Colonel Schaeffer’s Last Chancers – “Grease Monkey” and “Hero”

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Grease Monkey" and "Hero"

Another pair of Last Chancers up today for July, and we have another pair of models that couldn’t possibly offend anyone at all, ever. “Grease Monkey”, who is a vehicle driver guy, and “Hero”, who for some reason I always thought was some sort of disgraced Commissar type, as he’s always painted in a black outfit. So when I started working on this pair, as with all “individual” models, I started looking closely at Grease Monkey, deciding what colours to paint and where and when doing so, I began to notice details… his hat has a bit of a familiar style, with the roundel badge, and then the Y-harness on his back. Yes, this model is (loosely) based on a WWII German tanker.

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Grease Monkey" and "Hero"

So with that realisation, I decided to give him an overall scheme that fit in with my 15mm Afrika Korps. So with that, he got little details like dark pink Waffenfarbe piping on his collar and crusher cap, brown leather accoutrements, a 15th Panzer Division icon on his shoulder along with a tank IS number, and the overall uniform colour being appropriate for DAK tank crew. A paler European-looking flesh rather than a tanned flesh to represent him mostly being inside tanks – not exactly realistic for someone wearing the uniform of a desert force, but as I’ve said previously – I want to have a diversity of flesh tones in this little group.

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Grease Monkey" and "Hero"

“Hero” on the other hand… I feel like he may be more correctly called “Hiro”. I noticed while looking hard at the model that his facial characteristics looked Asian. That made sense, given how the other models in this set had elements of different nationalities. The sheathed Katana now had a more specific ken to it. Now I’m not nearly as familiar with WWII Japanese Uniforms as many others, but again, a little googling showed that many of the elements looked quite familiar when looked at through this specific lens – so with this in mind, I now had my colour scheme. This also informed my choice of flesh tone – looking for a warmer tanned tone, I used Vallejo Game Colour Elf Skintone as the base. Of course, the official ‘eavy Metal paintjobs of the day had the entire unit painted as Whitey McWhiteface – as was the style of the time.

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Grease Monkey" and "Hero"

I decided I didn’t need to add a bunch of bloodstains to Grease Monkey’s bandages, though I do have the option of doing that down the line if I change my mind (or paint another one of these down the line!) The german tank numbers worked out surprisingly well on the model, so that’s also something I might keep in my back pocket for other 40k models of different kinds down the line. Hiro’s weapon furniture was painted in a basic rifle “wood” brown to fit in with the IJA theme, while Monkey’s pistol didn’t really need the same attention, though I would likely have painted his weapon differently if it were a rifle.

Colonel Schaeffer's Last Chancers - "Grease Monkey" and "Hero"

So yeah, it ws quite surprising to me when I looked much more closely at these two to see that they’re actually both based on WWII Axis troops. I’m pretty sure that the remainder are all more generic, with the exception of one who I think is meant to be an Aussie – though I haven’t looked closely at the Colonel himself – and given the fact that he doesn’t look anything like Ahnold – he may turn out to be another xx-inspired model once I take that closer look – but that cap does look like it could be German!

17 thoughts on “Colonel Schaeffer’s Last Chancers – “Grease Monkey” and “Hero”

  1. Super painting, as always, and I appreciate reading the level of thought that you put into each of the minis you paint. I wonder if there is a story somewhere in GW HQ about why the change from Hiro to Hero.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you! Given the period when it happened every model in the GW stable was simply painted as a white guy, and I can completely understand wanting to remove any overt references to the IJA or IJN (or Wehrmacht – we were getting towards 5+ years away from stahlhelm Orcs by now!) in their published materials of the time, so the official paintjob has him painted as a white dude, and the coat in black – hence me always having thought that he was supposed to be a disgraced commissar or something from the pics….

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I guess with Krieg being inspired by WWI, it makes sense to see some WWII influences show up somewhere too. These two came out well and I think this squad is going to look great when they’re all done. I like how you’re varying the skintone on each model. That should help set them apart and highlight the personality of each one.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Interesting back story there. I don’t know enough about old GW minis, but I do recall the stahlhelm Orcs and I mainly thought they were inspired from biker gangs! The two turned out looking really nice. I think I would have been scratching my head on how to paint up a lot of the bits on them, but you aced them!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Some of the first ones definitely had the stereotypical biker gang look of the day involved, but even some of those first orks also had stielhandgranates to alongside their stahlhelms, and then the first range of Stormboyz of late 1e/2e were also painted with jackboots and in grey uniforms…. 😶

      Liked by 1 person

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