Colonel Schaeffer’s Last Chancers – “Brains” and “Shiv”

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Brains" and "Shiv"

After really quite enjoying the process of plucking unpainted models out of the tub of unpainted survivors and just getting them from based to completed quickly, I decided I’d like to paint up a couple more of my Imperial Guard Schaeffer’s Last Chancers box that came out way back in 1999. I painted Warrior Woman back in Febuary, and I figure it’d be nice to paint the entire box of models before the end of this year, especially as they’re nice characterful models and would probably work in games like Kill Team, or even Stargrave, etc.

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Brains" and "Shiv"

So I plucked this pair. For painting reference, I checked out the official box art to see what GW had done, and then took liberties from there. Shiv’s outfit seemed fine enough, so I didn’t deviate a whole lot, though I wanted to give his skin a pale, somewhat sickly pallor – because, you know, just look at him! It hasn’t come out all that well in the photos, unfortunately, but it’s there.

Shiv, on the other hand clearly has a Native American inspiration, given his outfit and the box art so I went with a more tanned skin tone, though I skipped most of the colourful aspects of the original – figuring that one bracelet was enough colourful bling for an outdoorsy Imperial Guard Regiment

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Brains" and "Shiv"

Amusingly/Depressingly, while doing my googling to figure out what the names of these models were, I found myself on Reddit where a person who identified themselves as Native American who wrote about how he likes this model since he felt it was clear representation for his culture was roundly put in his place by some (presumably white guy) who told him in no uncertain terms that the model is an unacceptable and offensive caricature. (following that guy, I found he also posts on /sigmarxism, so there ya go…) I mean, there’s your white entitlement – having the arrogance and gall to tell other people how they should think about their own representation… and I’m a “fucking leftie”. Just one with a brain and an understanding of irony and nuance…

So anyway, I’m not going to speak for anyone but myself, but this model seems pretty tame, as really only the hair and fringes/tassels potentially mark him as descended from any particular culture. He’s not wearing a long feathered headdress or sculpted in a “war dance” pose, and the headband has cultural overtones while also being pretty IG-generic over the years. Aside from the whole “Dirty Dozen” thing, I think the model’s sculpt was most influenced by the Perry Twins’ love of History and Historical miniatures – something that became even more apparent since then with some other LC models I’m still painting…
Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Brains" and "Shiv"

Anyway, people on the internet being offended by everything aside, this was really an enjoyable pair of models to pluck out of the leadpile and work on from start to finish – a nice break from all the Zombicide Survivors, but also models that I would not have just grabbed to paint if I wasn’t on such a roll of getting interesting and different models painted due to those same Zombicide models.

20 thoughts on “Colonel Schaeffer’s Last Chancers – “Brains” and “Shiv”

  1. Cracking minis mate, I love how you’ve dealt with them. Minis of this age are what they are & riff on all kinds of cultures and stereotypes, none are intended to be hurtful. I’d be quite pleased if my culture was represented in miniature form by a hard AF dual-wielding knife fighter!!

    Liked by 5 people

    • Thanks Alex! As you’d well know, WHFB and 40k have always stolen/been inspired from multiple sources across history and pop culture so as long as it’s done tastefully, then I don’t see a problem.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent painting mate, you’ve given both a lot of character with the colours and attention to detail. I always felt that the last chancers were a reflection of the crew from the original Predator movie just morphed to fit in the 40K realm, but that’s just my opinion.
    As for the comments, I thought it was great that an actual native American thought it was a good representation of his people, as for the keyboard warrior comment, I’ll ignore !

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thanks Dave – they were very much inspired by Major Dutch Schaefer’s predator crew as well as the Dirty Dozen and more broadly a few other historical and WWII tropes – because Perry Twins!
      I think it’s good that someone of NA descent liked the model, but after seeing the woke warrior’s behaviour I just had to vent here.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Cheers, IRO. The set is certainly one that’s worth picking up. I think GW may have offered it again with their “Made to Order” range a couyple of years ago, so it might come up again at almost-retail as opposed to needing to pay eBay prices…

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh, my. As I was reading I was going to celebrate how cool was it that a Native American felt proud and identified with the mini, but then… wow, what a bummer 😦 The word “sigmarxism” (which I had never heard of before) made me chuckle, I have to say.
    Anyway, painting wise, I love your work on both minis, you got them right and they look gorgeous.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Cheers Pete. I think they may have offered themn as a Made To Order set a couple of years ago, but either way they’d be something worthwhile for GW to offer again!


