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The characters of Top Gun.

For the characters of Top Gun: Maverick, see here.

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TOPGUN Students


Capt. (formerly Lt.) Pete "Maverick" Mitchell
Maverick in the 1980s.
Maverick in the 2020s.
Played by: Tom Cruise
Dubbed in French By: Patrick Poivey (1986), Jean-Philippe Puymartin (2022)
Dubbed in Japanese by: Toshiyuki Morikawa (TV Tokyo dub and also sequel), Hiroki Takahashi (NTV), Takashi Tsukamoto (home video), Hiroyuki Watanabe (Fuji TV)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Arturo Mercado Jr. (Mexican dub), Javier Ponton (Los Angeles dub)
Dubbed in Brazilian Portuguese by: Hélio Ribeiro (original), Alexandre Marconato (original, DVD), Philippe Maia (sequel)

The protagonist of the films, Maverick is an Ace Pilot who's a bit too hot-headed and routinely defies orders to pull some wild heroics.

  • Ace Pilot: It's demonstrated repeatedly that he's damn good at flying, surprising even his instructor Viper at one point when he chases after him in a hop. The problem is that he often does aerial antics against orders. As of the sequel, he's a literal Fighter Ace, scoring the required fifth enemy shot down to achieve the title, as discussed by a celebrating onlooker when he lands the F-14 he stole from the enemy.
  • Broken Ace: Downplayed, but still a prevalent part of Maverick's character in the sequel. For all his skill as a pilot, he has never truly able to get over Goose's death even after thirty-five years and it's implied that he still blames himself for it on some level, something that has affected his ability to maintain relationships: he lives alone in an aircraft hangar, has trouble committing to a long-term relationship with Penny, and he has an incredibly fractured relationship with Rooster. He gets better.
  • Catchphrase: "Talk to me, Goose!" Starts out as his way of asking Goose for radar information; later becomes a Survival Mantra after Goose's death.
  • Character Development: He starts the first movie being a Hot-Blooded Thrill Seeker who doesn't play well with others. Losing Goose in a training gone wrong toned his confidence down significantly. Though he has regained some of his old self by the end of the movie, his guilt of losing his best friend would haunt him even over thirty years later, and he tries to drill into his students about the importance of teamwork and responsibility to fellow wingmen' lives. He still maintains his Hot-Blooded personality, though.
  • Chest of Medals: Admiral Cain notes that he has several medals and at Iceman's funeral, we see that he has enough to cover the entire left side of his dress uniform.
  • Cool Old Guy: Certainly became this by the sequel, specially in pulling off effortlessly what the pilots decades younger were struggling. To wit, the oldest pilot to fly in the Navy retired at 52, and Tom Cruise was already older than that while filming!
  • Crippling Overspecialization: The reason why Maverick is still only a Captain after decades in the Navy is that his skills don't go much further beyond being an Ace Pilot. In fact, he isn't even suited to be the Guy in Back, as when Rooster asks him for help with the F-14's analog controls, Maverick admits he doesn't know them well either and he just let Rooster's dad handle it.
  • Desk Jockey: Defied. Desk Jockey is a fate Maverick doesn't want. Admiral Cain points out that at his age he should not still be a Captain, and Maverick makes clear his place is flying.
  • Determinator: When Maverick is told that "[his] kind is headed for extinction" by Admiral Cain, he has this answer:
    Maverick: Maybe so, sir. But not today.
  • Due to the Dead:
    • After the final battle, he tosses Goose's dog tags off the side of the carrier into the ocean, in a way evocative of Burial at Sea.
    • His private hanger in the sequel has a shrine made of photos and memorabilia from his youth, including many of Iceman and Goose.
    • He attends the funeral of Iceman in the sequel, removing the naval aviator's wings from his uniform and pinning it to Iceman's casket.
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: In the sequel, not only has Maverick finally come full circle with Goose's death, but has also returned from the final mission with zero casualties, reconciled with Rooster, and has found love with Penny Benjamin once again, even after his career has seemingly ended.
  • Establishing Character Moment:
    • In the opening act of the original movie, when Cougar (acting as flight leader) and Maverick are intercepting the Mig-28s, and as their flight is unauthorized to open fire on the Migs, Mav opts to get closer onto one of them by flying his Tomcat upside down just above the bandit's cockpit and giving a finger to the Mig pilot, while Mav's RIO, Goose, takes a photo of the guy, who decides to turn tail and retreat. This establishes Maverick as a daredevil of the sky, who pulls off crazy stunts in his fighter but nevertheless gets the job done in the end.
      • A more subtle moment before that: Cougar breaks off to get a better angle on the incoming Mig, wanting to see if it might be two Migs in close formation, while Maverick punches the throttle to make a head-on pass. Maverick discovers, to his own dismay, that it is indeed two Migs that he just closed to knife-fight range with, though he quickly recovers from his shock.
