USAAF Fighter Pilot WWII - 8th Army (European Battlefields)
If you are looking to add a figure to your latest WWII fighter plane serving in the European theater, you may want to investigate the latest offering from the Aires Aerobonus line. The figure is posed climbing out of the cockpit of your plane of choice, with a thumb up to indicate a successful mission. With a little care in removing the parts from the pour plug, and some painting, this figure is an easy addition for most modelers to place in the plane of their creation.
The packaging for this figure is simple with a clear plastic bag containing the figure parts (body, arms, and two optional heads) as well as a folded sheet of paper that provides drawings of the assembled figure with both heads, and painting recommendations. The build was quick and easy, as the arms and head are set into position without issue. Optional heads are provided with either a leather-brimmed hat, or the soft cap. Although I preferred the leather-brimmed cap, I actually liked the facial features of the other head better.
Although the recommended color for the pants and shirt in the directions is olive drab, I opted to use khaki based on the photo references that I had available. Aside from Vallejo Leather Belt for the jacket with Andrea Dark Leather cuffs and waistband, I used base colors of Vallejo Dark Yellow, Off White, and Khaki as well as Lifecolor Pink and Olive Drab. I mention base colors, as I mixed paints to obtain colors for the lifejacket and straps and to add highlights and shadows where needed.
My hit of this figure is that it is nice to add a sense of scale to our models for the non-builders who enjoy looking at them. Think of it as an easy reference point for the person looking at your work that does not know the dimension of the real plane they are looking at in your scale representation. While working on my figure, he seemed a little short for some reason, so I did measure him with my scale ruler at one point to find that he is between 5 feet, 3 inches and 5 feet, 6 inches tall. I did not have any misses for this figure.
I would like to thank Aires for being gracious enough to provide this figure to the IPMS-USA for review! I also like to thank Dave Morrissette for his time and efforts in running the Review Corps as well as allowing me to perform this assessment. I also appreciate the folks behind the scenes in the Review Corps who keep the review machine running so well, and finally my most sincere appreciation to all who take the time to read this.