SpotlightWatches Spotted In Major TV Shows—A World Television Day Special
From cult favourites and stylistic sensations to the most addictive and most discussed TV shows, here’s a look at leading ladies and gentlemen of television sporting instruments of fine timekeeping on their wrists
May We Recommend
When the United Nations declared November 21 as World Television Day in 1996, it was considered unnecessary by many, given that its purpose was to encourage an exchange of information and ideas, for which there were already several initiatives. Today, it seems even more irrelevant if you consider how the internet has taken over our lives and has arguably become the primary means of information exchange. However, from the point of view of TV programmes, television today is not just broadcast anyway; with streaming services booming even in India. And owing to that, TV shows have become an even bigger part of our lives. From being conversation starters to influencing public opinion, television shows are true trendsetters.
While iconic characters of the past also became style icons over the years, the pop culture phenomenon that TV is keeps us looking out for the new and happening among the emerging topics of water cooler conversations. Amidst those things, for a watch enthusiast are the watches seen on screen. I, for one, often pause the shows I watch, when I spot an interesting timepiece. Sometimes, these watches are instantly identifiable, and on other occasions, they really pique my curiosity. Here, we look at some of the watches spotted on screen, worn by characters in popular current shows, as well as in programmes of the past that are considered as icons of the golden age of television.
Rolex Explorer in Mad Men (2007-2015)
Don Draper has been one of the most enigmatic characters ever seen on television, and he was brought to life by Emmy-winning actor Jon Hamm. Set in 1960s’ New York, the critically-acclaimed Mad Men explored the burgeoning years of advertising and all the excitement that surrounded it, through the perspective of Draper, who had a complicated past and had cultivated a façade. Mad Men’s depiction of the ’60s, and entering the ’70s, made Draper—among the show’s other characters—style icons in the truest sense of the term. While Hamm’s retro-style suits and skinny ties stole the limelight, his character also sported an almost retro-rooking Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer.
May we recommend: The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Explorer—a newer (2016) edition. The 39mm steel timepiece is quite a contemporary classic, with its pared-down frame, a smooth bezel, the Oyster bracelet, and its basic black dial. The two-tone face of the watch features old-school numerals, and simple three-hand timekeeping, powered by an automatic Rolex movement offering a power reserve of 48 hours. Here is a Rolex that could pretty much fit into any era. There’s little not to love about it.
TAG Heuer Monaco in Breaking Bad (2008-2013)
Breaking Bad is one of those TV shows that truly marked a turning point in the television landscape, with its anti-hero, Walter White (AKA Heisenberg) played by Bryan Cranston, who won multiple Emmys for this role. It was such a success that it enjoys a cult following even today. While its spinoff series Better Call Saul is still on, a Breaking Bad film is even in the works. In the series, Walter White’s tumultuous rise from chemistry teacher to drug lord also sees his relationships go through the ringer. Among them is his relationship with student-turned-apprentice, Jesse Pinkman (Emmy winner Aaron Paul), who gifts ‘Mr White’ a TAG Heuer Monaco watch that White is proud to wear. This watch almost becomes a leitmotif, as their relationship crumbles towards the end of the series, and White symbolically abandons the watch on a phone booth out in the middle of nowhere.
May we recommend: The TAG Heuer Monaco Calibre 12—the same model as the one that Cranston wore in Breaking Bad. The signature square case of the Monaco series, at a width of 39mm houses an automatic chronograph calibre that is visible through the transparent caseback. The blue dial features chronograph and small seconds sub-dials at nine and three o’clock, and a date window at six. With angular chronograph pushers flanking the crown on its right, the steel case is water resistant to 100m.
Panerai Luminor in Grey’s Anatomy (2005– present)
Entertainment Weekly has called Grey’s Anatomy a ‘15-season sensation’—an apt expression for the TV series that has been among the top 10 US network dramas, since it started in 2005. A winner of multiple awards, and with a strong global fan following, the medical drama has also been known for bringing to the fore several issues that need addressing, on-screen and off. While it was the first programme to have a truly diverse cast that represents America, its lead actress, Ellen Pompeo has been a voice for women’s equality in the workplace, being famously vocal about equal pay. From creator Shonda Rhimes—and her company, Shondaland—the series has seen several cast changes in its ensemble over the years. Among the current long-term series regulars is Kevin McKidd, as trauma surgeon, Dr Owen Hunt, who has been spotted wearing some impressive timepieces on the show—one of which has been a Panerai Luminor.
May we recommend: The Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days Automatic Titanio. Like the Panerai on McKidd’s wrist, this watch comes with a date indicator and small seconds on a black Luminor-style sandwich dial, and with a black leather strap fixed onto a white metal case—in titanium here. Generously sized at 44mm, the cushion-shaped case features the signature Luminor crown protector. Water resistant to 300m, the case houses an automatic movement that offers a whopping 72-hour power reserve—a wholesome watch indeed!
