Webcomic: Lighter Than Heir
A webcomic by Melissa Albino, aka Nalem, Lighter Than Heir
is about Zeppelin von Schultheiss, a volant girl who's also the daughter of Hemmel Von Schultheiss. Due to being recognized as the daughter of a war hero, Zeppelin didn't take too kindly to anything she did being ignored so when she turned nineteen, she signed up for the military in hopes of becoming an even bigger war hero. With an ego as big as hers, she'll be in for a surprise.
Updates every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Lighter Than Heir contains examples of:
- Break the Haughty: Austerlitz admits that a big part of his Drill Sergeant Nasty training was supposed to do this for Zeppelin. Despite it failing, he grudgingly lets her graduate from training with the rest. Time will tell if this actually happens.
- Cerebus Syndrome: Even in its more violent and dramatic bits, the strip stays relatively lighthearted - until Zeppelin is vivisected, then finds her father's corpse, at which point all the plotlines start to get very dark, very fast.
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: Sergeant Austerlitz, who is actually a decorated veteran. In an interesting twist, it doesn't fully work in instilling discipline in the squad of the protagonists (see Mildly Military). Then again, this is possibly due to the saboteur and spy who had infiltrated their squad.
- Expository Hairstyle Change: The squad members all have their hair shaved off after entering training camp. They later grow it back out.
- Fantasy Counterpart Culture:
- Going by the names and general behavior, the Steiners are obviously German in heritage, with some of them (including Zeppelin) spouting off a few phrases in German from time to time.
- The Zamorans are harder to pin down in terms of culture, but the origin of the name points to them being from a counterpart of Spain. (Zamora is a province in Spain, as well as the name of the capital city of said province.)
- Heroic BSOD: Ria, after sniping someone to save Austerlitz.
- Instant Awesome, Just Add Mecha: Fleischer have made one with Hertz's help, because she wanted one.
- Jerkass: Roth and Austerlitz, Hertz to an extent, but Zeppelin is the main offender.
- Mildly Military: Played with. The majority of the military does run on fairly tight discipline. The squad of the protagonists...not so much. The military brass doesn't seem overly concerned, though. This is because they are more focused on the possibility of the war re-starting.
- The Mole: It becomes very clear early on that there is one on the training grounds. It turns out to be Kurt Grunwald, who not only feigned being broken by the training, but is also secretly a volant like Zepplin.
- Mood Whiplash: After getting treated to seeing whatever's left of her dad, we cut immediately to a flashback of an adorable Zeppelin celebrating her fifth birthday.
- Steampunk: Some influences are there, such as the machines they pilot and the metallic arm cast.
- Scars Are Forever: Hertz has a strange set of scars on his back. They're from a failed procedure to turn him into a volant. Zeppelin later finds herself injured in the same manner by a similar machine, in an effort to vivisect her and learn more about volants.
- Strapped to an Operating Table: Zeppelin wakes up (after having being shot down) cocooned inside a steampunk-ish version of this.
- Super Soldier: It turns out that the Zamorans have been trying to create artificial volants for years. Hertz is an early victim of a failed procedure to do so.
- Walk on Water: Anyone who's a volant is capable of this due to being buoyant enough not to sink.
- "Well Done, Daughter!" Girl: Zepplin suffers from this bad in regards to her father. What makes it brutal is that he died a war hero when she was a little girl.
- Wham Line: Page 378. "...Dad?"