Costume Design

Deconstructing Terminator 2: Judgement Day

Full disclosure: I will watch any Terminator film, any time. But Terminator 2: Judgement Day is a favorite of mine, mostly due to Linda Hamilton’s Sarah Connor. Her physical transformation from The Terminator to Terminator 2: Judgement Day is striking, and she does a great job selling Sarah’s dedication in preparing John Connor for the upcoming war against the machines. So let’s take a look at some of the fun costuming stuff going on with Sarah Connor in Terminator 2!

When we meet Sarah Connor in the first Terminator film, she’s a young woman working as a waitress in LA. As discussed in the previous Terminator post, Sarah spends most of the movie connected to LA’s pastel palette.

Sarah’s look in Terminator 2: Judgement Day is a complete 180. Her Terminator 2 costuming has some obvious military references, and it incorporates design from both the Terminator machine, and her lost love Kyle Reese.

Terminator 2 also does a great job of using Sarah’s hair. It’s often down when she’s vulnerable, and up when she’s trying to make herself more stoic.

Sarah talks about seeing her son, John.

Terminator 2 uses a lot of olive, gray and black in its color palette. In general, we see less of the separation of color palettes that we did in the first movie. The main characters are all in this palette, which gives the threat of the future an immediacy.

John Connor in camo…a bit on the nose, huh?

Remember Kyle Reese’s trench coat I mentioned in the last Terminator post?

Sarah dons a nearly identical trench coat for T2. It’s subtle and easily missed, but it’s my favorite bit of costuming in the movie. I love it because it shows us Sarah’s connection to Kyle, and the fact she can’t forget him.

That’s all for this week! No Fate But What We Make!