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Monday, January 21, 2019

A Pair Of Armiger Helverins

Hey there Chaos fanatics! Old Man Chaos (tm) is back with another astounding article here on Chaos Corner.

First off I wanted to say that I'm really liking the new (again) format of the White Dwarf. I like that it had some short stories (about Vigilus) and a revised Index Astartes for Crimson Fists, plus a nifty battle report, all of which I enjoyed quite a bit. I hope that each issue builds upon the success of this issue. Even my son enjoyed it!

At any rate, my wife (and son LOL) got me a box of Armiger Helverins for Christmas. just as my brother got me a Bloat Drone. I assembled and painted the Drone first, as it is something that I am quite familiar with. I have also painted a lot of Nurgle the past year or so, thus I went with the Drone and decided to wait on the Armigers.

Gotta start 'em young...
With the Drone finished, I immediately dove into the Armigers. I really like the model (though I wish it had some weapon options to vary up their look). They went together fairly quickly, and are also quite sizable. Now, they aren't as big as a Knight or something, but they are pretty hefty in their own right.

I feel like it has been quite a while since I painted anything Mechanicus. If my own blog is accurate, the last time I did Ad Mech was August 2017!! Holy Cow- but that is a very long time. No wonder why I was rusty with the color scheme- I had to look up my notes on the scheme I did so that I could recall the colors used!

Despite my foggy memory, I ultimately painted them the same as my other Mechanicus and Imperial Knight stuff. The basic armor plates was Steggadon Green, with alternating plates painted up Thunderhawk Blue. Russ Grey was then the highlight for the edging and such. The trim was Balthazar Gold with Hapshut Copper layered over that. The mechanical parts were Leadbelcher with a heavy Nuln Oil wash. This was followed by a very little Stormhost Silver highlight.

In keeping with what I have done with the Knights, I added some decals to their shoulder plates. I didn't care for the Armiger decal set, so I mostly used decals from the Knight and Admech decal pages, plus a small scythe from Imperial Guard tanks (my last of the small decals unfortunately).

The decals really bring the models together. They also make the Armigers truly look like the small cousins of the larger Imperial Knights. I really like the look of them together. Now all I need si the close combat Armiger Warglaives to complete the set lol.

Rule-wise, I think the Helverins ain't bad. With 2 x 2D3 autocannon shots doing 3 damage each, these things are clearly good against heavy infantry (terminators) and some vehicles. As long as you roll well, these things could be quite formidable. I have heard that they are good, though some people swear by the close combat Warglaives (again, reason for me to get some of those).

Well, that's all for now. I wont be back right away, as I have something very big I'm working on, and I am sure that it is going to take me time to assemble and paint. Should I tell you? Maybe just a hint you say? Oh, alright. It is big, and it is Imperial Knight related. There? That enough? LOL

Until next time...

Sunday, January 6, 2019

A New Bloat Drone Makes Three

Hey there my fellow Chaos lunatics. Old Man Chaos is back with a rather brief update. I got a couple of goodies from Santa for Christmas. I won't spill the beans on what they all are yet (as I need much more time to build and paint them). So I will show a model that I completed- a new Bloat Drone.

I got my third Bloat Drone from my brother as a Christmas present. So thanks to Steve I now have a trifecta of drones. I imagine that three of these buggers using their plague spitters is pretty lethal to most armies (D6 per spitter- each with 2 spitters). If you're rolling hot you can deal out a lot of damage (as long as you are within 9").  Ohhh... that makes me want to try them on the battlefield ASAP LOL.

So painting-wise, I painted him just like my previous Bloat Drones- Death Guard Green with liberal washes of Earthshade. Yes, Earthshade makes everything better. In Nurgle's case it makes models look nice and dingy.

As for the rust, I followed what I did with Typhus - I did dark browns followed by a stippling of orange and leadbealcher. It looks close enough to the other drones but I prefer it- the browns add a depth to the rusty parts.

The smoke I did tan with yellow washes. It keeps it consistent with the other models for Death Guard that have smoke (or whatever disease or gas) coming from them.

The drone's flesh I did differently from my previous drones. I did Kislev Flesh with successive washes of crimson. It looks like inflamed, diseased, irritated skin. I used Blood for the Blood God technical around some of the sores and gashes in the flesh.

So, thats my new drone. I now have a complete set. I can't wait to see them liquify things on the battlefield. Until next time...

