Five of Television and Film's Most Iconic Bow Tie Wearers


Iconic Bow Tie Wearers

We can find fashion cues just about everywhere. We style ourselves after our fathers or our friends. We read about latest trends in magazines. And sometimes, we emulate our favorite characters. Looking for some extra inspiration to wear a bow tie? Check out these iconic characters that pulled them off.

James Bond

From his first appearance to his recent entrance at the 2012 Olympics, the quintessential spy has worn a variety of bows around his neck. Ranging from Daniel Craig’s modern bow tie to Roger Moore’s large butterfly bow, the result is always a suave, sophisticated man capable of both wooing ladies and saving the world (sometimes all at once).
Agent 007 has been sporting a bow tie since the 1950s and while Bond’s wardrobe may have changed over the decades, the bow tie has stood the test of time.
And who doesn’t want to be like James Bond?

The Doctor

One of the BBC’s most beloved characters, the Doctor of has donned the dapper bow tie several times. But it was his Eleventh incarnation that became synonymous with this type of neckwear.

The Doctor’s insistence on wearing a bow tie, a recurring theme throughout Matt Smith’s tenure, brought the bow tie back into mainstream fashion.

The bow tie was a perfect fit for Smith’s quirky Doctor who was part mad man in a box and part genius. The Doctor and his bow were such a great match that one of Matt Smith’s final actions as the Doctor was letting the garment fall to the floor before his regeneration.

 If the Eleventh Doctor taught us anything during his time, it’s that “bow ties are cool.”

James Bond's Black Bow Tie
Bill Nye Bow Tie
Bill Nye dazzles us with his brain and his bow tie.

Bill Nye the Science Guy

During his time as host of the eponymous educational show, Bill Nye made both science and bow ties cool. 

For Bill Nye, the quirkiness a bow tie offers fit the theme of his show perfectly and, paired with his goofy personality, led to his fame and made him a role model for countless children and future scientists.

Though the bow tie has become somewhat of a norm in the field of science, but when Bill Nye embraced of the fashion, two almost inseparable. There’s no doubt at least a few scientists have turned to bow ties in his honor.


When “Gangnam Style” went viral in 2012, Psy’s now famous blue suit and black bow tie went with it. Thought not exactly a character, the singer’s over-the-top role in the music video has left a lasting impression in pop culture.

While Psy could have easily chosen a traditional necktie for the video, the bow only adds to the already absurd contrast it portrays. 

Even the formal bow he wears in the video is just eccentric enough to create a look that lives on beyond the video, and inspired a large number of costume reproductions.

He’s not alone, either. The bow tie is a common part of fashion for musicians, particularly with indie pop bands who tend to embrace a more hipster look.

Pee-Wee Herman

Continuing the theme of goofy characters who blended perfectly with their bow ties, imagining Pee-Wee Herman without his red bow is almost unthinkable. 

Through most of his initial run on television, the thin red bow tie was paired with a too-small grey suit, resulting in the brighter colored bow taking on a dominant role in the outfit. Modern fashion might frown on such a combination, but Pee-Wee Herman wore it with perfect confidence, which is key for any bow tie.

The tie itself was given to comedian Paul Reubens because of its child-like appearance which ultimately fit the character perfectly and became one of his most identifiable features.

Pee Wee Herman Red Bow Tie
Pee Wee Herman and his sparkly red bow tie are inseparable.

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