Trailer breakdown: Top Gun: Maverick

Trailer two of today’s trailer breakdown bonanza is Top Gun: Maverick, this one was a bit of a surprise to everyone at Comic Con, so luckily for us we never saw it coming! If you want to check out my earlier breakdown post of Cats, go here! Also, if you want to check out the lengthy breakdown of the Joker trailer I wrote for Blueprint:review it lives here! Let’s get into it!

Maverick hasn’t changed…

For better or for worse, we have learned in the first 30 seconds of the trailer that Maverick has not changed one iota since we last saw him. He isn’t able to listen to his commanders as well as he should and that has cost him the promotions he should have. As Ed Harris’s character states, he should be a two star admiral by this point in his life, but here he is still a Captain. Whether that is because he doesn’t think he deserves to progress further up the ranks due to those he has lost or something else, we don’t know yet. But with his remark to his superior we know that he hasn’t lost that cocky sarcastic nature he had when we first set eyes on him.

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Most likely, remaining a Captain is very much how Maverick wants to be, at the end of Top Gun he said he wanted to be an instructor at the Top Gun academy, so after most likely going out to war a fair few times according to his record then teaching the new crop would be right up his alley. He is a man of action who does not want to sit behind a desk, as we see throughout.

Oh boy is this a love letter to the fans as well

Aviators, jackets, motorcycles, camera angles of Tom Cruise in the cockpit, singing as a group in a bar and volleyball. I think that is all anyone wanted from this sequel. It is all we needed to be honest. Let’s get it straight, Top Gun was a fun film, but it was also a stereotypical 80’s film with some of it’s tropes. Fans of those tropes and of the film would be expecting it all again here and we got it and then some. We will be living vicariously through the eyes of Tom Cruise in this one again and we will be loving it.

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We also get to see how much he still relishes being out there in some form of action, whether that is “racing” a fighter jet about to take off on his motorbike or while he is taking off on one himself on a navy vessel. He lives for it and it is one of the few times in the trailer you see him happy. That is pretty telling about the character and where he is at in his life.

Diversity with the pilots

Rather pointedly I think, they correctly showed that being an air force pilot isn’t the boys club it used to be Monica Barbaro’s Phoenix. Adding her character into the trailer albeit for a second would have been a conscious decision seeing as we weren’t given time with characters we know will be there, such as Val Kilmer’s Ice Man. Diversity is key for a film like this as it is as Tom Cruise pointed out a love letter to aviation. It isn’t just a white male club, although there were some non-white characters in the original, from this trailer alone there is much more diversity and that can only be a good thing for the film to show a truer representation of the armed forces today.

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Will he have his own stunts?

Tom Cruise loves to be doing whatever his character is meant to be doing. He loves it, he probably didn’t have to stretch too far to get into the role for Maverick seeing how much of a thrill seeker he is himself. You don’t do half of the things that Cruise has done unless you live for it. He has that ‘need for speed’ ingrained in him as much as his character.

The trailer waits no time to show you that Cruise is up in that plane as much as humanly possible, whether he is truly flying it remains to be seen, but he is up there and back to being upside down again like the lunatic that he is.

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There will be others

We were ominously told this in Top Gun after Goose died and it appears we are going to encounter another death close to Maverick. The mystery will remain on who it is, will it be a fellow veteran who passed away after retiring to the desk? Or will it be a new recruit that Maverick had taken under his wing. A lot will be played up on the emotional side in this film, we have Goose’s son played by Miles Teller in the sequel. We know Maverick took the loss of his co-pilot badly, how will another death affect him, how many other comrades has he had to salute at their funeral?

Is there a role for fighter pilots?

That appears to be the main focus of the trailer, as we all know drones are being used more and more and the actual need for pilots in the air is becoming less. They are being kept in offices controlling the drones from a comfy seat. As Ed Harris’s character states, Maverick’s kind are set for extinction, and is Maverick going to go along with that? We do see him in an advanced looking suit at one point in the trailer. I have a feeling that the true antagonist of the film will be modernisation of the military. Will the breath taking work that the current pilots do be fully replaced by drones and what do these pilots do when their roles become non-essential?

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Whatever happens I know I am in, so stick on your aviators and put on Danger Zone and enjoy yourself with this one unless you’ve lost that loving feeling towards Top Gun.

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