Look, Up On My Shelf- It’s Major Mars!

Hey, gang-

Got another project done while home during this pandemic. It didn’t take a lot of time, but was a lot of fun.

I won this resin garage kit in a raffle over 20yrs ago at Wonderfest in Louisville, KY. I had primed it and never got around to painting it. I recently found it in a box while cleaning out the Batcave closet- thought it had been lost in my last move.


The kit was sculpted by Raven Hood and based on the Bob Burns character Major Mars from “The Further Adventures Of Major Mars” (1976) which was inspired by the early Rocketmen movie serials.

There was also a Major Mars cartoon short made in 2008.


This is a one piece model, so no glue or assembly required- and has its own base built right in. The kit had already been primed by me years ago, so after giving it a good cleaning I started painting it with acrylics. Started withe the billowing smoke base and worked my way up. Found a few small air bubbles here and there as I painted, but they were very tiny and the paint filled them in. 


Was happy to find out that my metallic silver and gold paints hadn’t dried out. It’s been a while since I used them. The trickiest part was painting the tiny M/M logo on the helmet. It was soooo tiny- I don’t know how Raven Hod sculpted it..! 

When I was done I sprayed a fixative over it. It was a lot of fun doing washes and drybrushing techniques on this mini statue. You can purchase one for yourself from Cult TV Man Shop online. You can also see the Major Mars helmet and many other items of Bob’s on that site as well.

I first met Bob at Wonderfest– which is a toy/model/sci-fi/horror/comic convention. Had a great time meeting driector/SPFX artist Chris Walas with Bob, too. Got a couple things signed by Chris- Fly2 8×10 and Gremlins movie magazine. He drew a quick Stripe caricature/toon inside it. Also met Rat Fink’s Ed “Big Daddy” Roth, comic artists Dave Cockrum and Terry Beatty, and other SPFX greats like Tom Savini, Steve Wang, and the legendary Ray Harryhausen – oh, and the original King Kong stop motion puppet which Bob owns. Got to watch the original “King Kong” movie at a Wonderfest screening that was attended by Bob, Ray, and Kong puppet.

Saw Bob at a few Wonderfest shows and ran into him and his wife Kathy at SDCC a few years later. Great couple. Have always wanted to see his collection in person.

If you’re not familiar with Bob’s work as an actor, SPFX make up artist/prop builder, Hollywood historian, or memorabilia collector I definitely recommend the book “It Came From Bob’s Basement”. Lots of great pics of his collection, other makeup artists like Rick Baker, and a lot of movie history that Bob has been a part of and/or owns.

There’s also a great documentary by Frank Dietz called “Beast Wishes” that’s about Bob and Kathy I recommend checking out, as well as Frank’s “Long Live the King” Kong documentary- both are available on Amazon Prime. Be sure to keep your eyes peeled in the 2005 Peter JacksonKing Kong” movie for a cameo of Bob and Kathy (as Kong escapes the theater in NYC)- as well as Bob and the Kong puppet in the DVD/BluRay special features, and Bob in Steve Wang‘s movie “Drive“.

My favorite thing Bob has starred in was as Tracy The Gorilla in the original 1975 live action TV series “The Ghost Busters”. Whenever anyone asks me who my favorite Ghostbuster is, I always say, “Tracy.”🦍 Well, actually 2nd favorite- my wife is my favorite Ghostbuster, but I represent the OGBs (original Ghost Busters- Spencer, Tracy, and Kong) whenever I go out as a Ghostbuster.

Beast wishes and happy birthday today to fellow ape fan and monster kid, Bob Burns– thanks for monkeying around all these years! 


*Edit- was sorry to hear that Kathy Burns had passed away recently. My best to Bob, their family, and friends.

Look, Up On My Shelf- It’s Major Mars!
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