Eagle Shirts, Reviewed

Patriotic Eagles

Description: A five-pointed star with American flag motif is centrally positioned over three large bald eagle heads. A smaller eagle flies just below. The large eagle heads are superimposed over a circle with stars-and-stripes motif, which covers an undetermined number of other eagles. This composite is overlaid onto an image of the United States flag, which is in space or against a cloudy night sky. It is also possible to make out another five-pointed star in the mid-background, which is itself adorned with five-pointed stars.

Number of Eagles: Undetermined, minimum of 6.

Clarity of Messaging: Stalwart and patriotic, if somewhat disorganized. There is a lack of apparent leadership, as each eagle is looking or flying in a different direction. This shirt is as much about stars as it is about eagles.

Overall Rating: ★★★

Wrap-Around Eagle Head

Description: A front view of the head of one bald eagle, its beak positioned over the wearer’s chest, as if to say, “My chest is an eagle’s head.” The body of the eagle is not addressed. It is left to others to determine whether the eagle’s body is represented by the wearer’s legs. The wings of the eagle are even more questionable, since the wearer’s arms protrude from the sides of the eagle’s implied head. The eagle wears a look of quiet disdain.

Number of Eagles: 1 or less

Clarity of Messaging: Unmistakable. “My torso is an eagle, make of that what you will.”

Overall Rating: ★★★★

Southwest Mountain Eagle

Description: A small flying eagle is backlit against the head of a larger eagle, who exists inside a ring with a vague Native American design concept. Through the ring, we can see a moonlit view of mountaintops, and another eagle in flight. The ring is decorated on the left with a necklace of teeth. The teeth appear to be those of a carnivorous mammal. On the right of the ring, two eagle feathers dangle in mid-air, but are not affixed to the ring by any visible means. On the lower-right quadrant of the ring, an abstract eagle symbol in blue. The exterior of the ring is decorated with symbols of cell phone signal quality.

Number of Eagles: 4, counting symbolic eagle

Clarity of Messaging: Poor. The necklace of carnivore teeth seems misplaced on what would otherwise be a powerful statement of eagle-related content. However, the presence of the ideographic eagle symbol is a nice departure from the overly literal realistic imagery so commonly found on this type of shirt.

Overall Rating: ★★★

Eagle on Motorcycle

Description: A single bald eagle is fully dressed in motorcycle gear, including leather jacket, gloves, helmet, goggles, and blue jeans. He or she sits astride a motorcycle. This frontal view is positioned against a weathered American flag. An important detail: this is the same eagle as on the full-body wrap-around eagle head shirt. This raises additional anatomical questions, since this eagle appears to have a human body and just an eagle’s head. We can’t rule out the possibility that this is not truly an eagle, but a chimerical being like the Egyptian god Horus (see Fig. 1).

Fig. 1. Horus, falcon-headed Egyptian deity (second from left).

Messaging: Crystal clear. This eagle is ready to ride. He or she is going to explore this great nation on its endless open roads.

Overall rating: ★★★★

Space Eagles

Description: A bald eagle has its wings outstretched, superimposed over a large head of another bald eagle. Above that, a third eagle flies upward, and for some reason part of another eagle’s wing is also visible. It is critical to note at this point that the aforementioned eagles are in space. The Earth is visible toward the bottom of the shirt, and we can only presume that a smaller, nearby celestial object is the Moon. However, the upper-left corner of the shirt features a reddish-brown planetoid. It may be that this is an asteroid; it resembles a Kuiper belt object, but obviously would be too close to Earth for this to be the case. Artistic license has been taken liberally, both in relation to astronomical scale, and with reference to the fact that there is no air in space and thus eagles would neither be able to fly nor breathe there.

Number of Eagles: 4 (including partial eagle)

Clarity of Messaging: Impressive. Unlike most eagle shirts, which emphasize the bald eagle’s loyalty to the United States, this shirt dares to transcend mere national pride. These eagles are not just proud to be Americans, nor even content to be proud Earthlings—they soar above the planet itself, conveying a galactic patriotism not typically seen. However, from these graphics alone we cannot be sure whether the eagles’ loyalty is specific to our solar system, or to our particular universe among what physicists postulate may be infinite multiverses. That is beyond the scope of this shirt.

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

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