It’s been a while since we saw a new wave of Aliens figures from NECA, but the new batch is finally here. This lineup features two new Aliens– a blue-tinted Xenomorph Warrior and “Big Chap,” the creature from the original Ridley Scott movie, as well as a new Colonial Marine, Sgt. Windrix (dedicated to Craig, the brother of sculptor Kyle Windrix).
The blue Xenomorph is a repaint of the Warrior from wave one, but I like the new deco. At different times throughout Aliens, the monsters appeared with a brownish or bluish color thanks to director James Cameron’s lighting, so I like that NECA is offering both versions. The sculpt is still remarkable, the best toy version ever of the cinematic creature. The level of detail, the articulation and even the wonderful design of the hinged jaw and extending tongue are all fantastic. And the blue coloring balances both the on screen look of the Alien, while also feeling like a nice throwback to the look of Kenner’s Gorilla Alien from the 90s.
The first of several Alien figures we will see in 2014 to celebrate the 35th anniversary of the classic movie, Big Chap is another remarkable figure. He shares some parts with the Xenomorph Warriors, but features all new arms, hands, feet and a fantastic new head. The new parts are great depictions of the differences with this version of the Alien, with its human-style feet and six fingered hands, and they blend in nicely with the reused pieces.
The new Alien’s head is excellent– the cloudy translucent dome on the creature is executed perfectly, not quite see-through but clear enough to leave the humanoid skull underneath visible. Like the other Aliens, Big Chap features a hinged jaw and an extendable tongue, as well as a sliding joint on the ball neck, allowing it to lurch its head forward or back. It’s an effective new joint, and opens up even more great posing opportunities.
While the latest Aliens figures are very nice, the parts reuse here does make the wave feel like a place holder set, as NECA continues to develop more original sculpts and (hopefully) secure more actors’ likeness rights. Even as an interim wave based largely on reused parts, each figure is a welcome addition to this promising young collection.