20 Best TV Show Costume Ideas for a Small Screen-Inspired Halloween

Jennifer Aldrich
Photo credit: HBO
Photo credit: HBO

From Country Living

Every October, you may find yourself asking the same question you did as the year before: "What should I be for Halloween?" With seemingly endless options, we understand that it can be tough to choose. But after years of dressing up in a witch costume or a cat costume, perhaps it's finally time to think outside the box. Actually, it's time to draw inspiration from the box—aka your television! Any of these TV show costumes would be a creative option to try out this year. This list is filled with small screen characters you know and love, including Frank Reagan from Blue Bloods, Olivia Benson from Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, and Leroy Jethro Gibbs from NCIS. But don't worry, there are plenty of characters not from popular police procedurals on this list too, including Mike Baxter from Last Man Standing, Randall and Beth Pearson from This Is Us, and Lily Tucker-Pritchett from Modern Family.

Whether you just need a costume for yourself, a DIY Halloween costume for couples, a best friend Halloween costume, or even a Halloween costume for kids, there are plenty of different TV show Halloween costumes that will work for any trick-or-treater or Halloween party attendee. And it's so simple to put together these costumes too. All you need to do is follow our guide and purchase a few inexpensive items for October 31—or go all out and splurge. (You may already have some costume pieces and accessories hanging in your closet though.) And even if you don't see your favorite character here, you can still get costume inspiration for another TV show.

Eleven, Stranger Things

Photo credit: IMDb
Photo credit: IMDb

Let your teen get inspired by Millie Bobby Brown's creepy character on the Netflix hit. For the signature bloodied nose Eleven gets throughout the show, simply draw on "blood" using red face paint.

Daenerys Targaryen, Game of Thrones

Photo credit: HBO
Photo credit: HBO

No, Daenerys didn't end up taking the throne, but the Mother of Dragons was still a force to be reckoned with.

Khal Drogo, Game of Thrones

Photo credit: IMDb
Photo credit: IMDb

Of course, Khaleesi needs her king. Although the Dothraki king succumbs pretty early on in Game of Thrones, he's arguably one of the most popular characters. (Especially thanks to the portrayal by Jason Momoa.)

Frank Reagan, Blue Bloods

Photo credit: John Paul Filo
Photo credit: John Paul Filo

Play the NYPD Police Commissioner for a day with this ensemble inspired by Tom Selleck's character on Blue Bloods. To really feel like you're on the police procedural, make sure you eat a hearty Reagan family dinner before heading out to your Halloween party.

Dwight Schrute, The Office

Photo credit: Trae Patton
Photo credit: Trae Patton

Everyone will get a kick out of this costume inspired by Dunder Mifflin's finest. Have your best bud dress up as Michael Scott, and you'll make the perfect pair.

Rachel Green and Ross Geller, Friends

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Grab your lobster and dress up as one of the most beloved couples to ever appear on prime time television. Bonus points if you actually get the "Rachel" haircut (or wig) and have your partner carry around a toy dinosaur.

Olivia Benson, Law and Order: Special Victims Unit

Photo credit: NBC
Photo credit: NBC

Although some actors come and go on any given TV show, Mariska Hargitay has portrayed Olivia Benson on Law & Order: SVU for more than 20 years. She started on the series way back on season 1—and we hope she stays for many more to come.

Mike Baxter, Last Man Standing

Photo credit: Michael Becker/FOX
Photo credit: Michael Becker/FOX

If you're a dad to all daughters, Tim Allen's character, Mike Baxter, is the perfect costume for you. You definitely won't have to do much to get into character.

Madeline Mackenzie, Big Little Lies

Photo credit: HBO
Photo credit: HBO

The best thing about playing Reese Witherspoon's role on Big Little Lies? Her outfits are so stylish, you can rewear them any day of the year.

Randall and Beth Pearson, This Is Us

Photo credit: NBC
Photo credit: NBC

The relationships on This Is Us are a major part of the plot line, and Randall and Beth's marriage is one of the most relatable. They're there for each other through thick and thin, and always come out stronger because of that.

Leroy Jethro Gibbs, NCIS

Photo credit: Bill Inoshita
Photo credit: Bill Inoshita

You'll be ready to lead the Naval Criminal Investigative Service in this getup. Even Mark Harmon himself would be impressed with the realistic badge.

Penelope Garcia, Criminal Minds

Photo credit: Sonja Flemming
Photo credit: Sonja Flemming

To celebrate the show's final season, get all dolled up as one of the quirkiest characters, Penelope Garcia. Her outfits are always bright and bold, so you can really have fun with it.

Meredith Grey, Grey's Anatomy

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

Paging Dr. Grey! You could even turn this idea into a couples costume by having your partner dress up as McDreamy.

Lily Tucker-Pritchett, Modern Family

Photo credit: Robert Ashcroft
Photo credit: Robert Ashcroft

Not only is this Modern Family-inspired outfit super cute, but it's also really comfortable. Plus, your little girl can wear it way beyond a single night of trick-or-treating.


Dr. Shaun Murphy, The Good Doctor

Photo credit: David Bukach
Photo credit: David Bukach

You'll look like you walked straight out of St. Bonaventure Hospital in this outfit that pays homage to The Good Doctor. Hopefully you're not on call during the Halloween party!


George Costanza and Jerry Seinfeld, Seinfeld

Photo credit: Getty Images
Photo credit: Getty Images

It's been more than 20 years since Seinfeld aired it's final episode, but these two will always be an iconic TV show character duo. If you have two more pals that need a costume, they can go as Elaine Benes and Cosmo Kramer.

Sheldon Cooper, Young Sheldon

Photo credit: Monty Brinton
Photo credit: Monty Brinton

How dapper is this outfit? Your son will look absolutely adorable!

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