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Are We Not Men? NECA Limited Edition “Apes” Lawgiver Statue

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NECA’s Lawgiver Statue strikes an imposing vision over their stunning Ape City diorama

Dear (Juris) Prudence…
The extraordinary sculpt work produced for NECA’s (National Entertainment Collectibles Association) classic Planet of the Apes (1968) action figures truly imbues them with the personality of their on-screen analogs and is what makes them some of my favorite collectibles. This week the toy company brings another key piece to original PotA fans in the form of the The Lawgiver Statue. The visage of the wizened orangutan was featured at NECA’s New York International Toy Fair 2015 booth as part of the jaw dropping diorama pictured below.
planet of the apes, neca action figures, lawgiver statue

At Toy Fair 15, NECA presented an amazing setting for their classic “Planet of the Apes” action figures.

Goin’ to Ape City, Gonna Have Some Fun…
At a foot tall, the highly detailed resin statue is scaled proportionally to the toy maker’s classic Apes 6” action figures. As you can see it is a perfect compliment to any Ape City tableau. Word to the wise…, it’s expressly limited to a single run of 1700 pieces.
planet of the apes, neca action figures, lawgiver statue, maurice evans, dr. zaius

NECA’s 6″ Dr. Zaius action figure doles out a few rules of his own.


SkeletonPete Says…
As an early teen “monster kid” I well remember the Lawgiver statue being a prominent prop in publicity shots of actor Maurice Evans sporting make-up man John Chambers’ then state of the art prosthetics. I was apparently impressed enough to paint this fairly large Dr. Zaius portrait which I recently discovered during a home basement “dig.”
planet of the apes, neca action figures, lawgiver statue, maurice evans, dr. zaius

Dr. Zaius publicity photo inspired this teenage artistic endeavor.


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Mama I’m Comin’ Home: NECA’s Ripley and Alien Queen

neca, alien, action figures, ellen ripley, alien queen

Alien Queen faces off against Ellen Ripley for a mother of a fight.


Ripley, Believe It Or Not…
According to recent news Fox’s Alien franchise is poised to gear up again. This fifth installment will feature first Alien protagonist Ellen Louise Ripley as the lead character and apparently ignore the plot lines of Alien 3 and Alien: Resurrection. It’s a maneuver by director/writer Neill Blomkamp (Chappie, District 9) that will surely cause controversy in the fan communities for its wholesale revisionism. I personally hope it will finally give the Ripley character a definitive and satisfying third act. Most importantly, actress Sigourney Weaver has just verified taking the lead again. It’s a role that has proven to define the female action hero for several decades and it’s good to know it will be in the hands of its original creator.
neca, alien, action figures, ellen ripley, alien queen

NECA’s P-5000 Power Loader becomes battle gear for Ripley action figure.


In tandem with this exciting news comes NECA’s announced Alien Series 4 action figures. This wave includes Nostromo Captain Dallas (Tom Skerrit) and none other than Ripley herself, based on Weaver’s likeness for the first time. It’s something collectors have been clamoring for and worth the wait as the figure debuts in two different versions. One Ripley dons the distinctive Nostromo spacesuit – what I call the “samurai goalie” look – the other is garbed in her jumpsuit, armed with flame thrower. Spacesuit helmets can be removed, but beware those of ornery face huggers. There are even two versions of Jonesy the Cat, one calm and the other with his hackles up.
neca, alien, action figures, ellen ripley, alien queen

Fan favorite Ellen Ripley ready for action with flamethrower in hand.


NECA (National Entertainment Collectibles Association) never fails to amaze with their New York Toy Fair sales booth displays. This year the highlight was a huge diorama with Ripley in the P-5000 Power Loader that NECA prevued last year. She’s prepared to battle the monstrous xenomorph Queen Mother. Half of the android Bishop (Lance Henriksen) watches helplessly in the midst of a hatchling swarm of scurrying face huggers.
neca, alien, action figures, ellen ripley, alien queen

NECA’s Massive Alien Queen closes in for the attack.


The queen is quite a showpiece. NECA has captured the sleek, angular, and wiry essence of the creature with its regal crest and slavering jaws. The deluxe figure has 30 points of articulation, stands over 15 inches tall and 30 inches long to the tip of its highly posable tail. A stand and two sets of inner jaws are included.

Tall Cool One…
NECA also displayed a prototype of their 1979 Alien. It’s a quarter scale replica of the suit worn by 6′ 10″ Balaji Badejo for his sinuous and balletic performance. Born out of the late H. R. Giger’s nightmarish artwork, this lone creature was plenty enough of a scare on his own in the original film. Even in its unpainted state it’s clear NECA has a fine representation in the works. It’s scheduled for a June release.

neca, alien, action figures, ellen ripley, alien queen

NECA’s unpainted prototype for a 1/4 scale 1979 Alien.


SkeletonPete Says…
I was fortunate to have viewed the original Alien in its first theater run, probably its first week. In 1979 there was no chance of internet spoilers, no speculation from decades old fan bases, just a pure experience that was quite a fright ride. Second and third viewings were equal fun, especially watching the popcorn fly in the midst of unsuspecting first timers. I only knocked the edges off the experience once I could run it on VHS at will. It is that kind of audience familiarity and the since proffered Prometheus backstory and Predator interpolations that Neill Blomkamp will have to overcome in his quest to make his new installment of a piece with the first two and offer that kind of impact.
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Too Much Monkey Business: NECA Shapes “Apes” Series 1

NECA's 7" Caesar, King of the Apes Action Figure

NECA’s 7″ Caesar, King of the Apes Action Figure


Mr. Mojo Risin’…
20th Century Fox’s Dawn of the Planet of the Apes opens July 11, 2014 and early reviews are promising a spectacular addition to the solid reboot of the much loved franchise. I will admit that after the misstep of the 2001 “re-imagining” by Tim Burton I was skeptical about future films, but the James Franco and Andy Serkis performances in 2011’s Rise of the Planet of the Apes won me over and I have been looking forward to this sequel.

Since the denoument of the original 1968 film revealed the apes’ planet to be Earth itself, the question was always “how did we get there.” “Rise” and “Dawn” tell that story in a thoughtful and effective narrative. A third, currently untitled, installment is set for summer 2016.


Sneak peaked at last winter’s New York Toy Fair, NECA Toys already has their first wave of articulated action figures on the shelves. Series 1 includes 6 inch renditions of Caesar, Koba and Maurice. Each comes with interchangeable hands and appropriate weapons. Check out NECA’s site for some really great posed studio shots of these three.
Dr. Zaius, as played by the late Maurice Evans, is perfectly portrayed as part of NECA's Classic "Planet of the Apes" Series 1.

Dr. Zaius, as played by the late Maurice Evans, is perfectly portrayed as part of NECA’s Classic “Planet of the Apes” Series 1.


Classy Classics…
NECA is also poised to release beautiful likenesses of the original film characters this month. Planet of the Apes Classic Series 1 includes 7 inch Cornelius, Dr. Zaius and an armed Gorilla Soldier.

Skeletonpete Says…
Follow NECA on Twitter for their #monkeymonday communiques and news about their other great collectibles.