    • In the opening of the second movie, he outright defies Rear Admiral Cain’s order to shut down the Darkstar program and proceeds with another test flight anyway, intending to take it to the proposed Mach 10 hypersonic speed (the test that day was only supposed to reach Mach 9) to save the program and his colleagues’ jobs. Even after he succeeded in reaching the targeted speed, Maverick just couldn’t resist the need for speed and decides to push the Darkstar even faster (against Hondo’s advice earlier), eventually reaching Mach 10.4 before the Darkstar finally give in and crash and burn into the atmosphere. This, once again, establishes Maverick as someone who’ll do anything in his power to take care of those close to him, even if it means defying orders, but deep down he’s also the same Thrill Seeker who couldn’t resist doing dangerous stunts just for the hell of it.
  • A Father to His Men:
    • He decides to hit Mach 10 not just because he feels the need for speed, but to help protect the development team's jobs.
    • His interactions with the pilots he's tasked with training have a very paternal aspect as well. He trains them hard, but with the intent of helping them all succeed rather than washing them out. He gives lessons in humility to the cocky Phoenix and even-cockier Hangman, teaches the hesitant Rooster to trust his own instincts, regularly reminds them of the very real consequences of mistakes, and is protective of all of them. Maverick fears that the upcoming strike mission will cost lives, and is determined to give all of them the best possible chance of coming back alive.
    • Even more so with Bradley "Rooster" Bradshaw, the son of Maverick's deceased RIO and best friend Goose. Already being Bradley's Honorary Uncle before Goose's death, Maverick did his best to fill the role of father for him afterwards, to the point of taking the full blame for obstructing Rooster's entry into flight school so that he wouldn't harbor any resentment towards his mother.
  • Fire-Forged Friends:
    • Becomes this with Iceman, after the final dogfight.
    • With Rooster in Top Gun: Maverick after surviving the Suicide Mission together (and saving each other's life during said mission).
  • First Girl Wins: Before he ever got with Charlie Blackwood, he's referenced as having had a fling with admiral's daughter Penny Benjamin, which landed him in some very hot water. The sequel reveals that they've been on-again, off-again for decades, and he finally ends up settling down with her for good.
    Mav: [to Penny, deadly serious] I'm never gonna leave you again.
  • A Girl in Every Port: He used to be quite a casanova in his younger days, as implied by Goose and his wife Carole, who says that Maverick "always go home with the hot women!". Even before he charmed Charlie, he used to go out with Penny Benjamin before he got in trouble because she's an admiral's daughter. He seems to grow out of it by the time of the sequel, though, and seems to settle down with Penny for good after he rekindles their romance by the end of the film.
  • Graceful Loser: Due to Goose's death and his resulting diminished performance, he ends up losing out to Iceman for the trophy after a close race throughout the course. Mav then shows up at the graduation after doing some soul-searching and sincerely congratulates Iceman for the win.
  • Heroic BSoD: Goes through one of these after Goose dies.
  • Honorary Uncle: Maverick was already one to Rooster before Goose's death, and helped Goose's widow Carole raise him afterwards. However, Rooster is still salty over Maverick pulling strings to try to keep him from becoming a pilot (because Maverick refuses to tell him that he only did so to honor Carole Bradshaw's Dying Wish to ensure that her boy wouldn't meet the same end as his father). They eventually reconcile, and the ending shows Maverick showing Rooster how to turn a wrench on the Merlin engine of his P-51.
  • Hot-Blooded: His ego is writing checks his body can't cash. He mostly gets over it in the sequel.
  • Iconic Outfit: Upon being sent to TOPGUN once again, Maverick puts his iconic leather jacket and aviator sunglasses on once more, albeit with some of the patches on the jacket's upper back altered in the trailer due to changes in geopolitics since the first film. In the cinematic release the Taiwanese and Japanese flags were restored to the jacket after Tom Cruise complained to the studio.
  • Indy Ploy: His modus operandi in the sky. Maverick often does things without thinking about them first, preferring to deal with problems head-on and improvise as needed. To quote the man himself, he summarizes how he flies to Charlie in the first film and to Rooster in the sequel with this:
    Maverick: You think up there, you're dead.
  • It's All My Fault: Blames himself for Goose's death, though everyone else, even Iceman (who admits to having some responsibilty in the incident) and Goose's wife, believe otherwise and reassure him it was simply an unfortunate accident he had no control over.
