Updated: May 12
Review : Dr. Elizabeth Shaw Prometheus (NECA) Wave/Series : Lost Wave Released : July 2017
In 2012 and 2013 NECA released three waves of Prometheus 7" action figures. At the time the hype for the Alien movies prequel was at a high, but despite this the figures did not do too well in stores. A further set of figures had been developed and sculpted and two were even pictured on the back of the packaging. The lack of sales and interest causes NECA to make the decision to pull these figures from the release - leaving those fans who had supported the range looking enviously at the sculpted iages of Holloway, Dr Shaw and Fifield.
Roll forward to the end of 2016 and with the imminent release of the Prometheus sequel, Covenant, in 2017 NECA came out of nowhere with the announcement that it would be releasing these missing Prometheus figures - the so called "Lost Wave".
This Lost Wave wasn't quite the missing 2013 figures. While Fifield and Dr Shaw had survived, there was no place for Holloway. Instead a brand new figure, Meredith Vickers, was introduced to make up the three figure wave.
Collectors will be pleased that despite being four years between the waves, NECA have kept the packaging for the Lost Wave identical to how it came in 2013. The figure arrives in a blister pack with insert sandwiched between the blister and plastic rear. A further insert sits at the bottom of the blister. This confirms the character name and under this sits a Prometheus logo.
Behind the figure the blister insert carries a dark black and blue image based on the hieroglyphics seen in the movie and beneath these a stack of Engineer bodies.
The blister is pretty flimsy sadly. I received all three figures as a case and they all arrived with warping to the blister side. The insert is also very flimsy and once the blister is warped, this creases very easily - it doesn't look great for display by MOC / "in packaging" collectors.
Round the back, on the reverse of the insert, is printed an image of the actual Shaw figure in a triangle insert. To the side of this sits a short bio of Shaw and her place on the Prometheus mission. Both of these sit atop a background of further hieroglyphics.
Under the image of Shaw sits a set of triangular inserts - 9 in total - which show the now complete range of basic 7" Prometheus figures from both 2012/3 and 2017. Under this is a further image of the deluxe Engineer and Trilobite. While these "also available" images are a nice touch to sew all the releases together - it will frustrate those who are just discovering the Prometheus figures as the rest of the range from 2012/3 is now selling for a ridiculous mark up on the secondary market.
The card reverse ends with a Weyland Yutani logo and a plug for Alien Covenant coming in Summer 2017. This was obviously added when the figures were originally due for release in June, the figures ended up arriving after the Covenant premiere.
The blister has to be cut to be opened, and inside the figure is sat in an inner tray - tied into position with twist ties. It baffles me why these are used on blister figures as the figure isn't going anywhere and as a theft deterrent, the blister is hard enough to open. Oh for the day NECA takes a leaf out of Hasbro's book and does away with these ties.
Alongside the figure is her helmet, an axe and the severed head of David-8.
In my opinion, NECA's sculpting team is about the best in the business at the moment at this scale and price point. Dr Shaw is no exception and the likeness to Noomi Rapace is very impressive. But it doesn't stop with sculpting with NECA, they have a very good level of paint applications for the face - and Shaw has subtle shading to bring out the sculpt as well as nicely painted expressive and realistic eyes - none of this black lining and dots we see on figures of a similar price. There is even a hint of blusher on the cheeks.
The figure is also full of graphical detail, most applied as decals. These can be found on the base of the helmet, on the left shoulder and round the back of the helmet base.
The spacesuit is really well designed too and captures the costume used in the movie. It is essentially a sleek blue, but this blue is metallic and holds a sheen to it and really dances in good light. Across this are neon orange trims. There are then black paneled segments on the neck, shoulder, wrists, belt and feet. While these look a singular colour, there are variations in black and grey and also in finish from gloss to matt. Details such as the vents on what is the spacesuit back pack are also picked out in silver, as are red panels around the helmet. There is even a screen accurate salmon pink strap visible to each side of the chest.
