Friday, July 19, 2019

Airplanes! Tom Cruise! Footage!

So this is the best trivial thing that's happened in a year of non-trivial bad things: Top Gun 2 is upon us. And it has airplanes (plus, somehow, shirtless volleyball again).

A few observations:

-I was surprised at first that the Department of Defense didn't insist that the movie use the F-35 instead of the F-18. If there's any aircraft in need of good P.R., it's the F-35.

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The poor, misunderstood, Lightning II.

But then it hit me: there's no two-seat version of the F-35, which means they can't create any footage of Tom Cruise in an actual jet. So the Super Hornet won by default, the most glorious way of winning.

-Why is Maverick wearing a pressure suit?

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Under pressure.

This is different from a regular flight suit in that, as you might expect, it's pressurized. That allows pilots to work at extremely high altitudes where the air pressure is essentially meaningless in terms of breathability. But the only aircraft the U.S. flies right now that requires that type of gear is the U-2, which flies (without Bono) at altitudes up to 85,000 feet. So what's the deal, is Mav flying a Cold War-era spy plane at some point?

-Maverick is a terminal captain. In the exchange with Ed Harris (Tom Skerritt is 85, which is even by Hollywood standards I guess too old to play an active duty Navy officer), we learn that Mav will never get promoted--the rank of captain is where he will end his career. I guess they had to build that in somehow, otherwise how exciting would a movie about "Admiral Pete Mitchell" be?

Anyway, I'm sure it will be a bad movie but I'm equally sure I will see it and react exactly like this as I walk out of the theater:

I feel the need....

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