Welcome back dear followers of The Science Of Superheroes this week you join us on the streets of Salford, the home turf of The Comics Code. If you missed last week’s epic chapter then you will have also missed the reason as to why we have had to return home, so as not to keep going over old ground I will give you a quick recap: Ryan spent our travel fund on prostitutes and so we’re now doing this scientific journey on the cheap. I’m not happy about the situation and to be honest I’m actually furious with him right now. I’ve calmed down somewhat since he first told me what he’d done, but right now I still wouldn’t spit on him if he were on fire (and by all accounts some parts of him still are).
Anyway, moving on, this week we’re looking at the Swat Kat’s super sleek jet, the Turbokat (which has no real relation to Salford at all) so let’s just get going.
WHAT IS IT?
It’s a jet fighter that is the main mode of transportation (and badass ballistic support) for the dynamic feline duo known as the Swat Kats!
In general jet fighters are military aircraft designed for air-to-air combat.
HANG ON... THE SWAT KATS?
Yep, the Swat Kats; who were created by Christian & Yvon Tremblay and first appeared in the animated series Swat Kats: The Radical Squadron in 1993. The Swat Kats were two humanoid cats called Chance Furlong and Jake Clawson (don’t worry, they lived in a world of cat people), who spent their days working at the local junk yard and their nights as masked crime-fighters. Prior to their daily slog at the junk yard Chance and Jake were members of an elite military taskforce known as the Enforcers, however following an unsuccessful mission they were reassigned and were pretty much left to live out their days amongst the scrap. With boredom setting in rapidly, the creative cats decided that they needed to put their combined talents to a more productive use and with bits and pieces salvaged from the yard they built the Turbokat; a high-tech fighter jet. They then adopted disguises and aliases (T-Bone & Razor), before taking to the skies to protect their home, Megakat City, from such villains as the Pastmaster and Dark Kat.
OH, SO WHAT DID THE TURBOKAT DO?
The Turbokat was a three-engine jet fighter that Chance and Jake kept hidden beneath the junk yard in a secret hangar and it transported the crime-fighting super-team anywhere around the city, as soon as the need arose. It was loaded with missiles and it was often instrumental in allowing the Kats to foil the schemes of some of Megakat City’s deadliest bad guys, thus saving the citizens from tyranny!
Yes, and it looked damn cool too!
DO SUCH JETS AS THE TURBOKAT EXIST? I WANT ONE IF THEY DO!
Well the design of the Turbokat came from a number of different jets (which sort of fits in with the fact that it was salvaged from parts found at the junk yard), so it kind of existed. One of the jets it shared similarities with was the (appropriately named) Grumman F-14 Tomcat, which made its debut in 1970. The Tomcat was a two manned jet that was one of the most expensive fighters of its time and quickly went into service with the US Navy. It was built with dual uses in mind, so that it could be both a fighter jet (to deal with Soviet threats and crafts with high levels of manoeuvrability) and a long range interceptor. The jet was equipped with a 20mm M61 Vulcan gatling gun that could fire 676 rounds, as well as a number of anti-aircraft missiles like AIM-54 Phoenix and AIM-9 Sidewinder... oh and unlike an actual Tomcat it didn’t pee all over the carpet in order to mark its territory! In total 712 were made in Long Island, New York, but it was retired in 2009. As mentioned the Turbokat shared similarities with a number of jets, so it’s safe to say that if you actually wanted to fly a similar aircraft it wouldn’t be impossible. However Ryan, as you owe me lots of money I would concentrate on sorting that out first If I were you and I’d maybe forget about becoming a pilot.
And now you know.
SUPER SCIENCE EQUATION: Ryan + A jet = A high-flying Ryan
That’s all for this week, we’re off to have a discussion about how Ryan can repay me, so we’ll see you next time!