Three, Eight, Thirteen

Whilst there are a few scant hours before Forgotten Heroes 2020, the fifth such event since its inception, ends – allowing a few participants to slip a last entry into June – this will be MY last post for this year’s challenge.

Now, Forgotten Heroes offers quite a few different sorts of challenge. There is the challenge of choosing a suitable character to replicate, finding the base figure you’re going to use, converting it into as close a representation as possible and THEN painting it, so it matches the source material.

Obviously, if you’re using a figure designed, either officially or unofficially, to represent the character, all you have to do is paint the figure.

For example, you can use this image;

The Wertzone: Doctor Who at 50: The Third Doctor (1970-74)

To paint your representation of the Third Doctor like so;

“Reverse the polarity… you know you want to…”

Yeah, I decided to finish off my Third Doctor whilst I was waiting for the Eighth Doctor to dry between coats.

Speaking of my version of the Eighth Doctor, the idea was to replicate this look;

Doctor Who Official on Twitter: "Happy birthday to Paul McGann ...

And this is my final rendition of the Eighth Doctor, converted from an Artizan Designs ‘Captain Withnail’ figure;

Comparing the source material and the finished figure, I think I possibly need to repaint his ‘waistcoat’ in GW Shining Gold, my pot of which is now an antique-y gold, so not particularly ‘Shining’ anymore. This will bring the figure closer to the source picture. I did try to replicate the laces on his boots by painting crosses up the front of each boot, but I’m not sure how successful this was. And I think that I might need to darken his hair a touch too, as it looks too yellow.

So, other than a few minor painting tweaks, I’m pretty happy with how he’s turned out. As he was originally holding a revolver, I think this minor conversion has worked really well, showing that nearly any pistol can be turned into a sonic screwdriver, which gives me a greater range of figures to look at when I get around to doing the Ninth, Tenth and War Doctors.

And to explain the post title, here are the Third, Eighth and Thirteenth Doctor, in a crossover that you would never have expected…

Hmm, this does of course mean I can do multi-Doctor episodes now…

A big thank you to all those who took part this year; Roger, Dave, Harry, Keith, Alan, and Wampley  – follow the links to see what this creative bunch have been up to.

And remember, this is an annual event, every June, so if you feel like taking part next year, you are more than welcome. Put on those thinking caps and start planning what you’re going to do next year.

I might finally get around to doing Big Wheel… although I do have a spare action figure head that might be the right size to do a 28mm M.O.D.O.K. It will certainly be cheaper than coughing up for the Crisis Protocol one…

Right, that’s all for this post. Next up, more Doctor Who, as I offer a counterpoint to the ‘Evil Sprout’ from the previous post, by offering their arch-enemies, whom the Doctor has described as ‘psychotic potato dwarfs’, so expect “automated laser monkeys, scalpel mines and acid.”

“Do You Want to Build a Rutan?”

Twenty days gone of June, leaving ten to go… so how is everyone who is taking part in this year’s Forgotten Heroes getting along?

Well, Roger over at Rantings From Under the Wargames Table has completed the sculpting of his Panthor and Battle Cat from Masters of the Universe, Dave at Wargamesculptors Blog has given us several A.B.C. Warriors AND the spirit form of Torquemada, all from 2000AD, Keith at Dead Dick’s Tavern & Temporary Lodging has created the First Comics characters Badger and Nexus, Alan at Golden Age Heroes has given us the Golden Age heroes Fiery Mask, Black Widow, Green Lama, Hangman and the Comet, work progresses on Corky from Tales of the Gold Monkey from Harry over at War Across the Ages and Wampley has given us the Image character Vanguard over at Wampley’s Castle.

If you haven’t already checked these out, go and have a look, as the hard work and creativity that has gone into these figures is what this annual event is all about.

So, how have I got on since last you visited the Buffet? Well, my version of the Eighth Doctor currently looks like this;

“But Jez,” I hear you cry, “you’re only doing one figure this year, so why haven’t you finished painting it yet?”

Because, gentle readers, I haven’t just been painting him – as the title of this post suggests.

Between tidying up the paint job on the Eighth Doctor, I took the opportunity to finish off a couple of figures lurking in the Tray of Shame, namely Abslom Daak, Dalek Killer;

And Servitor Vir, one of the Doomlords of Nox;

But my main focus was on completing my scratch-built Rutan, as I was intending on transforming this;

20200613_1804042878872380338704860.jpg

Into this;

Rutans | Villains Wiki | Fandom

So, the model was given a complete undercoat of Docrafts Blanc, then the main body painted GW Bogey Green. Looking at this, I decided this wasn’t going to cut it, so some GW Goblin Green was mixed with GW Mithril Silver until I got a colour I was happy with, then watered down to create a thick wash, which was liberally applied to the body of the Rutan.

The main and secondary tentacles were painted with Tamiya White, which is a gloss rather than a matt paint, and the whole base was painted Docrafts Chocolate Brown, followed by a wash of Docrafts Burnt Ochre.

Looking at the reference pictures, I then decided that there was a green tinge to the secondary tentacles, so these were given a wash of GW Bogey Green and the main tentacles a second coat of Tamiya White, as this is quite a thin paint and does require one or two coats to get a strong hue.

The Tamiya White was then used to create the veins/swirls/markings on the main body. The final touch was to gently dry-brush the whole body with GW Bogey Green. I decided against adding the silver dots, as I felt that the model looked fine as it was.

And this is the finished article, ready to assume the form of those close to you, having dissected them to find out what makes them tick;

Yes, it may look like like a Brussel Sprout, but remember, it’s an EVIL Brussel Sprout…

And to give a sense of the size of our ‘Awful Green Thing from Outer Space’, here it is facing the Thirteenth Doctor;

I have to admit, I’m pretty pleased with how it’s come out, although the final picture above does show that the base needs a little more work on it.

