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Xenopedia
"You ought to tell your hair-dresser — that rasta crap has been out for years!"
―Det. Schaefer, referring to a Yautja's dreadlocks (from Predator: Concrete Jungle)
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A Predator, clearly showing the dreadlocks on its head.

Dreadlocks,[1] or simply dreads, also known as braids[2], tresses[3], Flesh-braids[4] or "predlocks",[5] are hair-like appendages found on the back and side of a Yautja's head, named for their similarity to the matted strands of hair sometimes worn by humans.

Dreadlocks are notably among the most obvious Yautja features passed on to Predaliens, although some Predaliens have been known to lack them, such as the Berserker-Aliens born from Super Predators.

Overview[]

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The 'Gollywomp' with freshly severed dreadlocks, from Predator: Strange Roux

Despite their colloquial name, Yautja dreadlocks are not in fact hair; while some Predators possess "eyebrows" and other coarse facial and body hair, it is apparent that the dreadlocks on their heads are fleshy growths, and have been known to bleed when damaged or severed.[6] They are in fact complex sensory organs that provide the creatures with their exceptional balance and reflexes.[7] They are also thought to play a secondary role in attracting a mate — during her time with the Yautja, Machiko Noguchi was forced to cut off her own (hair) dreadlocks during a confrontation with a Xenomorph Queen, noting that this would make her less attractive to male hunters. Among the Yautja, longer tresses are considered desirable, while shorter ones are not.[8]

In Neonopolis, several Yautja being held by Borgia Industries for experimentation notably had their dreadlocks removed. Since the dreadlocks are sensory organs that assist with balance and reflexes, this was likely done to disorient them.

The length of the dreadlocks can also be used as a way to show the age of a Yautja. For example, Tichinde (an Un-blooded hunter) had tresses that barely reached his shoulders, while an Elder Predator had very long ones.

Variation[]

Several adult Yautja individuals have been seen with dreadlocks of notably different lengths, such as Shaman, suggesting a natural deviation in growth. Like human hair, Yautja dreadlocks show variation in color. They are most commonly black but can be red, brown, or even pale blue. They can also have patterns, such as banding or marbling.[9] Some Ancient Predators have been seen to have gray dreadlocks, indicating the appendages lose color with age, similar to human hair.

Trivia[]

  • Special effects supervisor Stan Winston (who designed the creatures in Predator and Predator 2) was known to refer to the Predator dreadlocks as "quills", apparently likening them to feathers or porcupine quills.
  • When creating the Yautja's cloaking effect in the films, the creatures' dreadlocks tend to be ignored and are simply removed from the image (quite noticeably in some cases). According to the team that worked on the first two films, this was an intentional oversight, as it would have been far too difficult to render the individual dreadlocks in the cloaked shots using the technology of the day.[10]

Gallery[]

References[]

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