Your reactions to the Swatch x Omega MoonSwatch Moonshine – the good, the bad, and the indifferent

Your reactions to the Swatch x Omega MoonSwatch Moonshine – the good, the bad, and the indifferent

Zach Blass

Oh, the Swatch x Omega MoonSwatch. Around this time last year, the unveiling of the concept and original collection was a massive moment for the watch space – the ripples of which extended far beyond the niche of watch enthusiasm. Massive queues, a lack of accessibility, while the launch certainly stirred up a lot of excitement it also resulted in a fair bit of frustration and bitterness. Conceptually, the notion of presenting an entry-priced take on the Speedmaster design for more people to enjoy is a total win. But, the MoonSwatch was relatively unobtanium with high demand and its limitation to physical sale at Swatch boutiques. While things have gotten better, to this day certain models remain elusive to those try to purchase a specific model or complete their collection with the full set. So, the intrigue for MoonSwatches still remains even a year later as people continue to satiate their thirst of securing one. This is why when a teaser rolled out on Swatch’s Instagram, announcing a new MoonSwatch Moonshine was imminently coming, the watch community held its breath in anticipation.

 

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Today the MoonSwatch Moonshine made its debut. Effectively, the new configuration is nearly identical to the previous Mission to the Moon model. The only difference is a special Moonshine gold-coated central chronograph seconds hand. So, no solid Moonshine gold case or even a Moonshine gold-hued BioCeramic case.

 

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Interestingly the FAQ’s presented alongside the MoonSwatch Moonshine has an err of cheekiness and playfulness suited for the Swatch brand. But, because of the enigmatic availability of the original’s, Swatch does risk poking a sensitive consumer base. The FAQ’s reveal that the second hand is coated with their Moonshine recycled gold, but also that the coatings were done strictly on the evening of the full moon in February. Perhaps this is why the watch has been launched for purchase in the four capital launch-cities strictly and for one day only. That being said, it is not a limited edition. It limited in production. It would seem the next full moon more of these gold-coated seconds hands will be made, and then another batch of cities will be able to purchase one on a specified day. For those wondering, the price of this new MoonSwatch Moonshine is CHF 275. This is CHF 25 more than the previous models, the obvious component adding the small premium the Moonshine gold-coated hand.

Now that it is finally here, in the shroud of all the hype and forecasting, the only questions that remain are does the new MoonSwatch Moonshine live up to expectation? Was any successor after the initial MoonSwatch craze doomed to fail? Was a new model what the market really wanted? Or would consumers have preferred a greater availability of the initial MoonSwatch models? Of course, such a big tease, and objectively minimal design update, is bound to elicit a ton of engagement and reaction. Let’s dig into the good, the bad, and the indifferent reactions of the day to find out.

MoonSwatch Moonshine: The good

The design on its own, outside of the context of hype and availability did not seem to offend anybody. With such a small, albeit intriguing, tweak, it is fair to say the watch is not regarded as ugly by anyone as it is effectively a Mission to the Moon with a gold hand. The Mission to the Moon, and its grey BioCeramic case, was designed to be more of an homage to the Speedmaster than some of its siblings with bolder and more polarizing color expressions.

Others were appreciative of the design and concept, but lamented the fact the MoonSwatch collection as a whole can still be difficult to source – and that this one-day launch, in four locations, is only further raising the inaccessibility factor.

Against the majority, some expressed an excitement for the increasingly limited nature of the MoonSwatch Moonshine. Some would suggest leaning into the flip-ability off the watch is a bit shameless, but it is, at the very least, honest. And it is definitely something the mass marketplace will not ignore.

In this same vain, regardless of how people felt on a personal level, a respect was expressed by some for the “marketing genius” of the MoonSwatch. Love it, or hate it, Swatch and Omega’s collaboration has a remained a relevant topic of discussion for a year now. And, as it, perhaps, was beginning to slow down, this new launch renewed vigorous discussion around it.

MoonSwatch Moonshine: The bad

When it comes to the watch enthusiasts community, like other niche-nerdy communities, you can always expect #watchfam to let you know exactly how they feel about a novelty. And when it came to the detractors of the new novelty, a large base of sentiment raged against… well… a lack of novelty.

Some honed in on the hype machine of the marketing campaign, and felt that the launch was not necessarily worthy of a global marketing campaign – especially with it so region and time limited (at least for the moment). A recurring theme of negative sentiment as well was that rather than deliver what the consumer base wanted, greater access to configurations already announced, instead Swatch x Omega have, disappointingly in their eyes, leaned into the scarcity factor to present a special model with even less touch points and time to purchase.

MoonSwatch Moonshine

Others were critical of the offering top to bottom – the exclusivity, the “unimaginative” concept and design, and a ripeness for scalping and flipping.

MoonSwatch Moonshine

MoonSwatch Moonshine: The indifferent

MoonSwatch Moonshine

Lastly, we had the indifferent. The indifferent echoed the sentiments of a lack of novelty to the offering, but did not take the time to berate the concept nor the lack of availability.

 

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After such a massive debut, entangled with excitement and frustration, it would appear some are eager to remove themselves from the “hype train” of it all.

My own personal reaction

MoonSwatch Moonshine

I am not trying to sound above it, or sound like a contrarian hipster, but I was never really enamored by the MoonSwatch offering. Were I to own one, within the scope of my current collection I just never saw it getting any wear time. So, I never chased one down. For me, it was always a respect and admiration for the concept. That Swatch and Omega were willing to present something so radical for the Swiss watch industry, and to, at least in theory, make the iconic Speedmaster design more accessible for people to enjoy. So, when I saw the MoonSwatch Moonshine element, I was more excited at the prospect of the Swatch Group leaning into the status the MoonSwatch has achieved as a collectable and them presenting a solid Moonshine gold-cased MoonSwatch. If you are going to lean into the hype and scarcity, I think you need to fully commit and go big.

The MoonSwatch Moonshine, and its novel second hand, for me, just doesn’t have enough oomph to get me excited. This is a sequel to one of the biggest watch moments in the history of the industry, so this ultimately feels like they took the easy route in my eyes. In comparison to the MoonSwatch Moonshine that was actually revealed, rather than the larger expression many of us predicted, I think that the marketplace would have much rather had a development in the logistics of acquiring one rather than a slightly tweaked model that is less accessible than ever. So, I am not happy nor mad. I would say I remain indifferent at the collector level, but also invested in the future of the MoonSwatch journey due to what the collection represents.