Last modified: Saturday, February 7, 2009 6:57 PM

Darth Deimos

Happy New Year, Y'all.



Darth Deimos/PhobosDarth Phobos If you've played the Wii version of Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, you may recognize this as being a rip-off of the "Darth Phobos" character. When I encountered her in the game, I took notice... which is probably a natural male reaction to encountering deep cleavage surrounded by a push-up bra with industrial strength underwiring. Reference photos were pretty scarce, and game consoles don't allow for easy screen captures. Photographing the TV screen seemed like the only way to get slightly better reference shots.

Some parts of her outfit looked easy to translate to doll format, but others not. From the photo, it's clear that her shoulders are bare skin; this is basically incompatible with the way that hard-bodied articulated dolls are constructed. That set the course for this project as an "inspired-by" piece; hence the name, "Darth Deimos" (Mar's other moon, meaning "dread").

That set the path for other liberties to be taken. Another difficulty was her coarse, blue hair. The coarseness is probably just a computer modeling thing, but I found it difficult to find a material that replicated the look. I considered several materials, like coarse plastic doll hair and thin strands of hemp, but neither looked right. I ended up using black mohair because it was manageable; it looked good plastered back from her forehead and had the proper volume for that "blown back" look. I left it longer since I liked the look, and didn't mind it being black instead of blue. (That's the liberating aspect of doing "inspired by".)

Unfortunately, I gutted a BBI Perfect Body figure before realizing that they had "improved" the design with ratcheting shoulder hinges-- way too much trouble to salvage. I therefore started over with a Dragon female figure, one that had come with a hideously oversculpted and overpainted Jennifer Garner (?) head. The Dragon female body, while oddly-proportioned, does have high-quality elbow and knee hinges. The Dragon figure has a weird ankle ball socket-- I don't trust those for their lack of tweakability, but I thought I would give it a go, since the design does give the foot some additional poseability and they're easy to remove, which would be important with this doll's weird feet. The left ankle ball loosened slightly during the construction, but made it to the end in acceptable condition.

The hands were less than ideal too-- the single axis proprietary design seems inferior to the design of the vintage-style GI Joe (VSJ) hand, but they were reasonably-sized and soft enough to be pinned so that their posing could be altered. Since they'd be covered by armour and costuming, the odd articulations seams would be hidden, and adding a secondary swivel wouldn't confer any benefit.

Darth Phobos Deimos The body was gutted and converted to an elastic-tensioned VSJ scheme, with underboob articulation. Since very little skin shows, I really didn't need to do the whole body treatment, but I did about 90% of it (with rudimentary finishing of her shins and feet, no nipples).

I hadn't yet made the underlying part of her outfit when I was making the armour. The armour was cut, crudely shaped, pounded out and fitted over the naked body-- but it's hard to see how all the separate pieces fit together until they're glued to the outfit. By that time, I realized that there were some notable inaccuracies, but decided that it didn't matter since she wasn't intended to be Darth Phobos.

I initially assumed that the underlying outfit would be made of some kind of thin, stretchy purple fabric. I played around with that for a while, but wasn't really satisfied: The tummy reveal needed to have stiffer edges or it would curl. I happened to have some recycled leather stuff from some dolls I'd recycled, and knew that leather could be painted. Thin leather does have some flex, and would be a more substantial base for the armour pieces. Leather also proved to be a good unifying material to use for the arm bracers (thicker leather) and the neck/shoulder coverings. I think the black leather looks okay, so I haven't decided whether I want to paint it with violet interference paint.

Darth Phobos is only barely "canon", but I found some Wiki stuff, which identified her as being of the Theelin species. From a few pics of her and other Theelins, I figured out that she should have weird, hoof-like feet. I thought the camel toes looked dumb, so I sharpened them a bit. Raptor claws seem more appropriate for a malevolent, fighting creature and she's got one one at the rear of each foot.

Darth Deimos/Phobos

Small incremental changes, and more to come: That's what makes customizing so gratifying, and such a "live" hobby. No project is ever done unless you lose interest, and you can always come back to it later... or you can recycle it for another project.




Just Fer Grins... and while I'm doing the ersatz Force Unleashed thing, this one's a very recycled oldie, outfitted in a recently-acquired Triad wetsuit, DID German riding boots and a Sideshow Commander Praji cap. It's a nostalgic indulgence of sorts: The headsculpt is from the very first transgenderized GI Joe I made, seen elsewhere in this site in various roles; as a demon lady with white eyeballs, looking Nazi-ish, and lastly, wearing a leather miniskirt, brandishing big guns. The headsculpt is a simple alteration of the vintage GI Joe headsculpt, which may account for it looking slightly masculine & transvestite-y (not that there's anything wrong with that!). It just shows ya what a little bit of lipstick will do.

It's kind of hard to ignore the pervy full metal jacketed nipples-- I swear, they didn't look like that before, so it must be Triad's super-stretchy wetsuit! I reckon it's stretched a little beyond its safety zone, but the suit appears to be up to the challenge.

The DID leather boots are really neat, although a little bulky at the top for a wetsuit (I'm curious about whether the New Line brand of leather boots would fit better?). I think leather boots look much better than rubber ones and signify yet another bar-raising standard in 1:6th scale stuff. Unfortunately, when you swap out a pair, it makes the other guys' rubber boots look funky... and swapping them all out could get kinda 'spensive!

Like Darth Deimos, this isn't an attempt to make Juno Eclipse from The Force Unleashed. That character is blonde, but I prefer redheads.... Basically, I borrow the ideas that I like, and leave the ones that don't interest me. I'm not really interested in making the Juno Eclipse character (Galen Marek's love interest, etc.) because she belongs to the already-told story, but do like her overall "look".

Juno Eclipse's outfit is multi-piece: tight pants, a low-cut top and a short unbuttoned Imperial-ish jacket. The point of it seems to be to expose her curves and cleavage, and the wetsuit does that in a more direct way. In my opinion, the overall effect is quite similar; they're both naughty takes on an Imperial theme. However, I think the riding boots, gauntlet gloves and wetsuit give a more domineering edge, pushing it into the domain of "Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS". Same as she ever was...