Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The Scarlet Viper from Battlestar Galactica : The Second Coming

Ever wondered where the concept of the Scarlet Viper came about? When I first saw this design, initially I thought it was something a fan created, a variant of the MKI Viper we already know of. It was cool, radical and intimidating.

This Scarlet Viper was build by Sherlock Holmes aka Gil Brumana

Before long, I found the resin conversion kit for her. It was from Millenia Models International (MMI) and though I was tempted to get her, I figured well, it is after all a fan's design, not canon, so I opted to wait for a while. How wrong I was. By the time I found out where this nifty fighter came from, the conversion kit was already out of production. Missed her by a mile.

This was Captain Apollo's new radical Viper in an attempted project to resurrect the Battlestar's franchise, before the Re imagined Galactica came to be. Richard Hatch who played the original Capt. Apollo, executive produced and co-directed a half hour segment, and a four minute trailer to be used in lobbying for a continuation of the popular original series (that's not counting Galactica 80) under the new concept. The intention was no doubt to impress Universal Studios.

The following is my shameless plagiarism from wikipedia about the effort

Richard Hatch was able to get many stars from the original series including Richard Lynch (in place of Patrick Macnee as Count Iblis), John Colicos (Count Baltar), and Terry Carter (Colonel Tigh, now President of the Quorum of Twelve) to appear in the film. Hatch himself also reprised his own role of Apollo (now Commander of the Fleet).

The finished edit of Battlestar Galactica: The Second Coming had a running time of thirty minutes in length. A four minute trailer was later assembled from this thirty minute version and state of the art computer generated special effects were added. The rare thirty minute version of the pilot film has never been shown publicly.

Mr. Hatch wasted no time promoting the series, by first showing her at DragonCon at Atlanta, and then via various Science Fiction Conventions, garnering positive feedback and support. Unfortunately Universal Studios decided to opt for Ron Moore's version called Re-Imagined Battlestar Galactica.

I was quite impressed when I saw the trailer. I hear Mr. Hatch is still trying to push for the original series's revival and to be honest, after seeing the re-imagined version, if he succeeds, he needs to radically change a lot of the designs and story plot to remake the original series all over again.

Here's the trailer in case you haven't seen it.

Battlestar Galactica: The Second Coming (1999 Su-Shann Productions)

Here's a review of the Scarlet Viper MMI Conversion Kit by Sal Bravo

What You Get
The kit consists of 32 urethane resin parts and the instruction sheet. Included are:
  • 3 replacement wings (dorsal, left & right),
  • 3 wingtip turbo-lasers,
  • 2 laser cannons,
  • 1 trio of main atmospheric scoops,
  • 3 gaseous matter intakes,
  • 3 turbo thruster exhaust inserts,
  • 3 turbo thruster nozzle extensions,
  • 2 side scoops,
  • 2 sensor pods,
  • 1 forward atmospheric scoop,
  • 1 filler plug and
  • 8 optional detail parts

And here's how the modified Revell kit would look with the conversion parts.

I'm hoping MMI would re-pop this conversion kit again. I'm definitely getting me a set if this becomes available.

1 comment:

  1. Well, this was one of the conversion kits I wanted too. I was so nice, and a more logical evolution compared to the DeSanto.