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Atlantic

Set 108

Seamen

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All figures are supplied unpainted    (Numbers of each pose in brackets)
Stats
Date Released 1973
Contents Varying number of pieces
Poses 11 poses
Material Plastic (Medium Consistency)
Colours Blue
Average Height 21 mm (= 1.51 m)

Review

Naval figures are a fairly rare event (discounting marines), and most depict subjects before the 20th century. Back in the 1970s when this set was made it was pretty much the only one, and is still the only one we are aware of dated to the post-war era. As with all in this range, these figures are generic navy personnel and primarily toys, yet such a set, if done well, could be of value to serious modellers today.

The 11 poses are quite a mixed bunch, and you wouldn't usually consider placing them all together. The first two are men on parade, with the officer wearing a sash over the left shoulder and his ceremonial dagger hanging from his belt. Three of the poses are sitting, intended to man guns or the very small boats found in the companion Navy set. Apart from the signaler the rest have the appearance of marines as they carry small arms and wear life jackets. They wear helmets which rather limit their use for earlier periods, but the men in soft caps have much more potential for being utilised in a more historic setting.

The poses are not a particularly useful bunch. The Atlantic tendency to have lots of arms up in the air for no good reason is much in evidence, and we seriously wonder at the likelihood of a sailor of the 1970s using a telescope. The seated figures are perhaps closest to being useful, although even there it is hard to see how - one of them is holding a pistol while another holds what appears to be a microphone or lamp. It will come as no surprise that the man in the top row using semaphore flags is not holding them in any recognised pattern - perhaps to be charitable we should assume he has been immortalised part way through moving his hands to a correct character. Also his flags are triangular - not impossible, especially in an emergency, but highly unlikely as square flags are used under normal circumstances.

Although the Modern series appeared over several years they all have some common characteristics, the most obvious being their rather malnourished look, in which respect this set is better than most of its companions. These were made in HO (1/87) scale, so they look puny when placed next to the Revell German Navy figures, but making such a comparison also highlights the wide gulf between them in terms of quality of production. Our examples had a great deal of flash at most points where the moulds met, and as usual large circles disfigure their backs.

These figures are over 40 years old now, and it can be said that it is cruel to compare them with the best standards today. That may be so, and yet to this day no comparable set has yet been made, so there is no real competition for anyone wanting seamen of the period. It isn't hard to be the best when you are the only one, but this set leaves much to be desired and certainly allows room for a much better set to be produced, both to improve on its quality and because it is itself now very rare.


Ratings

Historical Accuracy 8
Pose Quality 4
Pose Number 8
Sculpting 5
Mould 4

See Also
Atlantic Navy

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