11/24/18 update at bottom of page.
I’m not a cosplayer, but I love seeing Sarah Connor cosplay. Okay, sometimes I and friends joke that I do daily Sarah Connor cosplay. I prefer to think I just cosplay the dean of the Sarah Connor Charm School. Which would obviously be influenced by Sarah. But I’ preoccupied by costuming details as much, if not more, than the most authenticity obsessed cosplayer. At least when it comes to Sarah Connor. Of course, this is more so since I took up prepping, so I’m also picky about what is and isn’t practical in wardrobe and props.
There is a lot about what she wears in Terminator 2 that I absolutely love and do wear regularly. Black (although hers was apparently gray but some people think was green) tank tops being number one. Especially when I am feeling buffed, want to show off my tattoos (so very un-Sarah Connor, who wouldn’t take the time or want to be so marked….although Linda has at least one that we know of), as it keeps getting hotter where I live and as my old concert and events cut-up black T-shirts have worn out from years of wear and washings and I just don’t go to things to get them so much anymore (and I have a few special ones I stopped wearing regularly so they wouldn’t wear out so fast). But I also have various jersey material shirts with various lengths of sleeves, so I already have V-neck Ts now unlike the one she is wearing in the new photos. Of course, many, again of all sleeve lengths or none, are our own SCCS shirts. Black (I have long worn mostly black) BDUs I figured I should have some and learned to love extra pockets, I still wear them sometimes but evolved to prefer tactical pants with even more pockets. The covered watchband, I bought one as a lark when I saw it while buying some BDUs because it was cheap. But in black, of course. I have gone through many since because it’s cheaper than replacing the actual watches…and I discovered my watches now last for years instead of dying after a few months and, no, not the batteries, the watches themselves would fry. Now I don’t even remember when I last bought a watch. Combat boots, but I already was wearing combat boots and they are nothing like the low boots (requiring stirrups added on her BDUs) with brass eyelets Sarah wears which I never did see while shopping, tbh. I also like patrol caps on occasion. But I also have baseball type cap and a boonie hat. These are are fairly practical. I obviously am not walking around with an ALICE vest or even pistol belt (I carry concealed, after all). But to this I add a lot of Celtic-styled jewelry, multiple ear and eyebrow piercings. I do like long whispy bangs, but otherwise I have a side shave and scalp tattoo. To be honest, I’m probably aesthetically more Acacia in Lost Girl, than Sarah, it’s really the whole “what would a 2,000 year-old warrior wear today?” Right down to a leather jacket, mine in basic black but decked out with chainmail, family tartan and a bunch of pins and buttons.
So, there, done my confession that I do dress a lot like Sarah Connor, but don’t do full on cosplay. But do think about accuracy and practicality. Because I’m obsessive like that.
This means that since the first photos of Linda Hamilton from the set of the new movie came out, I’ve obsessed off and on about what she is wearing and carrying. And I’ve found a lot, but not all. So this is not definitive…I mean, that would be impossible until the movie is out, anyway. And anyone spots mistakes or can fill in where I’ve not found stuff, please let me know.
Below I discuss the clothing and accessories I have identified, the I haven’t and then the weapons. And a few thoughts on whether I think these seem right for Sarah as we have known her (YMMV), whether I would wear them and some idea for cosplayers.
Clothing and Accessories I have identified absolutely or best possibility (or so basic you have lots of options):
The first is those pants: They turned out to be rather easy to find and I think I did so on first day and this is the one thing I am one I am surest about (aside from the shotgun and the belt buckle, although not the belt) right down to the exact product. The good news is that if you want them either for cosplay or just because you love them, you can get these exact pants (barring any customizing done by wardrobe). These are motorcycle jeans by uglyBros USA , the women’s Olive Motorpool-G. The bad news is that they run about $330. While there are other moto jeans out there that have the stretch panel over the knee and are similar, I am quite positive on this for an exact match especially with the cargo pocket. Just not sure about the split hem over over her boots, as all other photos I’ve found of them have them tucked in.
