LT. ELLEN RIPLEY
Okay, guys, you read the title. You saw that picture. You know what I’m reviewing today. Are you prepared for what is about to happen here? I mean this totally seriously. Are you prepared? Okay, let’s give it ago. I think I’ve maintained my composure for a while, without freaking, so I’ve lulled everyone into a sense of ease. Good. Let’s move on.
HOLY CRAP, NECA TOTALLY WORKED OUT THE LIKENESS RIGHTS DEAL WITH SIGOURNEY WEAVER AND NOW THEY’VE MADE RIPLEY FROM ALIENS AND I TOTALLY HAVE IT IN MY POSSESION AND I’M REVIEWING IT AND THIS SOOOOOO AWESOME!!!!!!
I think I’m good now. Sorry, I’ve been holding the excitement in for a little while. Umm, so I’ve just gotten my figure of Ripley from Aliens, my favorite movie of all time, and now I’m gonna review it.
THE FIGURE ITSELF
Lt. Ellen Ripley is part of Series 5 of NECA’s Aliens line. After going completely to Alien for Series 4, they’ve switched back over to figures from the second movie for Series 5. Yay, more Aliens toys for me! Ripley is presented here in her Xeno-hive-exploring get-up, from the climax of the film, when she goes to save Newt. It’s really the go to look for Ripley from Aliens, so it’s definitely the one to lead with. The figure stands roughly 7 ¼ inches tall and has 26 points of articulation. Like Series 4’s Jumpsuit Ripley, this puts her at the same height as all of the Marines produced so far, and a little bit taller than Series 3’s Bishop. That’s definitely appropriate for a figure representing Sigourney Weaver, who is 6 feet tall. Ripley’s sculpt appears to be mostly new; the only parts that look to be re-use are the forearms, which are from Jumpsuit Ripley. And, seeing as they’re the same actress’s forearms, that seems pretty excusable. The rest of the sculpt is really, really good. It’s not perfect; the arms seem just a touch lanky and the neck’s a little on the thin side. However, those are minor issues, especially compared to what the sculpt gets right. The overall proportions are pretty spot on, and the figure is covered in detail work and texture. The ammo-belt and watch are both add-ons, which actually surprised me a bit, especially on the watch. Now, the key piece of a Ripley figure in this day and age is the likeness. NECA did a pretty great job on both Series 4 Ripleys, so the pressure was definitely on here. Prototype shots had me a little worried, but the final product blows all that away. Easily the best likeness in the line. This IS Ellen Ripley. Well, facially, anyway. The one thing that holds it back just a little is the hair. It’s not bad, but it seems just a tad too big. Hair is difficult, so NECA’s still done an admirable job here, getting it as close as they did. Moving onto paint, I feel it important to note that, while this is the best paintwork we’ve seen in this line to date, it’s not without issue. The biggest issue, for me, is the eyebrows. They’re set too hi, and they’re too at ease, which isn’t appropriate for Ripley at this point in the movie. It’s not enough to ruin the figure, but it is somewhat noticeable. In addition, the right side of the hair ends just a small fraction shy of the sculpted hair. It’s not noticeable from 90% of viewing angles, but when it’s visible, it looks a little goofy. Lastly (and this one’s really minor), the stains on the shirt stand out just a bit too much from the normal shirt color. Some fading would have been nice. Those issues aside, the paint on this figure is truly amazingly handled. This Ripley makes the switch over to the more realistic flesh toned plastic that NECA used on figures like Rambo and Dutch. It has the semi-translucent of real skin, and avoids loss of detail and the extra thickness added by paint. The end result is an astounding improvement to the Marines and Bishop. Ripley is packed with her signature pulse rifle/flamethrower combo. It’s a key accessory for this look, and it’s wonderfully executed. The piece is actually two pieces, bound together, and the pulse rifle even has the tracker taped to the top, just like the movie.
THE ME HALF OF THE EQUATION
So, I’m sure it’s no surprise that I’ve been anxiously awaiting this figure’s release ever since the prototype was first shown off. My wonderfully supportive parents were nice enough to get me Ripley (along with the rest of Series 5) for my birthday. The figure wasn’t here quite in time for my actual birthday, the sheer awesomeness of the figure more than makes up for that. I noted in my review of the Series 4 Ripley that NECA had set the bar pretty high for this figure. Well, I’m happy to say that this figure has cleared that bar with room to spare. This is the finest piece the line’s had to offer!