Halloween has come and gone, and for this year I decided I wanted to do something that wasn't Star Trek related, and certainly not last minute! (Bit of warning though, be prepared to read as I like to be thorough in my explanations.)
I present my Terminator-inspired soldier of the Resistance. Using Kyle Reese as the base, this is the culmination of a year's worth of work slowly and patiently collecting the individual pieces, pouring over screencaps, references, and pictures of screen-used props, and then putting it all together. I am overall very pleased with the results although I would call it about 98% completed, as there are little nicks and knacks I would like to correct before calling it completely finished. Especially the FAMAS I am using temporarily as a phased-plasma rifle.
Jacket and Undershirt:
The shell jacket I chose was a L-2B flight jacket. Reese and many of the other Resistance members wore MA-1s. In comparison the L-2B is lighter and mine doesn't have that orange lining (the orange bothers me on a subliminal level though I understand the importance of being rescued). No inner pockets though . It also does NOT have the inner zipper flap which is often seen hanging out. It started out as a sage green medium which I dyed and then became a blue small (I made the mistake of making the water too hot in the pot, but lucky me I am a small). It is actually much more like a navy blue although I was aiming for a light blue. I -really- like this shade of blue, so rather than discard it I've kept it. The distressing was achieved using Tamiya TS-32 "Haze Grey" and some Krylon Black.
I did use moving blanket for the external padding. To prevent fraying I cut more than I needed then folded the edges before sewing which I did by hand. The slots in the elbow pads were secured using a wrapping method, again by hand with needle and thread. I also wanted to also mimic that 'look' on the 'recoil pad' which was achieved by folding the edges and then tightly wrapping thread around them. Their color was achieved using a combination of TS-32, TS-11 "Maroon", Kyrlon "Leather Brown" and Krylon Black.
The arm straps are thin vinyl strips with 7/8" D-rings.
My identity tag was made from an old cloth belt from a thrift store. I used Crass font and printed it on stiff paper, cut it out, and used that as a stencil. My tag reads "RO DN 16309" (points if you see the hidden reference). I modeled by ID after Reese's in which the first two letters were the first two letters of his last name. Although one other screen-used jacket has "JDO RS26457" (which I have rationalized in my crazy head). I figured the DN for "Designated Number" was a safe bet, followed by a 5 digit number.
The collar was made from a stiff vinyl, with a slight crease on the outer edge. The knit collar was ripped and distressed (by me). I used O-rings on one end, (which is what I feel they are) and not D-rings which are prominent elsewhere.
There is a strap retainer sewn on the bit of fabric next to the bottom zipper. The strap was seen being used to hang off various accessories and pouches. I went with one instead of two, although I did leave that option open. 1" D-rings.
Apparently each soldier wore a white thermal shirt with a crazy tech-pattern on it. I decided the flight jacket was going to keep me warm enough so I used a cheap sport t-shirt from W@L-Mart with a texture. I have not yet done the tech-pattern on the shirt yet, although the L-2B's lack of a zipper flap would allow me to show it off much easier.
Knee Guards and Leggings:
To emphasize the 'rag-tag' look, I made sure each piece was not created identically. The knee guards are a modern type with the hard plastic kneecap dremeled off and replaced completely by vinyl and pleather pieces. I prefer these because I can velcro these off at any time versus having to slip the knee pad on and off like the originals.
The leggings are again, vinyl with a foam pad behind for support (and comfort!) The 'rivets' are brass paper fasteners. I used a much thinner vinyl for the little slips that go over the boot. The straps are made with a thicker vinyl and 5/8" D-rings.
Effects were done by tightening the leggings around my leg to create creases, then sprayed with TS-32.
I used a post-Vietnam "Hot Weather Cap" lightly sprayed black. The headset was a steal found on the Bay (like many other items in this costume). It is a Shure SM10A with a rubber covered boom. The goggles are typical Sand/Wind/Dust goggles.
Web Gear and Accessories:
Because my costume was not a strict emulation of Kyle, I took a very individualistic approach in selecting my gear, such as the 9mm ammunition pouch and the M67 Buttpack (invaluable for carrying convention lewt and drinks, or for your friends whose costumes are not so blessed with pockets ) although I did capture some screenshots in which a type of buttpack can be seen on Reese. I used a M1967 Davis "quick release" belt instead of the M56 that Reese wears. The individual First Aid Pouch and the M1916 holster are the only matching pieces to Reese's loadout.
Also pictured is a copy of a Universal Small Arms pouch and an individual first aid pouch/compass holder for a bit of variety. In a couple of appearances I hung these on the jacket 'belt' strap. Not pictured is a 1 quart canteen. Not sure yet if I will get a gas mask and distress marker to add to the belt.
The bulb flashlight/florescent lantern was another lucky find for me. I believe this type is the exact kind used in one of the flashback scenes which is labeled as a 7-In-1 but no maker is listed (closest I can find is it might be made by "Johnlite"). I have not distressed it yet because I have not yet worn it as part of the costume outside (not easy to secure).
I would like to thank RPF Member [SSgt. Burton] whose T1 Kyle Reese costume inspired me to start this venture and who was helpful in some questions I had. I had a lot of fun (and headaches) putting this together and gained more experience in costume construction. I definitely would like to further accessorize the kit out a bit, maybe give it a more specialized role or something that stands out. I have worn this to three Halloween outings plus a convention (Vulcan Events in Orlando). Sadly because it is so obscure almost no one gets it (but that's not why I built it anyways). My favorite guesses so far are "Metal Gear Solid" and "G.I. Joe".
Questions, comments, critiques? Have at it! (And if you have read up to this point, thank you for taking the time and putting up with my thoughts).
"If you're listening to this, you ARE the Resistance."