And Now, A Tribute to Mayor Vaughn’s Anchor Jacket from “Jaws”

Bruce the Shark got a raw deal.

Technically, the murderous Great White Shark is the villain of Jaws. But consider if you will that the ancient creature is just running on pure instinct. Sharks know nothing of morality, or good or evil. All they know is that they are driven to eat, and anyone who dares to enter their watery domain is fair game to become their next meal.

Humans, on the other hand, are scheming animals. Exhibit A: Mayor Larry Vaughn. As portrayed by the great Murray Hamilton, the politician is more concerned with his resort town’s bottom line than potential lives lost due to a shark swimming around in local waters.

Refusing to heed the warnings of Chief Brody (Roy Scheider) and Matt Hooper (Richard Dreyfuss), Vaughn wants to keep the beaches open…paving the way for a powerful confrontation between Man and Beast.

Alas, this post is not about Mayor Vaughn’s deadly folly. Nor is it about the conflict between islanders and outsiders. What it is, however, is a tribute to a fashion icon who has long been ignored.

Ladies and gentleman, Mayor Vaughn’s anchor-embedded sport jacket is one hell of a statement. Larry is man who has been metaphorically anchored to Amity his entire life. The town is his home, and he is Amity’s chosen king. It also generally vibes with the community’s aesthetic. So it is functional and stylish. Well done.

If this jacket was available in stores I would wear it everywhere. But especially to the beach, where I could wander around, ignore potential shark danger, and feel, just for a moment, that I had as good fashion sense as Larry did.

This post originally ran in 2019 and is being reprinted as we kick off our Summer Blockbusters series of posts!