Planet of the Apes is one of the very few rebooted franchises that works in regards to both the new and classic versions. I honestly would be hard pressed to choose between rewatching the 1968 original, or this year’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes… they’re both so good!
Thankfully, NECA seems to think likewise, because they are moving forward with both classic and modern Apes figures, as revealed at Comic Con. On the classic side of the equation, the second series is slated to hit in October and will include Dr. Zira, General Ursus and a second Dr. Zaius in his long coat. Zira and Ursus look incredible– there’s some smart use of soft goods on Zira’s skirt that should help make her feel more like an action figure than a statue, and the General will fit right in commanding his squad of Gorilla Soldiers. I would have preferred to see a new Ape like Caesar instead of a second Zaius, but I get it– this is a smart variant which will save on some tooling money and offer the second major on screen look of the orangutan.
Also on deck from the classic Apes series is the first Mego-style retro figure, based on Charlton Heston’s George Taylor. This figure is awesome, for so many reasons– the Heston portrait (the first actor likeness ever for a Taylor figure) is spot-on, and the detail is out of this world*, especially on the space suit. Plus, that accessory case is killer!
Taylor is actually the perfect first figure for NECA to do in this format, since Mego released most of the Apes in the 70s. Yes, NECA’s figure features a lot more detail and craftsmanship, but those Mego Apes were no joke; they’re some of the best toys of their era, and had a huge impact on me when I was young. Those figures were some of the first examples that there was an art to toys, that they could be something cooler and more interesting than just children’s playthings, and it seems like a great idea for NECA to pay tribute to such a highly influential toy series from the past.
Rounding out the Apes reveals, NECA also debuted a second series of modern figures based on Dawn. Included in this wave are new versions of Caesar and Koba– no longer rocking their badass skeletal war paint, but packing some serious firepower) and the massive Gorilla, Luca, who is clearly the star of this assortment. I’m kind of bummed we’re getting so many repeats instead of original characters like Blue Eyes or Rocket, but I will say the new Koba looks incredible, an even better likeness of the villain than his first figure.
This is a cool series, but I don’t think I’ll ever be truly satisfied until I see an Ape and Horse deluxe set. Until that theoretical day, NECA is certainly on point with their other releases, so I cannot complain.
Get the full rundown, complete with images from NECA, below:
Planet of the Apes – 8″ Clothed Figure – George Taylor (Charlton Heston)
Based on the beloved 1968 film, Planet of the Apes, and featuring the likeness of actor Charlton Heston! The poseable 8″ figure is dressed in fabric clothing similar to the toy lines that helped define the licensed action figure market in the 1970s. Other versions of George Taylor have been released in the past, but this is the first that features Heston’s likeness.
George wears his astronaut uniform and comes with a removable backpack that opens. Blister card packaging with removable protective clamshell.
Scheduled for a November release.
Dawn of the Planet of the Apes – 7″ Scale Action Figures – Series 2
Series 2 includes the truly massive gorilla Luca, who comes with interchangeable heads, plus new versions of Caesar and Koba that feature all-new head sculpts and shotgun and machine gun accessories. The figures stand approximately 6″ tall and are entirely authentic to the movie.
Scheduled for a November release.
Planet of the Apes – 7″ Scale Action Figures – Classic Series 2
Our second series of 7″ scale action figures from the classic Planet of the Apes films brings even more of your favorite characters! Series 2 includes General Ursus, Dr. Zira, and an all-new version of Dr. Zaius. These fully articulated figures stand approximately 7″ tall and are entirely faithful to their original on-screen looks.
Based on his appearance in Beneath the Planet of the Apes, General Ursus is the commander of the ferocious Gorilla Army, and comes with pistol and holster accessories. From the original 1968 film, brilliant psychologist and veterinarian Dr. Zira comes with notepad and pencil accessories. Also from the original film, the zealous Dr. Zaius is dressed in a long coat and comes with cane and scroll accessories.
Scheduled for an October release.
(*Sorry, couldn’t help myself)