  • Ladykiller in Love: He's a hotshot flyboy with a girl in every port — who has nonetheless been head-over-heels in love with Penny Benjamin for what is implied to be decades by the time of Top Gun: Maverick. He's obviously crazy about her, and their relationship is given real depth by the fact that she is one of the very few emotional confidantes he has. He also treats her with nothing less than the utmost respect, and when he finally gets over his commitment issues and swears that he'll never leave her again, he means it.
  • The Last DJ: In Maverick he has this status within the Navy. While he should be an admiral, he has remained a mere captain because he can't bring himself to leave the cockpit. It is also pointed out that his style of flying is a dying breed in favor of an increasing reliance on drones.
  • Limited Advancement Opportunities: Partly because of his reckless nature and partly due to his not wanting to be out of the cockpit, he's topped out at Captain when it's noted that he should at least be a two star Admiral.
  • Living Legend: By the time of Maverick. It's the reason Iceman recruits him to train the new crop on their Airstrike Impossible, the person best fit to make them believe something that impossible can be done. The students buy in when Maverick pulls off the bombing run simulation a whopping 15 seconds faster than the proposed time-to-target for the mission.
  • Made of Iron: He appears none the worse for having three ejections under his belt when just one might medically disqualify most other pilots.
  • Married to the Job: Despite being attractive and charming, he remains a bachelor after thirty years because he loves flying more than anybody else. Being the Navy's most experienced aviator also caused him to be regularly deployed abroad for the latest US military operations, causing him to break up with his longtime flame Penny Benjamin multiple times.
  • Military Maverick: True to his callsign, he likes to perform ridiculous stunts and other feats of unparalleled flying, even when it upsets his commanding officers, his wingmen, and his R.I.O. This is arguably deconstructed in the sequel, where his career has totally stalled out due to his personality exactly like you would expect in the military and the only reason he hasn't been rolled out of the service is because Iceman vouches for him and is able to keep pulling rank.
  • Mr. Fanservice: In the first and second films. The first film makes use of the locker room and beach volleyball scenes to show off his physique, not to mention his bedroom scene with Charlie. The second film then utilizes the beach football scene to show that even after all these years, he's still just as in great shape as he was 36 years prior.
  • Noodle Incident:
    • The original film makes it clear that he got into serious-enough shenanigans with an "admiral's daughter" (Penny Benjamin, only referenced by name) that he gets an airful from his Commander and Goose. In the sequel, Penny makes reference to something that happened in the past (caused by their on-again, off-again relationship) that left her "heartbroken".
    • The sequel establishes that he's been involved in multiple shenanigans that have been covered for by Iceman (who became an Admiral in the interim), including repeated instances where he was seemingly drummed out of the Navy for good before being brought back.
  • Non-Residential Residence: After 30 years of service earning the salary of a Captain, Maverick's private residence is a former US Navy airfield somewhere in the American southwest desert. He doesn't live in a house, so much as having an entire hanger to himself that both serves as his living quarters and garage for his personal fleet of cars, aircraft and motorcycles.
  • Older and Wiser: Returns to TOPGUN as a special instructor, drawing on his ~40 years of flying experience to help a new class of grads prepare for a special mission.
  • Old Master: In the second film Maverick would be in his late-fifties or early-sixties. Despite his age, he's still in great physical shape and his skills as a pilot have only seemed to improve over time. In the first film he was very capable, but in the second film he's basically portrayed as the world's greatest living fighter pilot, and he has to train a bunch of pilots for what is perhaps the most perilous airstrike mission to ever be attempted.
  • Old Soldier: He now has thirty years of service under his belt at the time of the film. He's also an Old Master, wiping the floor with the TOPGUN graduates on their first day of dogfighting training.
  • Perilous Old Fool: Many of the navy brass and even the TOPGUN graduates Maverick will train all initially see him as this. And then Pete gets a chance to show them that he's Still Got It.
  • The Peter Principle: Implicitly defied. Maverick's career stalled out at Captain, which is an implicit black mark on his record, but also means that rather than moving to an organizational job he'd be awful at, or wield genuine authority he's temperamentally unsuited for, he's managed to keep doing what he does best: flying and helping others learn to fly better.
  • Rebuilt Pedestal: For Rooster. It started off as a Broken Pedestal due to Maverick interfering with his career, but after saving him in the final battle and completing the mission, the two reconcile and finally become good friends.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red to Goose and Iceman's Blue.
