One of the most recognizable aspects of Max's character is that of his uniform. Sturdy, protective, and weather-resistant it gradually evolves alongside Max on his journeys spent in the wastelands of Australia.
The style of Max's jacket is a standard side-zip motorcycle jacket, though the lines and cut seem to be specific to the Melbourne area and deviate slightly from similar jackets available during the period the film was shot. In Australia this was known as a "Brando" style jacket. Max's jacket has a silver name tag with his badge number which reads "MFP 4073", there is also a bronze MFP badge on the jacket. Shoulder caps of unidentified origin are riveted with 10-12 rivets onto the jacket. Also note that due to the low budget of the first film, only Max's uniform is made of real leather, with the rest of the M.F.P uniforms worn by the cast were made of vinyl.
Under the jacket, Max wears a light blue raglan t-shirt by Bonds, these shirts are still popular in Australia though this specific colour has been discontinued sometime in the 1990's.
His matching trousers are cut in a standard "jeans" pattern. There appears to only be one pocket on the trousers and it’s a horizontal pocket on the right-hand side. The style of the pocket is known as a bound pocket. On the right leg there is a black leather drop leg holster for Max's double barrel sawed-off shotgun. On the back there is a black leather holster with a suede shoulder strap for his Smith & Wesson revolver with a 4" barrel.
Max's wears motorcycle or engineer boots, the right boot bears an MFP badge. The boots were made by Rossiter's of Adelaide, Australia. Although the company is still in business and still makes motorcycle boots, this style is not available anymore.
Max also wore black motocross/motorcycle gloves. These vintage gloves had foam rubber strips sewn onto the tops and appear to be made of deer skin.
Additionally Max uniform is equipped with a wooden nightstick, handcuffs (with 3 links in their chain) and Carrera-style sunglasses.
The Road Warrior
In this film the jacket has a different cut than the original MFP jacket. It has no waist-adjustment tabs, two symmetrical pockets and the horizontal seam across the shoulder is straight. The collar is also noticeably smaller.
A Rawlings football shoulder pad plate is attached to football shoulder pad arch padding by two one-inch-wide leather straps which are looped through the slots of the plate. One belt is riveted between the front and rear bottom of the padding, fastened under the arm (which is made of one of Max's missing top adjustment boot straps from his MFP boots. The remaining boot strap was used for the knee pad). reminiscent of a medieval armor pauldron. A dirty red rag is attached to the right jacket sleeve by a loop where the leather was cut.
Max's name tag is riveted in, as opposed to being pinned-on as in the first movie and is simply engraved/etched. Also, the name tag now reads "P 4073" as opposed to "MFP 4073".
Underneath the jacket he wears a black sun-bleached Bonds raglan-cut t-shirt with all hems removed (collar, sleeves and bottom). The bleaching has made it appear brown.
Max's gloves are weathered full-finger gloves (not fingerless gloves or the gloves with the pre-made holes and velcro strap).
The leather pants themselves are cut in the "jeans" style, this time with two pockets.
Leg brace is based on an Australian equivalent to 70's Ford F series utility truck tailgate hinges. The hinges appear to be attached onto an Ankle Foot Orthosis brace with three wide-flange pop rivets on each side. The AFO brace already has its own strap. The inside of the brace has been bent to fit the leg.
The knee pad was part of a 1930's cricket pad. The knee pad is a separate piece and is not connected to the leg brace. It is a ridged pad with a horizontal seam across the middle and rivets are placed on the outer edge. The other missing top boot strap from Max's boots was used to secure the pad to the knee.
Max's belt is a Sam Browne leather belt in the British style, with a single leather shoulder-strap worn vertically rather than diagonally. A drop-leg holster holds a sawed-off shotgun attached to the right-side of the belt. (In the Australian Army, certain corps still wear black Sam Browne belts and officers are required to wear this style as part of the ceremonial dress uniform.)
Tools and Accessories
- Adjustable spanner: A small (150mm or 6") adjustable spanner is attached to a quick-release key ring which is then attached to the bottom leather loop of the Sam Browne belt's shoulder strap.
- Can-opener: A three-piece rigging knife which includes a knife, can-opener and marlin spike. The knife is attached by a key ring to a swivel clip, which is then clipped onto the lower D-ring on the front of the Sam Browne belt.
- Fire Brigade Tools: Hatched and hydrant issued to the New South Wales Fire Brigades. The hatchet handle was apparently sawed short.
- Shotgun: Sawed-off shotgun in a leather drop leg holster. Apparently two different holsters were used in the film. A longer, baggier holster was used in the opening scene, and appears in the popular promo shot of Max walking down the road with his dog. After that, Max wears a nicer, flatter, riveted holster that has a small loop attached near where the trigger goes.
- Binoculars: Black, traditional binoculars, virtually indistinguishable from hundreds of similar binoculars.
His boots are the exact same model from the first movie, the might be the exact same pair too albeit vastly modified. The badge and top adjustment straps have been removed (and reused on other parts of the outfit) and a Gerber knife sheath has been riveted in using two rivets. Max's right boot also has the outside strap loop tab removed and has a cut and sewn/laced area on the rear - probably adjustments to accommodate the knife sheath.
The boots have a pair of leather boot harnesses attached. The boot harnesses are made of leather straps with centerbar buckles and there are tiny "spikes" on the rear strap. The spikes are male ends of rivets sticking through holes in the rear strap of the harness. The rings on the harnesses are D-rings.
Gerber mark II double serrated knife in a standard Gerber black leather sheath. The sheath's top is cut off, the snaps were relocated and the sheath is riveted to the outside of the right boot.
Beyond ThunderdomeIn this film, Max wears the exact same jacket as he did in Mad Max 2, but his uniform is even more damaged.