It’s certainly a LOT better than the recent picture that has surfaced on social media of what the redesigned Daleks are going to look like when they return later this year;

Doctor Who Page on Twitter: "A photo has been leaked online of the ...

And this, along with the “Timeless Child” travesty, is why Chris Chibnall will Burn. In. Hell.

Join me next time, as Forgotten Heroes draws to a close for this year and all those taking part complete their final submissions.

“I’ve Made a Terrible Mistake.”

The annual Forgotten Heroes “challenge” not only engenders a sense of community, as like-minded hobbyists flex their creative muscles, but also gives those taking part an opportunity to add to their collection a figure (or figures) that they may have been wanting for a while – but no-one has yet to make.

So, Roger at Rantings from Under the Wargames Table is adding to his scratch-built Masters of the Universe collection, Dave is building up his A.B.C. Warriors over at Wargame Sculptors Blog and Alan is working his way through the alphabet over at Golden Ages Heroes.

Wampley has posted his conversion of the Image character Vanguard over at Wampley’s Castle and I know that Harry at War Across the Ages is planning on adding to his cast from Tales of the Gold Monkey. I’m not sure what Keith at Dead Dick’s Tavern & Temporary Lodging is creating this year, but there’s still a couple of weeks to go…

However, I’m not one to talk, as I failed miserably to complete the promised models for Keith’s own Monster May(Hem) challenge – which is kind of what the title of this post is about, as you will see.

Anyway, the character I’d decided upon for this year’s challenge was to create a version of the Eighth Doctor, utilising the Artizan Designs “Captain Withnail.” As mentioned in this post, the Thrilling Tales range this figure comes from has been removed from the North Star site, but I have been assured that the range will return later in the year.

When we last saw my work in progress it looked like this;

So, referring to my source material, it was clear that his lower legs were too chunky, so out came the needle files and craft knife, to ensure that they were pared down to a more acceptable size. I also took the opportunity to scribe a V shape on the front of each shin, to represent the lace-up part of each boot. Now that I was happy with the sculpting, it was time to start painting…

Undercoat in Docrafts Blanc (i.e. white), then hands and head got a base coat of Docrafts Flesh, boots and waistcoat in Docrafts Linen and his sonic screwdriver in GW Mithril Silver.

Now, the paints used for his overcoat and trousers (GW Ghoul Grey and Revell Beige) had partially dried out, so adding water to them meant that they acted a little like watercolours, in that they were quite thin. Each area being covered was given at least three coats of paint, to build up the required hue.

And this is where we have gotten to so far;

He’s starting to come together nicely.

And here he is with the Third and Thirteenth Doctor;

Now, I did get some paint on some of the other figures in the Tray of Shame, including the “monsters” I promised for last month’s challenge;

But no major progress was really made, so nothing really to show there.

However, I DID make some progress on another figure – which fits the criteria for BOTH Forgotten Heroes AND Monster May(Hem) – and explains the quote used for the title.

Horror of Fang Rock was a Fourth Doctor adventure, originally broadcast in 1977, and featured the Doctor and Leela joining the occupants of the Fang Rock lighthouse – including the passengers of a wrecked ship – as they were terrorised and murdered by a shape-shifting Rutan scout. The Rutan are in a bitter war of attrition with the Sontarans and are not doing so well. Rutans, in their natural form, look like a cross between a jellyfish and an amoeba.

Rutans – Doctor Who World

Or possibly a really big ball of snot. Now, Black Tree Design do make a figure of the Rutan

But I am of the opinion that anyone can make their own version of this creature, even if they have ZERO sculpting skills.

So, this is how I made mine, which is probably the simplest figure I have ever made.

First, I got a spare HeroScape base and covered the top in Milliput, textured to represent earth. I then cut a few lengths of wire (from a paperclip), bent these into suitably tentacle-y shapes and glued these to the base, like so;

My initial intention was to then just use a big blog of translucent silicone sealant to create the body of the Rutan, then paint this, so I painted the base and tentacles next.

However, looking back at the source material, I decided that I needed secondary smaller tentacles and that the main body of the Rutan needed to be textured, a bit like the shell of a sea urchin.

The secondary tentacles were created using a small length of pipe cleaner, folded around and teased out, then glued into place. A trick I’ve learnt with using pipe cleaners is that you can coat them with watered down PVA glue and they end up looking textured like Twiglets (or twigs for that matter). However, if you paint them directly using Acrylic paint, you can not only colour the pipe cleaner’s fibres, it will also separate the fibres out, making it look like hair, fur, or hopefully in this case, secondary thin tentacles.

Now, the final part of this model is the body of the Rutan. As this is textured, you could roll up a ball of your sculpting putty of choice, stick the blob in place and then carefully texture the outside until you were happy…

Or you could cheat, like I did, and just get some baking foil and scrunch it up into a oval blob the right size and shape.

The advantage of doing this is two-fold; firstly – you can get it exactly the right size and shape, as foil is easily shaped and you can add additional layers if it’s not quite big enough, secondly – the process of scrunching it up creates a lovely texture on the exterior surface. You can smooth this down, if you wish, but this lends itself to dry-bushing quite nicely and for my purposes, does replicate the textured skin of the Rutan.

Just glue your finished blob into place and you get something like this;

Unpainted, it does kind of look like a big silver brain, so a smaller foil lozenge or two glue together and added to the body of a plastic dog might make a pretty acceptable Intellect Devourer for D&D.

So, there you go – zero sculpting skills needed, materials that you probably already have around your home, so zero cost and, with a little time and effort, a pretty good version of a Fourth Doctor-era alien.