Do I think Sarah wear them? Honestly, these are great looking pants, but I totally question Sarah wearing them over a pair of tactical pants with, say, 14 pockets. Hoping she at least rides in on a motorcycle. But if this ends up as a Future War movie rather than a stop the war movie, then maybe. I have learned from watching The 100 that moto skinny jeans are the most important post-apocalyptic wardrobe item a woman can have.
Would I wear them? No. I don’t have that sort of money for pants, I like a more relaxed fit and also just not enough pockets.
My suggestions for cosplayers? You can sometimes find “deals” for the uglyBros online, but some of those sites seem pretty suspicious. Sizes are pretty narrow (take the pun there or not), as well, and you’ll want to read their instructions on measuring as they’re, uh, different. The men’s version run slightly bigger but not a lot (men’s also come in a K for Kevlar version, cargo pocket is different, though). You might find some close but not exact searching for “moto skinny jeans” and variations of that, but finding them in olive drab green with cargo pockets might be difficult. A lot depends, of course, on how accurate you are wanting to go, how much money you want to spend and what your modification skills might be on what you choose. But at least you can be pretty sure on what you’re aiming for.
Would Sarah? Sure, why not? Although I admit I do kind of wish she was in a tank again.
Would I? I do already at times. When possible, and it is getting harder all the time, I like sweatshop free options which is why I linked this brand.
Cosplayers? I don’t think this is a problem.
AustriAlpin Cobra belt buckle in polished (sometimes labeled “silver,” “aluminum” or “chrome” by other sellers) finish on olive drab green web belt: This is a sure thing as far as the description goes, I am familiar with this coveted buckle brand. The only ready made belt I have found with this combination polished on OD green is Crosstac women’s Lightening Tactical. but I don’t know if that’s what they got or if they made one. Obviously, the wardrobe department could sew the buckle onto webbing themselves. The Lightening Tactical belt is pricey, but well made tactical and rigger belts with these Cobra buckles tend to be and it does have useful hidden pockets, with or without a knife to put in the knife one.
Would Sarah? Hell, yeah!
Would I wear? Hell, yeah! These are great buckles and I wear tactical belts already and really would love one. Black on black, or wolf gray on black, of course. But I’m looking at that no time soon due to costs, yeah even on Esty which has the best prices on belts, some of them appear really well made. Seriously, these are awesome buckles and is the one thing, other than basic black Ts, that I consider a practical thing that I’m happy to copy from this movie so far.
Cosplayers? If you are putting it on $350 jeans you are probably okay getting an $85-$100 belt. If you were to buy the Lightening Tactical, check their sizing information carefully, they’re strict and no refunds if you mess up. Again, Esty might be an option and you might be able to find one with this combo or get one custom made by someone there. It’s cheaper if you get a single density belt, rather than an actual tactical or rigger double thick and that is probably find for cosplay especially if you’re not holstering a real Shorty from it. A OD green web belt with a different buckle, pained silver (not likely to find that) might work. Or just hide it, which should be easy enough if you do the vest. But it’s a great buckle, so if it’s something you might want to wear enough for the bucks get a good one.
Nixon Regulus Watch in sand. Or so it appears. Really, it seems to be the only thing close. But I also can’t believe I identified it and did so within minutes of looking at watches. Photos of the the watch face she wears are not high rez enough to be completely sure, but the combination of a sand band with square holes and a black buckle of that particular shape, which is what is clear in the promotional photo, with a square faced watch this seems to be the only thing.
Would Sarah? Sure, I guess, it’s supposed to be a good watch.
Would I wear? No way. That’s an expensive watch to kill, so I’d have to wear it in a covered band and I can wear any watch in the covered band so why spend that?
Cosplay? I guess it also depends on how much you want to spend and maybe if you want a new watch. I though military/sport watches in this color would be more common than they are but no luck. That covered watch band (even if OD green with black Velcro is impossible to find as the Velcro matches now) was real handy to hide your watch or not even have one.
