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What's hot, Halloween 2018: Fortnite, Spider-Man. What's not: President Trump

Take a look at Halloween’s top-costumes list — and into the country’s cultural psyche.
Children and their families wait in line to greet Gov. Mark Dayton at the Governor's Mansion in St. Paul, Minnesota on  Oct. 31, 2017.
Children and their families wait in line to greet Gov. Mark Dayton at the Governor's Mansion in St. Paul, Minnesota on Oct. 31, 2017.Leila Navidi / Star Tribune via AP

Want to escape politics this Halloween? You’re in luck. This year’s trendy costumes are game characters, superheroes and dinosaurs — no Zombie Jared Kushner, Chucky Schumer or Frankenstormy Daniels to be found.

Political costumes are not hot this year, according to the Google News Lab. The search giant provided NBC News with data on this year’s most researched costumes in each state, and only President Donald Trump appeared — and just barely.

Trump slid from the 71st most popular search term nationwide last year to 125th this year. The term appeared in the top 25 in only one state.

The lack of interest is apparent to store owners. Betty Hermann, who has owned Novelties Unlimited in Norfolk, Virginia, for 39 years, called this year’s lull in political costume sales “weird” and attributed it to the charged attitude around politics.

“I think more people are afraid of buying them,” Hermann said of political costumes. “They think they'll get more grief than they get pleasure.”

Fortnite and comic book heroes topped the list of the most popular Halloween costumes among adults and children, according to Google’s data.

The data listed the most-searched-for costumes nationwide and in each state and the District of Columbia in September, and it was dominated by Fortnite. The gaming and cultural phenomenon was the most-searched-for costume across the country, topping the list in 43 states and appearing in every top 25, except for Vermont.

According to the data, there is one state where Trump costumes are selling: Vermont.

Cerina Federico, manager of Rubber Bubbles Balloon & Party Supply in Barre, Vermont, was so sure political costumes would be unpopular this year that she argued when the owner wanted to stock Trump masks for the season.

“But sure enough, we've been selling them,” Federico said.

Fortnite’s topping the list was notable, Google News Lab data editor Simon Rogers said, because the game didn’t even register last year — it only gained mainstream popularity this spring.

"It's a really interesting snapshot of what we care about from one year to the next," Rogers said.

Sue Puschak, a manager at Eddie’s Trick Shop in Marietta Georgia, said the shop sold all of its Fortnite costumes in two weeks.

“We sold out of that real quick and couldn't get it back in stock,” Puschak said. “I didn't think that would be that hot.”

After Fortnite, superhero costumes were well represented at the top. "Spider-Man" was the second-most popular costume search, and the wall-crawler was tops in both the District of Columbia and South Dakota.

"Harley Quinn," "Superhero," "Wonder Woman," and "The Incredibles" all were in the top 20.

Wonder Woman, 2017's most-searched Halloween costume, fell to 15 on the nationwide list, and Puschak said enthusiasm for the Gal Gadot-inspired costume was on the wane this year.

"The classic Wonder Woman is still popular, but the movie version isn't as popular," Puschak said.

Classic costumes, including unicorn, dinosaur, pirate, and witch, all ranked highly.

Which state was the most unique? NBC News analyzed the data, scoring each state based on how many times the costumes in its top 25 appeared on other states’ top 25 lists, and determined that South Dakota's searches differed the most from the rest of the country.

Six costumes on South Dakota's list didn't show up on any other state’s top list: "Hulk," "School Girl," "1950s," "Doctor Strange," "Robber," and "Smurf."

That isn’t to say South Dakotans costume choices are out of left field. "Spider-Man” was the most-searched costume in the state, “Wonder Woman” was fourth, and "Fortnite" sixth.

Brenda Olesen, owner of Einstein's Costume and Prop Rental in Mitchell, South Dakota, said that even though her costume shop frequently handles requests for civil war and Old West outfits, the most common costume requests were still comic book characters.

"This year we did a lot of superheroes and DC characters," Olesen said.