Saturday, January 23, 2010

The Steampunk doll project - the adventure begins!

Okay, Casey's Minis blog finally got me off my butt to getting together my dolls, and since I'm off this weekend (hooray!), I finally get to play! I've been wanting to make some steampunk dollies but it's taken me awhile to finally decide which dolls would be in the story.

The background? It's 1866 - a second Great Exhibition has been mounted in London, and all the world turns out, including the Americans. The events of the anime "Steamboy" kinda/sorta happened, as did certain events in the novel "The Difference Engine" (namely that the difference engine and analytical engine were both built and propelled the world into an early internet...)

In MY universe, however, there are female scientists (thanks to a successful early feminist movement - why should the boys have all the fun?) However, the Martian invasion is 30+ years into the future as are the events of "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" movie (more on this later.)

Doctor Athena Parnassos ("Doc A") and Doctor Edward Rudolf ("Doc Rude" - not a nickname he likes) are members of S.I.M.P. - Scientists and Inventors Making Progress, one of the world's most exclusive scientific societies.

Doc Athena is of mixed European heritage - Greek, Italian and English. She's one of the world's foremost computational analysts. She's wearing the latest fashion by Dollymop (snerk) which scandalously shows off her legs and ankles. I wasn't trying to make Athena the typical steampunk girl outfit with scanties and corset, but she insisted on something feminine. Her pink overskirt, white jacket, mesh skirt and purse are Barbiewear, but the ruffleed skirt and "sleeves" came from a cloth angel I got at the thrift store. Her "hat" came from another thrift store ornament doll. She is an I-Girl doll, the zookeeper who came with a panda.

Doc Rudolf is of German descent, by way of the American West. In addition to being a crack shot with a Colt .45 (from a thrift store grab bag) and a Winchester rifle (not shown), he's one of the world's top inventors. He's wering a suede vest from OpsToys (which I'm not sure is still around), a Ken shirt, and G.I. trousers from one of the historical soldiers. He is a G.I. Joe himself, one of the Real Heroes dolls.

Both dolls were chosen because they're articulated and great for posing. Doc Rudolf can actually stand up by himself!

Shoes, however, are going to be a problem.

Athena: Must you wave that pistol around? Rudolf: Not waving it; merely displaying my kung fu grip!

Anyway, my Steampunk world is going to be of various elements from the old and the new with one exception - I LOATHE the Alan Moore "League of Extraordinary Gentlemen" comics. He's sexist and violent and disgusting. He's not even original - Phillip Jose Farmer was already using Doc Savage and Tarzan in "new" adventures ages before him; and then of course, writers had already been putting Sherlock Holmes into new adventures as well.

And even though the movie "LXG" isn't that great, it takes out all of the gratuitousness of the Moore comics - and it demotes Mina from founder of the League and makes her into a vampire -it's plus one, minus one and plus one again, in my opinion. Also, it's visually impressive - Nemo's sweet ride of a car and the Nautilus! So, it's part of my universe.

Also, I like the more Jules Verne and H.G. Wells parts of steampunk than I do the more modern aspects - call it more "steam" than "punk". And as I go along, I intend to include more World aspects, with dolls representing all ethnic groups. Hopefully I can find more clothes to repurpose into Steampunk outfits.

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