Tuesday, 26 July 2011

French Foreign Legion

A little unit under orders to 'March or Die'

In my infant years I used to have the Airfix FFL set and fort to go with it, so when I started collecting again I couldn't resist these Esci figures, although got around to painting them only this year. When I started to research them, I realised that apart from knowing they were also sent to Mexico by Napoleon III, my knowledge about them was pretty much based on a 'Carry On...' film and some Jean Paul VanDamme nonsense. I managed to get a copy of the Gary Cooper version of 'Beau Geste', but this left me still pretty ignorant of who, what, where and why they were fighting, other than it was in French North Africa-so I guess Algeria/Morocco.

So far I've not done much to expand that knowledge. I've got a fairly inadequate number of the Airfix/Hat Bedouin set to oppose them (and could draft in various Esci/Italeri Muslim warriors). Unfortunately the Hat set is now OOP and Airfix haven't re-issued it-and possibly won't. I've found a few sets on the internet still available, but ended up spending my cash elsewhere, partly because I want the set mainly for the horsemen, and you only get three in a box.

So these guys might not see action for a while, and when they do probably just in the occasional light hearted skirmish. I'm actually painting up two units, this one that's finished and another in the white fatigues they wore under their blue coats-possibly to use as a garrison & rescue expedition. Ran out of steam finishing the second set, and probably wait until when/if I get more arabs before doing so.

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