly the kind of genius that deserves a full week of dissection. We can cover Monster Wars, but we will never fully comprehend it.
Monster Wars Week is thanks to a hot Hot Dog tip from Monster Mo, without Mo they’d just be nsters.