Toy Review: Alien 40th Anniversary Wave 2 Figures by NECA

When McFarlane Toys kicked off the modern era of horror movie action figures with Movie Maniacs, one of the big selling-point gimmicks was “bloody” variants. Toy stores with stricter family friendly parameters would get figures of Freddy, Jason, et al with simulated mud and dirt splashes, while specialty stores got blood-spattered deco. NECA, with a toy department featuring several McFarlane veterans, hasn’t done this a whole lot except where it means being faithful to a specific scene. But to change things up in the Alien line, and so as to include a different xenomorph in each wave, Alien 40th Anniversary wave 2 includes a bloody alien. A gloriously bloody Alien. As in, they didn’t just splash some dark red on it and call it a day.

Yes please, NECA. More like this.

Looks like a little grime and mud in there as well as blood. There’s not a lot else new to say about this figure, which utilizes the most recent Big Chap body. But compared to the wave one model, it does show what a difference a color change can make. On this review sample, the head’s back-and-forward joint was loose, which is unfortunate if one needs it to look down, but not a dealbreaker.

Note also the tiger shark-like stripes on the leg. Subtle yet effective.

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But the main event of wave 2 is the debut of Parker and Brett action figures, whom I believe are the first action figures of Yaphet Kotto and Harry Dean Stanton with authentic likenesses. NECA previously rejected the idea of a character like Brett, since normal guys in ball caps aren’t super in-demand. But anniversary waves seem to get away with character choices that normal waves cannot. And Stanton is beloved by cult film fans, one of “those guys” whose appearance onscreen always guarantees a good time. Usually armed with a zenlike quip and a cigarette, he’s captured pretty well in NECA’s likeness. It’s not perfect — something’s weird about the eyes, perhaps? — but unmistakably him. As Brett might say, “Riiiiight.”

On Parker, there’s a particularly nice touch we don’t see often enough. A figure of a black man that actually has lighter pigmentation on his palms! Such a simple thing, but it is rarely done, if ever.

Parker and Brett wear the same style of pants in different colors, which initially looked like a parts reuse. But it’s not. The sculpts are similar but different; and Parker has longer ankle parts to help make up the height differential — Kotto was around seven inches taller than Stanton. Articulation style is also different, with Parker having single-ball elbows, and Brett double.

Both men come with cattle-prod stun guns, while Brett has the motion tracker and Parker the flamethrower. Parker includes an alternate hand for the flamethrower’s wider grip.

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One slight bit of awkwardness with Parker is that his ankle joints set his legs back at a slight angle. He needs to lean forward to compensate. No big deal on a smooth surface…but sometimes challenging on a greenscreen cloth! Both men feature ball-joints under their shirts, but since Parker’s shirt goes below his waistline it’s more restricted.

The crew of the Nostromo is one step closer to completion, with the long-requested Kane (John Hurt) and Ash (Ian Holm) finally getting their likenesses approved in wave 3. Demand likely varies depending upon one’s fandom for the individual actor, but every Alien cast member continued to greatness. So they all have fans. The bloody xenomorph, though, will appeal to even total casuals.

Take a closer look in our gallery below. Will you make the entire wave yours? Let us know in comments.

Recommended Purchase: NECA Alien 40TH Anniversary Big CHAP 1/4 Scale AF

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