It feels like just weeks ago (it was a few months) when I visited Disneyland here in Southern California and found a general lack of anything even remotely horologically worthwhile. Mickey Mouse has a fine history of being on wrist replica watches, but today there are precious few modern timepieces which celebrate Disney’s very rich history of being involved with culturally important wearables. Most of today’s official Disney licensed timepieces are pretty crappy, to be honest, and I’ve actually been considering finding someone at Disney and telling them as much.
In the meantime, while I comb for receptive ears at Disney who might want to talk about more serious Mickey Mouse timepieces, I learned that Invicta recently came out with a limited-edition set of Disney-licensed timepieces. These are basically Invicta’s favorite emulations of mostly Rolex designs with integrated Mickey or Minnie Mouse visual motifs. Note a primary difference between the two major groups of Disney-licensed items. One set of items is sold directly via Disney in one way or another, and the second set of items is able to use Disney-owned imagery and intellectual property, but is marketed and sold without any assistance or participation from Disney themselves (such as the Invicta Disney timepieces).
These Invicta Disney replica watches are sold directly from Evine, which is an e-commerce and television-based sales company. Evine is yet another couch-friendly outlet for the energy-conserving shopper. Back when I used to live in San Francisco even before I started aBlogtoWatch, I recall plenty an evening eating dinner alone at home after class and viewing the replica watch sales hour of ShopNBC when enthused sales guys would wax poetic about each and every Invicta and other replica watch brand that they sold. I’ve not seen their channel, but Invicta has a long history of being deeply integrated with TV shopping channels such as QVC and ShopNBC.
Invicta even decided to come out with a 50mm-wide quartz chronograph Invicta Disney Mickey Mouse pocket replica watch (in three versions). It is actually smaller in diameter than some of the Disney wrist replica watches, ironically enough. Design flaws here abound such as too-short hands and a more or less nonsensical use of a chronograph complication. Then again, why am I choosing those particular replica watches to discuss design flaws among this collection of Invicta Disney replica watches? If anything, the language Evine wrote in selling these replica watches is telling of who they are marketing to: “It’s got just enough of the traditional with details fit for the here and now as a stainless steel case creates a strong build. It’s definitely old school in an awesome way, like something your cool grandpa would be into. And the star of the show is Mickey Mouse, of course… You’ll find a removable chain at the top with a hook clasp so you can do that whole inside your jacket pocket thing (you know you can’t wait to pull it out like a boss).”
Invicta even offers a Pelican-style carrying case (for three replica watches) that comes complete with Invicta and Disney/Mickey Mouse branding with each of the replica watches. The level of design effort and involvement here is apparent, but I can’t help but wonder what higher-end brands would have done if they were tasked with making some more appealing modern day Disney replica watches.
As a replica watch lover, the appeal of Invicta is mostly absent, even though I do consider the company to be a “gateway brand.” People can fault Invicta all they want (and often for good reason), but the low prices of the brand’s products do allow for a highly democratic sales volume. Most of these Invicta Disney men’s models are only priced at around $150 – even the mechanical ones. Plenty of people have begun their appreciation of replica watches with something low cost and basic like an Invicta, only to step up to many more high-quality timepieces.
I’m past the point in my replica watch education to consider wearing an Invicta replica watch personally. Aside from people’s regular qualms with the brand’s diligent focus on design “inspiration” from other brands, these products tend to be a bit too down-market to satisfy my timepiece expectations. I can, however, give praise where praise is due and want to compliment Invicta on a few levels. That’s OK, though, as I am happy to represent a more elitist section of replica watch collectors.
First, for the most part, the Invicta Disney replica watches are for adults. Yes, we can argue about their relative sophistication, but when it comes down to it, these aren’t kids’ replica watches (and not just because half of them are 50mm wide). Based on their Rolex Submariner-inspired Pro Diver or Rolex Daytona-inspired Speedway, the Mickey Mouse integration in the designs is actually quite mature. Just look at the decently covert integration of Mickey Mouse heads on the bezel of the Invicta Disney 45mm Pro Diver Limited Edition Quartz Chronograph. Even though the core replica watch design pulls liberally from Rolex and Seiko, the Disney elements aren’t too bad.
What Invicta was surprisingly decent at doing was to make these replica watches something not only for Disney nerds, but also for a slightly more mainstream audience that appreciates Disney themes in their life. Unfortunately (or fortunately), none of these replica watches are modern takes on the classic Mickey Mouse hands Disney replica watches, but are rather more about imagery on the dial. In most replica watches, Invicta did succeed in at least being artistic. The Grand Diver (which is like a large Rolex Yacht-Master… sort of) has a kind of stained-glass rendition of Mickey Mouse’s face, which is actually done differently in a collection Invicta oddly decided to call the “Bone Collector” which has Mickey captured in some state of being sucked into the digital Tron universe. Some of these replica watches are surprisingly intricate (not to be necessarily confused with attractive) such as the skeletonized dial on the otherwise quartz Invicta Disney Subaqua Noma replica watches.
If you want the ultimate integration of what high-end replica watch lovers don’t tend to see eye-to-eye on with Invicta and Disney, then look no further than that Invicta Disney 52mm Venom Sea Dragon Limited Edition Quartz Chronograph. At a bit over $460, this is the top of the line (for the men’s models) and even comes with a Disney version of a California dial.
Women get some sporty as well as dressy Invicta Disney replica watch options including those with fake as well as some real diamonds. I’m not sure these replica watches would represent the epitome of elegance and good taste for formal attire, but again, for mature ladies who nevertheless have an annual pass to a Disney theme park, Invicta has some decent options. Perhaps the best (and it doesn’t look like a Rolex, either) is the Invicta Disney 38mm Limited Edition Automatic that has some real diamonds, an impressively restrained design, and buckle on the clasp with Mickey Mouse on it (never seen that before). With a Japanese mechanical movement, it costs just under $500.
If you are looking for luxury quality and serious replica watches you can probably look elsewhere and accept the fact that it isn’t going to happen around Invicta’s parts. With that said, the company is decent at pleasing their core audience of decidedly non-snobby replica watch consumers who have been buying the brand’s replica watches in droves (and none the wiser how seasoned replica watch enthusiasts speak of them). Each of these Invicta Disney replica watches uses quartz or automatic mechanical movements sourced from Seiko and are assembled in either Japan or Malaysia.
Invicta is probably celebrating, as many of these Invicta Disney replica watches are already sold out (just days after their launch at the time or writing). That doesn’t surprise me because for Invicta’s core customer base these timepieces are probably super cool. While I don’t think most of the Replica Info audience is going to find huge appeal here, the design exercise and resulting replica watches are interesting, to say the least. Disney merchandising products today can be sadly bottom-of-the-barrel in both price and quality as evidenced when examining the larger breadth of the items you can buy that includes their names and imagery. With that said, Disney has also been increasingly open to working with higher-end brands (even replica watch makers). What I think Disney should do is not only be open to working with high-quality replica watch makers, but rather than waiting for yet another merchandising license opportunity, reach out to a brand that they feel can do Disney heritage and legacy justice. Don’t forget all the Seiko Star Wars replica watches and well as the Devon Star Wars Tread 1 Limited Edition.