  • Sadistic Choice: In the sequel, while talking to Iceman, he tells him that he has the choice of either sending Rooster on the mission and risk his life in the process, or not send him at all at the cost of further damaging their relationship. In the end, he ultimately decides to send him up.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: The sequel shows that he still regularly gets in trouble with the Naval brass for his antics and the only reason he hasn't been dishonorably discharged is that Iceman, now an Admiral, keeps stepping in to protect him.
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!:
    • In the opening skirmish, he defies orders to land his low-on-fuel plane to assist Cougar's landing, as Cougar had become too traumatized by the missile lock the enemy got on him to keep his head in reality. This gets deconstructed after they land, as while Cougar gets to resign and go home to his family alive, Maverick and Goose (Mav in particular) get chewed out by Stinger for "writing checks your ego can't cash!"
    • In Maverick, he pulls at least two acts of this:
      • Despite Admiral Cain trying to can the DarkStar project, he takes the plane out on an unauthorized test run to prove that the project has a place and save everyone who worked on it. It's too bad he wasn't satisfied with hitting the intended Mach 10 target and pushes the plane to catastrophic failure.
      • after he's kicked out of his position as mission leader and Cyclone adjusts the mission parameters to an easier time-to-target but which could certainly get some or all of Dagger Group killed in the process due to the Felons catching up to them, he steals a Hornet and completes the simulated run 15 seconds faster than his stricter proposed time-to-target to show that it can be done and that he should stay as mission leader. He does not want anyone in his group to be KIA, and he will have them conduct the mission under his parameters if that's what it takes. Cyclone points out that said Hornet will likely never fly again and that he did break military protocol...but realizes that he has to risk his career and put Maverick back in charge of the mission because his stricter training methods can help the Navy avoid losing some of their most valuable pilots.
  • Sergeant Rock: The Naval Aviation equivalent in Top Gun: Maverick. He goes pretty tough on the mission recruits when training them in order to adequately prepare them, and then leads them on the mission.
  • Silver Fox: The years haven't detracted from his good looks in the slightest. He even participates in another morale building sports match and shows he's in just as good shape as pilots young enough to be his children.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: In the original film, when Viper shows up as an opponent in a hop, everyone clenches their jaw except for Maverick, who thinks Viper is scared of him and Goose. It doesn't end well for Mav and Goose, who get ambushed by Jester while Maverick is chasing after Viper after having abandoned his wingmen.
  • Speed Demon: Maverick is an aerial daredevil with a knack for ego-stroking stunts and an intolerance for orders. He even states he has a "need for speed". Hell, when he hits Mach 10 in the sequel, he still feels the need to go faster, and causes a structural collapse!
  • Survival Mantra: "Talk to me, Goose" becomes one following the latter's death in high stress situations.
  • Taking the Bullet: In the sequel, he pulls a dangerous maneuver during the escape from the uranium depot after it's been destroyed to protect Rooster, via flying over him and taking the missile intended for him (the flares he deploys fail to stop it in time). Luckily, he ejects before impact and survives, but has to be rescued by Rooster immediately afterwards from an enemy gunship..
  • Thrill Seeker: To a fault. His "need for speed" routinely causes himself and those around him problems, and in Maverick, it's only by routine intervention from Iceman that he's able to keep his job for over three decades:
    • From the first film:
      • He and Goose get reprimanded after a training hop against Jester because rather than accepting victory when Jester drops below the hard deck (thus simulating a crash), he chooses to pursue him below said hard deck to go in for a proper (simulated) kill.
      • During another hop against both Jester and Viper, he slips out of formation to chase after Viper, thinking he can get the upper hand. Jester capitalizes on Mav's greediness to ambush him from behind.
    • From Maverick:
      • Mav reaches the Mach 10 target to save the DarkStar program...unfortunately, he chooses to try to push the experimental fighter further, causing it to go up in flames after it reaches Mach 10.4.
      • During the initial training hops, he gets caught up in sparring with Rooster and they both dive below the hard deck trying to one-up each other. Cyclone is not at all pleased about this, and it almost destroys his plan to invert the hard deck to a low-altitude hard ceiling specific to the mission.
  • Tough Love: How he treats Dagger Group. He makes the mission parameters just barely doable, subjecting his fellow pilots to Training from Hell...because the alternative is a slower run that is easier to achieve but which will get some or all of Dagger Group killed due to an inevitable skirmish with Su-57s that the Hornets have virtually no hope of winning against.
  • True Companions: The sequel reveals he became lifelong friends with Iceman.


