The conclusion of Volume 6 may be delayed, but that just gives us more prep time for Volume 7, Atomic Robo and the Flying She-Devils of the Pacific.
She-Devils was supposed to be Volume 2. And then 3. Also 4 through 6. We kept finding reasons to push it back, but the truth was simply that we weren’t yet good enough to pull it off. Even the broadest stroke high concept elevator pitch version of the story was enough to peel back the thin veneer of confidence we’d built up to reveal the ugly self-hating quivering mass of our impostor syndrome.
Which means that, yes, a multi-generational time travel story that eschews traveling through time was a less intimidating story to us than She-Devils. It’s not that it’s a complex story. I don’t think anyone could accuse us of those with a straight face. But what happens in it is hard as hell to pull off on a craft level. Moreover, I think Scott and I sensed that this had the potential to be one of those stories, a synthesis of everything that is an Atomic Robo tale. Hopefully we’re nearly good enough now that we won’t screw that up.
What follows is the result of Scott’s research and concept art thus far.
The Wegs Says:
The She-Devils are a rag-tag bunch of air pirates, and while they have no uniforms there is a certain vein of commonality to all their equipment.
When on missions, most She Devils wear simple yet functional flightsuits to which they add their own style and flare. These are mostly surplus from the recently ended World War, oft mended, and usually too big as they were sized to fit the Marine, Army, and Navy pilots who’d fought in the Pacific. Most She-Devils have manage to get their hands on the new P-1 helmets that the U.S. Air Force introduced recently. One or two prefer the old leather flying caps and one wears an old tanker’s helmet, (because I couldn’t get her glasses to work with the other two options, heh).
An air pirate has to carry everything she might need on her person. Knives, sticky-bombs, brass knuckles and so forth. The She Devil show here has a grapnel pistol, half hidden by the large ammunition pouch at her waist. This handy bit of kit lets her anchor herself to airships or enemy aircraft so that she doesn’t have to worry about falling off as she disables an engine or picks the lock on an hatch.
Her weapon is a Carl Gustav M45. It is typical of those favored by the She Devils. Simple and rugged, made from stamped steel and firing from an open bolt, the M45 has a folding stock, and is relatively light weight. It’s 9mm ammunition lacks stopping power, but it’s 50-round coffin magazine allows her to put a lot of lead in the air, making it an excellent close-quarters weapon.
The one thing that is uniform across the entire She Devils gang are their jet packs. The design is actually not a true jet, but a low bypass turbofan utilizing a multi-stage fan to create extremely high exhaust pressure. Maneuvering veins around the exhaust and small flow vents along the body of the jet pack allow the wearer to control their flight path. Input is delivered via control cables attached to rotating flexor cuffs and a throttle switch in one of the wearer’s gloves, (usually the non-dominant hand).