The Fourth Doctor may have believed he made a terrible mistake in regards to the Rutan in the episode in question, but I don’t think I’ve made a mistake creating my own version of this iconic alien, rather than paying for someone else’s version…

Join me next time, as the Eighth Doctor nears completion and I start painting my alien ball of snot. Luckily, I DO have some GW Bogey Green…

Forgotten Heroes, Hidden Monsters

Unlike last month, June in the UK has decided we’ve had far too much nice weather and we’re due some colder temperatures and some rain. Which means that whilst the easing of Lockdown means that you can have visitors in your garden, they’re probably going to get a bit soggy.

However, as June is also Forgotten Heroes month, the inclement weather means that you can stay inside and work on your fictional creations.

As we’ve had a few additional people express a desire to take part, I thought I’d list the participants first, before getting on to the meat of this post.

Dave over at Wargamesculptors Blog has cracked on with his A.B.C. Warriors, completing both Zippo and Hammerstein.

Roger at Rantings From Under the Wargames Table has made an impressive start on his conversions of a couple of cheap plastic toys into Battle Cat and Panthro from Masters of the Universe – to accompany the other characters he has created over the years from this franchise. I still need to add a few more to my own collection – I mean, who doesn’t need a 28mm version of Buzz Off?

Alan has decided to continue his A-Z of Golden Age Heroes, completing the entry for ‘F’ with Fiery Mask, an obscure Timely/Marvel hero… and no doubt will produce a few more before the end of the month.

The other participants have yet to put up their first post, but I’m sure these will follow shortly;

Keith at Dead Dick’s Tavern & Temporary Lodging, Harry at War Across the Ages and Wampley at Wampley’s Castle.

Roy has unfortunately bowed out, due to personal reasons, and we all wish him well and hope he can join us next year. As for Keith Frye, due to the wonders of time travel, did manage to complete his entry three months before the actual start of Forgotten Heroes – so unfortunately, it doesn’t actually count. However, I would go and have a look at his conversion of Col. Virginia Lake from U.F.O., as it is really good.

So, my plan is to turn this Artizan Designs figure (from the Thrilling Tales range, which strangely seems to have vanished from their website);

Captain Withnail

Into my version of the Eighth Doctor.

So, first order of the day was to sort out the revolver, as whilst the Doctor has used firearms on one or two occasions, he is not renowned for regularly carrying a weapon. Using a pair of needle-nosed pliers, I carefully bent the main body of the revolver upwards, until it was in the right position. Then using a flat needle file, the chamber and bulk of the revolver was filed down, until I had a column of metal extending from his hand, which will become the Eighth Doctor’s sonic screwdriver.

However, in it’s initial state it was too long, looking more like a wand than a sonic screwdriver. Looking at the figure with his “wand”, I realised that he now kind of looked like Newton Scamander from the Fantastic Beasts franchise;

Newt Scamander Coat | Fantastic Beasts 2 Movie | 50% Off

So, if you want a “Wizarding World” proxy, this might work out a bit more affordable than an official Knight Models miniature…

As the wand was too long, this was trimmed down and the end rounded to be more sonic-y and less wand-y. However, during this process, I’d failed to notice that my handling of the figure had bent it a bit out of shape. This is due to the fact that the top part of the figure is fairly hefty, with the flapping coat being solid metal, whilst the figure’s ankles are quite slender – therefore being the weak point on this model.

After carefully straightening the figure up, the base was filed flat and glued to a standard 25mm plastic base, as all my other incarnations of the Doctor are based in this way. The integral metal base was then blended in to the plastic base with Milliput. As my intention was to try and replicate the knee-high lace-up boots that the Eighth Doctor wore prior to his regeneration AND this was a weak point on this model, some Milliput was added to and smoothed around the bottom half of the legs.

For some reason, this took far longer than normal and was scraped off and reapplied a couple of times, until I was happy with the ‘look’. I then left it to dry overnight.

Revisiting the figure the following morning, I realised that his boots were a little thick, so using various shaped needle files, I filed down both the Millput top layer and, where necessary, the underlying metal, until I reached a point that I was happy with.

This is the result so far:

I think the boots may need some further reshaping before the first lick of paint goes on, but I’m reasonably happy so far.

Right, that’s the “Forgotten Heroes” part dealt with… what about the “Hidden Monsters?”

Whilst I only managed to undercoat my monsters for Keith’s (Angry Piper) Monster May(Hem) challenge, I did enjoy visiting other participants websites to see what they’d done, one such being Matt’s PM Painting. He’d painted a Cloak Fiend, a figure I’d not seen before and was keen to find out where it was from, as I thought it was quite cool. I queried this on his blog, but did then use my Web-Fu – for my Web-Fu is Strong – to find it myself, discovering that it was a Reaper figure.

However… this also flagged up a couple of other figures with the “fiend” suffix, which led me to an Etsy shop called ParagonStar.

From what I could gather, this seller utilises a 3D resin printer to create gaming miniatures which can be in a variety of sizes, based on the diameter of the base – from 30mm up to 150mm, with 100mm and 150mm being printed in plastic, rather than resin.

Intrigued by the figure that had brought me to the site, I browsed the range (354 items), noting that figures started from £5.49 each, it was a UK based seller, so shipping was £2.99 and, whilst the pictures in the shop were renders, buyers had posted reviews with pictures of the ACTUAL models painted up.

Then I found this;

Urban Devil  Resin Miniature  Many Size Options dungeons image 0

I have been searching for a decent miniature to represent the Jersey Devil for a very long time and I had now found one that I was happy with.

