Iconic, epic, fantastic, and legendary. Watch journalists never grow weary of (over-) using these attributes when discussing the universally beloved Omega Speedmaster that was introduced in 1957. Front and center is of course the Professional Moonwatch, the classic chronograph that started it all, and went to the Moon in 1969 on the Apollo 11 spaceflight. Not too shabby a job, by the way, because the watch made it back to Earth without a scratch.
The following decades saw the Swiss watchmaker produce countless Moonwatches for the masses. Any time the watch community grew weary of finding room in their watch boxes for yet another Moonwatch, Omega adroitly responded by releasing their next model as a limited edition. An ingenious sleight of hand that always worked, because markets (with a helping hand from human psychology) dictate that this kind of marketing prowess will always send demand skyrocketing. Space pun intended. Want another? Well, the prices these days for limited edition Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatches like the Silver Snoopy Award are, you know, astronomical.
You’d need a catalog with the thickness of a New York phone book (remember those?) to list all the Speedmaster models out there. So instead, we’re taking a (not-so-serious) look at selected Speedmaster models and the personalities of the folks who wear them. What type are you?
Moon Marketing Adoration – Omega’s Professional Moonwatch
If you’ve got anon your wrist, that shows just how much authenticity means to you. This is the one and only Moonwatch for you (you never could understand why they discontinued it in 2021). All those folks wearing another Moonwatch model? Let’s not even get into it. Omega’s brilliant Moon marketing solidified their promise that their timepiece would make you look like a dapper mix between George Clooney and Buzz Aldrin. Every time you glance at your Moonwatch, you daydream about your heroic voyage into space. Stuck in traffic? Printer in the office on the fritz again? No problem! You know your Moonwatch will get you through any adversity and put you well on the path towards your very own “mission complete.”
Charlie’s Snoopys – Must-Love Speedmasters
We all know that dogs are (wo)man’s best friend and faithful companion. With your Canis lupus familiaris roaming your house and yard, and with your standard Moonwatch on your wrist, you were, you know, over the Moon in 2003. That’s when Omega presented the first limited-edition Speedmaster Silver Snoopy Award, with the iconic Peanuts beagle in full astronaut gear gracing its 9 o’clock subdial.
A pizza-scarfing, root beer-guzzling dog on the dial of an Omega? What? Digging deeper into the topic (now that it was the 21st century, you could go online to do this), you discovered that Snoopy served as a kind of mascot for NASA, and that the Silver Snoopy Award is given to NASA employees and contractors “for outstanding achievements related to human flight safety or mission success.” Man, that new website with “wik” or something like that in its name knew everything!
Speedmaster X-33 Marstimer: Mars Time for Adventurers and Visionaries
September 26th, 2022. Omega’s vague Instagram post set off a ripple of excitement through the Speedmaster fan base. The next limited Moonwatch to clog their already overflowing watch boxes, perhaps? Infatuated, giddy Omega legions stood at the ready, credit card in hand, knowing that at any moment the time would come to click/swipe and become the proud owner of whatever timepiece was being offered, or at least get on the waiting list for it. But when Omega pulled the virtual curtain back, the wave of baffled, somewhat confused disappointment from the watch community hung so thick in the air you could cut it with a spring bar tool. Enthusiasts, instead of seeing a cool new Moonwatch on their devices, were treated instead to a 45-mm titanium quartz…um…what were they witnessing? The Speedmaster X-33 Marstimer is a timepiece for a planet that humankind has never set foot on. It’s a watch for dreamers and individualists.
Mercilessly chock-full of all kinds of technological features, the Speedmaster X-33 was developed by Omega together with the European Space Agency (ESA). No need to ask: Yes, every Tom, Dick, and Harry needs a watch like this. It wasn’t long before watch forums and websites were off and running with heated debates about the Marstimer. One longstanding, respected member writing on a well-known forum had the unforgettable comment of “It’s the civil servant’s Breitling Emergency.”
As a fan of this watch, you can already picture yourself (just like in a Hollywood blockbuster), already on your month-long journey to the red planet, faithfully accompanied by the Omega Speedmaster X-33 Marstimer on your wrist. But as opposed to all those, ahem, “heroes” in those Mars flicks, you never run into any trouble, what with your hyper-cool watch that sports an analogue and digital display (oh yeah!). The Mars Time Coordinated (MTC) feature and solar compass deliver the utmost to help you keep a cool head anytime, anywhere. The former feature lets you know what time it is at Mars’ prime meridian, while the latter tells you what direction north is on the red planet. By the way, for your seven grand, you’re only getting a water resistance of 30 meters (30 bar, 98 feet), so, you know, don’t get the watch wet, even if you are the one who ends up going down in history for finding vast quantities of water on Mars.
You startle awake in a lather of sweat, surrounded by empty bags of chips and beer bottles. It’s well past midnight, and your heroism in space was a mere dream. The Martian is still streaming on your TV. In the role of Mark Watney, Matt Damon plays an astronaut who, left behind by his crew, has to find a way to survive on the inhospitable red planet. Even though still half-asleep, your confidence doesn’t wane for a moment: Matt Damon’s certain to have one of those Speedmaster X-33s on his wrist. He just needs to push a button or two on it, and he’ll be on his way home in no time.