German Light Tank Panzer II
Meng, Ref. WWT-019
19th release from Meng in their World War Toons series, this Pz II is made up of 70 parts moulded in a dark grey plastic; a set of two one-piece vinyl tracks accompanied by a tiny decal sheet and an instruction booklet in a sturdy and attractively illustrated cardboard box complete the offering.
It may not be WWT’s best caricature but it still does look pretty good, I particularly liked the over-sized turret and the overal height of the finished kit. All in all, it is recognisable as a Pz II and should provide many modellers artound the globe with another great reason to either extend their Chibi AFV collection or to get involved! No doubt, some people out there are already planning some conversions for this little kit.. Wespe and Marder II come to mind, in particular!.
As with their earlier WWT releases, this Pz II can be built without glue, the breakdown is ingenious leaving few, if any, seams or gaps to deal with. Some parts are small and fiddly, others are very fine and delicate and it may not be the best WWT offering to give to a newcomer in the hobby but with supervision or with a few similar builds under one’s belt, there will be no issues at all. Pure fun. In fact, for some younger people maybe, the running gear, unless glue is used of course, remains fully functional. The tracks are, as usual with this series of kits, the weaker point, but the external detail is very good, very pleasing if not 100% accurate (but should it be in a caricature!?). Modellers will find ways to deal with this, no doubt, as they have done with the earlier releases. 1/48 and above all 1/35 accessories, figures, tracks from other kits (Tamiya, HobbyBoss, Trumpeter,..) or aftermarket sets have been known to be used with great success on and with those WWT caricatures…
As mentioned earlier, the decal sheet is minute with markings for just one Blitzkrieg-style ‘Panzer Grey’ vehicle, but again spare decals, or just plain imagination, can be the base for other interesting schemes.
The multi-language instruction booklet is well designed and with 9 stages (including painting & decalling), easy to follow.
With resin and 3D-printed animal or human (chibi) figures being available from numerous sources, the possibilities for dioramas or small vignettes are plentiful and this Pz II will find itself at ease with earlier WWT releases such as the Somua S35, the Pz 38(t), the Pz III or even Pz IV to name but five others in the series.
It’s very good to see Meng still investing some more resources in this series of caricaturised AFVs. Those caricatures are not everyone’s cup of tea but to those shying away from them I say: let yourself be tempted, this can be a real stress relieving experience and a great way to get back to having fun with the hobby. By the way, a M10 Wolverine is coming up next in the series!
Review and pictures by Domi Jadoul and Meng.