Using a steel rule and the ability to expand the view on my mobile phone, I worked out that in order for the figure to be the ‘right’ size for 28mm, it would need to be on a 40mm base, which meant that the figure would be about 35-40mm tall. This meant that the figure would be £7.69 + £2.99 shipping, so a total of £10.68. Based on the level of detail and size, this was a bargain compared to other figures.

However, I decided that before ordering THIS figure, I’d test the waters by ordering a different figure, so plumped for Paragon Star’s Wendigo, which was very reminiscent of the illustration of it that appeared in issue #138 of Dragon magazine, way back in the dawn of time…

Dragon Magazine #138

Wendigo  Resin Miniature   28mm / 32mm Scale  Dungeons And image 0

Okay, so the Dragon version hasn’t got 4 arms, but Paragon Star’s one is pretty damn cool.

So, ordered last Wednesday and due to be delivered beginning of next week. Once it arrives, I will give it a full review and show everyone what it looks like compared to other figures. The seller is quite communicative, so if you have any questions prior to purchasing, send him a message. I asked what the height of the figures would be, based on a base size of 40mm and he came back the following day to advise, confirming my calculations.

As mentioned above, there are a LOT of monsters on there, and they are all non-standard – so while they may have a version of an Owlbear on there, it’s probably not what you’d expect – which is pretty cool. As long as the figure quality is decent, I may very well be ordering from there again. I’ve been needing a proper Jersey Devil for a while, but can I really resist getting a Keg Golem…?

Keg Golem  Resin Miniature  Many Size Options dungeons And image 0

Forgotten Heroes 2020

June has rolled around once more, which means it is once again time for…

Forgotten Heroes!

Yes, once again the Buffet descends into the creative madness that is the Forgotten Heroes challenge – although I prefer to think of it as a community art project, rather than an actual challenge…

So, to reiterate the “rules”, such as they are, are these; during the month of June, you must produce a single figure of a fictional character of which a figure has not yet been made or has been made, but was not how you felt the character should have been represented. The character you choose can be from any medium – film, TV, book, comics, etc. – and in any scale. The base figure you use should NOT be either an official or unofficial representation of the character you are producing. And your first post should explain who the character is – ideally with a picture so we can compare this with your finished figure. Your figure can be as simple as repainting a Heroclix Blue Beetle as the obscure Marvel villain Goldbug, converting the same figure into Zodac from Master of the Universe or sculpting the entire figure from scratch – it’s entirely up to you.

So, give your imagination free rein and finally create the figure YOU’VE always wanted.

Anyone who would like to take part who hasn’t already let me know, all you need to do is post a comment on this blog letting me know and I’ll add you to the blogroll of participants.

So, as I am currently in the midst of my ongoing Doctor Who project, surprisingly enough I am going to stay within this universe. As part of my ongoing love for the show (up until Chris Chibnall decided to crap all over my childhood), I intend to collect a model of every iteration of the Doctor, from First to Thirteenth.

Now, I have models from Black Tree Design representing the First, Second, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh Doctor, figures for the Third, Twelfth and MY version of the Thirteenth from Crooked Dice (although only the latter is still available, as it’s not specifically a representation of the Doctor… well, at least until the BBC realise MY version is far superior) and the Steve Buddle-sculpted version of the Eleventh Doctor, which WAS available from Heresy Miniatures, but sadly no more.

Which leaves me missing the Eighth, War, Ninth and Tenth Doctors to complete my collection. The latter three were available from Crooked Dice and Heresy up until the Cease and Desist notices went out and the Eighth Doctor IS available from Black Tree… but I don’t like this version of the figure.

So, my intention, for my Forgotten Heroes entry for this year, is to create my own version of the Eighth Doctor.

Now, this version of the Doctor has had three ‘looks’, two of which are canon and one of which appears on the covers of Big Finish adventures. The first look is from the Doctor Who TV movie, in which Sylvester McCoy’s Seventh regenerated into Paul McGann’s Eighth and looked like this:

Eighth Doctor Adventures – The Doctor Who Companion

In between his first appearance in the TV movie and his final appearance in The Night of the Doctor special, he gallivanted around in the Big Finish extended universe dressed like this;

8th Doctor Alternate Costume by rook971 on DeviantArt

Which is reminiscent of the Ninth Doctor’s outfit. And his final look was in The Night of the Doctor, when McGann regenerated into John Hurt – and this outfit was an echo of his first outfit, but less… flouncy.

The Night of the Doctor promo pics - The 8th Doctor looks ...

Now, as the first and third looks are canon, I’ve decided to disregard the Big Finish outfit and create MY version of the Eighth Doctor as the transitional stage between the two outfits. And the figure I will be using for this is PLP013 – Captain Withnail;

Captain Withnail

So, this will require turning his current footwear into a closer representation of his lace-up boots and turning the revolver into his sonic screwdriver, then a suitable paint job to tie everything together. I’m fairly certain that this will work…

Now, as I’ve failed to complete last month’s Monster May(hem) challenge, I have been given a stay of execution by Keith and my Cyclopian Aliens will be completed this month, alongside the Eighth Doctor.

So, that’s what I’ll be up to. Be sure to check out the other participants blogs to see what they’ll be creating;

Dave at Wargamesculptors Blog, who is intending to complete his compliment of A.B.C. Warriors from 2000AD.

The co-creator of Forgotten Heroes, Roger at Rantings from Under the Wargames Table, which he has assured me involves some kind of cat-themed characters… and no doubt some awful puns.

Keith aka The Angry Piper at Dead Dick’s Tavern & Temporary Lodging, who will no doubt be bringing to light another obscure superhero or villain.

And Roy from This Blog of Mine will be completing the Calista Secor version of Retro Girl from the TV show Powers.

