Pictured above is the first figure in my post apocalyptic collection as well as the first 1/6th scale action figure I've owned since my last GI Joe in 1973. My, how things I've changed. The figure is a work in progress and still has some things to be added to, but I'll share here what I've learned so far, as well as a bit of background into what I'm doing in this collection.
To begin with, I'm doing two collections which may have some bit of overlap in some ways. The first collection is will be focused around various groups of post apocalyptic survivors; some good, some bad. The girl in the image is part of one of the good groups. The second collection will be more tied into my WWII Canadian Army / Italian Campaign (sort of) reenacting. I'm a Canadian army veteran and associated with this group of veterans who own 3 WWII vintage 25pdr howitzers and use the to fire salutes for Canadian veterans and to promote, teach and maintain artillery tradition. We dress up (at least in summer) as if for the Sicilian/Italian Campaigns of 1943. So my second collection will focus on Canadian Artillery (my arm of the service) in Italy, 1943. Both collections will likely feature some avatar of myself.
But getting back to the post apocalyptic collection, the first group of survivors in the collection will be "The Pinup Patrol," a group led by a photographer specializing in pin-up/glamour photography, especially featuring girls in retro uniforms carrying guns, several photo models, a female makeup artist and hair stylist, a female wardrobe stylist, a female photo assistant or two, and maybe an art director who were all out in the desert on a photo shoot when the big brown poo hit the proverbial fan. As a matter of tradition, when doing these shoots, live ammo was brought along for the crew and talent to blow steam off at the end of the shoot. The girls always really enjoyed it, and so the photographer, who is also a history buff, reenactor and gun collector always brought lots of cool toys to the shoot. I haven't really fleshed out all the details yet, but they figured out something was wrong well before the photo shoot was over and before using up their ammo, and so being out in the desert, far enough from the city with a bunch of guns and ammo was definitely a survival plus for this group. More details will be posted as I flesh them out along with the collection.
The figure in the photo is one of the new TB League bodies; 2018-S24A which is the taller of the two types, mid bust and pale skin. The head is a Super Duck SDH010-B head, and while I find it's proportions were pretty good for the body, the skin tone is noticeably darker and not a good match in my opinion. It doesn't show much in these photos, which are shot under flash at 6000K but you'll rarely be viewing them with light of that colour temperature but will metamerism makes it looks darker under incandescent and other lighting. Of course I had to use some blue tacking to keep the head in place because of Phicen / TB league's absurd decision to use smaller head/neck ball joints on the new models.
By the same token, the Magic Cube top and shorts I ordered were also too big. I managed to tighten up the top enough that it doesn't look too bad, though it was clearly made with a large busted model in mind, but the shorts had to be tailored with scissors, needle and thread to make them fit, and this being my first attempt at doing this, was to say the least, a bit of an experience. In the end, they look acceptable to me anyway, but please do feel free to give me your feedback on the issue.
The girls's main weapon is parted out British Sterling SMG from Dragon. I have a special affinity for this weapon as I carried the Canadian version, for a number of years during my time in the Canadian military. It differed from the British in only one or two minor details and was a good, reliable and compact weapon for close in combat, though I'd rather carry a C7 (M16) or C8 (M4) today. It was also a staple of 60's and 70's action movies, from Dark of The Sun and On Her Majesty's Secret Service to The Spy who Loved Me. It wasn't my first thought for this character to carry however. I had wanted to arm her with an M1 carbine, which would be a much more common survivor weapon than the Sterling in my mind, but the M1 was just to chunky for this model's small hands. A WWII Thomson did fit, though as well as I would have liked, but the Sterling fit perfectly. Then looking over what I had created thus far, with had, the revealing shirt and the very 60's hot pants like shorts, I realized that the Sterling combined with a set of high shin combat boots would give this figure a very 60's movie retro look, so I I kept the Sterling and ordered a pair of high shin boots, which have yet to arrive. I will post photos when they do.
Our figure is also wearing a British Pattern 37 web belt, pattern 37 tanker's drop leg holster which has been modified for normal over the belt wear as were many of the originals and the gun in the holster is a Smith & Wesson Revolver. Her hat is a Fire Girl Tactical shooter hat parted out and bought loose and her dust goggles are WWII aviator goggles, make unknown and bought as part of a lot. They also seem to scale nicely with the figure. The binoculars are of the type used by the Canadian and British armies in WWII, though mostly made in Canada. Looks like I'm going to have to get another pair for my WWII artillery officer!
There are a couple more things I will want to add to this figure. One will be a nasty knife of some sort like a Ka-Bar or maybe even a boot knife. The other will be a drop-leg MP-5 magazine pouch. The MP-mags have similar profile to the Sterling mags and despite being a bit shorter, the pouch should be a good substitute for pouch designed to hold Sterling mags. We finally got some in the Canadian Army only a couple of years before the Sterling was withdrawn from service. Before that...our magazine pouches were our pockets! But that's another story.
Now why doesn't this figure look like she came straight out of a Mad Max film like so many other post-apocalyptic figures? Good question. My answer to this is that The Pinup Patrol were not only comparatively well-armed as a survivor group from the outset, the also consider themselves agents of civilization as opposed to chaos and disorder. As such, they have jumped on to the retro-sexy military look that they portrayed in photo for gun magazines and other publications, figuring this sets them apart, and gives them a look of authority as well. When scavenging a pharmacy for drugs, medication, bandages and hygienic products, they also raid it for hairbrushes, lipstick and makeup. Their appearance and mainly female composition has not only made it easier to gain the trust of other survivors, some of whom have been recruited, but it has tricked some of the more vicious groups out there into thinking they were dealing with bunch of harmless little girls when they were in fact dealing with well-armed and well-trained cunning she-devils. This has worked to their advantage many times and many a rogue or bandit has paid the ultimate price for underestimating them.
Anwyay, that's where I am for now. I hope some of you find this info useful, and I would love to get some feedback from you on the figure and where I'm going with it.
20190112_0112 by Gary Menten, on Flickr
And under more dramatic lighting....
20190112_0115 by Gary Menten, on Flickr
And finally this final photo, where most of the figures face is not under direct flash, the difference in tone between the body and the Super Duck head are much more evident.
20190112_0119 by Gary Menten, on Flickr