SINGAPORE (Oct 22): Before denim jeans became a fashion icon, they were a staple of the hardworking labourers of the American West. Miners, factory workers, railroad workers and farmers alike often wore the durable fabric to work. Omega pays tribute to the spirit of that industrial past with a new Railmaster that would have complemented denim trousers or overalls, the classic work uniform of the time.

The original Omega Railmaster of 1957, with its reliable design and anti-magnetic properties, was suited to working-class life. Similarly, the 2018 denim-inspired Railmaster is hardy and practical yet trendy-looking. It is powered by the Master Chronometer Calibre 8806, which is 15 times more resistant than the original Railmaster models, and is certified by the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology for its ability to withstand magnetism of 15,000 gauss. The 40mm brushed symmetrical stainless steel case features a conical crown and wave-edged caseback with Omega’s patented Naiad Lock system to keep the wording in position.

Omega’s new denim-style Railmaster model comes with either a blue denim NATO strap or stainless steel bracelet.

Cosmetically, the most prominent reference to denim is the vertically-brushed “blue jeans” dial, whose indexes and hands are coated with light-grey Super-Lumi Nova. Its beige lollipop central seconds hand and transferred “Railmaster” indication on the dial are both reminiscent of the coloured stitching found on denim jeans. The watch comes with a genuine blue denim NATO strap, with brown leather used on the underside and for the keepers. A version with a stainless-steel bracelet is also available.

In a nod to the key character of Tsuburaya Productions’ Ultraman series, Omega’s 2018 Speedmaster Limited Edition 42mm “Ultraman” is packed with Seventies Japanese sci-fi references. As Ultraman is only able to stay in super-hero mode for three minutes, the minute subdial at three o’clock has only the first three minutes picked-out in orange. Another clever design twist is the hidden silhouette of Ultraman’s profile on the seconds subdial at nine o’clock. It can only be revealed via UV light from a lamp on one end of an Ultraman Beta Capsule device, which comes with the watch and functions as its strap changer.


The Speedmaster ‘Ultraman’ (left) shares its DNA with Omega’s 1967 ‘Moonwatch’ (right)

Notably, the watch’s seconds hand adopts the same dimensions and shade of orange as the classic 1967 Speedmaster chronograph that was most famously worn by the Monster Attack Team in the show’s fourth instalment, The Return of Ultraman, to match the characters’ orange jumpsuits. In Omega’s 2018 edition, the distinctive colour of the seconds hand is matched by a black/ orange bezel in anodised aluminium and a black-and-orange NATO strap, which is interchangeable with a spare black leather strap. A vintage Omega logo adds a retro touch to the dial.

As a true collectible, the Speedmaster 42mm “Ultraman” comes in its own hexagonal box fashioned after the futuristic table used by Ultraman’s Monster Attack Team. All 2,012 limited edition pieces of this model were, however, snapped up in less than two hours at Omega’s #SpeedyTuesday online-exclusive event, which was held on the watchmaker’s Instagram channel in July. Nonetheless, diehard fans can still put themselves on the waiting list on Omega’s website in the hopes of a cancellation.