Oct 28, 2016

Why Harambe is the perfect Halloween costume

Depending on who you ask, gorillas are seen as elusive, intelligent creatures dwelling in mist, or scary, subhuman monsters -- and everything in between. And that's why they make such good costumes.

Mel Campbell — Freelance journalist and critic

Mel Campbell

Freelance journalist and critic

As Halloween draws nigh, online media outlets publish their annual round-ups of the worst costumes commercially available. Such listicles are pure clickbait, allowing readers to enjoy racist, sexist and homophobic imagery while outwardly condemning it. And while “offensive costume” listicles are usually framed as advice on what revellers should avoid wearing, there is no evidence that they actually teach awful people not to use dress-up occasions to be gleefully disrespectful.

Back in 2009 I sketched a taxonomy of offensive Halloween costumes, and most of the outfits that celebrate male supremacy or make fun of minorities remain the same every year. But then there are more timely burlesques of shocking news stories and controversial celebrities. And this year, alongside Sexy Donald Trump and Kim Kardashian’s Paris Hotel Robbery, costume stores have reported a run on gorilla suits as meme-savvy internet jokesters prepare to dress up as Harambe, the gorilla who died at Cincinnati Zoo in May.

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One thought on “Why Harambe is the perfect Halloween costume

  1. Rob Fischer

    A note to those in the Crikey bunker, All Saints Eve or Halloween as those in the land of the ignorant and land of the stupid call it, is mainly an American thing. It has no place in Australian culture, society or history. It’s only becoming a thing over here due to the domineering influence of a fundamentally flawed culture, mainly via TV programs. So please in the name of whatever/whoever you consider to be holy, do not do ANYTHING to promote or propagate the spread of this insidious festival. Any jumped-up twit who knocks on my door is going to get an earful, I’m going to ask them if they’re an Aussie or a seppo and if it’s the later then they can move over there and get their stupid heads blown off, in a country that has more guns than citizens. I know you won’t publish this, but take it on board and DO NOT do anything to help in the spread this disease.

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