Sunday, November 25, 2018

New Typhus and a New Plagueburst Crawler

Hey there Chaos fanatics. I know I've been missing in action for a while, but little children don't raise themselves you know- plus I'm busy at work too! I have had a lot less time to get my modeling and painting in.

I got a new Warlord Titan LOL

I've just had my birthday recently, and got several gifts from friends and family. My wife got me a new Plagueburst Crawler. Originally I wasn't a fan of the design, but it has since grown on me. I also think the rules for it need a bit of improvement (either make it ballistic skill 3 OR make the mortar 2D6 take the highest. A randomized weapon with a BS of 4 really sucks for the Death Guard).

However, the Entropy Cannons are lethal (again, if you get a 4+ BS), and I've discovered if you put a generic Chaos Lord there to babysit them you can re-roll 1s (so just avoid those 2s and 3s). If you are rolling hot, the Crawler is a very interesting tank, especially as its Daemonic and has Disgustingly Resilient to boot. Perhaps the Predator is a better option, but I do like this tank

At any rate, I built the model pretty quickly and wanted to do something to make it stand apart from the previous one I did . So I went to my bitz box and grabbed some Nurglings from the new Great Unclean One . At the time I wanted the model itself to stand out and not be distracted from by the Nurglings. So I had saved them. Now was my chance to use them.

I put two Nurglings on the spiked railings at either side of the tank. One looks like he is just sitting back relaxing as the tank moves forward, which I thought was amusing. The other Nurgling has a mace, ready to swipe at any enemy that gets too close to the Crawler. The third Nurgling was the one being stepped on bu the GUO, so he was kinda flat. Thus, he was the perfect size to place into the mortar of the Crawler. It looks like he is about to be fired at some unsuspecting foe. Again, it is amusing and goes with Nurgle's sense of humor.

I also took my time with the tank rust effects. I used dark browns, moving up to stippling brighter (Mornfang) browns, followed by stipplings of Ryza Rust and Leadbealcher. Thus the rust looks slightly different (and in my opinion better) than my previous tank.

All in all, I think this tank is better than my first. I really feel the Nurglings give the tank a bit of a story or joke. The tank really looks good, and while it looks similar to my previous one its just different enough to be an improvement. Now I need just one more LOL...

My friend Pete got me Typhus for my birthday as well. I didn't get the new Typhus when he came out last year as I already had my old Typhus. However, the old Typhus is very small compared to all the new Death Guard models. The Lord of Contagion is like a monster in comparison. In the end, I decided I wanted the new Typhus and put him on my Amazon list. Pete obliged and made him my birthday present.

I painted him Death Guard Green, with a healthy wash of Earthsahde to tone him down, followed by highlights of Nurgling Green. The plague vents were done with The Fang and darkened with the Earthshade as well. The blade of his Manreaper was done with the same rust technique I talked about above. I really think the blade really looks rusty- yes, I am proud of how that turned out.

So with Typhus done, I finished two painting projects. I am happy with how both came out. As it turns out, I felt the urgency to do these as I am playing a huge game this upcoming Friday. I wanted these two finished for the big birthday game. Nothing like a little motivation to keep the painting juices flowing. Now hopefully I can paint other stuff after the game whilst also raising my Titan, er, son.

Until next time...

Friday, July 27, 2018

Examining a Movie: Day of the Dead

Hey there my friendly neighborhood warp entities! Old Man Chaos is back in action just as I promised.

Almost a year ago, we learned of the passing of George A. Romero. While he was 77 years old and had lived a full life, I was very saddened when I saw it on my phone. If you have read this blog a bit you'll have noticed that Romero's dead films have a special place in my heart. Heck- my Plague Marines and Plague Zombies draw a lot of inspiration from those films!

I was lucky enough to have met Romero once. It was at NY Big Apple Convention at the Hotel Pennsylvania. This was I think in either fall 2005 or 2006 (I can't quite remember). Now this was before "Comicon" became the huge draw. There were plenty of smaller cons then (and now, but Comicon is obviously just huge). At any rate, George Romero was signing autographs. Naturally, I knew exactly what I wanted him to sign- a mini poster for Dawn of the Dead. When I finally got up to him I couldn't believe how tall he was. He was also very friendly and laid back. As he signed my poster I sheepishly asked him if there was going to be another Dead film after Land of the Dead (a film that I like quite a bit actually). He smiled and said something akin to "we shall see what happens". Now, he must have been asked that question 10 million times by every film and horror geek out there. But at no time did he show that. He was a friendly gentleman. Period.