Anyone else who wants to take part, just let me know in the comments and join us in our madness!!!

More Awesome on the Inside

Due to the application of transdimensional engineering, whilst the exterior of every Tardis in use by the Time Lords is relatively small and unassuming, taking the form of such things as stone columns, grandfather clocks, horseboxes or even antiquated Police boxes, the interior is much, much bigger.

In other words, it’s bigger on the inside, which was the title of my previous post.

In that post, I did state that it was my intention to build the control room for my 13th Doctor – with a combination of downloaded papercraft templates (which I tinkered with) and some odds and ends from my bits box.

I was also intending to make some progress on my entries for Monster May(hem), the month-long event instigated by Keith over at Dead Dick’s Tavern & Temporary Lodging, but because of certain issues regarding the building of my control room, these were put on hold.

However, I believe that concentrating on my Tardis was worth it, but you can judge that for yourself.

So, having downloaded the template for the 8th Doctor’s Tardis floor, resized it and printed out enough copies to produce the entire hexagonal wooden floor, I cut these out, as well as a piece of mounting board. The idea was to glue the three parts of the floor to the mounting board with a glue-stick, then use a plate to make the completed ‘floor’ circular.

Things did not go according to plan.

To cut a long story short, I messed this part up and had to come up with an alternative plan – which actually worked out better, as you will see.

Using a side plate, I cut a circle of mounting board approximately 8 inches in diameter, used a compass to find the centre, then scribed 5 rings within the circle. I then divided this into 16 segments.

It would have been easier if I’d had a black Sharpie for the next part, but the whole circle was then painted alternating black and white, to create a tiled floor, like so;

As you can probably appreciate, this took quite some time, as I initially painted the black tiles, then realised that I had to tidy of the edges of the white tiles with some white paint, then go back and do some touching up with BOTH black and white paints when the original coats were dry. Labour intensive, but does give a good effect, even if staring at it for any length of time does start fucking with your eyes.

In order to protect my hard work and give it a more ’tile-y’ look, the floor was then covered with some transparent sticky-backed plastic, like so;

You can just about make out the sheen on the top left of the floor in the above picture and the 13th Doctor standing in the centre does give a sense of scale.

The final part of preparing the floor was to make a hole in the exact centre, like so, for reasons that will be explained later;

Now that the floor was done, it was time to start working on the ‘fixtures and fittings’.

First was the Tardis console. The transparent pen lid used as the time rotor had been glued into the hole on the HeroClix base, but was loose AND wonky, so this was re-glued with my son’s hot glue gun, rather than with what I’d attempted to use previously.

I’d also worked out that the cardstock console panel would need some kind of support, so some careful measuring was done and a rubber sleeve, which was the finger-grip from another pen, was cut down and slid over the central column. The base had previously been given a coat of Docrafts Bronze, as shown below;

After this picture was taken, the base received a further coat of Bronze, as did the sleeve.

Next up was the additional furniture – two file card cabinets taken from the Victory of the Daleks papercraft set and a grandfather clock taken from the Sarah Jane Adventures Bannerman Road set, all downloaded from the AFT Downloads site.

The end of yet another expired pen became a stone planter (once repainted), and a blob of hot glue secured the small frond of plastic vegetation, creating EITHER a pot plant for the interior of the Tardis control room or the Great Rangdo of Arg – in his Aspidistra form…

The next part was to assemble the walls. I’d printed out on card wall sections from the 4th Doctor’s secondary control room, including the scanner, but not the stained-glass windows – because I didn’t like them. These had been manipulated to produce a run of roundel wall sections, with blank wall sections in between. I’d made a double-sized blank section, which I then pasted in the exterior door section from the 9th Doctor’s Tardis, to provide an egress.

The two printed sections were cut out, with a half-inch white border at the bottom, to create tabs with which to attach the walls to the floor. This was then joined in the centre and the whole interior wall covered with plastic to protect it and give the slightly lacquered appearance of the original walls. This didn’t go quite according to plan, as it was a long strip and didn’t stick completely flat, so the creases were squashed flat with the handle of the craft knife. I did try ironing these flat, but this didn’t work and actually made it slightly worse, but it’s not THAT noticeable.

The walls were then glued to the perimeter of the floor, then the file cabinets and grandfather clock were glue to the internal walls and the pot plant and central console placed, which just about completes the control room, as shown below;

A few close-ups to give a better idea of how everything scales together – here’s Tara having just come in to the Tardis from outside, showing the exterior door and one of the filing cabinets. You can see where the creases are in the plastic around the door and where I attempted to rectify this with the iron. It’s not that bad…

And the Doctor checking out the scanner, which also shows the pot plant and the grandfather clock. I can see that the pot needs a bit more paint on the inside, which, as it has not been secured yet, can still be done.

And a close-up of the central console. This has not been completely finished, as the cardstock control panel section is not yet glued in place and I’m undecided whether the base needs to be painted Brass-y or can stay Bronze;

Now, this is the FUN part. If you look at the picture above, you can see that rubber sleeve under the console is now painted bronze and has interesting lines scribed into it. If you recall, this was originally blue. And, if you remember earlier, I did say I’d explain why I’d made a hole in the floor…

As the transparent plastic tube is open at the bottom AND not covered, the idea was to feed a LED or other small light up inside it, so as to illuminate the Time Rotor. In order to test this idea, I sat the whole diorama on top of a big torch, covered the top with a circular placemat and turned it on.

This is the result;

Not only has the top of the Time Rotor illuminated and cast its light on the ‘ceiling’, the blue of the plastic sleeve shines through the base of the console and the floor is also glowing red, purely from sitting on top of the torch.

