8 TV-inspired Halloween costumes to wear this spooky season

Sex Education Season 3. Asa Butterfield as Otis Milburn, Mimi Keene as Ruby Matthews in Episode 3 of Sex Education Season 3. Cr. Sam Taylor/NETFLIX © 2020

Halloween is one of the best holidays to express your pop culture interests in a creative and fun way. With the advent of peak TV, there are so many television characters to choose from this year. You can attend a haunted house as the heir of the Iron Throne Rhaenyra Targaryen or tap into your inner vampire hunter as Guillermo de la Cruz. Partners can even arrive fashionably late as the lovable odd couple, Otis Milburn and Ruby Matthews. Regardless of who you want to dress up as this spooky season, you can pull off all these costumes with a reasonable budget. Here are the best TV characters you can wear this year for Halloween.

1. Carmen ‘Carmy’ Berzatto (The Bear)

Carmy may be a troubled chef turned sandwich shop owner from Chicago, yet the character makes for the perfect Halloween costume. Not only is he easily identifiable, but Twitter provides countless memes celebrating this year’s hawt new boyfriend for inspiration. Starring the ultra-talented Jeremy Allen White, The Bear follows Carmy as he tries to rebuild his family’s restaurant after the death of a loved one. Unlike Linguini from Ratatouille, you do not need to find a cute little rat to put under your white hat. All you need to pull off Carmy’s look is a plain white tee from Hanes, a blue apron, a bunch of temporary tattoos, and your best smoldering stare.—Phylecia Miller

Total amount: $40

2. A Las Encinas High School Student (Elite)

Move over Gossip Girl because this Halloween, the high school uniform that makes for the best high school uniform costume comes from Elite, the Spanish teen drama series. Making Blair Waldorf’s machinations look quaint, Las Encinas students face wilder mysteries each season. So pretending to be a student at Las Encinas means pushing the school rules, of course. Aim for a tight white button-down with maroon pants or a navy skirt and finish off the look with a red-trimmed preppy blazer. Suggested adjustments include accessories too ridiculous for any real high schooler to wear: chokers, berets, undone ties, chunky belts, signet rings, and hoop earrings.—Ingrid Allen

3. Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen (House of the Dragon)

Lord of the Seven Kingdoms, Viserys Targaryen, once said to his daughter Princess Rheanyra in House of the Dragon, “A dragon’s saddle is one thing, but the Iron Throne is the most dangerous seat in the realm.” Did the reckless princess listen to her father? Based on the last couple of episodes, the answer is no. But, at least she looked good fighting for the throne from her nemesis Queen Alicent. Set 200 years before Game of Thrones, the HBO fantasy drama revolves around the brutal civil war within the ruthless Targaryen Family. For this Halloween, pretend you’re a messy Targaryen with this red renaissance dress and a light blonde wig from Amazon.—Phylecia Miller


Cost: $69

4. An Abbott Elementary Teacher (Abbott Elementary)

Thanks to Quinta Brunson’s delightful workplace sitcom, everyone wants to work at Willard R. Abbott Elementary. Set in an underprivileged elementary school in Philadephia, Abbott Elementary follows second-grade teacher Janine Teagues and her cohorts as they provide the best for their students with little to no resources. Dressing as an Abbott Elementary teacher is easy since all you need to wear is a pleated dress or a pair of khaki slacks. However, suppose you want to go the extra mile or not look corny like Jacob (sorry, Jacob). In that case, you can purchase this unofficial Abbott Elementary staff member T-shirt and notebook at Redbubble.—Phylecia Miller

Cost: $46


5. Ted Lasso (Ted Lasso)

Just because it’s Halloween doesn’t mean you can’t dress a little wholesome. If anything, dressing up as Ted and Rebecca at a Halloween bash will get everyone to talk about you. Ted Lasso is a sports dramedy about a folksy American college football coach leading an England soccer team to success. Though Ted is wholly inexperienced, he wins the hearts and minds of everyone around him. Luckily for you, Ted’s costume is easy to snatch as it’s available at Spirit Halloween, which includes the character’s iconic accessories like his visor and whistle. If you have a friend or partner to join you, they can wear Rebecca’s costume too!—Phylecia Miller

Cost: $52.00

6. The Diamond of the Season (Bridgerton)


Queen Charlotte may have declared Daphne and Edwina the diamonds of their seasons, but nothing is stopping you from stealing their crowns. For the uninitiated, Bridgerton is the hit Netflix historical romance that focuses on the romantic antics of the renowned Bridgerton family in Regency London. Every member of the ton knows that a diamond must have impeccable charm, grace, and frocks. So, you should have all three to impress the Queen. If you need to stretch your budget, check out this affordable satin Regency-era dress with puff sleeves on Amazon. You can also pair the gown with these white gloves and jewelry.—Phylecia Miller

Cost: $50.00

7. Otis Milburn and Ruby Matthews (Sex Education)

Existing somewhere in the modern world with a nebulous 80s and 90s aesthetic, any character from Sex Education makes for a visually appealing Halloween costume. Whether you ship Ruby/Otis or Maeve/Otis, both couples present thrift-friendly couples’ costumes. TYF recommends scouring your local Goodwill for a cropped yellow jacket, red belt, denim skirt, and funky knit crewneck to mimic this look of Ruby’s for under $40. Maeve requires fishnets and a cool fringed jacket paired with layered necklaces. As for Otis, fortunately, his color-blocked windbreaker makes him easily recognizable and can be splurged on here. For the rest of his costume, just wear some jeans and Converse. Cue up “Crimson and Clover” while you’re at it.—Ingrid Allen

Total: $54-$56

8. Misty Quigley (Yellowjackets)

Due to word of mouth and good ole social media, Yellowjackets became the breakout darling of the 2021-2022 television season. It makes sense, as the survival thriller has cannibalism, trippy seances, and murder galore. The teen drama tells the story of a group of high school soccer players surviving a harrowing plane crash in the Ontario wilderness. With its vast ensemble cast, there are many characters to choose from for a Halloween event. However, Misty may be the best one to pull off since she is wonderfully unhinged in the series. All you need to do is purchase these scrubs and these pairs of fake glasses to execute the look.—Phylecia Miller

Cost: $42


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