Later in the Con, my brother and our friend Pete went outside to have a hot dogs and soda. While we were out there, Romero came out all by himself for a smoke. I wanted to go over and say "hey" but Pete was like "Let the man smoke in peace". Pete was right and so I left him alone. But it was awesome nevertheless.

The autographed mini poster is one of my most prized possessions. No, it has no certificate of authenticity. It is not numbered. Nor is it an original poster or something. None of that matters. This is special to me. It is now occupies a central place in my man-cave.

A while back, I did reviews of both NotLD and DotD, both as films and their interesting reflections on the times in which they were made. NotLD stands not just as a zombie film, but as a reflection of the uncertainties of a changing world (the 1960s), while DotD is a satire of our media and consumer obsessed society (the 1970s). It is those things for me that elevate the films beyond simple horror films. They have larger things to say about both history and the human condition. That makes them timeless.

After I watched Dawn of the Dead, I immediately sought out Day of the Dead on VHS. And immediately, I was disappointed. I really didn't like the film all that much. The movie lacked both the originality and action of the first two films. I recall watching it, hearing a lot of yelling and indiscriminate cursing, a fairly blood soaked finale, and then... a stupid ending. At the time, it was bland in comparison to the two that came before.

That was years ago, while I was in college. But of course, as one gets older, things change. A refined movie-viewing palette develops. New experiences and knowledge. Perhaps a growing amount of cynicism. But several years later when I revisited it I discovered that it was actually a powerful ending to the trilogy. Now some fans say Day is the best. I won't go that far. NotLD and DotD are superior films. But Day has a lot to offer, again about the human condition and the time period in which it was filmed. In previous reviews I went all out reviewing every nook and cranny of the movies. I won't do a beat for beat review here. Instead, I'll focus on some of the larger points that are threaded throughout the film and the trilogy as a whole.

Reaganism and the 1980s

Like the other two Dead films, this movie is an attempt at reflecting the times Romero was living in. This one is a bit different though, as it was made in the middle of the decade rather than at the end of a decade (which means he's commenting on things unfinished as it were). What exactly is he commenting on?

Well, in the 1960s America was going through a variety of identity crises- we were a changing nation in the 1960s, and NOTLD reflected the uncertainties of those changes. The 1970s saw America become helpless- ending of Vietnam, Watergate, Oil Crisis, etc. It also saw America become a lot more pessimistic and cynical.

The year 1980 became a bit of a turning point for America. The serious, though flailing, Jimmy Carter ran against Ronald Reagan, a Hollywood actor turned politician, promising to restore America via conservative programs. Reagan promised he would cut government spending, whilst increasing the size and power of the military. Trust Reagan, and he would solve the problems. Obviously, Reagan won that election.

At that point, "Reaganism" swept America. Liberals held Reagan in disdain, but also felt his vision was both flawed and dangerous. As Reagan increased the size of the armed forces, some Americans and Western Europeans alike thought he would unleash World War 3- massive protests were held in both America and Europe when Reagan wanted to deploy new missile systems in Europe. His rhetoric was also incendiary, calling the Soviet Union the Evil Empire. Finally (and importantly for this film), Reagan called upon scientists to create better (defensive?) weapons, such as the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI- popularly known as Star Wars).

But Reagan's pro-military stance did more than that. It permeated American culture. American films became more violent, more "gung-ho", if you will. Rambo was a popular hero, taking us back to Vietnam and "winning" it retroactively. On TV, cartoons such as G.I. Joe promoted both America's military and the idea that shooting is the answer to any problem. Jingoism was omnipresent in American pop culture.

This is the world of Romero that he is commenting upon in Day of the Dead. A small group of soldiers and scientists have been ordered to solve the "zombie problem". The soldiers are certain of their guns alright; however they are callous, crude, etc. Obviously Romero is criticizing Reagan militarism- for Rhodes, Steel, etc., shooting is the answer to the problem. The scientists don't escape Romero's criticism either, as embodied by the rather amoral but brilliant Dr. Logan. It is clear that Romero thinks that Reaganism isn't going to solve anything, but rather, make it all worse. Neither the soldiers nor the scientists can get us out of this jam, despite what Reagan says. Humanity's days are numbered, and not all the bullets in the world are going to change that.

