Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Miami Vice Monday
Season 1 [Episode 2, Heart Of Darkness]
Original Air Date: September 28, 1984

Just like last week, I am doing Miami Vice Monday on Tuesday. I had to wait until today because there were too many other things going on yesterday.

I am in a really awkward position I am going to share with you. If you are a regular reader of Jake's Rolex Watch Blog you know about Flipper Friday and I Spy Saturday, in which we are examining each episode to see the Rolex watches and to explore the other history including fashion, social moires, and historical content and context.

In many ways, I find the history behind Rolex watches to be just as interesting as the watches themselves. Last week I posted a photo of Don Johnson from Miami Vice wearing a two-tone Rolex Datejust. Marrk, who is a reader of Jake's Rolex Watch Blog commented on the post and said he thought many of the early episodes of Miami Vice were very good and worth watching including the pilot.

I had only seen several episodes of Miami Vice in my life back in the 80s–probably because I was too busy chasing girls ;-)

After Marrks comment, I watched the Pilot and was blown away at how well done the show was and I was equally stunned at how many Rolex watches there were–so I decided to start Miami Vice Monday.

While I was finishing up the article with the screen captures, I started looking at the image below and I thought I saw something strange with the President bracelet, and in particular how the piece between the lugs which is part of the bracelet did not look right.

Then it suddenly hit me!?!?! I vaguely remembered somebody saying they may have used fake Rolex watches in Miami Vice. I was not certain if my memory was correct and then I spoke with Leo and he confirmed it was a fact.

Leo even told me about how he was on the set of Miami Vice and Don Johnson wanted to borrow Leo's yellow gold Rolex King Midas to wear in a scene where Don would be rolling over the hood of a car and they offered Leo $300 to borrow his Rolex. Leo declined because he did not want his prized possession to get goofed up.

Robert-Jan (RJ) from the FratelloWatches.com Wristwatchblog also pointed out Don Johnson likely wore fake Rolex watches as well.

This put me in a strange quandary!?! Do I cancel Miami Vice Monday or keep it going? I decided to keep it going, at least for a while and here is why: I think it is valuable to understand the fake Rolex dynamic. I personally don't like looking at or even discussing fake Rolex watches because I think they are so stupid, but I understand they exist. I think that in many ways the huge fake Rolex market has significantly increased Rolex's mindshare with the international consumer.

As I mentioned earlier in this story, and many times before, I like to explore the story behind the story so for at least a while I will keep exploring Miami Vice. Also, Miami Vice had AMAZING music and excellent acting...


Marrk said...

Inspired by Jake's Blog, I've been watching _Miami Vice_ episodes again. Two days ago, I watched the pilot. Last night, I watched "Heart of Darkness."

My impressions so far: The show is making the transition from '70s cop show plots and characters to something wholly new and unique, and it is succeeding pretty well. The high-concept music, wardrobe, setting, and some outstanding writing are really helping, although a few cliches (e.g., Gregory Sierra's cigar-chomping police lieutenant) remain, like vestiges about to be sloughed off. The center of gravity of the performances, and of the show as a whole, is Don Johnson, whose performance is so rooted in reality that one can only be in awe. He rarely strikes a false note. He is simply at the top of his game. If you enjoy good acting, it is thrilling to watch.

The secondary characters are developed and bring a strength to the episodes, and each plot tries to illuminate some of the existential "darkness" of undercover police work. If that sounds like a fancy-schmancy idea, the show pulls it off with a balanced, even a light, touch that makes today's police procedurals seem flatfooted, didactic and melodramatic.

Jake, almost all movie and tv production uses props — prop watches and prop cars, etc. It would not be cost effective to do otherwise. This should not cause you to have doubts about Miami Vice Monday. Keep going.

Headunderbed said...

MV was is a fav of mine. I liked the Jahn (spell) Hammer music. The thing I also liked was the use of color in the show; lots of pastels and easy contrasts.
The use of fakes on the set always bugged me; but like Leo said, "rolling over the hood of the 'Rosa'" for $3 Franklins just didnt look worth it. During the days of the series they probably already had saphires and those wouldn't last a Miami Vice Minute of shooting. The plexis would though...