I had never heard of this kit back when I was a kid building monster models. It wasn't until my brother gave me a vintage Revell kit of The Phantom, that I learned (through an ad on the side of the box) of THIS one. While the Phantom was cool, THIS was something special, in my book. Even moreso after I finally saw a small picture of the actual kit, but finding one of these was like the proverbial needle in a haystack. Until last year, when Atlantis produced a fantastic re-issue of it. Even better, there was now an aftermarket base by Thunderboy that accurately reproduced the base as shown in the box art (a vast improvement over the small parts that were originally included).
I would've built this kit soon after buying it anyway, but as it happened, there was a group build of it that started up on the HobbyTalk forum (http://www.hobbytalk.com/bbs1/), and it was a good kick in the butt to get me started in on it.
Here are the initial sub-assemblies:
One of the things that didn't need re-working was the head sculpt. Now, this kit is about 1/8 scale, so the head is fairly small, but man, the detail is really quite remarkable, down to sculpted teeth in the figure's slightly open mouth, and scribed in irises in the eyes to indicate position. That was a detail I had missed until priming.
When painting flesh, and a head in particular, I incorporate multiple layers of color and matte lacquer sealant to get what I feel are very satisfactory results. I also use a number of tones of pastel chalk that are ground up and brushed on to the figure to warm up the skin and give it some variety. Maybe I'll go over it in detail in a future post. In any case, here's the head of the kit with finished skin and eyes. I was pretty pleased at how this turned out.
One of the other parts of the kit that needed a little extra detailing was Flash's blaster pistol. It's got a very cool, classic "ray gun" look, but could stand a little extra bit of polishing. The "business end" of the gun in particular looked poorly molded, and didn't have a hole in the barrel. My solution was to file down what bit of existing detail there was, and replace it with one of the same rivets used in the air tanks, but inverted. It gave me just the look i wanted. For the back of the gun, I felt it could use some kind of sighting guide, so I dug through my micro parts stash, and found a small metal piece that fit against the round body of the gun, and had a small rectangular section jutting up. You can't see it well in this pic, but it shows in one of the finished pics:
The base came with an additional half Martian, and both it and the stock Martian from the kit were painted the same way. I wanted to use the box art as a guide, but thought I'd tone down the colors to get a more "realistic" look. The tentacles, I wanted to look almost exactly like the box, with the addition of being distinctly slimey, so they got a gloss coat of lacquer after being painted up a truly nasty looking green.
The final result is this: