Breaking down "The Captain" from Romantically Apocalyptic


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Although I did a little digging to see if the subject had been posted on, I couldn't find anything relating to the costumes of Romantically Apocalyptic, especially that of the main character, zee Captain.

I'm certain some members of this forum are fans of the webcomic, and after having met both the creator of the comic and a costumer dressed as the Captain at last month's MCM Expo, I'm keen on having a go at replicating the Captain's outfit.

I've got ideas on some of the items, but no info on others (I've sent a message to the comic's creator, but I haven't received any word back). I've gathered some of the better photos of the ensemble for use as a breakdown (including an excellent full-length photo of the ensemble by the artist link):

1) The Hat.


Quite possibly the simplest element of the costume (although that hasn't stopped replicas featuring a wide and varied assortment of peaked caps). In the comic, the cap is black with a red band and a black chin strap, and features a stylised star on the crown, although as shown in the convention photograph the hat is closer to blue than black. Also shown in the photograph, the stylised star appears to have been painted directly onto the crown, rather than a metal cap badge.

After some digging, I'm inclined to believe that the cap is similar (if not identical) to those worn by enlisted members of the United States Air Force, with the cap being modified to include a red strip circling the head band. I'm inclined toward this conclusion as the chin strap appears almost identical in the costume photo, and the in-use cap below, and the section featuring the star seems flatter, suggesting the cap badge was affixed to the crown, rather than the band.



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Close matches to the design (if a USAF cap isn't available) include the cap style worn by the Royal Electrical & Mechanical Engineers of the British army:


-Although it does feature a red stripe around the crown, and gold REME insignia attaching the chin strap, making it good, but not exact (I actually already possess one of these caps, minus the strap, and have been considering using it). It would appear that one of these caps has been used in convention attendances by a friend of the artist who has dressed up as the Captain, making the REME cap a viable and acceptable alternative to the USAF style cap.

As for the star, as I'm not terribly keen on painting onto the hat, I'm considering adopting a similar approach others have used, and applying a star badge:


- A school merit badge, available in silver, about 20mm across.

2) The glasses, Respirator, head covering


In a post on the RA forum a member has collated a collection of items for the various costumes link. For the glasses, a set of binocular glasses made by Camman have been posted up, and do seem a close match for the costume ones used.


-Although they will need to be modified to remove the branding, as well as to give them the purple finish as seen in several instances in the comic.

The respirator, as far as I can tell is a US Safety respirator, specifically the Comfort-Ease series 400 (featuring P100 slim profile cartridges):


If there were any doubt, the purple cartridges would be the final nail in the coffin, as purple is visible in some of convention photographs of the mask that's seen in the comics.

Finally, the head covering. It's far too long and lose fitting to be a balaclava. A gas mask hood is probably a likely suitable candidate.

3) The coat, scarf and other elements


The coat a wool, full-length longcoat, charcoal grey, double breasted and featuring less-common shawl lapels. The coat greatly resembles those used in the military, although there are a number of civilian designs that are quite close matches for the unusual design:


The closest match in design I've found, is one that was advertised as being from the American Military from the first World War (without having seen a second of this unusual design, I can't confirm or deny the claim):


The coat is the greatest mystery due to it's unusual design, one that the author of Romantically Apocalyptic tells me is custom (and as to how much of it is custom is up for question).

Obviously similar greatcoats could be found and modified to match the overall appearance if the costumer was up to the challenge, although an unmodified version is also perfectly acceptable.

Often the coat is accented with a long, black scarf, however the Captain has also been depicted with a red scarf (most recently at convention appearances), which helps to add a bit more colour to the costume.

The captain wears black leather gloves.

4) The boots


Any army-surplus will do, although having a maker's badge near the ankle will definitely help to narrow them down.
The Captain appears to wear loose fitting black trousers, possibly combats.

Given how good the RPF has been at identifying other obscure details, I'd appreciate any information the members are able to provide for the greatcoat and the respirator.
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I've updated the breakdown to reflect the fact I've finally managed to identify the respirator.

Now I need to work out the make of the coat.

Edit: I've received word back from the comic's author that the coat is a custom design.
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