What's Your (Call) Sign? 'Top Gun: Maverick' Is Here to Help

Glen Powell Top Gun Maverick
Glen Powell plays "Hangman" in "Top Gun: Maverick." (Paramount Pictures)

Every (imaginary) Navy aviator deserves their own (imaginary) call sign. As you count down the final days to the (very real) release of the long-awaited sequel "Top Gun: Maverick," Paramount Pictures and Tom Cruise are here to help.

If you visit WhatsMyCallSign.com, you can give them your name, answer a few random questions and get your own call sign personally selected for you by the website's algorithm. Privacy hounds, be warned: You'll have to grant temporary access to your webcam so that the site can generate a photo of you in a flight helmet with your call sign emblazoned across the front.

I got "Crawler," which is OK by me because I was a fan of the band with the name that had a minor album-oriented rock (AOR) radio hit with "Stone Cold Sober" back in the late 1970s. Other Military.com staff members got awarded "Astro," "Scorcher," "Maestro," "Wiz," “Sunset” and "Mastermind." There seems to be a huge number of options, so prepare to be either surprised or impressed.

Wait, you don't know what a call sign is? Did you even watch the original "Top Gun" movie? A call sign is the nickname that aviators give themselves or each other and then have to live with for the rest of their lives. You know, like "Maverick," "Goose" or "Viper."

The helpful folks at Paramount have made a short video to explain the concept of call signs to a new generation of moviegoers.


"Top Gun: Maverick" picks up several decades after the action in the original 1986 "Top Gun." Pete "Maverick" Mitchell is a test pilot whose career stalled out at captain, but he's stuck around the Navy so he can fulfill his need for speed.

Adm. Tom "Iceman" Kazansky orders Maverick back to the Top Gun school to train a group of elite aviators for a secret mission that requires skills that only our hero still knows. One of his students is Bradley "Rooster" Bradshaw, son of Maverick's late RIO, Nick "Goose" Bradshaw.

Will Maverick keep it together? Can a new generation of aviators keep up with the old man? Will "Top Gun: Maverick" live up to the hype? Procure your call sign and get ready for the adventure to begin.

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