Costume Consensus:
DC Classics Elongated Man

Whether it’s for a few years or a few panels, all comic book characters change costumes over the course of their publishing history. In Costume Consensus, we poll our readers about which costumes they’d prefer to buy when their favorite characters are finally turned into action figures. This week: Elongated Man!

How this column works is easy. We show you some pictures, provide a little background, and then ask you what you think. As always, If you have a suggestion for a character to be featured in this column, drop us a line at Submissions@ItsAllTrue.Net .

Ralpha Dibny became the Elongated Man after his metagene was activated by drinking the extracted juice of the rare gingo fruit (No, really).

1. Ralph first appeared in the pages of Flash shortly after Barry Allen was introduced. He and Barry became quick friends and shared plenty of adventures – including Ralph meeting the love of his life, Sue Dearborn. Shortly afterwards, Sue and Ralph were married and moved to the backup in Detective Comics. They’d stay there (and appear sporadically in JLoA) until the late 1960s.

2. During those years as a backup, Elongated Man changed to his more familiar red/black costume. It was in this costume that Ralph joined the Justice League of America. Ralph stuck around as a member of the team for nearly fifteen years.

3. Shortly before the JLA disbanded after Crisis, Sue redesigned Ralph’s costume to the half-purple, half-white costume that he’d wear well into the 90s as a member of Justice League Europe & Justice League International.

During that tenure on the JLI, Sue would again redesign Ralph’s costume. It was a variation of his original costume with a few minor changes including a dark purple collar and a big “E” emblazoned across his chest. Now, we opted to leave this one out of the poll, but feel free to vote for it as a write-in if you disagree with our omission.

In the late 90s, Elongated Man would return to his red/black costume and wear it up until Sue died in Identity Crisis. He typically appeared in 52 wearing normal clothes until his death in that series. Since that “final” appearance, he has appeared both as a ghost (wearing a regular suit) and a Black Lantern.

18 thoughts on “Costume Consensus:
DC Classics Elongated Man

  1. Hey, if Mattel ever gets around to EM, I’d spring for his figure and an alternatively attired variant!

  2. I gotta represent Silver Age, baby! 1 is nice and clean, with or without the mask. 2 makes him look like a Plastic Man imitator. 3 screams Legion of Superheros. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I want actual Legion figures, mm’kay? ๐Ÿ™‚

    Plus, I’m kinda thinking development, if the paint apps are simple maybe they’ll throw a little money on stretched body parts.

    1. It’s a good point on extra accessories . . .

      That’s what made Plas the awesome figure that he is IMO.

      1. Yeah, see? They can do all that for a SDCC figure but not for the ‘street’? Blarg.

        Of course we won’t get ‘wiggling nose’ as a feature nor extended ear for that famous “ARGH! It’s an EAR!!” scene… ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. #3’s the one I know best (JLI forever!), but #2’s simply a better costume, despite the vague similarity to Plastic Man’s. I’d probably buy either one. And Sue, but that’s not happening.

  4. #1 – too plain
    #2 – too derivative of Plas
    #3 – ugh. even without the “eM” plastered on his chest, I never cared for this one, AND it’s also the basis for the JLU costume which did improve it with minor tweaking.

    #2 is *my* Ralph, but again, it’s too derivative of Plas. It was just a few years ago that I found out Ralph was created only because the Flash writer at the time was unsure of whether DC owned Plas or not. Sure, Plas gets all the fun shapes, but Ralph is the Sherlock and more personable than Reed.

    considering a DCUC Ralph is likely going to BE Plas with a new head, a minor redeco to get #2 is fine by me. save the purple for Jimmy’s Elasti-Lad.

  5. Well, 1 is just dull and 3 is an eyesore, so 2 by default. The red suit may be a challenge, however – Ralph is a ginger kid and his fair complexion and sandy hair may result in a very odd-looking figure – think stretchy Conan O’Brien!

  6. Number Three for the win. Though of course if anybody deserves a variant it’s Ralph.
    Plus there was bearded, trenchcoat Ralph from 52.

    I get the feeling this will be next years SDCC exclusive, it’s too soon after Plas for another stretchy guy, but Ralph needs all the extra parts Plas had (and a bottle of Gingold natch) to shine.

    Is it too much to hope for a Ralph and Sue two-pack, maybe with a JLI console as an accessory?


    Next up should be Kyle Rayner. He’s had eight costumes that I can think of, off the top of my head…

  7. I’d love to pick this figure up with his JLA costume. The best representation of his purple and white outfit is the JLU one. Do a variant of that. As for extras, more than likely if he was made, expect repainted Plastic Man parts. Not fair I agree, but cost-effective from DCUC’s point of view. Cheap Bastards!

    I know not much love is shown so far on his classic JLA outfit, but shit how awesome did his Identity Crisis figure look? It came w/extended arms and everything.

  8. I want the Red & Black costume the most, but I would love to see a 1st appearance variant, even though costume #3 is the easier to do as a variant.

    But in the end, I think Ralph would make a great CnC figure with elongated parts and I would want the red & black costume to be The One.

  9. I can see why this is a difficult one for some people: his initial years were spent in the all purple ensemble, his time with the original JLofA was in the red number, and the majority of his time with the JLI and JLU was the purple/white combo. Nonetheless, he was always more prominent in the DCU than Plastic Man. It’s only been since Morrison’s JLA that Plas has taken center stage. EM is far more nuanced and less “hokey” than Plas, so I would hope we’ll see him with variants or the CnC spot.

  10. I picked #3 this was how he looked in fomerly known as the justice league/I can’t believe it’s not the justice league. Superbuddies forever!

      1. Sorry, but for me the super-buddies story is better than that ugly outfit. I do like the JLU’s version of that costume. I’d go for a DCUC version of that.

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