An icon of kitsch or the peak of poor taste, this is the Goofy Drinking Bird spending time in my attic. Who knows where the first one bobbed its head but I recall seeing tons of them in the Sixties. My Dad sold them to shops from his cash and carry warehouse.
It got its true Sci-Fi stripes when it nodded us into the 1979 epic ALIEN in the opening scene, when all was quiet on the ship except for the bird and the clatter of the green telex screen. It turned up again with its buddy at the crew's breakfast table amidst the tupperware, muesli and ""coeffee". Forget the acid blood, just what the hell is inside that glass bulb anyway?
As a toy, I found its use in the film effectively startling: obliviously nodding, the bird was the only thing apparently 'alive' when the crew were in suspended animation. It sets the scene for the chaos to follow and presumably it just kept on nodding when they were being systematically slaughtered by an equally relentless thing.
Untroubled, uncaring, unending, the drinking bird could be a metaphor for Weyland Corporation maybe or the cruelty of space, the fragility of life or just simply a nodding toy on a spaceship? Who knows. My learned friend Bill would tell me its an anachronism I bet. Whatever it is their is something unsettling about toys placed in films, especially sci-fi and horror.
Have you got a drinking bird readers?