Which is pretty damn awesome.

To paraphrase Kelis;

“My Tardis brings all the fans to the yard,
And they’re like, it’s better than yours,
Damn right it’s better than yours,
I can teach you, but you have to understand non-Euclidean geometry….”

Right, time for an announcement. Whilst May is Monster May (Hem) month, June is Forgotten Heroes month. I’m announcing it now to explain the rules and to give everyone a chance to order whatever figures they need to participate, if they so wish.

Rules are as follows; during June, you must produce at least one figure to represent a fictional character which has not yet had a decent figure made for it yet. It can be from any source, be it a movie, TV series, book or comic and in any scale. The base figure you use CANNOT be a figure designed to be the character you are producing, so no using Miniature Figurines Retro Space Pilot as a base for Dan Dare, as it was designed to represent this character. Can be as simple as repainting a Heroclix Blue Beetle as Goldbug to ‘doing a Roger’ and sculpting your figure from scratch.

I shall be falling in the middle and converting an existing figure into a character I want, which, bearing in mind my current project, is Doctor Who related.

If you want to take part, post a comment on here stating you want to join in and I will add you to the list of participants.

Which character have you always craved a figure of, which no-one has made yet? Now’s your chance to make that unique figure just for yourself.

That’s all for this time – join me next time for (hopefully) the completion of my entries for Monster May(Hem), but definitely MORE Doctor Who.

Forgotten Heroes – All Around the World

When I first instigated the Forgotten Heroes challenge back in June 2016, it was initially just a bit of fun for those in my immediate blogging circle – an opportunity for a few like-minded souls to stretch their creative muscles and produce a comic book hero or villain that had yet to have a figure made of them yet.

Over the next two years, it spread beyond my immediate blogging circle and evolved into a celebration of ANY fictional hero that had yet to have a figure created for them.

This year there were a few changes, as my long-term co-conspirator during the first three years, Mr Roger Webb, decided to retire from the hobby. As he had created and run the Forgotten Heroes blog, in order to continue with this challenge, I decided to host the challenge on my own blog.

As 2019 appears to have thrown several real life challenges in the paths of those who had previously taken part in this challenge, I was dubious about how many people would actually be taking part this year, if any. Especially as I had announced it would have a theme this year…

Luckily for me (as you can’t really call it an event if it’s just you taking part) some previous AND some new contributors stepped up to the plate.

This year the theme was patriotic superheroes and everyone taking part produced at least one figure that met this criteria. In fact, some created more than one.

So, a big thank you to Keith aka the Angry Piper, Mezmaron, Wampley and Scott Pyle for joining in and making it into an actual event this year, rather than just me converting figures on my own.

Keith converted a Heroclix figure into Zangief from Street Fighter, who although doesn’t strictly meet the criteria, everyone knows is Russian…

This was followed later in the month by La Bandera, a really obscure Marvel hero hailing from AND wearing a costume inspired by the flag of Cuba.

Full details on how Keith converted the base figures into these characters can be found on his blog Dead Dick’s Tavern and Temporary Lodging.

Mezmaron decided to create an original hero and their sidekick in 15mm, to match the rest of his collection – the Winged Hussar and Wotjek 3000, patriots hailing from Poland;

Full details of how Mezmaron created these figures can be found on his blog Mezmaron’s Lair.

Wampley created FOUR superhero characters, two of which met the criteria for Forgotten Heroes this years, G.I. Jingo;

And the national hero of Catalonia, Estelada;

He also provided full origin stories for both of these characters, as well as his other two characters in both English and Catalan, so an opportunity to learn a new language too! Full details can be found on his blog Wampley’s Castle.

Scott Pyle, as in THE Scott Pyle of Super System and Super Mission Force fame, created two new characters, Uban the Defender and his loyal golem, Ptah;

I’m getting a definite Egyptian vibe here, especially with the Dr. Fate-esque helmet. The back story for these two characters and additional photos can be found on Scott’s blog, Super Mission Force, but as this is a Tumblr blog, you might need to sign up to view the content.

As everyone taking part in this year’s Forgotten Heroes challenge has now completed and submitted their entries, I can officially announce that it is closed.

But fear not, gentle readers, for it will return once more next year, for it’s 5th outing. Next year will be a more open playing field. A single figure, in the scale of your choosing, converted from an existing base figure into a fictional character who has yet to have a miniature created for them, or has, but the figure was not how YOU thought the character should look.

Any genre, any era, any scale, but MUST be completed during the month of June. No prizes, just the fun of taking part and ending up with a figure that no-one else has. Over the four years this has been running, I’ve created Super-Soldier, Stegron the Dinosaur Man, Bananaman, Crystal Man, Neon Queen, Kid Dynamo, The Planet, Rom the Space Knight and this year, El Aguila;

Maybe next year will finally see me creating…Big Wheel.

That’s all for this time, but join me next time… when who knows what will be served at the Buffet.

Jez

 

Forgotten Heroes – The Eagle Has Landed!

As has been proven in my last post, my language skills are rudimentary at best, so I chose not to utilise Google Translate (other programs are available) to render the post title into Spanish. However, the above sentiment is broadly correct – El Aguila, my entry for this year’s Forgotten Heroes event is now finished – bar some detail work that my failing eyesight and lack of strong enough glasses prevented me from accomplishing.

So, join me as we journey through the various stages that have led me to the finished article…

This was the starting point – a Heroclix figure of Stonewall, whose was removed from his Oreo ‘Clix base, re-based on a 2 pence piece and had his base textured.