Is It Just Me or Is Everybody Crazy?

Something that escaped me on first viewing but is now something obvious is that every single character but one is crazy. Yep. Batshit insane. All but one. This is what makes the film difficult to watch, as opposed to the previous Dead films. The world is effectively over- Zombies outnumber humanity by the hundreds of thousands to one. There is simply nothing left. All that's left of humanity might well be in that missile base. That the base is filled with trigger happy soldiers and oblivious scientists make it all the sadder and more pathetic.

As I said, the film must be understood from that point of view. Humanity is dead and the few stragglers are simply crazy. How could they not be? After all of this, how could they not be unhinged? Let's look at Rhodes for example. The death of his superior has put him in charge. Rhodes screams, he threatens, he yells, waves his gun, even at the most innocuous of things. If the zombie apoc hadn't happened he'd be a military prick blowhard. But since all went to hell, Rhodes is just about shattered, and it clearly shows.

Naturally, Dr. Logan (AKA Frankenstein) has also seen better days. It is obvious he is a smart man, but has lost touch with reality. He wants to understand the zombie problem- but at this stage what's the point? He is interested in their memories, and hopes to domesticate them, zombies like Bub. It doesn't seem to register that feeding Bub parts of dead soldiers might be a bad idea for many reasons. Nor does it register that there is no chance of actually solving the problem. Logan just seems interested in his macabre experiments, nothing more or less.

What about John, the chopper pilot? He seems sane on the surface, and he understands that there is no solving the zombie plague. His answer is that they should all forget the past (keep it buried in the silo he basically says) and just live their lives on an island some where How can one do that in the midst of hell on earth I'm not sure- hence I think John isn't too tightly wound either. His belief that the zombie plague is God's punishment against man doesn't make him sound any saner.

Surely the heroine and main character, Sarah, is sane. Again, on the surface she appears to be, but again this is not true. Sarah as it turns out truly believes that a solution can be found. That there is a way to reverse the effects of the zombie plague. She puts up with both Rhodes and Logan, hoping that a cure will be found. Despite her skills and demeanor, she is crazy if she really expects to end this. Her hallucinations/dreams show that she is falling apart as well.

No, the only sane character left in the entirety of the base is McDermott. Why? Because his solution is to drink booze. He is always wanting a drink from his flask throughout the film. He stays with John because he's the least insane and is a capable fighter (to protect McDermott). But the booze helps him cope with the situation- I think that's a rational response LOL. And if this lush is all humanity has left then you can appreciate Romero's sick sense of humor.

Is That Really The End?

One of the things that bugged me was that, once again, our main characters escape by helicopter, this time to a sunny island and Sarah, McDermott, and John live happily ever after. Night's ending was nihilistic, with all the main characters dead. Dawn's wasn't much better- they leave on a helicopter without much fuel left- they won't be getting too far. But this ending seems false- we leave it all behind just like John says and they're all OK?

Perhaps the ending IS false. As you will have noted, Sarah has been plagued by nightmares the whole time, earlier in the film. At the end, just before she gets into the helicopter, a zombie jumps out at her and then... she awakens on that beach. Suppose the zombie really did get her, and this last dream of a happily ever after is just that. It's not real. Her irrational mind is trying one last defense against the inescapable. If that is true, perhaps no one makes it out of that base after all. I do not know what Romero intended, but my hypothesis makes it fit better with Romero's other endings. (It still bugs me though).

At any rate, thus ends Romero's original Dead trilogy. Now he's gone on to make a few more Dead films, but they are all weaker efforts- even Land of the Dead, which I do enjoy, is not on the same level as these three. No contest. However, these three are secure, having originated a genre of film whose power today is undeniable. But it wasn't just blood and guts that made Romero's films. It was the subtext, the combination of real world issues in this apocalyptic setting that makes Romero's films worthy of being called "great". Day of the Dead, though not as strong as the previous two, continued that trend, if in a rather bleak and even more hopeless way (despite its "happy" ending). These three films are commentaries on the times in which they were made, and that makes them all the more unique and special.

Monday, July 23, 2018

In (Partial) Defense of The Last Jedi

Hello once again Chaos fanatics. Welcome back to another red hot edition of Chaos Corner. Sadly, I have no new 40K models for show today (and probably not for a while yet). So I have decided to do a bit of a rhetorical exercise, a "partial" defense of Star Wars The Last Jedi (TLJ). So away we go...

