Monarch 1/8 Nosferatu Kit First Look
By Tom Grossman
|Date of Review||December 2007||Manufacturer||Monarch|
|Kit Number||402||Primary Media||Styrene|
|Pros||Very cleanly injected! Detailed base and creepy accessories. Lots of room for a great painting adventure!||Cons||Large parts may knock small parts off the trees in transit.|
|Skill Level||Basic||MSRP (USD)||$29.95|
Fans of classic monsters and classic models will enjoy this retro inspired styrene kit from Scott McKillop at Monarch Models. Reminiscent in lots of ways of monster and other classic kits from a fabled old company, Monarch has captured that feeling from our childhood for us older guys. Here’s a chance to build and feel like that kid again, all excited and maybe a little impatient! Hopefully, this will be, the first of many high quality, imagination based kits from Monarch.
Nosferatu was what some have called an unauthorized movie version of Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Originally released in 1922 by German Expressionist filmmaker F. W. Murnau, this silent horror classic stars Max Schreck as the evil Count Orlok. He is nosferatu, a term used in the movie in place of vampire in some cases. The movie is the story of Thomas Hutter, an employee of a real estate firm who lives happily who lives happily with his wife, Ellen in a little village in Germany. He is sent to visit Count Orlok in the Carpathian Mountains to finalize the sale of the house across the street from his.
Near his destination, the locals at the inn he rooms at have come to fear even mention of Orlok’s name and discourage Hutter from continuing his journey to the castle. The carriage driver refuses to cross the bridge to the castle, leaving Hutter to walk until Orlok’s carriage picks him up. Early in his visit with the Count, Hutter cuts his thumb. Orlok would have sucked the blood out of the wound if it had not been for the cross around Hutter’s neck stopping him. Later, they close the deal. Hutter falls asleep in the parlor, only to awaken later with wounds on his neck that he attributes to mosquitoes.
Back in Germany, Hutter’s wife sleepwalks and is found in a comatose state screaming for her husband. The screams stop Orlok long distance from doing further violence to Hutter who discovered in his luggage the copy of “the Book of Vampires” that he had seen and ignored in his room at the inn and now suspects that Orlok is indeed Nosferatu.. Exploring the castle, he finds a crypt complete with a coffin containing the dormant Orlok. Taken by fear, he runs back to his room and sees Orlok loading coffins into his carriage. Orlok climbs into the last one before the coach leaves. Hutter escapes the castle and returns to Germany. A ship arrives with no crew left, oodles of rats and a bunch of coffins. As expected, mayhem ensues in the village with lots of corpses piling up. Orlok finally gets to Ellen and drinks her blood but forgets about the approaching dawn. A rooster crows and Orlok goes up in smoke.
Capturing a moment out of this silent classic, the Monarch kit contains 44 red styrene pieces injected into an all new tool. Part trees were loose in the box along with the large, well diagramed instruction sheet. The kit includes a very nicely detailed castle stairway diorama base with a spooky skull, skeleton forearm, giant centipede, giant spider with web and two rats for your creepy modeling enjoyment. In a pose right out of the box art, Nosferatu holds a large ring with 7 keys on it. (Note there are 6 in the parts pictures. I found the 7th on the floor after I ha taken them.) He is very well sculpted and the reproduction in styrene is quite remarkable. The pieces are injected with little flash and crisp details. Despite the healthy guide pins and sockets, the surfaces are free of sink marks. Colorful diagrams in the instructions guide the modeler thru the assembly. The colors in the diagrams match the paint references in the call outs and in the pictures of the finished kit. Two color pictures of the finished kit are also included on the back of the instructions as additional painting references. With the castle stairway base and all the accessories, the kit will be a fun build ending with a nice presentation.
Nosferatu himself is engineered to assemble easily. Seams and joints are hidden when ever possible. The head is divided so that the face is away from any seams. All the details are there, including his bushy eye brows and bad teeth! His skull is also well shaped. The flash is virtually none existent and the fit is very good. His coat is exquisitely detailed and offers a nice chance to do some detail painting and dry brushing to capture that crushed velvet look that so many of yesterday’s fashion conscious vampires were wearing! Painting the face and hands is open to creative license as the original vision was in black and white. If you are a fan of accuracy, all you will need to paint the kit will be grays. Otherwise, mix the coldest, deadest looking color for the Count’s hands and face. Have a ball with the spider and centipede and Orlok’s suit! Lots of room on the base for some faux stone work, too!
If you’re a fan of monsters and other creepy kits, or maybe just looking for a change of pace, this kit might be just the ticket. Packed with great engineering a big load of nostalgia, the Monarch Nosferatu offers a great build of a classic movie monster. Go for the accurate black and white or spread your creative wings and paint him up all dead. moldering and creepy!