Due to various issues with glue and things not drying the way they were supposed to, my first painting pass was to block paint El Aguila’s torso in GW Woodland Green, his legs in Docrafts Blanc and the base in GW Orc Brown. These are really old GW paints, like a good 10 or so years old, but they’re still going strong and to find the equivalent from GW now, I’d have to probably pay quadruple the price and they’d have a silly name…

Realising the base was a little TOO yellow, I repainted this with Docrafts Linen, which I also used to paint his hands, the bottom half of his face and his eyeholes, as I wanted the cowl to look as much like a Mexican wrestler’s mask as possible. His belt and wristlets were given a coat of Docrafts Burnt Umber  and his boots a coat of Docrafts Cherry Red. His tights got a coat of Tamiya White X-2, which unlike the Docrafts Blanc, is more of a gloss paint, so it made them look more like lycra…

Now the main colours of the Mexican flag were on and he was looking kind of how I’d envisaged him, I had to work out what his chest symbol/icon should look like. I knew I wanted a stylised eagle, but was unsure exactly how to depict it.

Various supers have bird symbols on their chests – Phoenix, Nightwing…even Marvel’s Aguila, whose name I’ve appropriated for MY hero, who looks like this;

Image result for aguila marvel

Brings new meaning to the expression “the gay blade…”

Anyway, I needed something a bit simpler and easy to paint…and then I remembered that there was another Marvel character with a stylised bird chest emblem… Thunderbird!

Image result for thunderbird marvel

From Giant Size X-Men #1 (May 1975), Thunderbird made up the first change in roster since the introduction of the X-men back in 1963. He was the Native American representative in the new, more diverse line-up and was killed on his very next outing…probably because his powers were covered by Colossus, so why have two strong guys? Absolutely nothing to do with the fact that he was a Native American…

Blankets? what blankets? I see no blankets…

Anyway, I thought that his stylised “thunderbird” symbol would prove to be a reasonably easy one to replicate, so initially painted this in Docrafts Burnt Umber. i.e dark brown, as this is the colour of the eagle on the Mexican flag…

But it looked shite. Not enough contrast and not superhero-y enough. So, taking inspiration from the Aztecs, I repainted it in Docrafts Shining Gold. Much better.

I then attempted to paint the studs on his belt with the same colour…and failed, so repainted the belt and wristlets in Docrafts Shining Gold, then washed them in GW Brown Ink, then painted the buckle in Docrafts Bronze. The flesh parts were given a wash of GW (the label’s fallen off and I can’t remember what it’s called) Brown, to give him a Mexican skin tone.

I then tried to paint on a moustache using my thinnest brush and some more Brown Ink. Which would have worked if I could have seen what I was doing. New, stronger glasses are needed before I attempt any teeny, tiny detail work in future. I then had to repaint his face, to rectify the mess I’d made. Rather than continue and risk fucking it up, I wisely decided to stop.

And here he is…El Aguila, national hero of Mexico.

I’m my own worst critic, so I’m 90% happy with him, but he does embody the look I was going for and doesn’t look like a cheap Captain America knock-off. And he’s pretty beefy too, as can be seen in the following picture, with a Crooked Dice figure.

“No hablo ingles…”

Still a few more days left in this year’s Forgotten Heroes, so please be sure to check out the other participants blogs to see how they’re doing – Angry Piper, Mezmaron and Wampley.

And join me next time, when I’ll being doing a wrap-up of this year’s event.

Jez

Forgotten Heroes – Variations on a Theme

Whilst it is the last day of May and, strictly speaking, Forgotten Heroes 2019 doesn’t start until tomorrow, I thought I would explain how the idea to make this year’s Forgotten Heroes a themed event came about.

And also tell everyone exactly what I’ve got planned for this year.

So, as previously explained in the announcement (Patriot Games), this year is all about patriotic superheroes. During the month of June, those taking part will produce a figure of a costumed patriotic superhero, representing the country/state/county/planet of their choice, in whatever scale they feel most comfortable with.

It can be an existing hero, such as Captain America, Union Jack or Red Guardian, or a completely new made-up superhero. The only criteria/rules are that;

1. the base figure you use should not be a representation of the character, i.e. it must be a conversion, but this could be as simple as a repaint, and

2. it must be reasonably obvious to anyone viewing the character which country they are representing, so using the colours from the national flag or a symbol strongly associated with that country on their costume, such as a shamrock for Ireland, would be a wise idea.

But where did this idea come from? Well, I have always been a massive fan of both Captain America and the revised (Alan Moore) version of Captain Britain.

Being a long-term fan of the former and having a reasonably large collection of his ongoing exploits in comic book form, I have watched as various other costumed patriots from both America and other countries crossed his path and how the idea, and ideals, of this character were reinterpreted over different time zones, realities and in other non-Marvel universes. So, whilst Marvel has the Iron Patriot, Miss America, the Spirit of ’76 and U.S.Agent, you will find Cap-inspired heroes such as Sergeant States, the Golden Age Public Spirit, Super-Soldier and the Star-Spangled Kid lurking amongst the comics racks from a variety of other publishers.

However, it was the finale of Avengers: Endgame that finally cemented this idea in my head. If you’re a superhero fan and you haven’t seen this movie, where on Earth have you been?! However, as, the next part of this post will contain a minor spoiler for the movie, if you haven’t seen it, look away now…

At the end of the movie, Steve Rogers is no longer able to continue as Captain America and hands the shield on to Sam Wilson/the Falcon to continue as the new Cap. This has historic comic book precedent, as this did actually happen, but whilst this is the way the future of the Captain America mantle appears to be going in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (even though Sam was holding the shield the wrong way up! Jeez, Sam, get it right…), this got me thinking along the lines of who I would prefer to see as the new Cap in the MCU, which led me to thinking about other patriotic heroes I would like to see and thus this year’s themed event was born, as I thought it might be fun to see what other might do with this idea, once the shackles were off.