Accessories I haven’t identified
Combat boots: I never saw combat boots like she had in T2, either, and think those might have been paddock boots rather than combat boots. These again don’t seem to be combat boots, but look more like engineer boots and I may have identified them, but I”m not sure enough to put in the previous section… they look a lot like these Fryes. But maybe Skynet wants me to think so as these popped up as an ad on FB and I was struck by the similarity.
Would Sarah? Really, I’d like to see black eyelets blending with the boot. I could probably see her in a different sole, but might be just projecting my preferences.
Would I wear? I’ll stick to my Panama sole speed-lacers, although I might try athletic sole tactical boots.
Cosplayers? If you’re cosplaying at a con, I recommend wearing what ever style black boot you are comfortable in and fit your budget. Your pant legs would be covering them, anyway. ETA: Fryes are a nice boot if you’re looking to spend the money, find them comfortable and intend to wear them a lot given the price. Then again, Frye may be in funding Skynet or something. I’m really a bit suspicious.
Aviator sunglasses: I can’t believe I have identified the watch but not the exact sunglasses. Unlike the very unique Matsuda 2089 of T2, these are much more basic aviators. They are distinctive, however, in having plastic/acetate rims that match the lenses, with gold on the outside, no screws showing. This is not uncommon, in itself, but it’s hard to search for (not all sites give very full descriptions of the glasses). One issue is that the early unofficial photos they looked brown lenses like her personal glasses but with brown rims, but the official photos look like they are smoke lenses with black rims. Going with the smoke/black these seem like a close but not exact match.
Oddly, I think I found her own personal sunglasses that we often see her wearing in fan photos off the set, which are aviators as well, but different than the on-screen ones.
Would Sarah? Sure, why not.
Would I? Sure, why not. I do have some little round aviators, and, yes, because they reminded me of the Matsuda pair without being exact copies (which Magnoli Clothiers weren’t making yet). I do prefer wraparound sport glasses for regular wear, however.
Cosplayers? Well, some might want the exact match so hopefully that will be identified. but aviators can also be considered “so basic you can find something that works” anywhere from $8 to thousands of dollars. If your budget is around $40, I really do think these from Solful would work well. Have less of a budget? These might work in a pinch, but might not last long.
The ballistic vest: This isn’t a real thing or it’s seriously obscure. I have searched, I have talked to vets, tactical magazine photographers and others and no one has seen anything like this, some of them have been asking others with gear knowledge. This somewhat resembles a plate carrier with PALS (Pouch Attachment Ladder System) webbing, but without bulk producing plates, of course.. However, while it has standard PALS webbing on the top, the cummerbund, which where you’d hang most of you gear with a MOLLE (MOdular Lightweight Load-bearing Equipment) or similar system, is not PALS. PALS is uniform, 1 inch wide webbing, 1 inch apart, sewn at 1.5 inch intervals; like on the top part which is a PALS panel. Rather than having holsters and pouches hooked to PALS like plate carriers tend to have, this webbing is made to fit the grenades and revolver she’s carrying. I have yet to see a system like that. Also, most vests stop rather high on the waist and if they add more below it’s detachable and goes all the way down to protect the groin and upper thighs.
Costume designer Ngila Dickson does have a good bit of experience in fantasy body armor designs, given some of her past work. I’m not sure why they went with a non-standard design like this, other than perhaps aesthetics. And it is more attractive than plate carriers tend to look. Face it, they’re bulky even before plates are added, let along gear pouches. This is actually a disappointment to me, I’d like to see a more realistic looking vest, even if it was still highly modified for aesthetics.
Of course, I and my sources may we proven way wrong and this thing exists in real life. Please let me know if so!
Would Sarah? I think she’d be more likely to actually wear an actual plate carrier and to use the PALS as it’s meant to be used. But it’s not going to be very useful against a Terminator that can more precisely get a head shot than a human, anyway. Ballistic vests work because for humans aiming for center mass first is the most effective way to stop a person.
