Sunday, 28 February 2010

Musketeer Miniatures Vampire Hunters & Zombies

I'll be honest, until very recently, I had never heard of Musketeer Miniatures. I came across them on the Post Apoc forum, which had a thread listing makers of zombie miniatures. Musketeer Minis was the only name I hadn't heard of. So I clicked onto their website and liked what I saw. Here's the link to where their zombies hang out - http://www.musketeer-miniatures.com/store.php?r=10&rule=Historical&id=34 If you do a Google search for Musketeer Miniatures and find their homepage, be aware that the zombies are listed under the tab for Hazel's Heroes. They are a UK-based firm and their figures are reasonably priced.
I'll look at their zombies shortly, but first I want to review their two vampire hunter figures - Night Stalker and Big Kris, both of whom should be instantly recognisable to fans of the Blade series of films. It isn't that hard to find figures to represent Wesley Snipes' eponymous hero. I know that there are at least two Heroclix versions of him and West Wind make a nice male vampire hunter in their Road Kill range, who is clearly Blade in everything but name. For obvious copyright reasons, the Musketeer version is just called Night Stalker but we all know who he really is. The figure comes in two parts, with the katana and right hand being a separate piece. I was glad of the photos on their website to show how the sword should be fitted, otherwise I would not have glued it in place behind his body. He is a very nicely sculpted figure. The weapon in his left hand is a sawed-off pump action shotgun. He has a row of silver stakes strapped to his left thigh and of course, he wears his cool looking wraparound mirror-shades. You can just make out his fangs, which I must admit, were a bitch to paint. It took me four attempts to get them right!
Much as I like the Night Stalker figure, I was even more impressed with the figure of Big Kris. Blade fans won't need telling that he is based on Kris Kristofferson's character, Abraham Whistler, Blade's mentor and weapons' technician. I truly applaud the decision to make a not-Whistler figure and it sure is a good likeness of him. Of course, the figure had to have his leg splint. I know all about them as my dad had to wear one recently after a fall which bust the tendons in his knee. It looks remarkably similar to the one worn by Big Kris. His weapon of choice is similar to Night Stalker's, although his shotgun is not sawed-off. I can see this figure getting a lot of uses. He'd make a great survivor character in ATZ.
Moving on, here are the three zombie figures that Musketeer Miniatures sell. At the far left is Brian the zombie. Sorry folks, it's not me! My name is spelt Bryan and besides, he looks nothing like me. If anything, he reminds me of Colin the zombie from the low budget English movie called Colin. (Memo to self, I ought to review that film here.) Brian is a teenage zombie dressed in the archetypal jeans, hoodie jacket and trainers. Note the crushed Cola can that I added to his base.  Brian has suffered some nasty injuries - half of his face has been ripped off, he's lost his left arm at the elbow and there is a hole just above his right knee.
In the centre of this group is Drew the zombie and he reminds me of a university student. He wears a sweatshirt and jeans. His long hair has been tied back in a ponytail and he sports a goatee beard, both good reasons for turning him into a zombie! A chunk of his right cheek has been chewed upon. He also has a large bite wound to his left arm and a cut to his left leg. There is nothing remarkable about him, but that doesn't make him a bad figure.
Finally, we come to what has to be the star of the show - zombie Gene Kelly! This truly is a unque figure amongst the horde of zombie miniatures! The very idea of turning Gene Kelly into a zombie would never have occured to me. So full marks to Hazel for originality. He is described on the website as "screaming in the rain" - a rather apt description, I think. Zombies are not noted for their singing ability, or dancing ability, come to that... unless you include the Michael Jackson Thriller zombies! I added a strip of pavement to his base using Milliput modelling putty. I wanted it to appear as if he had just jumped off the pavement onto the road. He has been wounded in all four limbs, although not too badly, but his head and body are still intact. Naturally, he is still carrying his umbrella. As soon as I saw this figure I knew that I had to have him.
All five figures are roughly 28mm scale and will fit in well with many other popular ranges in this scale. Night Stalker is the most expensive of the bunch at £3.50. Big Kris and zombie Gene Kelly retail for £3.00 each, whilst Brian and Drew are a very reasonable £2.00 each. These five figures are well worth checking out. I like all of them but I especially love Big Kris and zombie Gene Kelly.

4 comments:

  1. Nice job, Bryan. I ordered the zombies so its good to see them painted. I think they should have done at least 8.

    I have noticed a lot of companies are jumping on the zombie bandwagon. The oddest of all being Osprey putting out a zombie book later this year.
    I hope more companies put them out. There is always room for more!

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  2. I totally agree with you, Roger, more zombies would definitely have been a good thing. Let's hope that Hazel decides to add to the collection. I'm glad to hear that you've ordered them. I'm sure you won't be disappointed with them.

    I read about the Osprey book of zombies on the TMP Horror forum and had to check that it wasn't April Fools' Day! Nonetheless, I am intrigued by it and I'll almost certainly end up buying it.

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  3. Those two miniatures are a great find! If I didn't just make a pact (to myself) not to buy more lead before painting some, I'd pick them up in a second!

    -B

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  4. I know the feeling Brendan. I've just done a count and I have about 80 zombies to paint at the moment, plus there are far too many other figures waiting for a lick of paint. I too have made a pledge not to buy any more figures this month... and probably not next month either, but I'm sure my willpower will weaken the longer the month goes on. Ho -hum!

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