The third album was to feature an image of Eddie that would become a staple of Heavy metal iconography for decades to come. The album was The Number of The Beast, and the cover depicted a giant Eddie controlling the strings of a puppet Satan, which struck a chord with the metal scene and adorned T-shirts, posters and the like for years to come. With each album, and each successive image of Eddie, the demand for figures and other items based on the character and his many guises grew to boiling point, and in 2002, during the massive rebirth of Iron Maiden’s career following the release of the ‘Brave New World’ album. The first action figure based on the legendary metal mascot was produced by licensed toy giant McFarlane Toys, and depicted Eddie in his ‘Killers’ era incarnation, complete with Axe and snarl.
Art Asylum created this magnificent looking figure of Eddie based on the artwork to the third Iron Maiden album, ‘The Number of the Beast’. While the large format figure and his little devil accessory looked superb, they weren’t the sturdiest of figures to be made, and the packaging left a little to be desired. Nonetheless, the figure has become a highly sought after collector’s item ever since the production ended its run in 2004.
The first series of NECA-made Iron Maiden Eddie action figures was released to much acclaim from fans in 2005. The range began with two figures based on famous Iron Maiden album covers, namely ‘Piece of Mind’ and ‘Somewhere in Time’. Both supplied with diorama bases and accessories, they proved to be very popular with Maiden fans and the demand for more grew.
More officially licensed Iron Maiden Eddie action figures arrived in 2006, with NECA’s second wave, which consisted of high-quality figures inspired by the ‘Live After Death’ live album and the ‘Phantom of the Opera’ single sleeve. Once more setting fans alight, they proved to be the perfect accompaniment to any Maiden-stuffed CD shelf. The superb ‘Live After Death’ figure remains a popular item today.