All the painting is ultra neat, I can't find any bleeding or mis-colouration. Excellent work.
Articulation on Shaw is improved from the 2012/13 David-8 figure, who came in a similar Spacesuit. The head is ball jointed and can turn and look up and down within the physical constraints of the helmet collar.
Shoulders are ball jointed and can raise up quite a way, with the grey shoulder panel being flexible and moves with the arm. The elbows are a single rotating joint and the hands are on a small ball joint too (socket on hand, ball on the wrist) so will rotate and move forward and back ever so slightly.
The torso is jointed under the blue panels of the chest and the waist is on a similar ball joint. This means Shaw can bend a good way forward and backward. The legs are ball joints too and the groin area is that softer plastic that NECA favour to allow some more movement without ugly T-joints. That being said, the joints won't let Shaw sit or kneel - you will get a reclined position if you really want. With single jointed knees and ankle rockers finishing off the legs - the figure has plenty of range for action stances.
Accessory number one is that weird shaped axe that Shaw arms herself with towards the end of the movie. This is well made and is painted with a silver blade, wood effect handle (two tones of beige) and a black grip with silver end cap.
It fits into either hand and the arm articulation also allows for two handed poses if you wish. You might have to coax the fingers a little to achieve these.
The other accessory / costume addition is the oversized space suit helmet.
When you unpack this be very careful to take out the small baggie that is packed inside. This contains an articulated camera that can be slotted into a socket at the front of the helmet. It can also, if you aren't using the helmet, slot into a similar socket on the left shoulder. There is nothing on the packaging that tells you this (hence no images of ours being shoulder mounted), I found it out a bit later when trawling some images.
The helmet is well made and slots perfectly into the notches on the collar. It is made of a very clear perspex, but that means it is brittle and won't take much to scratch or break if the figure takes a tumble. Being oversized the head can be posed within the helmet - so can look ahead, to the side or up and down without stopping the helmet being worn.
Accessory number 3 is an odd one, but of course very apt to the movie. It is a severed head of the android David-8. The head comes with part of the neck and from this is a silver metallic spine. The head is actually articulated with the head on a ball joint to the neck.
At first I thought this was a new sculpt of David-8, which seemed extravagant. On inspection it is the same as the 2012 release. But you can therefore see in the comparison image how far NECA have come in just 4-years with the painting of human heads. David-8 has the same subtle shading/blushing to the cheeks as Shaw. The eyes are also painted realistically, with the hair and eyebrows using two or more shades of brown to bring out the depth. The only niggle for me is a spot of silver paint from the exposed mechanical parts has been splashed on the flesh tone on the neck.
The head doesn't do much obviously, but Shaw can hold it if you really want.
I wonder (and this is speculation on my part) if the inclusion of the David-8 was a little nod to fans on two fronts. Being jointed and assuming it can be boiled and popped off - it would allow collectors with the original David-8 figure to update the head to a superior paint job (if they wanted of course considering the price of the figure on secondary market).
The other option is of course that the Fifield figure uses the same body as David-8. Buy an extra Fifield and swap heads and you have an instant David-8 for your crew without paying "silly money".
Alongside the actual 2012 David-8 figure, Dr. Shaw does stands out with a much brighter space suit and better paint applications - although yes I am aware the spacesuits did differ in the film. However, the gap is not massive and David-8 is certainly not overshadowed in the way some earlier releases are when stood next to more modern versions.
I look forward to unpacking Vickers and Fifield for a full crew picture.
I find it rare to review a NECA figure at present that doesn't score high on our rating scale. In fact it was a NECA Alien 3 figure that resulted in us adding an extra 5* score for exceptional figures.
While Shaw doesn't hit that height, there is little to fault with the figure itself. Sculpt, paint and articulation are all top notch and there is a good array of accessories. The only downside, for MOC collectors, is that blister packaging and the thin insert being prone to warping.
I score Dr. Elizabeth Shaw from the Prometheus Lost Wave a 5 out of 5.
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