The Parachute Regiment of the British Army, colloquially known as the “Paras”, was formed during the WW2. Designed as shock troops, Paras were dropped behind German front lines to capture key positions and hold them until the rest of the force could link up with them. The modern day Parachute Regiment provides infantry to Britain’s air mobile rapid reaction force and specialized infantry support to British Special Forces. Trained to conduct a range of missions, from preventive tasks to complex high intensity war fighting, with a specific capability to deploy at short notice in the vanguard of operations and in the most demanding circumstances, the Paras are the spearhead of the British Army’s rapid intervention force.
Paratrooper, British Army, Afghanistan 2011 (AM35003)
is the first miniature from a 1/35 scale pair of British Paras sculpted by Dmitri Shevtsov for Assault Models. The kit is packed in a nicely designed plastic box, with the parts safely secured in a zip-lock bag. The front of the box features an image showing assembled but unpainted model. In the meantime, however, Pavel Ilyin painted the figure and now the kit is supplied with the painted boxart image (as seen in the header of this review).
The kit consists of 6 pieces:
- full body with left arm,
- right arm,
- weapon and
The pieces are cast in grey resin, and the molding is very impressive as there are no air-bubbles to fill or seam lines to clean... absolutely perfect! The pieces look great with an astonishing amount of details very nicely rendered in scale, a true work of art from the sculptor. Due to the exceptionally good fit of the parts I had no problems with assembling this figure whatsoever. Small protrusions and indentations in corresponding parts enable optimal alignment of the right arm to the torso, as well as the right hand, which is cast with the weapon thus ensuring the tight grip, to the right arm. Also, the head and the helmet are easily positioned, making it possible to keep putty work to a minimum.
The figure represents a British Paratrooper wearing the latest garb and gear: Personal Clothing System – Combat Uniform (PCS-CU), Osprey Mk4 modular body armor, Mk7 Helmet, Personal Role Radio, and Combat Boots. The extra equipment includes camelback hydration system and various pouches attached to the body armor (commanders pouch, radio pouch, 2 ammo and 2 grenade pouches, first aid pouch), drop leg holster secured to the right thigh and a knee pad. The Bowman radio single-sided headset is included as well, with a tiny mic boom cast with the figure’s head. After taking the time to study photo references of British Paras in Afghanistan, I have to express my respect to the figure sculptor… all the intricate details of the uniform and the equipment are replicated to the highest standard on this resin miniature and the figure is a real masterpiece in 1/35 scale.
The figure is armed with L129A1, a semi-automatic sharpshooter rifle chambered for 7.62x51 NATO ammunition, capable of engaging individual targets at ranges of up to 800 meters. The rifle supplied in this kit features LMT’s SOPMOD adjustable telescoping buttstock, Trijicon ACOG 6x48 telescope sight with additional close-combat Docter red dot above it, and Harris bipod installed via Picatinny rail interface. The weapon is a product of 3D rapid prototyping and is on par with the best 3D weapons available on the market today.
Finally, I have to compliment the pose of the figure. Although some might find it boring, I like the posture with a hand on the radio, as it conveys alert usually seen among coalition troops on check points throughout Afghanistan. If you are thinking of adding a “human touch” to your British Land Rover WMIKs look no further… this figure and its pair are an ideal solution.
I really liked the first releases from Assault Models, but with the British Paras the company raised the bar even higher. This particular figure kit has it all... amazing sculpt, flawless resin cast, easy assembly, and most of all the choice of subject.
For me, it is a no brainer; this figure and its pair (reviewed here: link
) are the best 1/35 scale miniatures depicting modern British Paras. Period.