When my wife and I saw TLJ last December, my initial feelings could best be described as "underwhelmed". Not quite disappointed, but certainly not as thrilled as I was when I walked out of The Force Awakens. My wife and I saw it again and I appreciated it more, but the flaws of the film bugged me more as well.

There are some things about TLJ that are pretty bad. The Canto Bight thing is totally shoe-horned in there, at the expense of pacing, but worse, at the expense of ALL logic (if Finn's ship could go to hyperspace to GET TO that casino planet, why couldn't Leia and the others escape like that, or each ship goes to a different destination so Hux can't follow/trace them all, etc.). Sadly, Finn and Rose are wasted on this rather boring subplot. Furthermore, while I liked Poe's growth (what it means to truly lead), it came at a silly cost (why didn't Holdo just tell everyone the plan? This plot point would have worked better if they found out there was a spy aboard or something to make Holdo keep tight lipped about it, whilst making Poe paranoid and rash). I was thrilled to know that Leia could use the force, but floating through space was a bit much (and the effects looked too much like a similar scene in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1 for my tastes). Truth be told, Carrie Fisher's performance is one of the highlights of TLJ ("Dead heroes, but no leaders"), however her floating scene just doesn't sit right with me even now.

Despite those flaws, there are 3 huge positives- Kylo Ren, Ray, and of course, Luke himself.

Let's start with Rey. Some call her a "Mary Sue" for wielding the Force like a pro with absolutely zero training. I would agree, EXCEPT Luke did the same thing in ANH. What? Let's be honest, he knew Obi Wan for like 5 minutes but was suddenly able to use the Force to guide the shot blowing up the Death Star. Later, he trains with Yoda for like a week or something- hardly a lengthy curriculum. So there's that. Hence I discount "Mary Sue" when it comes to Rey.

Despite that debate, what I found compelling about Rey this time out is her search for "her place" (just as Kylo Ren is also seeking his place, more on that later). She is looking to Luke to help her find her place, who she is, why she can do what she can do, etc. Sadly, Luke has no answers for her. Now, this is where the filmmakers pull a doozy- Rey isn't a Skywalker. Or a Kenobi (stupid fan theory). Or anyone in particular. She is a nobody, coming from poor deadbeat parents from Jakku. This does two things: first, you don't have to be a Skywalker to wield the Force; second, its a great contrast to Kylo Ren, who was born in privilege (a Skywalker, son of the Rebellion's greatest heroes, etc). She has nothing but is intrinsically good, whilst he is born with everything and is simply bad. The fact that she is a nobody makes her relatable, and while it is a little sad, it is very realistic (after all, the characters cant all be related, right? Its a bigger galaxy than that). This is one thing I hope they don't "undo" for Episode 9.

Then there's Kylo Ren's equally complicated story arc. Kylo Ren starts the film being chastised and belittled by Snoke- Ren is told that he is "just a child in a mask", hardly the next Darth Vader. Thus, Ren begins to question all that he has done. He destroys his own mask in a fit of impotent rage, and it is clear he is filled with anger, and a lot of doubt (Snoke calling Hux a rabid "cur" certainly applies equally to Ren, and he knows it). Have all of his decisions led him to this? Surely he must be greater than this?

In Ren's next scene, when he is flying toward Leia's ship, he hesitates to shoot the bridge, knowing his mother is on board; again he doubts, just as he felt doubt in killing his father Han Solo. When the other First Order ship blows up the bridge instead, to Ren, Leia is dead. I think that several critics missed that idea- HE thinks Leia is dead, and thus his past is just about dead as well. It is time for him to bury the past (even though he will always be obsessed with it) and forge his own path to greatness. There is nothing- no love, no sentimentality- to hold him back.

Even though a lot of people complain about it, Ren's murder of Snoke fits Ren's arc perfectly. He must get out from under Snoke's shadow, and in doing so does something that even Vader could not do- he becomes the head of his new Empire (or whatever you want to call the First Order at this point). Thus Ren has surpassed the past, even as he claimed to "kill" it. Ren is now the number one threat to the galaxy, his greatness fully achieved. All he must do is get rid of the stragglers of the Resistance (he thinks his mother is dead, so he will feel no hesitation) and he will have achieved it all.