LTJG Nick "Goose" Bradshaw
Played by: Anthony Edwards
Dubbed in French By: José Luccioni
Dubbed in Japanese by: Hiroaki Hirata (TV Tokyo), Wataru Takagi (NTV), Masashi Ebara (Fuji TV), Sousuke Komori (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: José Antonio Macías (Mexican dub), Juan Alfonso Carralero (Los Angeles dub)

Maverick's R.I.O. and best friend.

  • Best Friend: Simply put, he and Maverick are Blood Brothers.
  • Catchphrase: "Great balls of fire!"
  • Character Death: He's killed when his ejection seat launched him into the canopy of his F-14 during a training session gone terribly wrong.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Has a few moments, usually when Maverick does something ridiculous or dangerous.
    The Defense Department regrets to inform you your sons are dead because they were stupid.
  • Good Parents: He adores his son.
  • Guy in Back: He's Maverick's initial radio intercept officer.
  • Happily Married: He has a wife, Carole, who visits and makes it clear that the two have a healthy relationship with one another. Meanwhile, his pilot Maverick is a bachelor.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: The plot of the sequel hinges upon his death in the first film, which also ends up being one of the driving reasons Maverick wants his team to come back from the mission alive, especially with Rooster.
  • Neck Snap: His neck gets broken after he ejects headfirst into the canopy of his and Maverick's F-14.
  • Nice Guy: A devoted family man, liked by everyone, and pretty much the only one who can rein his impetuous partner in. Naturally, he dies two-thirds of the way through the film.
  • Only Known by Their Nickname: Goose's actual name is never stated onscreen. Everyone, even his wife, just calls him Goose. His real name was Nick Bradshaw.
  • Posthumous Character: Even over thirty years after the tragic event, his death still haunts Maverick.
  • Present Absence: Goose is consistently mentioned by most of the cast after his death, casting a shadow over the final third of the original movie and the entirety of the sequel.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Blue to Maverick's Red.
  • Sacrificial Lion: His death shows how dangerous the career of a naval aviator can get.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Goose delivers these a couple times to Maverick, reminding him that every time Maverick does something reckless they both suffer for it. Ironically, in the exercise that kills him, he and Maverick were initially working quite well together.


Admiral (formerly Lt.) Tom "Iceman" Kazansky
Iceman in the 1980s.
Iceman in the 2020s.
Played by: Val Kilmer
Dubbed in French By: Jean-Paul Tribout (1986), Philippe Vincent (2022)
Dubbed in Japanese by: Hiroki Tochi (TV Tokyo and also sequel), Takuya Kirimoto (NTV), Takashi Taniguchi (Fuji TV), Toshiyuki Morikawa (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Oscar Flores (Mexican dub), Leonardo Araujo (Los Angeles dub)

Maverick's rival at TOPGUN. The two of them eventually became friends.

His brilliant career led him to become a Admiral and Commander of the Pacific Fleet. It also allowed him to protect a Maverick who relentlessly kept living up to his callsign.

