After unveiling a handful of new Alien toys at Toy Fair, including the Aliens Power Loader, many fans of the franchise were left wondering if NECA would be releasing an Ellen Ripley figure, to put inside of the infamous weapon of Xenomorph destruction.
Well, we didn’t have to wonder for very long, because NECA just posted a tweet that’s sure to be music to the ears of all who have been awaiting her addition to the line…
“Word is out, we’ve got her and you’re getting multiple figures,” read the tweet, which included a drawing of Ripley.
Can I get a hallelujah?!
Though it’s incredibly exciting that NECA is going to finally bring Ripley into their quickly expanding Alien line, they’re not the first company to immortalize the iconic ‘final girl’ in plastic. In honor of the exciting announcement, let’s take a look at some past Ripley toys, which have come out over the years!
The very first Ripley figure was released by Kenner, back in the early 1990s. These figures were actually intended to be a tie-in with an animated cartoon series based on Aliens, called Operation Aliens, which never ended up getting off the ground. That explains why all of the figures in the line were so colorful and cartoony, and the characters didn’t look the way they did in the movie.
In 1994, Kenner put out a four-pack of mini die-cast Aliens figures in their Action Masters line, which included two Xenomorphs, a Face Hugger and Ripley, armed with a pulse rifle. A terrible likeness, for sure, but this figure is noteworthy for being the first Ripley collectible to be decked out in clothing she actually wore in the movies.
A couple years later, Galoob added a few Aliens-themed collections to their Micro Machines line, which was comprised of small scale figures and vehicles. This particular set included Ripley, the ‘Dog Alien,’ the U.S.S. Sulaco and the Cheyenne drop ship. Certainly not the most detailed Ripley figure, but a Ripley figure nonetheless.
1997 saw the release of Alien: Resurrection, the fourth and final installment in the franchise. Hasbro put out a line of 6″ action figures in conjunction with the movie, which gave us the best looking Ripley figure that had been released at that time. Still not quite there, but getting better!
Ripley got Mezco’s Mez-Itz treatment in 2004, released in a three pack with the Alien Queen and an Alien Warrior. I’ll take any Ripley toys I can get, but this was admittedly a pretty hideous one.
Shortly thereafter, MediCom released a few different Ripley toys in their popular Kubrick line, which are simple block-style figures that are housed inside of ‘blind boxes’ – you don’t know who you’re getting, until you buy one and open it up. Again, these were pretty unsightly, and the other Ripley Kubricks saw her in a space suit and packaged with the Power Loader. If nothing else, gotta appreciate the cat carrier, and the fact that this one was based on the original film. Where you at, Jonesy?
The best Ripley figure we’ve seen to date is no doubt this 2007 release from Hot Toys, which measured 12″ tall and was fully pose-able. The same figure was also included in a box set with the Power Loader, and both of them have become quite rare and expensive over the years. You’ll have to pay several hundred dollars for the figure by herself and $1,000 or more for the Power Loader set. Awesome figure, but no thanks!
If you’re looking to pay a whole lot less for a fairly decent looking Ripley toy, you can do worse than the Hot Toys Aliens Snap Kit figure, which was housed inside of a Xenomorph egg. How it worked is that you had to free the disassembled parts from the eggs, and then put the toys together yourself. The 4″ figures included the Colonial Marines and a couple different Xenomorphs, and you can usually find Ripley for less than $100. Still not the greatest likeness, but a whole lot better than any of the Ripley toys that came before it.
Finally, Super7 put out a line of retro-inspired Alien toys last year, which were actually based on prototype images of unreleased Kenner toys from 1979. The toys were abandoned when a previously released Xenomorph figure caused parental outrage, and Super7 brought them back from the dead, over 30 years later. Due to the period-authentic nature of the figures, they’re not exactly the best looking toys, but it’s nevertheless pretty awesome to be able to own a line of figures that it seemed like we were destined to never get our hands on. This is also one of the only figures based on Ripley’s look in the first Alien film, which is another reason it’s a must-own.
As you can see, the common connection between all of these figures is that none of them quite look like Sigourney Weaver, which is due to the fact that she never signed off on allowing the companies to use her likeness. As a result, they were allowed to release Ripley figures, but their hands were tied when it came to making them actually look like Weaver.
The most exciting thing about the news of NECA’s upcoming offerings? They were able to acquire a license to use Weaver’s likeness, so their figures will be the first ever Ripley toys that… look like Ripley!
Can I get another hallelujah?!