But, his anger and his (continued) obsession with the past blinds him when Luke confronts him. Ren lets his rage blind him to what Luke is doing (more on that in a bit). When that "confrontation" is over, Ren heads inside the old rebel base and finds- Han Solo's dice (another Force projection). Again, something that I bet a lot of viewers miss- by seeing those dice, Ren must surely realize that his mother was there, still alive! Imagine how he must be reeling knowing that he just missed his mother, that his past isn't as dead as he thought. (Sadly, the audience knew that Carrie Fisher died and the Ren/Leia confrontation will never happen. But think about it as if that wasn't the case... )

Finally, this brings us to Luke Skywalker himself. After RotJ, one would have expected everyone to have a happy ending. However, TFA shows that there is still no peace in the galaxy. None of our characters had a "happily ever after". What makes everyone think Luke would have? Whatever happened, he blamed himself and left everything behind. That was all we knew from TFA. We find out, more than we bargained for, in TLJ.

People have had enormous problems with Luke's behavior. First, some have said he was made cowardly by going away and hiding. I don't think I need to remind anyone that Obi Wan and Yoda both went into hiding, waiting for years before getting involved again. Luke is just following a Jedi tradition, if you will. I have no issue here.

Luke is obviously reluctant to jump in again, and tells Rey to "go away". His argument is VERY logical- would he jump out with his "laser sword" and fight the whole First Army war machine singlehandedly whilst blindfolded and jumping through the air? It is unrealistic for many reasons. But, as Luke's story unfolds, there are other, more personal reasons to not get involved.

Luke has many reasons to doubt the Jedi, his father, and himself in terms of their galactic legacy. He makes the case that the prequels tried to make (but couldn't quite figure out how)- that the Jedi, whatever their intentions, had become part of the problem. Subsequently, they have become romanticized figures, but Luke, knowing the truth of it, feels they are not nearly so worthy of veneration. "Failure" is their legacy, Luke says. Is he really wrong?

Finally, the issue that has divided the fanbase ever since- Luke's reaction to the growing power of Ben Solo. During his time training with Ben, Luke feels the darkness stirring within the young man, and, for the briefest of moments, contemplates killing him. I think it is akin to killing a young Hitler- do you kill an innocent child for the evil he may do one day? Luke can see that his nephew is enamored by tales of GrandpaVader (never thought I'd write that), and that he will travel down that path, ruining everything Luke and Leia accomplished. Who could stand aside and LET that happen? Surely such a scenario is a trap of the Dark Side of the force.

He is TEMPTED, but doesn't succumb to that trap. To those fans who say this is a poor way to handle Luke, I have two responses. First, Luke was sorely tempted to kill Vader in ROTJ. Look at the end battle of ROTJ- Luke is enraged, and violently hacks his father's hand off. Luke is certainly about to perform the death blow, but stops just short of the abyss. He will not do this- he will not murder. His actions toward Ben are similar. He is tempted, but doesn't commit the act- thus Luke is certainly consistant. Second, some say that he resisted the Dark Side in ROTJ, and thus shouldn't be so tempted again. Says who? Who said that its a one and done thing? Sure, Luke passed the test in ROTJ. But the future? The future is always in question. Temptation can rear its ugly head again, and no one, not even Luke, is a saint, forever perfect. Luke was tempted, didn't fall into it, but the damage was done. Or was Ben going to go bad no matter what, and this was just the convenient nudge? Truthfully it doesn't matter. Luke blames himself, rightly or wrongly, and runs away from everything.

Now here is what I consider the best part. Luke now realizes that he must learn from his failure and come back to the galaxy. But Luke has sworn to never wield a Lightsaber again. But Leia, the Resistance, and indeed "all hope" is about to be extinguished by Kylo Ren. Luke does something we have never seen a Jedi do- a realistic force projection of himself to Crait and the battlefield. Now, we have never seen a Jedi do that before- such is Luke's power. But the best part of this is- he doesn't actually fight. He turns Ren's rage against him, buying time for the Resistance to escape. Luke does this without bloodshed, without anger. In my opinion, Luke knows this will cost him his life, but the cause is the right one. Luke will save his sister, he will save "hope". Indeed, Luke's "fighting without fighting" is an action that FEELS so true to the Jedi principles, more true than any previous Jedi action in any of the films. Luke is using the force for "defense", not attack. Luke tricks the Dark Side, and saves the light without anger or violence. Luke's explanation to Ren gives me chills whenever I watch it "The rebellion is reborn today. The war is just beginning. And I will not be the last Jedi". Powerful stuff in my opinion.

