For me, my NECA collecting is widely due to their current, super-awesome, handling of Aliens. That line is definitely one of their signature lines, but the line that really, truly defines NECA is their fantastic Predators line. The line first began as a tie-in to 2010’s Predators film, before gradually moving on to the designs of the creatures from the other films in the series. Like a lot of properties from the ‘80s, the Predator franchise has a really strong, really distinctive first film, before switching to films that are of a noticeably lower quality. Predator 2 definitely isn’t up to the first film by any stretch of the imagination, but it’s really not the worst thing ever, and, more importantly, the main Predator design is really cool. So, let’s have a look at one of NECA’s versions of that character!
THE FIGURE ITSELF
The City Hunter, as he is officially named, was released in the 4th Series of NECA’s Predators line. As noted in the intro, he’s based on the primary Predator featured in Predator 2 (there were actually quite a few secondary Predators featured.) The figure is just shy of 8 inches in height, with 24 points of articulation. City Hunter is appears here sans-bio-mask, meaning it’s after his first run-in with Harrigan, however, he still has both hands, so it’s before they do significant battle. Structurally, the figure shares a number of pieces with the Predators that preceded him, however, he has a character specific head, as well as some unique armor pieces. He also has a brand new pelvis, hips, and upper legs, as the figure is one of the first in the NECA line to sport the ball-and-disc-style hip joints that would eventually become standard for the line. Probably the best part of the sculpt is the figure’s head, which gives a great look at what lies beneath that Predator mask. The mandibles have been sculpted as a separate piece and glued in place, which not only gives the figure a great bit of dimension, but also allows for the mouth to be really detailed. Beyond just the head, every piece of this figure’s sculpt is covered with some sort of texturing or detailing, just like the prop-suit from the movie would have been, and it all looks pretty fantastic. City Hunter’s paintwork isn’t quite as good as his sculpt, but it’s not terrible. The colors all match up pretty well with the colors from the movie, and for the most part the paint stays where it’s supposed to be. The figure also has the appropriate sheens on his skin and armor, to help differentiate them, which is definitely cool. However, there’re a few areas with a bunch of slop, and, most notably, the painting of the fishnets is, at best, erratic. It results in an overall decent effect, but it doesn’t stand up to close scrutiny. The City Hunter is armed with one accessory: the smart disc. While it’s not as cool as the Combi-Staff, the piece is significant in the movie, and it’s nice to see it here. He has a little trouble holding it, but it can be stowed in his side holster quite nicely.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
After getting pulled into NECA’s Predators line with Dutch and the Jungle Hunter from the first movie, I hadn’t really planned on getting any of the other Predators. But, a re-watch of Predator 2 reminded me of how much I really liked the City Hunter design, so I ended up tracking this guy down on Amazon. He’s a really great figure, and he shows of the best qualities of the line very well. Now, if only there were a Harrigan to go with him!