Would I? Obviously, not this one. I’ll never say never for an actual ballistics vest, world is looking pretty grim these days.
Cosplayers? You’ll need to make or have made from scratch, or shot for the real thing and then redo it, or go for a more authentic real-life version over an authentic movie version, I guess. Who knows, Magnoli Clothiers might do one up someday.
Thermobaric Grenades: You can see that one has “obaric” written on it and therefore the rest of the word is likely wrapped around each of them. I can’t think of any other grenade related word that matches and if you’re fighting Terminators, I suppose this is a good option.
Would Sarah? Yeah, it makes sense. Not sure it would destroy a Terminator completely, but it’ll mess it up, burn off the skin (of the T800s and the like) to destroy any cover…I see it.
Me? Yeah, right.
Cosplayers may find replicas that can be easily doctored or probably rig something up. Of course any and all fake weapons for cons are subject to particular con rules.
Chiappa Rhino Revolver: not sure what model, will have to wait to see it drawn. but it’s the black anodized finish.
Sarah? Yeah, I guess. They’re good guns, she somehow obviously has resources. Not sure I’d see it as her first choice.
Me? Not enough of a fan for the price. Wouldn’t be my first choice, but if I had the money, it might be added to the collection I would have if I had the money.
Cosplayers? It’s actually easy to find air pistols (which some cons allow) and replicas of Rhinos, although wait to see which model.
Would Sarah? Sure. This baby is expensive, but a nice gun if you need an up close shotty. If she’s in an urban environment, it’s a shotgun she might choose. We know it takes a lot of rounds to affect a Terminator at all and it’s always best to keep some distance, but she might have other concerns than just Terminators.
Me? I’ll stick to my full length Mossberg. Although if I were suddenly flush I might do the Mossberg version, up close works for home defense even in the sticks. Yeah, honestly, I can’t even tell you why I am loyal to Mossbergs except my shotgun was the first gun I ever bought.
Cosplayers, well, good luck finding a ready made replica of gun or holster. If you can make the vest you might be able to replicate the holster. You might be able to doctor up the gun from some replica sawed off.
Anti-Tank Grenade launcher: Not sure on specifics, but maybe someone else has that info?
Would Sarah? Yeah, probably, it should slow down a Terminator.
Would I? Never even thought about it, until now. Obviously if I were in the market I might recognize the specifics of this one. That’s about the real thing though, otherwise see below….
Cosplayers? Actually I think this the best weapon for cons, ever. At least if you are also there to get autographs. Get an OD green document tube or paint one, doctor it up with some bits and stencil some lettering (waiting for more specifics for that) and you have something that probably won’t be banned from any con, it’s just a document tube, and a place to safely carry your photos. Try not to clobber anyone in the crowd, though. So this is one I might do, even if I wouldn’t be in full costume…. if Linda Hamilton,and hopefully also Natalia Reyes and Mackenzie Davis, ever does a con I can get to again, as I have made a poster of that first photo and would love to get it autographed by all three.
Some behind the scenes photos have shown up since filming ended, showing Linda/Sarah wearing a different top, vest and belt (I can’t determine if the jeans are different, yet, but it looks like they might also be different and blue). It would be likely that this is another costume and not just something she wears casually, given the vest.
Shirt is long sleeve, or 3/4 sleeve, Olive Drab Green T-shirt. Neck line is impossible to tell.
Black “ballistic” vest at first glance looks more realistic, being shorter and having features one can find on ballistic vests. But usually not on the same vests. And the wrong end of the buckles are attached to the vest (to remove an accessory attached to these you’d have to do one side at a time, using both hands, instead of using one hand on each, pushing the tabs and pulling it off all at once…and, of course, you’d have to have accessories that have the “female” end of the buckle instead of the “male”).
Belt is pretty basic black leather (or the like) with standard silver buckle.
I do assume that her tattoo is covered either by a watch or make up, as well.
So, that’s what I have at this point. Someday I may make a standard page for this and Again, please feel free to discuss this with me.