Tomorrow is the 40th anniversary of Alien, so we wanted to do something special to celebrate. We wanted to make a definitive list of must-have collectibles for any Alien fan. Well, it started that way anyway. Much as any mission does, we turned from our course. This list begins with a couple of obtainable must-have items but ends in our all-time holy grails.
See, Alien is one of those franchises that inspires so much passion that we couldn’t stop at the little stuff. So we went all out. So here are ten items that range from obtainable must-haves to the ultimate holy grail of Alien collector items.
Alien Quadrilogy on Blu-ray
We have had several releases of the Alien series over the years, and some are better than others. There have been some notable sets — for the packaging or other reasons, but if you’re looking for a veritable treasure trove of behind the scenes, interviews, deleted scenes, and documentaries, this is the only set you need. The Quadrilogy has over 50 hours of archival content thanks to filmmaker Charles de Lauzirika. No, that wasn’t a typo — 50 hours.
Which means this is pretty much the end all be all of Blu-ray sets. If you collect the other versions for display, that’s great. But this is the set you buy to watch. Many collectors already own it, but if you don’t, get it now. It’s only $18 on Amazon.
Mondo Alien and Aliens soundtracks, LP on colored disks
Even if you don’t collect vinyl, these sleeves are a work of art. When placed side by side, they form an evolution of the Xenomorph genealogy, from the original monster to the queen. Music sets the tone for any movie, and the music of Alien and Aliens is part of what makes them stand out from the crowd. There were several editions of these vinyls, but the most sought after are the Alien acid blood green edition and the Aliens Queen vs. Powerloader edition. While you might be hesitant to play these four colored vinyls, they display beautifully. The colors are sharp and crisp, and the artwork captures the essence of each movie.
The designs are stunning, and the limited availability makes them a really great addition to any collection. They are still within what we consider the more affordable collectibles range, too. The Alien Acid Blood Green set goes for about $50 on average, and Aliens Queen vs. Powerloader set sells for about $100. These prices aren’t bad for a limited edition vinyl that would look great in any collection.
1979 Alien Board Game
In 1979 they released a board game to go along with Alien, and most collectors are at least aware of its existence. It was pretty simple, and nothing compared to some of the board games you can find today. But for Alien fans, it’s a hard thing to find.
Finding one with all the pieces (and if you’re lucky, with the pieces unpunched) is the hard part. If you’re looking for factory sealed, you’re in for a long wait and probably a pretty hefty price tag. We haven’t seen one in a while, and those that appear tend to sell pretty quickly. What you usually see is a lightly used copy with most of the pieces. This isn’t a bad thing. If you really want it — and don’t care if all the pieces come from the same set — you can pick up a couple for cheap and build a complete set that way. Just make sure one of your games has a good box.
Luckily, complete copies of the game go up for sale semi-frequently, but often for inflated prices. Most of the time they sell, but it depends on how much the seller is asking. Recently, complete sets have been going for about $100. Which isn’t bad for a decent condition game.
Hollywood Collectibles Group Exclusive Alien Queen 1:1 Wall Sculpture
Sometimes, some of the coolest collectibles are still available — but the price becomes the limiting factor. That’s what’s happening with this insane wall sculpture. Nothing screams awesome quite like the Alien Queen emerging from the elevator in the climax of Aliens. If we had to pick a favorite scene from the original quadrilogy (honestly we can’t, please don’t make us), this would be high on the list.
Hollywood Collectibles has done an incredible job recreating the Queen and the little details on the elevator doors. The only problem is finding a place to put it! At 3′ tall, it’s a huge display, but it’s worth the wall space. The HCG version comes with a second extended inner mouth, which lets you change up your display from time to time. The HCG exclusive edition is limited to 125 pieces, so if you want one for the base price (a price tag as big as the statue at $1,600), you should jump now. There is a standard edition, but as it’s the same price — it’s better to get the special edition with the extra mouth.