His jacket is ripped in several places, the jacket zipper is broken, and the shoulder pad is dented and scratched. There is thick black stitching on the left shoulder (Bearclaw Mohawker damage from Mad Max 2), collar, shoulder seam, elbow and a few stitches where his sleeve zipper used to be.
Black cotton sleeveless shirt, probably made from scratch.
Black long-sleeved tunic, approximately knee length. The neck opening extends approximately down to navel level. Material: most likely a black-dyed cotton muslin. Contrary to popular belief, the tunic style Max wears is not typical of Arab traditional dress and is actually the length of a kurta or kameez: traditional shirts worn in central Asian countries such as Afghanistan, Pakistan and India.
Max wears two belts. One of them has ammunition shoulder straps attached to it, and is a British style belt. This belt's round brass buckle reads "Astore Police". Hanging below the British belt is another belt with a pocket and bullet loops and is connected to a black leather holster.
The trousers remain the same as the second film, if only weathered. Thick black stitching can be seen on the crotch area, zipper possibly broken. The leg brace is gone and replaced by a medical bandage.
He has only one of the same boots from The Road Warrior, with a sole made from a tyre, while he wears a black cowboy boot on the other foot. This is in no doubt homage to the western in which the Mad Max films are thematically based.
Turban and Cloak
Max wears a black turban and a black cloak (looks like a cape) during the beginning of the movie. The black turban is made of black cotton bubble gauze.
Tools and Accessories
Max has a silver whistle known as a naval bosun whistle which is held in his cowboy boot. Also, under his cape he holds a wide array of weaponry, some of it includes: a sawed-off shotgun, a Mauser C96, grenades, a crossbow, shotgun shells etc, and also has binoculars with a Geiger counter attached to it.
Max has a few costume changes in the film.
This jacket is styled after the original trilogy's jacket as it appeared in Beyond Thunderdome with the thick black stitching on the left shoulder (Bearclaw Mohawker damage from Mad Max 2), the collar, shoulder seam, elbow, and a few stitches where the sleeve zipper used to be. The jacket zipper's right half is still missing but the left half zipper appears to have all of its teeth (as opposed to the Thunderdome jacket). Pocket zippers are gone. The police tag is gone. The jacket is seen in all scenes except for the Blood Bag scenes and until the War Rig is on its way to the canyon.
The shoulder pad is a permanent part of the jacket and is a replica of the trilogy version with some noticeable differences. The Rawlings replica plate is significantly thicker. The front of the plate in particular looks very rounded on the edges and the plate appears to be larger as a result of the extra material used to thicken the underside. Some of the plates were covered in leather. The soft arch padding has a significantly rounder protrusion at its apex and is devoid of any top stitching. The vinyl collar appears to be thicker. The underarm strap looks similar except for the buckle. Instead of a Rossiter-style roller buckle there is a plain flat center bar buckle.
The shirt appears to be a khaki waffle-knit long-sleeved shirt with the sleeve hems cut off and the front of the collar cut off. The shirt looks like it was weathered with black wash.
The trousers are black leather trousers with no back pockets, with similar stitching to the ones in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. Additionally there is some stitching on the right upper thigh, the inner seam of the left leg has stitching running along it and there's a seam over the left knee with stitching repairs.
Max's leg brace is made out of a real leg brace. It looks like a variant from the Donjoy Armor line. The covers over the hinge were removed and straps were replaced with brown leather straps.
Drop Leg Holster
Max wears a black Condor MA1 tactical MOLLE platform with a Condor holster in the final scenes.
Max wears a South African Defense Force Pattern 83 battle jacket in the final scenes. The vest was taken from The Bullet Farmer and his henchmen after he was confronted and killed by Max. It is filled with various magazines, ammunition, a gun cleaning kit and has a Chris Reeve Pacific knife attached. On the left shoulder is a medical nebulizer clear hose, the vest is modified and has extra pouches sewn into it.
Max wears a number of different boots. In the Intro scene they are replicas of the Rossiter boots. After Nux steals his boots and jacket, Max the Blood Bag is fitted with a pair of short lace-up boots Slit manages to take one off his feet as he slips into the sandstorm. After Max wakes up in the sand and tries to free himself from Nux he takes his boots back. After Max finishes off the Bullet Farmer he comes back wearing modern tactical boots, which are Under Armor Valsetz boots in Timber.
To complicate things, production apparently had a pair of Rossiter-style boots made for Tom Hardy. They have flat rubber soles, have no side tabs and have zippers on the insides (they were probably made for either comfort, convenience or safety reasons). Hardy is wearing them a lot in the film i.e. as he is running around in the Citadel, in place of his remaining left boot after the sandstorm and for all the pre-bog scenes. The faithful replica pair of Rossiters have only been spotted in the intro scene, on gas pedal close-ups and in a quick, low shot showing Max approaching the War Rig for the first time.
Paracord survival bracelet with lanyard knot closure. Foliage green.
As a human blood bag, Max is forced to wear a muzzle made out of a garden fork.
- According to the Mad Max DVD special features the producers of the first movie, obviously working on a very limited budget, only had enough money to produce one set of MFP leathers -- for Max. The other MFP officers' were "very well done vinyl knock-offs." However, further research has brought about a debate whether the one leather costume constructed was actually for Goose, as he was the only one on a motorcycle and needed the extra protection.
- Max's paracord bracelet was an addition of Tom Hardy who wears it every day. Miller agreed that the bracelet be included in Max's uniform.
In the popular Fallout video game series, the leather armor that can be worn bears a striking resemblance to Max's armor in The Road Warrior - they have one sleeve missing and American football shoulder pads.