Tiger King, Fortnite and Health Workers Are the Most Popular Halloween Costumes

Party City's CMO shares insights on trends for the spooky season

Tiger King-inspired costumes are proving popular this Halloween season. Source: Party City
Headshot of Richard Collings

At the outset of 2020, blockbusters such as Wonder Woman 1984, the latest chapter in the James Bond series No Time to Die and the long-awaited Top Gun sequel, not to mention another installment of Ghostbusters, were all scheduled to hit the silver screen.

As is often the case, come Halloween these movies were likely to inspire trick-or-treaters and partygoers alike to wield golden lassos or proton packs while donning bullet-deflecting bracelets and bomber jackets.

But the pandemic continues to ensure that 2020 is not like any other year in modern times.

Due to Covid-19, movie studios ended up delaying the release of many highly anticipated flicks until later this year or 2021.

Instead, popular TV shows such as Netflix’s Tiger King are frequently popping up in searches for costumes as consumers slowly turn their attention to Halloween following a tumultuous back-to-school season, said Julie Roehm, CMO of Party City.

Even though shoppers are only beginning to show interest in dressing up, and Covid-19’s ultimate impact on sales is still unknown, the retailer is offering its usual wide selection, including a whole line of Tiger King-inspired costumes.

Among other themes proving popular are video game characters, particularly Fortnite‘s Black Knight and Overwatch’s Reaper, complete with Hellfire Shotguns.

In a sign of the times, frontline workers are inspiring kids and young adults alike to dress as their favorite real-life heroes, from doctors and nurses to firefighters and police officers.

Classic slasher-themed costumes such as Pennywise, the antagonist in the horror film It, as well as iconic killers such as Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers and Chucky are on the lists of many shoppers.

Some things do remain the same. Disney characters remain among top costumes you are likely to see on parade (depending on your city’s social-distancing restrictions) this Halloween, namely the characters Anna, Elsa and Olaf from the animated film Frozen. And while Wonder Woman did not crack the top five Halloween themes, she did notch sixth among anticipated trends.

And in case you can’t get enough of politics from your Twitter feed or the news, election-inspired costumes are also on offer during this crucial election year.

If none of those options work for you, in the words of Party City’s Halloween ad campaign, “You Boo You.” Feel free to mix and match to create your own individual look. A hybrid Tiger King and Donald Trump outfit with maybe a Hellfire Shotgun thrown in, anyone?

@RichCollings richard.collings@adweek.com Richard Collings is a retail reporter at Adweek.