Alien Trilogy Facehugger Edition VHS
This isn’t your average VHS trilogy set. You can get a standard Alien Trilogy on VHS for about $10 on eBay if you want it. That’s not a rare or exciting find by any means. Most people don’t even have a VHS player in their house — so why buy VHS tapes? Well, in 1993 they released a collectors edition of the set in a case molded to look like there was a Facehugger attached to it. If that wasn’t cool enough, it came with so much swag it was silly. The set included all three movies on VHS, an Alien War Privilege card, T-Shirt, 12 lobby cards, 3 button badges, a 36-page trilogy booklet, collector’s certificate, and a VHS on the making of Alien 3.
Basically, this was the end all be all set at the time. There was one major problem for collectors — It was never released in the US. This set was UK exclusive. Now, for all that swag to stay intact and together over the last 26 years, and for someone to want to sell it? Well, that’s nearly impossible to find. It’s a unicorn, and most collectors can only dream of seeing one in the wild. The closest there is to a recent sale was the box, missing the trilogy on VHS, the Alien War Privilege card, and the t-shirt, which sold for about $50. This might not seem like much — until you realize the key pieces of this set are missing. If you get ahold of a full set, know you have something special on your hands! It’s unlikely you’ll be able to find another like it.
Reebok Alien Stompers
Reebok did something pretty cool for the 30th anniversary of Alien: they released the shoe specially designed for Sigourney Weaver to the public. The Alien Stomper was a limited edition release and sold out so fast some fans didn’t even know it dropped. Reebok released two versions. The super limited high top, and the less limited standard shoe. Being able to own the shoe was a rush most fans never thought they would experience. After all, owning the screen used shoes is a grail none of us are likely to obtain.
But the second-hand market is a tough place to buy shoes (as any sneakerhead can tell you). If you are looking for a shoe like the Alien Stomper to wear, finding it in your size is next to impossible. If you’re looking for a hightop (just like Ripley wore) to display — expect to spend about $1,000.
Thankfully we get to bring good news to Alien fans. Reebok re-issued the standard Alien Stomper this year for the 40th anniversary. The Alien Stomper “Bishop” edition is just as impressive as the first release, and you can still get most sizes for the release price of $175. It may not be the screen accurate high top version, but it’s as close as you’ll get without breaking the bank. Get on it though, as these shoes won’t be around forever.
Konami Aliens Arcade Game
Of all the Alien games that have come out, few can hold a candle to Konami’s Aliens arcade game. It was late to the party where Aliens games were concerned, but it was one of the best of its era. Some argue it’s still one of the top Alien games out there (Isolation has the top honor for most fans now, but not all of them). While it did some weird things — we don’t remember Zombies in the movie — overall, it’s satisfying and fun to play. Its signature magenta Xenomorphs have spawned an action figure from NECA, which is both weird and delightful.
Getting ahold of an arcade cabinet, however, is next to impossible. The cost is astronomical if they do come on the market. And finding one in working order is basically a pipe dream. We would love to own one. We would give it a place of honor in the Gemr offices. But this grail is out of our reach. You can often buy a board with the game on it for about $100 to $200. But we haven’t seen a full set up sell in years.
Kenner 1979 Alien Action Figure
This one is obvious. The original Alien action figure is the end all be all of Alien figures. When Kenner released the Xenomorph — called Big Chap — in 1979, they were doing something cutting edge. They didn’t realize it, but they were way ahead of the curve. This was an action figure for adult collectors — but no one at the time thought about collectors as companies do now. Kenner and everyone at the time saw it as a toy for children. Now we aren’t sure who thought the titular monster of Alien would make a good kids toy, but someone did. They even made advertisements directed at kids (watch it here if you haven’t seen it, it’s kinda surreal).