  • Affectionate Nickname: Those closest to him tend to just call him "Ice". Maverick doing so in the sequel signifies how the two have become genuine friends. Maverick's iPhone even has Kazansky named "Ice" on his contacts list.
  • Character Death: He eventually dies of throat cancer in Top Gun: Maverick and gets the due military honors for his funeral.
  • Character Development: He starts off thinking that Maverick is too dangerous for the Navy and should be grounded for his antics. He comes around to him by the end of the first film and by the sequel he considers Maverick to be a necessity to the Navy because of his unorthodox attitude.
  • Easily Forgiven: While he did apologize for what happened to Goose, Maverick seemed awfully willing to forgive a guy whose Glory Hounding result in an accident that killed his best friend. Possibly because Mav blames himself a lot more.
  • Face Death with Dignity: He knows he's dying in the sequel but has no fear and, true to his callsign, faces his oncoming demise calmly.
  • Fire-Forged Friends: With Maverick, by the end of the first movie. The second movie makes it clear that they're so close that they use smartphones to text each other whenever possible.
  • Happily Married: With Sarah. They have one son and one daughter.
  • I Owe You My Life: During the final dogfight at the end of the first movie, Maverick ends up saving his life, and his quote post-battle to Mav ("you can be my wingman anytime") feels completely sincere. This is likely why, decades later, Ice — now an Admiral and Commander of the US Pacific Fleet — in turn has constantly kept Mav from being dishonorably discharged in spite of the latter's antics.
  • Ironic Echo: During the TOPGUN program, he calls out Maverick and says, "I don't like you because you're dangerous," not just to enemies but his wingmen. At the end of the film, during a post-skirmish celebration, he tells Mav, "You are still dangerous...You can be my wingman anytime."
  • Life Will Kill You: After surviving a heated dogfight with six enemy fighter jets and before that, the intense training sessions of TOPGUN, what eventually did Iceman in is not a hostile missile or a training accident, but throat cancer.
  • Mentor Occupational Hazard: Iceman more or less becomes Maverick’s Obi-Wan in the second movie. So when he’s gone, this is when Maverick starts taking his training and the mission seriously.
  • Mr. Fanservice: The beach volleyball scene in the first film shows off his well-built physique.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: When he apologizes to Maverick for what happened to Goose, it's clear he feels guilty that the accident was partly caused by his own refusal to break off when Maverick first told him to.
  • Nerves of Steel: The reason he's called "Iceman". He almost never panics or loses his cool, no matter the situation.
  • Not So Above It All: Even when he's on death's door, he can't help but tease Maverick about the fact that he was the one who placed first in their class at TOPGUN.
  • Rank Up: He pursued a career to the very top as a Admiral in-between the two films, while Maverick advanced only into a Captain.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He's grown to trust and protect Maverick (despite the latter's multiple normally career-ending antics) to the point every trace of animosity there was between them vanished, personally choosing him to train the TOPGUN candidates for the Airstrike Impossible mission.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Blue to Maverick's Red.
  • The Rival: To Maverick, at first. Both of them are neck-and-neck for the trophy for most of the program, and in a late hop, he intentionally stalls the exercise to prevent Maverick from gaining a point advantage.
  • Secret-Keeper: Along with Maverick, he hides the secret that the real reason Maverick delayed Rooster's Naval flying career was to honor the dying wish of Rooster's mother, Carole, while protecting him from hating her for making the request. Kazansky takes this secret to his grave.
  • Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: Dies from throat cancer in the sequel.
  • Technician vs. Performer: He's the technician to Maverick's performer - Ice's style isn't flashy, but relies on grinding his enemy down until they make a mistake.
  • True Companions: The sequel reveals he became lifelong friends with Maverick. Ice's death from cancer makes this even more tragic.
  • The Voiceless: By the time of Top Gun: Maverick, he's battling throat cancer, which has left him barely able to speak in a rasp (invokedjust like his actor). He communicates using smartphone texting, and uses a computer to type on a screen when having meetings in his office.
  • Your Days Are Numbered: Is dying of throat cancer by the time of the sequel.


LT Rick "Hollywood" Neven
Played by: Whip Hubley
Dubbed in French By: Éric Etcheverry
Dubbed in Japanese by: Takayuki Sagazume (TV Tokyo), Takashi Matsuyama (NTV), Hōchū Ōtsuka (Fuji TV), Nobutoshi Canna (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Hector Moreno (Mexican dub), Carlos Stevenson Jr. (Los Angeles dub)

  • Mauve Shirt: Overshadowed by Maverick and Iceman, he is the third most prominent TOPGUN student with screentime and lines.
  • Nice Guy: Unlike Maverick and Iceman, he's not interested in pursuing petty rivalries and prefers to be a team player. Unfortunately to his detriment at times.
  • Sacrificial Lion: Is immediately shot down by a MiG-28 in the climax, though he and his RIO are able to eject and are rescued.


LTJG Ron "Slider" Kerner
Played by: Rick Rossovich
Dubbed in Japanese by: Jin Yamanoi (TV Tokyo), Taiten Kusunoki (NTV), Yuji Mikimoto (Fuji TV), Hidenobu Kiuchi (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Andres Gutierrez Coto (Mexican dub), Jorge Garcia (Los Angeles dub)

Iceman's RIO.

  • Heterosexual Life-Partners: He and Iceman are extremely close friends, to the point they have no problem hugging shirtless.
  • Guy in Back: Iceman's radar intercept officer, and also his voice of reason from the backseat.
  • Mr. Fanservice: Gets to show off his incredible physique during the famous volleyball match.
  • Rude Hero, Nice Sidekick: He's nowhere near as arrogant as Iceman at the beginning of the film, and even when he's throwing barbs at Maverick and Goose they're much less mean-spirited.

