The Good: Affordable, Amazing sculpt, Good coloring, Perfect balance
The Bad: No sound feature (None really!)
The Basics: My standards have not been lowered: the Alien 35th Anniversary ornament of The Alien is perfect!
Those who read my reviews know that I have high standards. In fact, there are remarkably few products that I have given perfect ratings to. Out of more than 6600 reviews, less than 300 have gotten perfect 10/10 ratings. Yesterday, I reviewed the Frozen Olaf ornament (reviewed here!) and gave it a perfect rating and today I’m looking over the new Alien ornament. Perhaps one of the best endorsements I can give to an ornament these days is this: despite my hundreds of ornament reviews, I actually have a fairly small collection of Hallmark ornaments. There are few I buy and keep in my personal collection. On spec, the Alien ornament was not one I was sure I would keep, but the moment I bought it, opened it up and examined it at all angles, it became a no-brainer that it would be in my permanent collection. The Alien ornament, which commemorates the 35th Anniversary of the film Alien is perfect!
For those not familiar with Alien (reviewed here!), the villain was the Alien, a giant insect-like creature that hunted the crew of the space ship Nostromo throughout the ship, killing (and in the Director’s Cut, cocooning) them. Hallmark used the character from Alien , without choosing a single iconic moment for their sculpt of The Alien in ornament form. That actually makes sense because in Alien, the creature was not seen fully until the very end of the film!
The Alien ornament faithfully presents The Alien hunched down and ready to strike. This is the Alien with its inner jaw out and the translucent skull faithfully recreated. The sculpt is simple, but recognizable for anyone who has seen Alien. The ornament, released in 2014, is an incredible representation of the xenomorph. With such a rich three-dimensional model, given how all the Aliens have since been rendered perfectly in CG, Hallmark was able to create an ornament with an amazing form. Given that there is no credited sculptor for the Alien ornament, I suspect Hallmark made the ornament using the digital model of the xenomorph. The Alien ornament came with an original retail price of $17.95 and that is a fair price given its size.
The Hallmark Alien ornament is made of durable plastic and measures three and a half inches tall by three inches deep by one and three-quarter inches wide. As appropriate, the Alien is not wearing anything. It is molded with every ridge on the face and neck. It also has an incredibly detailed and lethal-looking tail! The ornament features every claw and spine on the Alien, including the ones on the back of the creature’s heels! The Alien’s spine is appropriately ribbed, so the alien looks great and accurate even from the back!
The Alien ornament is also perfectly colored for the creature from Alien. Instead of simply being cast in monotonal black plastic, the Alien is accented with gray splotches and the finger and toe nails are painted on in a silver-gray that is incredible.
As a Hallmark Keepsake ornament, The Alien could have a sound chip, but it does not. Given how the Alien does not have an iconic growl or anything, it makes sense that this ornament does not have a sound effect.
As with all ornaments, the intent of the Hallmark Keepsake The Alien ornament is to be hung on a Christmas Tree. And for those creating the ultimate science fiction Christmas Tree, the Alien ornament is an indispensible ornament. Fortunately, because the ornament is cast with the Alien crouching and the placement of the hook loop, this ornament is perfectly balanced. The ornament has the standard steel hook loop embedded into the top, back of the Alien’s head at a pretty obvious, though necessary, position. From there, the ornament, when affixed to a tree with a hook, swings very easily and is level.
Hallmark Keepsake began delving into the collectibles market in 1991 with Star Trek when it introduced the exceptionally limited edition U.S.S. Enterprise ornament (reviewed here!). Since then, they have made ornament replicas of almost all major franchises like DC comics, The Wizard Of Oz and Harry Potter. The Alien ornament is the first ornament from the Alien franchise and given its quality and the low initial price of the ornament, it seems like it might easily sell out and become a worthwhile investment piece.
Fans of xenomorphs, the Alien franchise, and science fiction in general are likely to find the Alien ornament to be worth every penny.
For other science fiction-themes ornaments, please check out my reviews of:
2014 San Diego Comic Con War Machine Exclusive ornament
Doctor Who TARDIS ornament
2014 Legends Of Star Trek Hikaru Sulu ornament
2014 Sandcrawler Star Wars Ornament
For other ornament reviews, please visit my Ornament Review Index Page for an organized listing!
© 2014 W.L. Swarts. May not be reprinted without permission.
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