Parents did not take so kindly to their kids playing with a terrifying murderous monster. In fact, there were so many complaints about the Alien action figure — it was pulled from shelves. With its short shelf life, this figure quickly became a must-have for collectors, and still is today. Getting ahold of one in perfect condition is incredibly difficult. Most people settle for a well played with version — often missing pieces, and then buy what they don’t have. Just ask filmmaker Mike Mendez, who shows off his nearly complete Big Chap on Season 1 of our docuseries Collection Complete.
To put it into perspective, finding one in new condition (mint in box) is nearly unheard of — but when one appears, it sells for about $500 or more. If that’s a little expensive for you, and you don’t mind if your Alien is, let’s say, missing an arm, or the translucent dome, or even has limbs that aren’t attached? Well, that will cost you about $200. Finding a translucent dome that hasn’t turned orange over time and is still as smokey and clear as it was at creation? Just that will cost you $100. Heck, even just the box goes for about $60. By the standards of collectibles on this list, $500 for MIB might not seem like much, but finding one in that condition is the harder part of the search.
Giger’s Alien Bust signed by H.R. Giger with Certificate of Authenticity
There are plenty of Alien busts out there, but this one is one of the most sought after. While this bust is smaller than many at 1:4 scale, it’s got something most don’t. Hollywood Collectibles worked directly with H.R. Giger when they created this bust. He helped them perfect the biomechanical style and the color of the dome. He helped design the stand, and he expected perfection. What Hollywood Collectibles gave us is pretty close to that. And if all of that wasn’t enough, Giger signed each of the 500 busts by hand.
With Giger’s passing, there will never be another collectible like this. Getting your hands on one has become harder with each passing year. When you do see them go up for sale, it’s usually for a small fortune. Most dedicated collectors aren’t willing to part with such a rare piece — which means finding one at all becomes tricky. It was initially sold for $1,000, and if you find one with the certificate of authenticity for that, you’ve struck gold. Now it sells for closer to $2,500 or more.
Refurbished Screen Used Nostromo from Alien
The story of the original Nostromo is infamous in Alien circles. The tale of how Bob Burns got ahold of one of the most influential Alien collections ever is pretty widely known. If you don’t know, I recommend you watch the mini-documentary Bob Burns: Aliens in the Basement or read a brief synopsis on our blog about movie props that almost wound up as garbage.
Long story short, though: Fox left the screen used Nostromo to rot on his driveway for 20 years. They gave it to him for a haunted house and then never came to get it. Granted, it weighed several tons — so there wasn’t much he could do about it. And if you didn’t know the story, really, go read it or watch it. It’s really, really worth it. He eventually donated it to The Prop Store of London.
Now the Prop Store did some fantastic work. They took the decrepit, rotting, rusted Nostromo that Fox abandoned, along with a bag of bits that had fallen off through the years, and restored it to its former glory. The work they did was breathtaking. Sadly for us collectors — they aren’t going to sell the piece. It’s on permanent display at their L.A. Prop Store location where fans of all ages can come and visit it. So while we can’t own it, we are thrilled that we can still go visit it from time to time and bask in its presence.
The Alien Costume at the H.R. Giger Museum in Switzerland
At this point, we’re deep into true holy grails. This statue is made from a costume that Giger crafted for Alien. This is the original Alien, and it is sitting inside a case at the H.R. Giger Museum in Switzerland. Now the statue, and it’s wooden edged case, has become a holy grail for many die-hard fans. A pilgrimage to the museum alone is a must — it’s an incredible look into Giger’s mind and creations. But to be able to own this one of a kind legend? Well, we can’t put a price on it.
We’re going to have to keep dreaming here — because it’s not happening. Ever. The museum isn’t going to sell it. So instead we’ll have to settle for the maquette from Cool Props in partnership with Sideshow Collectibles. They recreated the statue, including that iconic wooden case, and are taking pre-orders. They worked directly with the museum to get all the details down perfectly. It stands at 2.5′ tall and is scale accurate to the original. That being said — It’s not cheap by any means and will set you back $1,500. But, it’s as close as we’ll ever get to owning the real thing. And maybe that’s reason enough to get it.