Do you remember where you were when the first official trailer for Top Gun: Maverick showed up on the Internet in July? I do. I was on a plane, about to take off, and while I had a lot of feelings about it I valiantly swallowed them as Tech Culture Editor Sam Machkovech had all the fun. Well, Slack tells me that Sam is still asleep, and there’s a new trailer out for the return of Top Gun, so this time he can be my wingman.
This summer’s trailer raised plenty of questions. Why was Pete “Maverick” Mitchell still in the Navy, decades after we saw him in the first movie? And what was that weird pressure suit he was wearing at one point? And can an entire movie about naval aviation still be cool if all the planes are F/A-18 Super Hornets with their goofy looking (and drag-inducing) canted pylons?
This new trailer clears up some of those questions, and obviously there will be spoilers to a degree, so stop reading now if that’s something you want to avoid before you see the film next year.
An admiral, played by Charles Parnell, has the answer to the first question: “they’re called orders, Maverick.” That weird pressure suit goes with a weird-looking stealth plane that Maverick gets to fly for reasons that remain unexplained. The final one was a trick question, because there are at least two F-14 Tomcats (albeit one is a gate guard) and a P-51 Mustang that get air time alongside the US Navy’s current workhorse.
There’s some new stuff to see—air-to-ground counts as diversity compared to the first movie, but we also get to see women fly fighter jets and also play beach volleyball. But as has become the way with Hollywood and its inability to deviate from what worked the first time around, there is plenty of fan service on display. Maverick riding his bike as the sun sets. Maverick and a special lady friend riding his bike as the sun sets. Dudes playing beach volleyball. Air combat maneuver training in the desert. It’s all there and looks predictably gorgeous.
There’s also a character who at first glance looks like a CGI’d Anthony Edwards, but it’s not Goose, it’s his son Brad Bradshaw, played by Miles Teller. Upon hearing the news this morning, “his daddy bequeathed his mustache to his son before he died” was all Senior Technology Editor Lee Hutchinson had to say.
Listing image by Paramount/Skydance