Introducing Surprise! A New Blancpain X Swatch Scuba Fifty: The Ocean Of Storms Launching January 11, this all-black variation might just be the best of the bun
he last story that I wrote in 2023 was the final
Moonwatch Mission to Moonshine Gold (or so we think). It's only January of 2024 and Swatch is at it again, unleashing a new surprise variation on one of its recent collaborations
– but this is no MoonSwatch. Just four months after Swatch and Blancpain collaborated on the
Scuba Fifty collection, the two brands are set to release a sixth model in the line known as the Ocean of Storms.
I was in Biel/Bienne late last year to get a sneak peek at the original Scuba Fifty collection a few weeks before it launched worldwide. I still remember being completely stunned at the
prospect of Blancpain taking its famed, historically significant diver and effectively transposing it onto this affordable, $400 platform.
During that trip, I spent time with Mr. Nicholas Hayek Jr., and he expressed such excitement for these collaborative timepieces that it almost made any doubt feel ridiculous. And
to be honest, I get it. I was in
NY for the MoonSwatch launch, and despite feedback from the comments here that there is a growing fatigue for the watches – they continue to sell out and continue
to play a vital role in bringing new faces into the watch world.
Making historically significant designs (that also happen to be quite expensive in their original forms) affordable is an amazing thing. And this new Ocean of Storms launch plays
right into that.
In fact, when the first five Scuba Fifty watches launched, I – and much of the community – yearned for a version of that watch that was akin to the MoonSwatch Mission to the Moon.
What I mean is, a watch conservative in appearance with a more overt connection to its inspiration. The Mission to the Moon, with its black dial and gray case color, is
effectively a bioceramic Moonwatch.
The Ocean of Storms, similarly, makes the same case when it comes to the Fifty Fathoms. And that's because it removes any sort of flashy color effect and opts to take a more
measured approach to the collaboration. It has a black bioceramic case and what appears to be a brushed, almost satin-finished, black dial with orange accents for the depth rating
and the tip of the seconds hand.
In terms of dial format, it opts for the modern approach (some of the original Scuba Fifty models took on a more vintage look with throwback logos and different markers) with
the 12, three, six, and nine applied markers and the contemporary Blancpain logo at the top. Just like the other models in the collection, it comes on a striped NATO-style strap.
Now, there was a reason that there were only five original Scuba Fifty models. Each was named for an ocean on Earth and there are only five oceans. So how is there a sixth
version, and what does Ocean of Storms mean?