The folks at NECA are damn busy people trying to give the proper love to a lot of different franchises. That’s why I can forgive them for taking so long in getting back to releasing figures the original Alien film. I also get that a lot of this has to do with what likeness rights they can and cannot secure and other behind-the-scenes stuff. But I do love Alien and I was always hoping they’d come back to filling out the roster of the Nostromo crew. On the downside, there’s still no Brett or Parker, but hey look… It’s Lambert!
Yes, Joan Lambert, navigator on board the Nostromo and one of the crewmembers chosen to accompany the ill-fated survey of planet LV-426. She made out a lot better than Kane on the survey, but the Xenomorph later punched her ticket back on the ship, and off-camera no less! NECA has been sticking to the sealed clamshell packaging for the regular releases in their Aliens and Predator lines. And I’m cool with that. They may not be collector friendly, but they do give up that wonderful rush of pure plastic fumes when I cut into them.
Lambert is the fourth figure based on the Compression Suit body sculpt. We got both Ripley, Dallas, and Kane from the original film and later Amanda Ripley from the game Alien Isolation. Hey, it’s an amazing sculpt, so I don’t mind that NECA dipped their bucket into this well more than a few times. Of course, each of the suits featured their own unique deco, and Lambert’s may feature my favorite coloring of the bunch.
Indeed, even now I still found myself lost in all the rich details of this sculpt upon opening her up. High points include the ornamentation on the shoulders, the quilting on the mid-section and upper arms, the lacings on the elbows and knees, and the the pads that are strapped onto the lower legs. Extra props go out for the little things, like the painted patch on her left ass-cheek and the personalized strip across her chest. I also love the green-coppery patina that they gave to the parts that are supposed to be metal. The suits look old and well-worn, and that really adds to their character. Indeed, the entire design of the suit looks like just the kind of DIY patch job that a commercial towing vessel might use. It’s both wildly imaginative and hideously practical and it gave NECA an opportunity to run wild with the detail.
Lambert comes with two heads, which is pretty cool considering Kane only came with the Facehugger head, something I’m still a little bit miffed about. Anyway, this is a pretty solid likeness to the Veronica Cartwright.
The alternate head features her with a horrified look and I think this sculpt is downright amazing. I would imagine that it’s hard enough to do decent likenesses, but when you toss in rather extreme expressions, it seems like it would be a lot tougher. Either way, NECA nailed this one perfectly, and I like that it also features her wearing the hood for the suit, while the other one just had her sculpted hair. Another cool detail is that her hood is completely different than the tanker-style cap on the Dallas figure. NECA just loves all those little details!
The helmet is identical to the Kane’s and comes apart into two halves. To put it on, you just pop the head, put on the lower piece, reattach the head and snap on the top piece. The sculpt here is every bit as impressive as the rest of the suit with all sorts of little controls and bits and bobs littered around it. The oxygen tank/backpack includes some detailed paint apps as well, and I love the two furnace-style knobs stuck onto the back. There are two tubes coming off the top of the tanks, which plug into the slots on the helmet.
Articulation on the figure is great on paper, with rotating hinges in the shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees, and ankles. There’s also a ball joint under the chest and in the neck. The sculpt, however, does impede a lot of movement. For example, there’s virtually no range of motion for the bend in the elbows, but the suits didn’t look terribly agile, so I’m fine with that.
Lambert comes with two accessories, and they are the same ones that came with Dallas and Kane. First up is the pistol. I’ve said it before, I absolutely love this design. Like most everything else in the Nostromo equipment lockers, this looks like a wonderful patch job. At the core it looks like a traditional 20th Century handgun grip and trigger assembly, but with a cylindrical body and a cone for the laser emitter. There’s a scope mounted on top, and what looks like a laser scope slung underneith, because who doesn’t need a laser scope for their laser gun! There’s some great diamond texturing and I can even make out the detail in the brackets that hold the extra bits on. Lambert’s right hand is sculpted to hold the gun. Oh yeah, and I still think the loop holster is a rubbish design, though. It’s tough to get the gun to hang in it, and if I needed to fast draw that weapon I’d probably be dead by the time I got it out.
The flashlight is just a box with a light emitter on the end and something protruding out of the back. The left hand is sculpted to work really well with the carry strap.
Lambert is an excellent addition to the Nostromo crew and another way to showcase this fantastic suit sculpt. And NECA, if you want to get your money’s worth out of the likeness rights here, I’d be happy to pick up Lambert in her regular jumpsuit as well. I was able to grab Lambert for about $20 and I’m still hunting for the two Xenomorphs that make up the other two-thirds of this assortment. And yes, I’m still going to hold out hope that some day we’ll get a Brett and Parker two-pack, but until then, it’s nice to have the LZ-426 survey team complete.