After years in limbo, NECA delivers (most of) the fourth wave of action figures based on Ridley Scott’s (not-really) prequel to Alien.
Five years ago, legendary director Ridley Scott delivered Prometheus, a movie that couldn’t decide whether or not it was a prequel to the same director’s classic Alien. The movie ultimately opted to split the difference, a choice that– along with a rather terrible script– left the entire production in a weird lurch. There were big ideas on display, and the whole thing looked pretty, but the end result was miles away from the claustrophobic terror that made Alien such an exemplary film.
Still, despite its many flaws, Prometheus featured some excellent production design, especially in the various creatures that inhabited this universe. NECA managed to capture many of them in their toy line at the time, although the lack of popularity for the film itself meant the fourth and final wave of toys never saw release. This was increasingly frustrating, as the main character of the movie, Elizabeth Shaw, was finally slated to make her action figure debut in said assortment.
It looked like all hope was lost, but now, half a decade later, NECA has managed to resurrect the “lost wave” of Prometheus figures, so they finally see release. In addition to Shaw, the wave also includes Charlize Theron’s Meredith Vickers and Fifield, the idiot geologist who becomes mutated into an otherworldly horror due to plot contrivances and poor character development.
While Fifield is the only creature in this assortment, another gold star in Prometheus’ corner was the design of the team’s space suits, which– while looking nothing like the bulky outfits of the Nostromo crew– were still a visually appealing fashion in their own right, with a skin tight teal and black design meshing with an oversized dome helmet. All three new figures sport variants of this uniform, with Fifield in a dirty, battle worn version complete with shattered helmet, while Shaw and Vickers are features in the neon orange accented undersuit.
Each figure includes a great range of motion, although Fifield is limited by the same shortcoming of 2013’s David-8, especially in the Mattel-style hinged hips and “spinning meat” forearms. The mutant makes up for this with a great new headsculpt that perfectly matches his monstrous on-screen appearance, down to every gruesome nook and cranny that makes up his mutated face.
Shaw sports an entirely unique female suited body, along with an excellent portrait of Noomi Rapace, and with her axe accessory she easily earns a spot alongside Ellen Ripley among the heroic action figures of the Alien saga. Down the middle– and the biggest surprise of the wave– is Meredith Vickers, the Weyland Company stooge who is clearly unfamiliar with a serpentine pattern when it comes to running for her life. Based on everything we knew, the third figure in this initial lineup was to be Logan Marshall-Green’s Charlie Holloway, but he is absent from this “lost wave,” replaced by Vickers. While that loss of a fifth Prometheus crewmate sort of itches, I’m okay with the swap, as having a toy version of Charlize Theron seems much more enticing than a Logan Marshall-Green figure (if only to build a custom Furiousa from Mad Max).
But back on track to Prometheus– the Vickers figure not only provides an all new, very nice portrait of Theron, it also includes the flame thrower seen in the film, one of the few relevant accessories NECA had not yet included in the series. This basically means– aside from Idris Elba, a few redshirts, Guy Pearce in super lame old man makeup, and poor snubbed Holloway– we’re left with a well rounded out toy line based on one of the more hotly debated installments of the Alien mythos.
I’m really glad NECA managed to release these figures, especially Shaw. It always rubbed me the wrong way that the film’s hero was relegated to a later wave, ostensibly left on the chopping block until she inevitably got cut. In light of Alien: Covenant‘s reveal that David is actually the protagonist of this film series (not really a spoiler, so sorry/not sorry), I guess my beef didn’t hold as much weight as I thought, but regardless, NECA found a way to deliver.
Do I wish Holloway were still included? Sort of, just because the only other male figure in a Prometheus space suit was the long out of production David, who is now fetching astronomical sums on the secondary market. Charlie would have provided an easily customizable base body to create most of the ship’s crew… while Shaw and Vickers can only provide fodder for Prometheus’ third woman crewmate Kate Ford.
For what it’s worth, I feel the “Lost Wave” from Prometheus is great, providing three more core characters from the film, and lots of exciting fodder for anyone jonesing for Furiousa or Lisbeth Salander custom action figures. I’m very glad NECA was able to work their magic to make this wave a reality, as it helps make their Prometheus toy line feel closer to complete… even as Covenant finally establishes Ridley Scott’s movie squarely in the Alien canon.
Thanks to NECA for giving us the opportunity to review these great, final additions to the Prometheus toy line!