WHEN: 2:15pm EST, March 1st, 2012

WHERE: My apartment in Portland, ME (Isla Nublar)

FORMAT: Blu-Ray on a Vizio 32″ LED HDTV

COMPANY: Girlfriend Becca

PHYSICAL AND MENTAL STATE: Laid back, enjoying the surprise of Becca being home thanks to a snow day, eating Ben & Jerry’s Coffee Heath Bar Crunch

FOCUS OF THIS WEEK’S STUDY: None. SNOW DAY! No assignments today!


  • According to the opening text, TOPGUN was created March 3rd, 1969. Becca says I should have waited two more days to do this viewing.
  • I wonder if Harold Faltermeyer is pissed that his beautiful score builds and builds and builds only to get bitchslapped prematurely by Kenny Loggins.
  • Goose is wearing a cross. Maybe “up early for church” wasn’t a joke? Does this affect my poly theory?
  • I just realized they’re all sitting on leather couches when they first meet Viper. Maybe the arms around each other isn’t so suggestive. I usually put my arm on the back of a couch, regardless of who’s sitting with me.
  • What does Goose throw on the floor at the bar? Pick that up, young man.
  • Is the official symbol for “inverted” crossing your hands at the wrists and dropping them to the ground?
  • Becca can’t stop laughing at Goose giving Charlie the finger. It’s embarrassing.
  • Becca and I tested just how erotic the “That’s right, I am dangerous!” scene really is by reenacting it. By the time she did the Iceman bite, Becca came twice. Kidding, but future experiment?

“I’m gonna eat you!”

  • Why is Maverick surprised that buzzing the tower wasn’t “a big hit”? Is this how jock brains work? “Wait, authorities don’t like it when you break the rules? Dawww…” I retract my previous statements indicating that Goose and Mav are nerds. They’re jocks.
  • I love Iceman’s dainty little volley during the game.
  • Becca thinks “Take My Breath Away” sounds like a midi file.
  • I asked Becca how much time was left. She told me I’ve seen the movie enough times; I should be able to do the math. So I did. I knew the run time without having to look it up. 110-45=65. We hit “Display.” I was right.
  • WHOA. The “For Rent” sign is up the first time Maverick drives away from Charlie’s house. Becca swears it wasn’t there when he drove up. I refuse to rewind during my viewings, so it’s time to check “Goofs” on IMDb. Yup. Those bastards. They forgot to shoot Tom driving away, so they used a take from a later scene. This is particularly unforgivable because it’s a plot point.
  • Goose wears TIGHT jeans. Becca assures me that this was the style back then.
  • At this point, we broke out some Wheat Thins and pepper jack cheese.
  • “Take My Breath Away” keeps making me think of “Paparazzi” by Lady Gaga. I know this is Lady Gaga’s fault, but I’m blaming the Gun for now.

If you told me this outfit was produced by Jerry Bruckheimer, I would believe you.

  • When Kelly McGillis says she’s fallen for Maverick, Tom Cruise’s face looks exactly like Ben Stiller’s in his “death” scene at the beginning of Tropic Thunder.
  • I looked over and caught Becca mouthing the words to “Take My Breath Away.” I said nothing.
  • Becca, as Kenny Loggins fades in over the make-out scene: “Pussy is the danger zone?”
  • I forgot to mention this last week, but everybody gave me shit for not noticing that Goose’s kid is in the sad scene with Carole. Now he’s all I can see.
  • Becca thinks the photo of Goose that says “BEWARE OF JET BLAST” is foreshadowing. Even though that scene is after his death.
  • I did not know hemlock is a poison. I thought it was a brand of alcohol or something. So Charlie just made a joke about drinking poison to a guy whose friend died? Fuck. You.
  • Our upstairs neighbor put on some sexy bass during the scene at Viper’s house. It made it extra sexy.
  • Becca and I both said “Wood/Wolf” at the same time. It’s on the markerboard behind Stinger at the end.
  • Becca suddenly launched into an in-depth analysis of RIO call signs during the climax. We’ll get to that in a bit.
  • Becca and I also tested the “wingman any time” scene for eroticism. Mostly just resulted in face-licking.
  • The credits include “Navy Dialogue Consultant.” I wish I could get my hands on the Top Gun script before that gentleman intervened.

So, in the tradition of a snow day, I declared this a time to relax. Switch off the ol’ brain and just take it easy. Besides, I’ve handed in enough assignments, Teach. I think you can let me off the hook just this once.

And then Becca had to raise her hand.

“Their names are symbolic.”


“The call signs for each of Maverick’s RIOs represent the hero’s journey.”

“Wait, what?”

“Sorry, I’ve been watching a lot of Joseph Campbell.”


“Goose is sometimes called ‘Mother Goose,’ and is associated with family. After Goose dies, his new RIO is Sundown; Maverick is in ‘the descent,’ into the abyss. When he has to re-engage at the end, his RIO is Merlin, a magical companion.”

“You think all that’s intentional?”

“I question it.”

And so Becca continues the grand tradition: homework on a snow day.

Like the water cycle, but with Luke Skywalker.

I’m not promising this next week or anything. This is going to take some time. But I’m probably going to get very acquainted with Joseph Campbell over the next few months. He seems to know what he’s talking about, and after sitting in on an episode of Mythos, he seems like he’s not a dick.

Whoa. Cinema 52 kind of fits the pattern. We’re beginning our descent into the unknown. And Becca is my helper! Holy crap.

Yes, it seems Joseph Campbell will be accompanying me on the journey, collecting and dissecting myths from ancient times, studying their pieces, and tying them together so that I can better understand the human condition.

And a guy who makes faces like this.