  4. Pretty cool. Personally I like the Native American one the best. And yea, people on the internet are just crazy. That’s why more and more I steer clear of social media, because that’s a whole nother cesspool!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Yeah, it’s a shame since twitter and reddit and such have a lot of potential as places to see cool and inspirational pictures of models – but there’s too much crazy on both sides of the political spectrum there, and even stuff you agree with is served in a matter to create emotional reactions because of the design of social media and “engagement”.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. While I have issues with suspension of disbelief of a Native American in 40k, there is nothing that offends me about one being included. I heard the term “virtue signaling” relatively recently to describe the kind of behavior well-intentioned people on the left have and while I don’t think it entirely applies here, the mindset that YOU need to get directly involved and tell people what is right and wrong is really frustrating and troubling. It does way more harm than good, sadly as is the case with what you saw on Reddit. With all that said, great job on these minis and I’m glad you knocked a couple more classic ones out too 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • I’ve always seen the huge, open design of 40k as being deliberately designed to include pretty much whatever you can think of. It was more explicit in these terms before they started releasing plastic scenery and from that beginning to homogenise the “look and feel” of Imperial worlds.
      Looking at the old IG regiments, they riffed on things like Vietnam/Rambo, Soviet WWII, German/French WWI trench fighters, “modern” troops, US army uniforms from 1905-ish/USMC dress uniforms, and North African Arabs (and T.E. Lawrence).
      It’s only in more recent years that nonwhite figures have been represented much in their painted box models beyond “that figure” which is explicitly of this or that (pseudo)ethnic type – which is a positive move.
      We’ll have to agree to disagree on the VS nature of the guy whose posts I was reading, but given it was a series of posts and such on the topic, I’m pretty satisfied with my call on it – though I don’t think VS is inherently especially well-intentioned at this point in time. I feel it’s more for dopamine hits from scoring internet points via “likes” and the satisfaction of telling people how they should feel/think (ie, power fantasy) similar than it is for achieving anything meaningful outside of the bubble of twitter/socials/etc.
      I agree that it creates more harm then good because many people who would otherwise agree with those people on many issues instead are driven off by “internet woke” people’s quest for “purity.”
      Here’s a good read (or listen – I think it’s on Audible) on a related topic.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I like that the old Warhammer was so open and had a little bit of everything in it. I wouldn’t mind if GW did more of that in the future though I feel like they support a lot of factions now across their games I can’t complain too much.

        Maybe I judged the conversation you saw a bit harshly and I didn’t read it truthfully (so I’m just as bad as the rest of the unwashed masses on the internet) but I’ve observed as a fellow leftist that people who do VS or are just too pushy with their otherwise just causes, are turning people off and causing a pushback (which you can see in the US in recent years). It seems like we’re of a similar mindset in this regard. Truthfully, I don’t get on Reddit or Twitter much at all because I don’t think they’re all that positive of spaces and I don’t enjoy using them either so what do I know! I appreciate the recommendation, mate. That looks like a good read to me so I’ll have to give it a go! I find public shaming to be a waste of time so I imagine there’s plenty I can learn about why it is so popular these days.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Uh, I think I’m the one being harsher on the guy who was being a dick? Unless we got our wires crossed. I do agree that it causes a pushback and you end up with a situation where holier-than-thou virtue-signalling woke dickheads call anyone not in lockstep with them facists or nazis or some other nonsense, based on social media posts with little to nothing to do with real world actions. I despise people like that, and think they cause more harm than help to progressive causes, while (usually) doing little more than posturing on social media rather than doing something in the real world to help make change. I think a lot of people who identify as being on the moderate right would actually have a lot more in common with people on the moderate left in terms of social issues, equality and so forth if the fuckheads on social media (and some mainstream) weren’t so invested in keeping everyone divided and at each others’ throats across a keyboard.
        Divide and conquer.
        Fucking sheep.


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