TOPGUN Instructors and Other Faculty


CDR Mike "Viper" Metcalf
Played by: Tom Skerritt
Dubbed in French By: Jean-Claude Balard
Dubbed in Japanese by: Shinji Ogawanote  (TV Tokyo), Ben Hiura (NTV), Masaaki Maeda (Fuji TV), Akio Nojima (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Humberto Solórzano (Mexican dub), Ignacio Campero (Los Angeles dub)

  • The Dreaded: He's respected by his students on the ground, but during a hop where he shows up as one of the opponents, the cadets participating in the exercise all collectively piss their pants, except for Maverick.
  • The Mentor: Maverick's, being his teacher and a close friend of his late father. Viper's role is to not only train Maverick, but to help him get his confidence back when he's at his lowest point.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: He's very reasonable and father-like to Maverick after Goose dies, and doesn't really fault him when Mav's air performance subsequently diminishes. Ultimately he decides to risk his career to reveal to Maverick that yes, in line with what he's been trying to tell himself for years, his father did die honorably in combat.
    "First, you've acquired enough points to show up and graduate with your Top Gun class, or you can quit. There'll be no disgrace. That spin was hell; it would've shook me up."
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right!: He discloses classified information to reveal once and for all to an ailing Maverick that his father did indeed go down fighting and not in an act of cowardice.


LCDR Rick "Jester" Heatherly
Played by: Michael Ironside
Dubbed in French By: Jean Barney
Dubbed in Japanese by: Takaya Hashi (TV Tokyo), Hiroshi Iwasaki (NTV), Mugihito (NTV), Kiyomitsu Mizu'uchi (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Alejandro Abdalah (Los Angeles dub), Octavio Rojas (Mexican dub)

  • Cool Teacher: Flying as a Top Gun instructor has got to qualify.
  • Number Two: To Viper. He's also a formidable fighter pilot in his own right.

Other U.S. Navy Personnel


LT Bill "Cougar" Cortell
Played by: John Stockwell
Dubbed in French By: Philippe Peythieu
Dubbed in Japanese by: Yasuyuki Kase (TV Tokyo), Atsushi Miyauchi (NTV), Kazuyuki Sogabe (Fuji TV), Kenjiro Tsuda (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Jesus Brock (Los Angeles dub), Enzo Fortuny (Mexican dub)

  • Fatal Family Photo: Cougar keeps a picture of his wife and son in the cockpit with him to remind him of what he's fighting for... and what he could lose. Zigzagged in that he retires after the Action Prologue, putting an end to the pilot but not the man.
  • Heroic BSoD: After an enemy MiG screws with him by locking missiles, Cougar suffers a mid-air nervous breakdown.
    Merlin: Mav, we got a little problem up here. That MiG really screwed him up. I don't think he can make it back.
  • Screw This, I'm Outta Here: After the traumatic encounter with an enemy MiG, he turns in his wings. He was supposed to go to TOPGUN, but Mav and Goose end up taking his place.


LTJG Sam "Merlin" Wells
Played by: Tim Robbins
Dubbed in French By: Bernard Soufflet
Dubbed in Japanese by: Mizuki Saitonote  (TV Tokyo), Takayuki Sagazume (NTV), Kenichi Ono (Fuji TV), Takuma Takewaka (home video)

  • Guy in Back: He's Cougar's R.I.O. at the start of the film. Later he becomes Maverick's new R.I.O. when they have to clash with some enemy MiGs in real combat.
  • Naďve Newcomer: Not to flying, but to being Maverick's backseater.
    Maverick: I'm bringing him in closer, Merlin.
    Merlin: You're gonna do WHAT?!?
  • What the Hell, Hero?: When Maverick disengages from the final battle, Merlin angrily tells him to get back in the fight and that they can't just leave Iceman and Slider to die.


CDR Tom "Stinger" Jardian
Played by: James Tolkan
Dubbed in French By: William Sabatier
Dubbed in Japanese by: Mugihito (TV Tokyo), Masaru Ikeda (NTV), Kiyoshi Kobayashi (NTV), Tomomichi Nishimura (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Guillermo Romano (Los Angeles dub), Gabriel Pingarron (Mexican dub)

  • Artistic License – Military: James Tolkan was visibly too old to play a Commander and his position on the ship is vague - he might be XO or CAG (which on an aircraft carrier are positions normally held by a Captain) but more likely he's Maverick & Goose's squadron commander. Ultimately, his position is left undefined.
  • Da Chief: Maverick and Goose are a pain in the ass to him and he doesn't miss an occasion to tell them about it.
    "You've been busted, you lost your qualification as section leader three times. Been put in hack twice, by me. With a history of high-speed passes over five air control towers and one Admiral's daughter!"
  • Cigar Chomper: Almost every scene he's in has him puffing away on a cigar, even in the middle of monitoring the aerial combat at the climax.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Despite not liking Maverick for his reckless behavior, he sincerely wishes him and Goose luck when he tells them they're going to TOPGUN. Then when Iceman objects to Maverick being their backup, Stinger tells him to stow it.
  • Scotty Time: Demands it when both catapults are broken and it'll take ten minutes to scramble reinforcements.
    "Bullshit ten minutes, this thing will be over in two minutes. Get on it!"

