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Laurie Blake and Wade Tillman discovering Archie in Adrian Veidt's hangar in Karnak.

Archimedes (commonly referred to as the Owlship), also referred to as Archie, is is a technologically advanced aerial ship and primary vehicle originally belonging to Dan Dreiberg, which he used during his escapades as the masked vigilante Nite Owl II.[1]

History

Development

Archimedes was constructed by Dan Dreiberg thanks to his knowledge on aerodynamics. It stayed in the Owl Cave and would go out through a unused subway tunnel that Dreiberg had converted, and exited from an abandoned warehouse building, which he owned.[1]

Nite Owl's Crimefighting Career

As Nite Owl II, Dreiberg used Archie throughout his costumed adventurer career.[2] Nite Owl II used it to travel to Nelson Gardner's mansion during the first Crimebusters meeting.[3] In 1977, Nite Owl II and the Comedian used Archie to quell the riots in New York City.[4]

After the Keene Act was passed Dreiberg goes into retirement, and Archie goes unused.[3] However, Dreiberg maintains it to keep his nostalgia and memories alive.[1]

Return to Crimefighting

Owlship on the cover of Chapter VII

In 1985, Dan Dreiberg and Laurie Juspeczyk have the crazy thought of getting it out, subsequently rescuing the occupants of a burning tenement.[5] The ship also plays a significant role in Dreiberg's plan to free Walter Kovacs from Sing Sing. Later, Rorschach and Dreiberg travel to Antarctica in it to confront Adrian Veidt.

Because Archie was submerged in a river for several hours, the water contained in its housing freezes quickly upon arrival in Antarctica. The engines stall, forcing a crash landing. Nite Owl and Rorschach are forced to finish the journey on Dreiberg's hoverbikes.

Recovery and Return

Adrian Veidt recovered Archie buried in the ice outside of Karnak and successfully repaired it.[6]

Dan Dreiberg founded and secretly ran MerlinCorp, which supplied him and Laurie Juspeczyk with gadgets to help them fight crime, as well as equipping various weapons, vehicles, and other equipment to law enforcement agencies across the United States, including law enforcement Owlships similar to Archie. Dreiberg's designs would continue to be manufactured even after his arrest in 1995.

Laurie and Wade Tillman would use Archie to return to civilization along with Veidt in custody.[6]

Variants


Capabilities

Due to Archie's curved design and concealed turbines, the ship cannot be detected by radar. It is highly maneuverable and it has the power to fly, hover, and can even be used underwater. The ship's hull can be electrified or magnetized. Weapons and riot control devices built into the ship include water cannons, flame throwers, fog screen, and sonic screechers that when emitted creates a powerful high-pitched sound that can immobilize enemies.

Inside, the ship is large enough to carry a dozen people comfortably and still have enough room for Nite Owl II's bulkier equipment and well-stocked workshop. The ship's equipment includes telescopes, tv screens linked to several external cameras, a computer with a public address system, and a PA system with heavy-duty external speakers and stereo attachment. A winch-operated 300-foot ladder allows for Nite Owl II to quickly move from the ship to the ground and back. Compartments for extra equipment are stored in the rear of the ship, including two collapsible hoverbikes and closets with additional suits. The ship has extendable ramps from the rear exits.[5]

The flight controls are attached to a motorized rail, allowing Nite Owl II to work the instruments from either of the two cockpit windows, the interior of the ship, or even sitting on top of the ship. The ship can be controlled from the ground via a remote control Nite Owl II carries in his utility belt.[7][8]

Equipment

It was outfitted with defensive and offensive weapons:

  • Blowers that produced concealing fog (from dry ice).
  • Radiation Shields[5]

For offensive capability it had

  • Air-to-Air missiles,[5]
  • A flamethrower[5]
  • Water cannons[5]
  • EM systems[5]
  • Machine gun[9]

Other facilities

Archie also contained several facilities inside.

  • Water sprouts for the windows.[5]
  • Coffee machines (behind a panel on the starboard wall)[5]
  • Movable pilot chairs.[5]
  • A portable "steering column" which can be plugged into receptors around the ship, like the cockpit or (when need be) on its roof so that the ship can be piloted from the exterior.[5]

Trivia

  • The Owlship is nicknamed Archie, short for Archimedes, Merlin's pet owl.[1]

References

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