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Forum Name: Our Witches at War
Topic ID: 29
Message ID: 0
#0, Our Witches at War!
Posted by Gryphon on Jan-20-15 at 00:55 AM
LAST EDITED ON Jan-20-15 AT 00:57 AM (EST)
 
To start you off, here are a couple more profiles of witches who may be appearing in future episodes. The first is based on a real female pilot of WWII, which is something of a rarity in Strike Witches characters (the only one in the main TV cast is Sanya, whose "ace archetype" is Lydia V. Litvyak); the second is an adaptation of a favorite minor character of mine from another show.

Melitta Schiller
Hauptmann, Luftwaffe des Karlsländisches Kaiserreich
Captain, Imperial Karlsland Air Force
"Sturzi"

Nationality: Karlsland
Date of birth: January 9, 1923
Familiar: Kestrel
Striker model: Junkers Ju 87G Kanonenvogel
Weapon of choice: BK 5 heavy autocannon, BK 37 autocannon (x2)

At 23, Melitta ought to be winding down her career, and in fact she is... for certain values of winding down. Though she is no longer rated for combat (having, as is common, lost her shield not long after her 20th birthday), she's still an active test pilot, one of KG 200's best. Her specialty is what the Luftwaffe calls the Sturzangriff, "diving attack", in which a high-speed dive is used to increase the accuracy of a dropped or thrown explosive. Dive bombing has gone out of fashion - as a form of direct assault, it's dangerous, and there's no fallback position if it doesn't work - but Melitta is working on a revival of the tactic which uses the dive to stabilize the platform for a very heavy weapon, such as the BK 5 50mm cannon originally developed for the Me 262 jet Striker. She's also developed the first Striker with integral weapons, in the form of the pair of BK 37 37mm cannon mounted one apiece in the halves of her Ju 87G prototype. She's considered more than a little crazy... but the design does show promise. If it can be made operational, it will provide new uses for both the BK 5 (which was abandoned as one of the reasons the Me 262 V1 was too demanding to use) and the Ju 87 Striker model, use of which has declined along with dive bombing generally.

Since she works with weapons developed for the Me 262, that means she commonly works with Ursula Hartmann. Although they have developed a very close friendship in the process, the two - perhaps in a deliberate act of irony - always address each other very correctly as "Captain Schiller" and "Captain Hartmann".

Melitta Schiller is based on Melitta Schenk Gräfin von Stauffenberg, a real German dive-bomber test pilot - one of whose brothers-in-law was Claus Schenk Graf von Stauffenberg, a key figure in the July 1944 plot to assassinate Hitler. (Schiller was her maiden name.) Her callsign is short for Sturzbombardierin, "dive bomber girl".

Dara Jane Ealing "Darjeeling" Bishop
Sergeant, Royal Farawayland Air Force
"Teatime"

Nationality: Britannia
Date of Birth: May 28, 1931
Familiar: Britannian Blue Shorthair
Striker model: de Havilland Farawayland DH.98-FB Mk 26 Mosquito
Weapon of choice: Cannon, Aerial Specialised, Mk VI (Mosquito)

Wilma and Lynette Bishop's youngest sister, two years younger than Lynne. Eccentric even by the rather liberal standards of the Bishop family. Like Wilma, she chose to join the RFAF, their mother Minnie's old outfit, instead of the Britannian RAF, despite having been born in Britannia. Would have preferred to be a tank witch, but the exigencies of war intervened. Calm, polite, more refined than Wilma and more self-assured than Lynne was at her age; she has a curious habit of saying things that sound like wise adages, but upon closer inspection are generally nonsensical. Her Striker is a rare fighter-bomber variant of the Mosquito (a unit more commonly configured as a bomber and employed against ground-based Neuroi): among the swiftest Strikers to be found in Europe and powerfully armed, but fragile. (Most of it's made of wood!) The Mk VI Aerial Specialised cannon that goes with it is a hybrid weapon that combines a .303-caliber Browning machine gun with a Mk II Hispano 20mm cannon.

Darjeeling's perennial nickname and radio callsign both derive from her deep commitment to the Britannian national beverage, which surpasses even her elder sister Lynne's.

(The connection is that Humikane Shimada, creator of Strike Witches, designed the Girls und Panzer cast. Note that this doesn't mean she doesn't also exist as a Tankery team captain in the 25th century! Parallel universes. It happens. And yes, I know the original character is really supposed to be Japanese. :)

Enjoy!

--G.
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Benjamin D. Hutchins, Co-Founder, Editor-in-Chief, & Forum Mod
Eyrie Productions, Unlimited http://www.eyrie-productions.com/
zgryphon at that email service Google has
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