Monday, May 13, 2013

Star Trek: The Motion Picture - ILIA PROBE!

Star Trek - Warp Factor: Series 2 - Ilia Probe - Playmates 1997

Star Trek: The Motion Picture was a landmark event for fandom.  I'm not talking about Star Trek fans specifically, but all geeks in general.  Star Trek: The Original Series ended in 1969, ten whole years before this motion picture came out.  This was largely to due to the show's popularity in syndication and an ever-growing fanbase.  I think we take it for granted that nostalgic properties are brought back to life easily today, but in the 1970s it was crazytalk.  Lieutenant Ilia was the navigator aboard the USS Enterprise who was killed by a probe of the alien entity V'Ger.  Soon after, V'Ger create another probe in the likeness of Ilia to return to the Enterprise and collect data (believing the enterprise was a living organism).  The probe was a complete duplication of Ilia down to a molecular level; even retaining her memories and personality.  Pure Sci-Fi genius if you ask me.  Ilia's important role and striking appearance made her a very memorable character.  Let's check her out below!

This figure is very simple; Limited articulation, minimal paint apps, and an uncomplicated sculpt - but somehow she turned out gorgeous.  She doesn't quite have the exotic facial features that actress Persis Khambatta had in the movie, but she's still amazing.

Ilia came with a figure stand and a bunch of pieces to build your own miniature V'Ger.  The V'Ger build-a-figure came in a few varying colors.  I've seen blue, gray, and a coppery-gray.  I believe they were all the same release and the color was a random running variation.  Here is an eBay pic:

And here are a few pics of Ilia from the Movie.

Time for a Comparison Pic!



  1. Ilea is awesome.

    Around 1997/1998 Playmates seemed to know the time for Star Trek being a huge money making property for them was coming to an end.

    Thankfully, they decided to make a lot of the characters we needed in those last few years, even though some of them now had the limited 5 POA.

    A few of the final Warp Factor Series 4.5" assortments were largely female characters. Ilea, Leeta, Captain Beverly, Insurrection Beverly & Troi, Seven of Nine, Edith Keeler...many cool females arrived towards the end.

    Playmates didn't seem to have issues with female figures. The initial 1992 Trek assortment was testing the waters & only included Troi. But when that set sold well, series 2 had twice as many characters & many were female. The 1993 set had Beverly, maroon Troi, K'Ehleyr, Sela & Guinan!

    1. It's amazing that they filled in all the gaps in the 11th hour. I wish all companies would be that dedicated to a property, and also to the inclusion of female characters. When you read lists of final abandoned waves of action figure lines, I feel like it's always the cool female characters who get the axe. And when they are released, they are in such small proportion that they're impossible to get. At least Star Trek (and more recent Star Wars lines) have broken that mold.

  2. Isn't it utterly CONFOUNDING how you have a figure with such a simplistic sculpt, literally just a robe and a DOT... ...and they give her the wrong shoes? She had open-toed shoes, not closed. Stuff like this makes me insane.