Omega Seamaster in Grey’s Anatomy (2005– present)
In Grey’s Anatomy, with characters mostly seen in surgical scrubs and lab-coats, it’s rather easy to identify the watches they wear. Over the years, we’ve seen brands such as IWC and TAG Heuer among the timepieces sported by characters of the past and present. One such character is current series regular, Jesse Williams—as plastics and ENT surgeon, Dr Jackson Avery—who’s been seen wearing watches such as a Casio G-Shock as well as an Omega Seamaster.
May we recommend: The Omega Seamaster Diver. This year, Omega celebrates the silver jubilee of the Seamaster collection, one of the brand’s strongest pillars. This here is a bestselling chronograph edition from the Seamaster Diver line. With striking red accents on the largely black-and-steel face of the watch, the chronograph timekeeper is the ideal sporty watch for daily wear even. Set in a solid 41.5mm steel case, water resistant to 300m, it’s a sturdy piece as well. And with a self-winding mechanism beating inside, offering up to 54 hours of power when fully wound, this watch leaves nothing to complain about.
Movado 1881 in Scandal (2012-2018)
Concluding its seven-season TV run earlier this year, Scandal was a political drama that unapologetically embraced heightened reality through its over-the-top storylines—often ripped from the headlines—that had the audience hooked. At the centre of the fast-paced series was Olivia Pope, a Washington DC ‘fixer’, inspired by real-life American crisis manager Judy Smith, and portrayed by the feisty Kerry Washington. An ambassador of Movado, the actress was often seen wearing the brand’s Swiss-made watches in the series. Among the several timepieces that complemented her signature business attire and coats was a Movado 1881 watch.
May we recommend: The Movado 1881 quartz timepiece in steel features the unmistakable Movado Museum dot at 12 o’clock, among its other linear hour markers on the silver dial. The sleek 28mm case, water resistant to 30m, is complemented by a steel bracelet featuring rows of four curved links, for nuanced style and wearing comfort.
Movado Sapphire in How To Get Away With Murder (2014– present)
Also from the house of Shondaland—like Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal—the ongoing How To Get Away With Murder is TV’s legal drama known for its addictive mysteries through non-linear storytelling. Earlier this year, in a crossover storyline with Scandal, Olivia Pope makes an appearance in How To Get Away With Murder to help its protagonist, Annalise Keating (Oscar winner Viola Davis), with a high-profile US Supreme Court case. Kerry Washington was seen wearing Movado during this stint of hers—once even spotted with two watches on her wrist, including the Movado Sapphire.
May we recommend: The Movado Sapphire… We believe this is the same model that Washington wore in How To Get Away With Murder. In yellow gold PVD-treated steel, this Swiss-made timepiece is perfect to lend elegance to daytime work-wear, while also doubling as a pretty dress watch. The 26mm case houses an accurate quartz movement, but the highlight is the gorgeous gold mother-of-pearl dial that adds a subtle shimmer, as it complements the architecturally bevelled links of the gold-PVD bracelet.
Rolex Day-Date in This Is Us (2016– present)
One of the most talked about shows since Game Of Thrones took the world by storm, This Is Us is the TV show that has captured the hearts of many worldwide, as it tells the heart-warming and gut-wrenching stories of the fictional Pearson family. Among the diverse cast is breakout star, Chrissy Metz as Kate, one of the ‘big three’ Pearson siblings. Kate deals with being overweight and with all the struggles that she’s grown up with, and still faces on a personal level as they impact her relationships in big ways and small. In the ongoing third season, as Kate deals with the issues of being pregnant at her weight, she’s been spotted wearing a Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day-Date, in steel and gold, with a dark dial and a Jubilee bracelet.
May we recommend: The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust in a Rolesor combination of Oystersteel and yellow gold. The Rolex Jubilee bracelet accompanies the fluted bezel that frames the black dial featuring diamond hour markers and the date at three o’clock, magnified through the Datejust staple—the Cyclops lens on the sapphire crystal glass. Water resistant to 100m, the 36mm case houses an automatic Rolex movement offering a power reserve of 70 hours.
- Round-Up All 36 Rolex Cosmograph Daytona Watches: A Comprehensive Review
- Round-Up Best Of Rolex: The 10 Most Popular Rolex Watches
- Round-Up Review : All 8 Rolex Submariner watches !
- Round-Up The Ten Best Rolex Gold Watches, From All-Gold To Rolesor
- Feature The Rolex Oyster Perpetual Day Date
- Feature Discover The Rolex Datejust: The Modern Rendition Of A Classic
Shop The Story
TAG Heuer Monaco
Panerai Luminor 1950
Movado 1881 Quartz