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Hot Toys Alien vs Predator: Requiem
Warrior Alien

   

"The following is a guest review.  The review and photos do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Michael Crawford or Michael's Review of the Week, and are the opinion and work of the guest author."

Jeff Parker recently covered the new PredAlien from the Hot Toys AvP:R line, and tonight he's hitting up one of the other Aliens.  Take it away, Jeff!

Thanks as always to Michael.

The Hot Toys (HT) juggernaut just keeps on rolling them out, and here we are with HT third and last figure from the AvP: R line up, and it also happens to be their 3rd Xenomorph (not counting grid and colour variants), of what promises to eventually comprise of the whole series.

As this week (25/02/08) after unveiling their new A L I E N, Nostromo crew cosmonauts, they also announced that they have now secured the licence for all 4 Alien movies along with those of the Predator and AvP that they already had. Iíve been pretty bowled over by the first two Alien incarnations they gave us so far, can this guy make it a hat trick.
 










Packaging: ***
If you already have an Alien from the MMS line, you will already know what to expect. We again have a reflective sleeve, which slips over a flap-fronted box. The whole thing is covered in a wealth of photos of the product; drawing our attention to itís many special features.
Inside heís laid out in exactly the same position as all the previous Aliens and indeed the PredAlien all of which can be seen here in previous reviews-

- AvP warrior/drone
 
- PredAlien

- ĎAliensí warrior/drone

- Brown ĎAliensí warrior/drone comp

So yet again it is still in a semi-kit form, but compared to the other HT Preds and Marines these are a synch to construct, youíll have Ďem done in under five minutes.

Sculpt: ***1/2
To my eye these look pretty spot on as far as the head and body goes, so why not full marks. Well thatís down to the feet.

Apart from the head and hands most other elements have been re-used from the two Aliens that went before, mostly the first AvP.

So the legs, arms and body/torso are all virtually exactly the same as the AvP Alien apart from the omission of the top central spike on the creatures back, but this is all fine, as the design of the creature Ďas seen on screení was lifted pretty much straight from that movie, probably to save money on R&D.

Then we get new hands, just bendy ones! No rigid sculpts this time. Theyíre a nice tight job and are again movie accurate showing the longer fingers and double opposable thumbs, but then we get the feet, these are a straight lift from the ĎAliensí drone, theyíre a lot closer in style than the original AvP feet, but still not spot on.

To be fair the Aliens feet are seen only briefly in the movie, and when glimpsed itís in semi darkness. But the feet should be a little larger and have double opposable big toes to mimic the hands biology, so for me, as far as accuracy goes this is the only real falling down.

But youíll be pleased to see the head is spot on to the movie costumes and CG models used. Iíve made no secret of the fact I find the smooth Alien domes far more sinister and threatening than the ridged heads, so this guy would always be an also ran for me (canít wait for HT to give us the Alien 3 runner, my second fave after the original, and even the Alien: Resurrection aquatic Aliens are high on my Ďmust haveí list), but even though not my favourite in terms of design I can see HT have done a sterling job of translating the screen seen head to this 1/6 depiction. The opening jaw and extendable inner jaws/tongue is again present, mine was a little stiff, but soon loosened up with a bit of work. Viewed from the front, the new head has quite a streamlined effect but from the side actually looks a little like it has a double chin, as the line of the other Aliens jaws have been Ďleaní running up from the chin to the top of the neck, but this new design goes from the back of the chin down at an angle to the bottom base of the neck. I guess itís nice to have another Ďversioní of Gigers nightmare creature, yet again showing its Ďevolutioní, but itís still my least favourite in terms of creature design, taking yet another step away from the seminal beast Giger gave us.

Like all the HT Aliens he has the opening and extending inner jaws as well.

Paint: ***3/4
At the risk of sounding repetitive, as I said above, this is not my favourite design, but as far as paint apps go this is probably the best depiction of what we see in the movie yet! Nice subtle use of lighter, but still very dark coppery tones give this Alien the darkest, near Ďblackestí overall look of any of the HT Aliens thus far. The teeth are again picked out in steel and some subtle bronze dry brushing is used on the front of the cowl to mimic its translucent quality, even hinting at the skull beneath from some angles. So all in all a near perfect paint app, not that complicated by the standards of some of HT recent projects, but still impressive.

Articulation - ***1/4
The body is pretty much a straight copy of the AvP drone (review linked above) so he ought to get the same score, but having seen the ĎAliensí drone (review linked above) I feel a small tweak could have made the elbows far more flexible, but apart from that itís all good, even the feet (though not 100% accurate) fit a lot better with a much stiffer joint than the Aliens version and they arrive already fixed in place.

I still love the rubber covered multi articulated torso and the range of movement in the neck and head is till pretty astounding so though not perfected yet, HT have still given us the best poseable Aliens on the market, which leads me to expect great things from the up and coming H.R.Giger original and his various brethren.

There are some more cool shots viewable here over at SSF, courtesy of Sabres21768 (note he added the top back spike, it doesnít come with one).

And here is another small youtube demo on some of the articulation (sorry about the lighting, I had to do this one at home!). 

Accessories: ***
No stand or second pair of rigid hands, but you do get a rather nifty poseable facehugger, like the one we got with the AvP grid and brown versions. Itís made of softish rubber with wire inside the tail, fingers and the Ďsaddlebagsí, as far as I remember no eggs are seen in the movie, so I guess thatís about all you could give this guy. But Iím marking down slightly for the lack of alternate hands.  

Fun Factor: ****
For me, a self confessed Alienophile there are few things better than getting a new Alien figure, and the fact that this is another fully poseable top job from HT just makes me even happier. Iíve mentioned the few issues I have with this version of the Alien, but itís still a great figure, and if I wasnít already spoilt by the ones that came before, it would be way up there as one of my faves. But this weeks announcement makes each new Alien another step closer to the full line up, and thatís gonna be impressive!

Value: ***1/2
This is the cheapest of the three AvP: R figures, so at the Sideshow Toys (SST), RRP of $129.99 itís a full $20 less than Wolf and $55 cheaper than the PredAlien. There has been a lot more re-use of sculpts than on the other Aliens, but all for good reason (well apart from the feet), so for me Iíve gotten pretty used to the $100+ price tags, but if this had been between $100 to $110 it wouldíve been full marks. Even at this price though, youíre getting a fantastically put together and well engineered figure.

Overall: ***3/4
Another solid Movie Masterpiece Series figure rounding off the AvP:R holy trinity nicely, and pathing the way for HT to give us top class renditions of the creatures from the other movies. If I had come to this figure fresh without owning the others it wouldíve been 4 stars, but the fact that I havenít coupled with re-used feet Ďjustí keep it from that perfect score.

Score Recap:
Packaging: ****
Sculpting: ***1/2
Paint: ***3/4
Articulation: ***1/4
Accessories: ***
Value: ***1/2
Fun Factor: ****
Overall: ***3/4

Where to buy-
Iím sorry to say SST sold out quite a while a go, they had him for $129.99 on pre-order. But you can still find him at Michaelís sponsorsí below-

Corner Store-
In stock $116.99

Amazing Toyz-
Pre-order $116.99

Dark Shadow-
Was $129.99, but may be sold out

Forbiddenplanet.co.uk
Pre-order £89.99

- or you can try searching ebay with the sponsor MyAuctionLinks.

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Figure from the collection of Jeff Parker.

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