Right, you can look back now.

So, having decided what the theme would be, my next step was to decide what I was actually going to do. And I cheated a bit here, as I had already bought a figure many moons ago with the intention of turning him into a patriotic hero for a country other than America, but had not got around to it yet. And this is the figure I will be using;

Image result for heroclix stonewall

This is a character called Stonewall, from the Heroclix Uncanny X-Men subset. I saw him and immediately thought “Hmmm, he looks a bit…Mexican.”

My original intent was for him to become…Captain Mexico, a south of the border knockoff of Captain America and kind of a joke character. However, it appears that there is already several variants of Captain Mexico out there, including a cos-player…

Image result for captain mexico costume

Not only that, Marvel themselves had done an Aztec alternate reality version of Captain America, Captain Mexica from Earth-1519, who featured in Marvel Zombies 3, having been turned into a flesh-eating zombie, the title of the series kind of giving away what was going to happen…

Image result for captain mexica

Now, regular readers will know that I like to plough my own furrow, so as someone has already done both a Captain Mexico AND an Aztec-themed Captain Mexica, I had to come up with something different and uniquely my own…

Now, Mexico does have a history of masked heroes, dating back to 1942, when a man in a silver mask stepped into a wrestling ring and forever changed the sport of lucha libre. I am, of course, referring to those masked Mexican wrestlers known as luchadores enmascarados, the most famous of which was the silver-masked wrestler known as El Santo.

Image result for el santo

So, by combining the colours and symbolism of the Mexican flag, the moustache of Zorro and heavuily influenced by the luchadores enmascarados, I am intending on transforming my base figure of Stonewall into…

El Aguila, national hero of Mexico.

“An eagle cannot be bound by walls”

So, join me next time to see how this crazy little project is progressing and be sure to check out what the other participants, Angry Piper and Mezmaron, are up to on their respective blogs.

 

Small Objects of Desire

One of the problems of this wonderful hobby of ours, is the desire to own more…which can sometimes get in the way of painting what we already own and/or playing with them.

I think we ALL fall victim to this at some stage or another, and unless you are extremely strong-willed, have a limited budget or have some kind of epiphany that allows you to stop hoarding all those figures and games you’re never actually going to play with, you will end up buying something that you don’t really want and will never use.

Now, you may be forgiven for thinking that this signals one of my infamous soapbox speeches, which divides those who follow this blog between those who understand what the Hell I’m banging on about and those who think I’m launching a personal attack on them – you will know into which camp you fall – but you would be wrong.

This post is actually about one of my ongoing hobby-related obsessions and what those cursed folk who manufacture tiny lead man are releasing, when I haven’t got any money to buy things with. Cue much gnashing of teeth, wailing and general poutyness – which may not have been a word before, but is now.

I have two ongoing hobby-related quests; the first is to have a 28mm representation of every version of the Doctor, from William Hartnell up to Pater Capaldi. Yes, I am aware that Warlord Games are doing every version of the Doctor, but I want 28mm versions, so as to fit in with ALL my other figures, rather than the whatever scale WG are using. And yes, I am aware that you may think there is another iteration of the Doctor after Capaldi, but you are mistaken. The Universe is lying to you…there has not been a 13th Doctor…nothing to see here, move along….

Anyway, I am missing the 8th, 9th, 10th and War Doctor, but do have plans to convert my own version of the 8th, as the Black Tree Design one is a bit…pants.

My second quest is to have 28mm versions of every Blackadder and their respective supporting cast…which is where the gnashing of teeth comes in, because people keep releasing MORE figures…

In my previous post on this matter, I highlighted that Rogue Miniatures did a version of Edmund, The Black Adder and King Richard IV from the first series, but it appears that their website no longer exists and the owner is selling off the molds/business, so if you want these figures, you might have to contact him direct via the Rogue Miniatures Facebook page. However, as Studio Miniatures released these just prior to Salute this year;

THE BLACK PRINCE & AIDES

You can get Edmund, Percy and Baldrick in their original iterations for £12.00 from their online shop here.

Of course, if you’re still craving someone to bellow “Fresh Horses!” whilst fighting Saracens, this Heroclix movie version Volstagg would make a good proxy;

Image result for heroclix movie volstagg

Now, whilst The Assault Group does the Elizabethan versions of Edmund, Percy and Baldrick, that’s all the characters you get. However, Space Vixens from Mars actually do a Queen Elizabeth I, for a very reasonable £2.75.

Elizabeth I

Whilst hunting for Lord Melchett, I did find a possible figure to use for Lord Flasheart, from Wargames Foundry.

Top right, with the right paint job, I think would work. This is SB022 Squire Edward’s Swashbucklers, from the Seadogs and Swashbucklers range, It’s £12.00 for the whole pack, but you do get 6 figures, so £2.00 a figure.

And talking of Lord Flasheart, whilst Scarab Miniatures provided you with nearly everyone from Blackadder Goes Forth, including Bob the driver AND the drinks cabinet, our dashing aviator was nowhere to be seen. However, this has now been rectified by the latest entry in Wargames Illustrated’s ‘Giants in Miniature’ range;

LORD ‘FLASH’

Available from North Star Military Figures for £3.50. However, you will have to provide your own “woofs”…

We wants them, my precious…

Anyway, as June fast approaches, this signals that the next month will be taken up with Forgotten Heroes 2019. Currently, we have three participants; myself here on the Buffet, Keith aka The Angry Piper over at Dead Dick’s Tavern and Temporary Lodging and a new participant Mezmaron over at Mezmaron’s Lair. Still time to join in, should you so wish and the full details can be found in my previous post about this event here.