In my Comic-Con preview, I mentioned that Top Gun was expected to have a “presence” at the convention but was not slated for Hall H. I thought Tom Cruise would do something stunty and Navy-related in San Diego, capitalizing on the nearby Naval base. But no, Tom Cruise just strutted into Hall H yesterday like everyone else and introduced the first trailer for Maverick: Legend of the Skies (we recognize no other title in this household). I really thought he would do something more impressive than walk on stage like a mere mortal, but okay. Lainey is here to take Top Gun seriously. I am here to point out the shocking lack of “Danger Zone” in this trailer: There is a shocking lack of “Danger Zone” in this trailer.

Don’t get me wrong, Maverick: Legend of the Skies looks good—I mean it literally looks good, the cinematography is gorgeous—but it also has a lot of stuff recreating moments from the original movie. I don’t really care about that. I care about the new stuff, like where is Miles Teller? Is that him playing the piano? It’s so hard to tell! Glen Powell gets a clear shot—THANK YOU, TRAILER GODS—but Miles Teller, GOOSE’S SON, is like, blink and you’ll miss it at best. What gives? 

My favorite part of this trailer is the 1.5 seconds of Glen Powell playing beach volleyball. Or football. Somethingball.  

Top Gun would have us believe fighter pilots play a lot of beach volleyball. I happen to know a fighter pilot, and he INSISTS there isn’t that much beach volleyball. Actually he says that “there is no f-cking beach volleyball”, but he doesn’t know EVERY other pilot and SOME of them MIGHT be playing beach volleyball, you don’t know, maybe they just don’t invite you because you’re a BEACH VOLLEYBALL KILLJOY. (This is entire post is dedicated to R, stop acting like you know all volleyball-related activities happening in the entire Navy). I asked R to break down this trailer, and he talked me through it from the perspective of a flyboy. 

He wasn’t super impressed because “this is my job” and “I do it every day” (SHOW OFF), but he DEIGNED to grace me with a bunch of technical jargon that amounts to: Maverick (legend of the skies) flies a Super Hornet now, the same type of jet R flies. There is, however, a classic Tomcat, like from the first movie, at the end of the trailer. R never got to fly a Tomcat. He is officially not as cool as Maverick (legend of the skies). R did comment that the flying looks like footage from a “strike fighter ball”, a yearly compilation of Super Hornets at work. I think this is supposed to be a compliment, but it’s hard to tell over his DEAFENING CONDESCENION. 

And then we come to the critical moment, the single most important thing in this trailer, when Glen Powell appears, silhouetted against a burning sun, and playing shirtless beach somethingball. He is blonde, he is buff, he is bare-chested. Glen Powell is 100% playing Iceman’s son, right? Also, this beach volleyball scene better include Manny Jacinto or I will be sorely disappointed. R doesn’t know what this has to do with being a fighter pilot, but it is a critical ingredient in the Top Gun recipe. Beach volleyball is a defining moment in Top Gun, maybe THE defining moment. I am pleased to see Maverick: Legend of the Skies upholding the true legacy of Top Gun: charged, homoerotic beach volleyball games, and the hot men who play them.