There are many problems with TLJ. Pacing is a problem. The Canto Bight subplot is a problem. Some of the humor is a problem. However, I would argue that the main through line of Luke, Leia, Kylo Ren, and Rey is strong, worthy of the best of the Star Wars films. The trick is sifting through the weak stuff to get to the good stuff. In that way its like the Prequels, but unpredictable. I do not know where TLJ will ultimately fall in the pantheon of Star Wars. There is a lot of hate for it right now (some legitimate criticism, some just crazy). But there are defenders of it as well. Only time will tell, depending on how Episode 9 deals with this. Some hope that Ep 9 will reverse all of the big things that happened in Ep 8. I HOPE they double down- Rey is a nobody, Snoke is DEAD, Kylo Ren is the new Emperor, etc. Let this stuff have the opportunity to stick. It is worthwhile, and if Ep 9 can keep this while adding to it, this "sequel trilogy" will be successful.

PS- Carrie Fisher's untimely death certainly impacted how people viewed TLJ. IF she lived to be in Ep 9- the climax to 8 would be stronger in that Luke saves Leia for a future "confrontation" with her son. But, in real life we know she won't be in Ep 9, making Luke's act seem almost futile. Something to ponder...

Until next time...

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Old Man Chaos Where Have You Been????

Hello there once more Chaos fanatics. I know that I have been away for quite some time. You don't want excuses, so I'll give you the facts. My wife and I recently had a baby boy (well, she did the work and I got the co-credit LOL).

This is a brief post to let everyone know why I have been MIA. With summer around the corner I plan to blog when I can- as well as paint when I can, as well (Oh- how I want that new Knight).

I'll post again soon. I promise.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

The New Great Unclean One

Hey there Chaos fanatics! Old Man Chaos is back with a new look at my finished Great Unclean One (just like the title says duh). Let's take a look...

How long I have waited for this model. I have been hoping for a plastic Great Unclean One since they did the plastic version of the Bloodthirster. While the 'Thirster was a tremendous re-envisioning of what came before, the GUO isn't nearly as radical a change. Indeed, his form is more of a natural evolution rather than a major overhaul.

My friend Joe says that he is unimpressed with it, as it looks not unlike the Forgeworld GUO (forgettting his daemon name at the moment). But to me that's the point. They all tend to look like Nurgle himself (check Nurglings... they look like micro GUOs). This model looks exactly how it should- boils, maggots, slimy tentacles, and of course huge open wounds. There is no mistaking what this model is.

I should also comment that the thing is as big as a house. While not the size of a Knight or something it will likely be the biggest single thing on an average battlefield. It is clear that he's "large and in charge" as it were. Certainly a sight to see in a game of 40K that's for sure.

For his skin, I sprayed him Death Guard Green then I did successive washes of Earthshade (heaver in some places than others). Then I highlighted some of the folds with Nurgling Green to make them stand out a bit. The boils I did with yellow and a wash of Earthshade over that to make them duller and dirtier looking.

The wounds / guts were outlined in flesh tones to make their edges stand out from the rest of the model. Then I painted the wounds with screamer pink and then some khorne red. Finally, on the muscles I added some brighter pink to differentiate the muscle strands a bit. The guts I decided to keep dark red, as it contrasts with the rest of the model. Naturally I put the Blood for the Blood God technical on, but used it sparingly.

The tentacles I decided to do purple. Purple and green go together nicely, so I figured why not. Speaking of, I made the GUO look the way I wanted- a big sword but with the sorcerer's (Rotigus') arm- I thought the dagger was stupid, and I just didn't want a flail. If I ever did another I'd do the bell- I like the idea, but since I'm only likely to have one I decided to go with my top choice.

Overall, a very impressive model. I am quite pleased with it. I was also pleased by my paint job. I still feel that my Bloodthirster is still my best. However, it is certainly clear that this thing is the leader of my hordes of Nurgle Daemons.

Though Joe is right about one thing- it is a bit bigger than the forgeworld GUO, but not by a lot. That means that I have two GUOs. I should make up a story about the "Brothers of Ruin" or something like that lol. I wonder how a game with two of these things would go...

Until next time...