    Air Boss 

"Air Boss" Johnson
Played by: Duke Stroud

The air traffic controller at Miramar.

  • Butt-Monkey: His tower ends up getting buzzed twice my Maverick, causing him to spill coffee on his uniform both times, and when he shouts at the TOPGUN instructors regarding the behavior of their "snot-nosed jockeys", not only do Viper and Jester not seem to empathize with him, but on the way out he accidentally crashes into someone carrying six cups of coffee.
  • Chewing the Scenery: When he's chewing out Viper and Jester because their students buzzed the tower:
    (Johnson crashes into someone carrying a tray full of coffee cups)
  • Only One Name: His first name is never revealed.


Duke Mitchell

Maverick's father, who was killed in action in Vietnam with Viper as his wingman.

  • Classified Information: The fact that he died heroically is classified because, as Viper puts it, it happened "on the wrong line of some map."
  • Dying Moment of Awesome: Chose to go down swinging and protect his squad rather than escape.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Despite his own F-4 being damaged, Duke could have escaped back to base. Instead, he stayed in the fight and saved three of his teammates before he was finally shot down.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: The way Viper describes Duke's final battle makes it sound more epic than any of the dogfights seen in either Top Gun movie. Naturally, the audience never sees it.
  • Posthumous Character: He's been dead for years before the events of the film. How he was killed — more specifically, whether he died fighting or in cowardice — is classified information that Maverick seeks to know about so that he can reassure himself that his old man was the aerial badass he always thought he was.



Charlotte "Charlie" Blackwood, Ph.D
Played by: Kelly McGillis
Dubbed in French By: Maďk Darah
Dubbed in Japanese by: Mabuki Ando (TV Tokyo), Yurika Hino (NTV), Rihoko Yoshida (Fuji TV), Atsuko Yuya (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Sofia Agrama (Los Angeles dub), Dulce Guerrero (Mexican dub)

A civilian instructor at TOPGUN and Maverick's love interest.

  • Action Girl: Sort of. We never actually see her fly a plane (let alone participate in any dogfights), but on the ground, she clearly knows what she's doing!
  • Expy: She is based off a Real Life person, Christine Fox, who worked at the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Whether it's mocking his singing skills or ridiculing him for his ego, she's often this towards Maverick. It's all done in jest, though.
  • Love Interest: For Maverick in the first film.
  • Nice Girl: Is very warm and friendly, especially when Maverick is grieving over Goose's death.
  • Sequel Non-Entity: She doesn't even get as little as a mention in Top Gun: Maverick, aside from a brief appearance in archive footage from the first film. The actress wasn't asked, and she expressed no desire to be in it either.


Carole Bradshaw
Played by: Meg Ryan
Dubbed in Japanese by: Eri Saito (TV Tokyo), Sakiko Uran (NTV), You Inoue (Fuji TV), Emi Hoshino (home video)
Dubbed in Latin American Spanish by: Ruth Toscano (Los Angeles dub), Mildred Barrera (Mexican dub)

The wife of Nick "Goose" Bradshaw and the mother of Bradley (who would take the callsign "Rooster").

  • Break the Cutie: She's the sweetest character in Top Gun, and she gets brutally widowed.
  • Bus Crash: She died of cancer sometime before the story of Top Gun: Maverick.
  • Dying Wish: According to the sequel, she asked Maverick just before she died to stop her son's burgeoning naval career, fearing he was going to wind up sharing the same fate as her husband. Maverick managed to delay but ultimately didn't stop Rooster's ambitions.
  • Happily Married: From what is shown of their marriage, Goose and his wife Carole have a pretty healthy one with some kids who seem pleased with the parents they have.
  • Nice Girl: Carole is very sweet and caring to both Goose and Maverick, and when Goose dies, she has no chip with Mav and encourages him to get back into flying.
  • Unwitting Instigator of Doom: The sequel reveals that before she died from cancer, she asked Maverick to stop Rooster from joining the Naval Academy and becoming an aviator so he wouldn't end up like Goose. Maverick honored her wish, but all it accomplished was merely delaying Rooster's career for a few years before he became a pilot anyway while also destroying his relationship with Maverick.

See "Rooster" here.