Halloween may feel a bit like channel surfing this year.
According to retailers, popular Halloween costumes could be pulled right out of the TV Guide, with shows like "Boardwalk Empire" and "Game of Thrones" inspiring many.
The most common theme, however, has been zombies, which shouldn't surprise fans of AMC's "The Walking Dead."
The undead have unseated vampires, which dominated recent Halloween seasons, says Ressa Tomkiewicz, Halloween "spookswoman" for Party City's more than 600 stores across the country. More than 2.6 million American adults and children plan to dress as zombies this year, according to the National Retail Federation's, or NRF's, 2011 Top Costumes Survey.
"I think people are ready for something new and different but still on the dark side -- something a little scary, a little gory," Tomkiewicz says.
However, with the continuing economic turmoil, the scariest thing for some partygoers might be their bank account balances.
Still, consumers surveyed for the retail group stated they planned to spend a little more to celebrate Halloween this year -- more than $72 on average, up about $6 from 2010. Respondents say they would pay $40.81 on average for costumes for themselves, their kids and their pets, about $3 more than last year.