The James Bond franchise grows as if it was born yesterday! 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of You Only Live Twice; the 40th anniversary of The Spy Who Loved Me and the 20th anniversary of Tomorrow Never Dies. The Omega Seamaster Diver 300M Commander’s Watch Limited Edition commemorates. Bond was first spotted sporting a Seamaster watch in GoldenEye in 1995 and has been wearing Omega ever since.
Pierce Brosnan and the Seamaster Diver that he wears in Tomorrow Never Dies.
In design, OMEGA’s “Commander’s Watch” salutes the ensign colours of the British Royal Navy. Touches of white, blue and red are found throughout the watch, creating a suave and stately look. The 41 mm stainless steel case features a blue ceramic bezel with a Liquidmetal® diving scale and red rubber covering the first 15 minutes. The dial is polished white ceramic and includes 12 blue indexes, the word “Seamaster” written in red and blue skeleton hands.
Unique features include the 007 gun logo counterweight on the central seconds hand and the number 7 in the date window which is coloured red, while all other numbers are blue. The NATO bracelet is blue, red and grey and follows a 5-stripe pattern with a polished buckle. On the wave-edged caseback, the “three stripes” of the Commander’s naval insignia are featured on the rotor, along with a 007 “bullet” design.
The stainless steel model is limited to just 7,007 pieces and is driven by the OMEGA Calibre 2507. It comes with a 3-year warranty and is presented in a special box that has been inspired by a military medal case. The box also contains a stainless steel bracelet, a changing tool and a “naval pin” that mirrors the design of the NATO strap. Additionally, the “Commander’s Watch” also comes in an 18K yellow gold model, limited to just 7 pieces.
Commander Bond, OMEGA and the British Royal Navy
It was Lindy Hemming, the costume designer on GoldenEye (1995), Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), The World Is Not Enough (1999), Die Another Day (2002) and Casino Royale (2006), who proposed that 007 should wear an OMEGA. Talking about her choice of the Seamaster, she said, “I fought for Bond to wear an OMEGA watch because I wanted to change to a watch that I felt was appropriate for a naval commander to wear [the rank Fleming gave Bond] and the company was known for its diving watches, the Seamaster in particular.”
She added, “My father had been in the RAF but was friendly with navy men and I remember as a child one often visiting us, and he always wore this OMEGA, which fascinated me – this unusually sporty design that looked as though it was built for purpose. It’s the small details that really matter. So one of the early tasks in designing the new Bond, Pierce Brosnan, I went to a props and hand props meeting and argued for the use of OMEGA.”
Interestingly, Hemming was quite right in linking OMEGA with the British Royal Navy. It was indeed the Seamaster 300, originally released in 1957, that was issued to military divers around the world. In 1967, a famous batch of 2nd generation Seamaster 300s was also delivered to the MoD for issue to certain units.
Additionally, during the early days of the Second World War, the MoD – UK’s Ministry of Defence – introduced the specifications for a wristwatch that would help British forces in the sky and on earth and ocean. Subsequently, OMEGA delivered more than 110,000 pilots’, navigators’ and soldiers’ watches to Great Britain’s MoD. Incredible as it may sound, this means that more than 50% of all of Switzerland’s watch deliveries to the United Kingdom during the war came from one company, OMEGA, with all other brands sharing the remaining 50%.
It is entirely plausible that Commander James Bond would have been issued with an OMEGA watch.