Big for Halloween: Big Bird and Batman

While President Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney battle it out for undecided voters, both men may be falling far behind a couple of birds in the Halloween race.

That would be Big Bird and Batman.

"There is an adult Big Bird for men that's an XL, that's selling well. The men's is a normal Big Bird costume, the women's is a little bit more like a dress and but it doesn’t really have a mask," explains Seth Gittlitz of Ricky's, the New York makeup and beauty supply chain, which expands into a full-fledged Halloween store each October.

It's no surprise that Big Bird is, well, taking off, after Mitt Romney's mention of him during the first presidential debate gave the Sesame Street favorite a major pop culture moment.

But some costume vendors say they have not yet had much interest in the two candidates -- or maybe folks are just going the DIY route.

Gittlitz says Ricky's decided not to order too many Obama or Romney masks after they reviewed the weak sakes of presidential candidates in '08.

"My personal belief is people just don’t want wear the mask. It's uncomfortable to drink with the mask on, it gets hot, it doesn’t smell very good," said Gittlitz.

Other stores in New York are getting hit with Big Bird requests (one reported being sold and madly restocking), as well, but Big Bird is not big everywhere. Brian Bowers, owner of Halloween Hallway in Chicago, says his stores "haven’t really gotten many requests" for Big Bird.

"Bane from Batman is probably the most requested costume," adds Bowers. Before you go out and score yourself Bane's breastplate, shearling coat and face mask, ask yourself, Do I have Bane's hulking musculature?

Miguel Dixon of Dixon Costumes in Miami hasn’t gotten any Big Bird requests since the day after the first debate, but he too is doing brisk business in the Caped Crusader.

"The Batman stuff has been our bestseller, because of 'Dark Knight Rises,'" says Dixon. "Batman and Catwoman."

The National Retail Federation reports that Batman characters will be the fourth most popular costume for adults and second for kids, according to a survey conducted in September. (And they have that info in a cool graphic.)

If Romney's threat to pull Big Bird's funding may have managed to spark one brief, regional costume craze, is it possible that he'd sparked another with his performance in the second presidential debate?

Sadly, there's been "No uptick in binder sales," according to Nicole Miller at Office Max's media relations office.

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