With the release hammer-wielding, ale-quaffing Thor this week, we couldn’t help but notice Anthony Hopkins’s Odin sporting a rather silly gold eye patch. But an eye patch can be so much more and is a reliable indicator of bad-assery. With that in mind, let’s take a look back at some of the most memorable eye patches in cinema history.
Snake pretty much personifies everything that's cool about an eyepatch. He's an ex-special forces war hero from World War III who turned to a life of crime only to be offered a pardon if he could rescue the President from the maximum security island of Manhattan. The baddest of the bad asses and no arguments.
A grizzled, drunken, tough-as-nails US Marshall hired by 14 year old Matti Ross to track down the man who killed her father, Rooster is an uncompromising tracker and ruthless gunfighter. Watch the eyepatch switch from left in the 1969 John Wayne version to the right in the 2010 version.
Commander of the Marvel Universe's S.H.I.E.L.D. organisation, Fury is a skilled tactician, paratrooper, Ranger, demolitions expert, vehicle specialist and Green Beret. Bizarrely (and hilariously) played by The Hoff in 1998, he's recently been rebooted in the much cooler form of Samuel L. Jackson
A ruthless and vicious assassin jealous of The Bride's relationship with Bill, Elle poisoned The Bride's master Pai Mei and tried to kill her in Bud's camper van. Needless to say that didn't end well. A natty line in designer eye patches though.
Chang's notable because he's not wearing an eye patch, it's actually nailed to his face! He was a general who assassinated the Klingon Chancellor and tried to incriminate Kirk and Bones. Tsk.
Hopper's going for a sort of half goggle/half eye patch look here as he leads the post-apocalyptic gang The Smokers, but no amount of optical accessories could save Waterworld from being a humongous flop with the dubious honour of being the most expensive film ever made at the time. Occasional hilarious lines though. Eg "If I ever see him again, I'm going to cut open his head and eat his brain."
The mastermind behind a dastardly plot to capture Churchill and bring him to Berlin, Radl sports a classic black eye patch and discusses the philosophy of Karl Jung. He also gets to say this beauty, "A wink from a pretty girl at a party results rarely in climax, Karl. But a man is a fool not to push a suggestion as far as it will go." Magic.
What is it about Nazis and eye patches? Well, he's based on a real person and he was part German resistance attempting to assassinate Hitler so I guess we'll let him off.
A small role for Angelina Jolie as the Commander of a Royal Navy flying aircraft carrier. The film was criticised for being all style over substance but when it comes to eye patches, style's all that matters. Ohhhh yeaaaah....
Bringing up the rear for eye patch style is Anthony Hopkins as Odin. We know he's supposed to be a god but a gold eye patch, really? Looks like he's been spending too much time rummaging in Gabriel's wardrobe. Still - plus points for not having a strap and the film's a corker.