It’s a bird, it’s a plane…no it’s a Von Schultheiss!! Zeppelin Von Shultheiss has been in the spot light ever since her birth, and now at the age of 19 she is ready to show the world that she is more than just a tabloid piece. To rise up above her father’s shadow, the Legendary war hero Hemmel Von Schultheiss, she decides to enlist in the Steinbech army to prove once and for all she can and will make an name for herself. Upon enlisting it’s obvious that the army is no place for a spoiled brat, and her bunk mates make that very clear to her from the get go. But being a Von Schultheiss Zeppelin is determined to not let a few opinions get her down.
Life doesn’t balance out to well for Zeppelin upon her introduction into the Army. She finds that sometimes folks just don’t like her and she has a really hard time adjusting to that. Along the way she becomes part of a group of trainees and each day seems to be a new battle for her to fit in. Punished for her behavior and given certain handicaps because of her Volant blood, to make her be on the same playing field with the rest of the cadets, certain tactics are used at times by the drill sergeant but Zeppelin continues to push through it.
As the groups training intensifies a threat seems to linger that puts them in danger. As the thought of one of their own being a traitor starts to unravel them they look to each other to continue keeping things in tact, else everyone will turn on one another and they will never graduate. Eventually the traitor is revealed to be a Zamoran spy and Zeppelin learns first hand that the battle her father fought is far from over, and she is definitely not as unique as she once thought.
Nalem and Spanio continue to create a Germanic fantasy world that takes us deep into a conflict that has been ongoing for some time and shows it to us through the eyes of the young generation as they fight not only for their country but for their own personal identities. We get to see the personal conflicts that these 19 and 20 year old kids face in the midst of the military system, still clinging to their own selfish natures but being forced to grow up fast and lay their lives down if needed for their country.
One of the elements I find so fascinating about this comic is the internal conflict among the kids as they learn who they are and what they are capable of, especially Zeppelin. We see friendships grow, and we watch as they become part of a system that tells them how they need to feel about different people, and who their enemies are. We also see the other side of the coin, as we meet their enemies, the Zamorians, and see how they have been affected themselves by the Steinbechians.
As we go further through the comic we start to see that even through it all the ability to work together as a solidified team seems to escape Zeppelin, and soon that solidarity leads her into a situation with dire consequences.
Zeppelin isn’t the only one in trouble as her team mates soon find themselves in situations that are going to require them to think fast and act as a team if they are going to get out of all this alive. Will they eventually pull themselves together? Has the tables finally turned on our beloved Volant? You’ll have to tune into this wonderful comic to find out.
The Archives for this comic strip make it great to jump in from the beginning and move around with each chapter. With roughly 376 comics in the archives it may take a bit to go from the beginning moving forward to current, but I strongly recommend it. Along the way you will meet characters like Schultz, Hertz, Roth, Fleischer, and Klein, to name a few. It’s really a great comic, one that for some reason only recently came across my radar and I’m so thankful it did, and so will you. Don’t take it from me, go check out Lighter than Heir yourself, and come back here on February 17th as Nalem and Spanio take on our “10 Questions for the Pick of the Month”.