I really hate being constantly reminded of how old I am, and yet it seems as if everything I hold dear in pop culture is doing just that by celebrating some insane anniversary these days. Now it’s Freddy’s turn, as the undead bastard son of a hundred maniacs has turned 30 this year. I’ve pontificated a lot in the past about how into these movies I was when I was a teenager. My VHS copies of the movies got regular workouts in the VCR, I watched the TV series every week (for as long as it lasted), I had a giant poster of Freddy on my bedroom wall (much to my mother’s chagrin), I even had the only two issues of Marvel’s canceled magazine-format comic book and I still do! Hell, if there was a Freddy Krueger breakfast cereal, I’m sure I would have eaten it. Mmm… Krueger-O’s. Part of this nutritious breakfast! Anyway, NECA has done a lot with the license in the past, and now they’re giving us a self-proclaimed “Ultimate” version of the character to celebrate his 30th. Let’s check him out…
Holy shit, this is some rad packaging! Yeah, I said “rad” because I feel like it’s the 80s again. I had no idea what the package was going to look like, so I was expecting a standard NECA clam shell or window box, but no! What we got was this snazzy box with the totally bitchin’ original poster art by the great Matthew Peak. I love this poster! It’s absolutely balls out crazy and all sorts of creepy. This is from before Freddy became a wise-cracking loveable murderer and was still pretty damn scary. And even though the box is much bigger than a VHS tape, I still get the same kind of vibe off of it. The side panels have the familiar franchise logo along with “30th Anniversary Ultimate Freddy” and the back panel has some pictures of the accessories. Open the front flap and you’re treated to a window showing off the figure inside and everything is totally collector friendly, which is awesome because I’m definitely going to be keeping this box. NECA has been doing some really nice presentations lately, particularly with their repainted 8-bit video game style figures (which, admittedly aren’t my thing), and this package is fine example of some of that superb packaging.
Out of the package and Freddy is sporting what is easily one of NECA’s finest sculpts. And, well, this is NECA, so that’s saying quite a lot. I have some suspicions that some of this figure is re-purposed from past Freddy figures. The different heads all look like the ones that were included with their last Freddy. I’ve got no problem with that because if it is the case, they’ve obviously chosen the best they had to offer. The sweater is cast in soft plastic and attached over the figure buck. It’s appropriately textured and worn and while the green stripes don’t all line up with the sculpted striping in the texture, I didn’t even notice that until really scrutinizing the figure. Freddy’s glove hand features soft finger knives, which straighten out pretty easily and should resist breakage, which is more than I can say for the finger knives on my Mezco Freddy.
Before getting to the portraits, let’s look at articulation, because I’m pretty sure this is the first Freddy figure from NECA that has full articulation below the waist. In fact, I think that’s specifically what makes him the “ultimate” Freddy. The arms have rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, and wrists. The legs likewise have rotating hinges in the hips, knees, and ankles. There is a ball joint above the waist and the head rotates on a post. Based on the poseability alone, this figure certainly qualifies as being an “Ultimate” Freddy figure, but I’ll swing back to that idea in the conclusion.
Moving on to the portraits, and these are probably my favorite points about the figure. All three heads are exquisite with a depth of detail in the sculpts that is beyond impressive for a figure at this price point. The regular head is a serious, “I’m done making pithy puns now and I’m going to murder the shit out of you” expression. You also get grimacing Freddy and the “That bitch Tina just pulled my face off while I was wrestling with her in the backyard” Freddy. They all look amazing and all are capable of wearing the included fedora. If I had one complaint here, I wish the faces had a glossy top coat like we see on the ripped off face. Freddy’s make up always looked glossy and wet to me, whereas here it looks flat, at least on two of the three heads. Then again, a top coat probably would have drowned out all those tiny details in the sculpt, so NECA may have made the right call here after all.
Besides the fedora and the extra heads, Freddy also comes with a few cool accessories inspired by scenes from the original film. First off you get poor Tina’s face, which Freddy briefly wore while peering in the front window of Nancy’s house.
The tongue phone is a bit of a stretch, as Freddy never actually interacted with it in the film. If it came with a Nancy figure it would have made more sense. But hey, it’s a phone with a tongue coming out of it. That’s still plenty cool.
Lastly, you get an extra left hand from where he cut off two of his own fingers complete with green blood spewing out in a little fountain. “Hey, Tina… watch this!”
Some may take issue with the use of the “Ultimate” moniker on this Freddy figure. If you’re a fan of Freddy’s entire filmography like I am, you’ll certainly notice lots of cool stuff from the later films missing, so it’s probably best to consider this just a 30th Anniversary Freddy and a tribute figure to the first film. Also missing are the extra long arms that were included in the previous Freddy. When you consider this one has the same removable arms, I’m actually considering going back to pick up that figure just for those pieces so that I can make this release all the more ultimate-er-er. Still, even with those gripes, I think this is a fantastic release. The packaging is awesome, the sculpt is superb, and even if you have a bunch of NECA’s old Freddy figures, it’s probably worth getting just for the added leg articulation alone. At about $21 it certainly doesn’t break the bank!
“So who the fuck are you supposed to be?”
“Remember, kids, you gotta get up pretty Earle-y to get one over on me… HA!”