Aliens (comic book)

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Aliens
Cover of Aliens Book One: Outbreak
Publication information
Publisher Dark Horse Comics
Format Comic book limited series and one-shots
Publication date 1988
Main character(s) Rebecca "Newt" Jorden
Corporal Dwayne Hicks
Ellen Ripley
Weyland-Yutani

Aliens is a non-canonical comic book series set in the fictional universe of the Alien films. It was first published by Dark Horse Comics in 1988. The stories often feature the company Weyland-Yutani and the United States Colonial Marines. Originally intended as a sequel to James Cameron's 1986 film Aliens, the first mini-series features the characters of Rebecca "Newt" Jorden and Corporal Dwayne Hicks. Later series also included the further adventures of Ellen Ripley. Other stories are completely unique to the Alien universe, and are often used to explore other aspects of the species, such as their sociology and biology.

The first three stories formed a continuation of the two Alien films that had been released by the time they were published. However, 1992 saw the release of Alien 3, which contradicted the events of the comics by beginning with the deaths of Newt and Corporal Hicks. In order to keep the stories relevant and canonical to the Alien film series, Dark Horse changed the names of the characters for future printings of the stories. Newt became Billie while Hicks was now known as Wilks. The only other major difference between the original publications is that as well as being renamed the trade paperbacks were also recolored.

Stories[edit]

Outbreak[edit]

Outbreak starts 10 years after the events of Aliens. Ripley's fate is not revealed to the reader, but Hicks and Newt have been struggling with the aftermath of their encounter with the Xenomorphs. Newt is in a mental institution suffering horrible reoccurring nightmares, and when nothing seems to help her, the doctors decide to wipe her memory. The badly-scarred Hicks, facing constant fears from his fellow Marines that he is somehow contaminated by the Aliens, has never gotten over the annihilation of his squad, and so agrees to go on a mission to the alien homeworld to recover some eggs and to destroy one of the hives (the hive-destroying serves no purpose other than to satisfy Hicks' hatred). Hicks goes to visit Newt before he departs, only to learn about the planned memory-wipe. Hicks believes Newt to be the only thing that marks his existence and honors his squad's sacrifice, so he extracts her from the institution and smuggles her on board the ship flying to the homeworld. Said ship departs, but is trailed by another, manned by a crew of corporate mercenaries intent on keeping the Aliens' secrets for their paymasters.

Meanwhile, strange things are happening on Earth. A scientific corporation has acquired an alien queen, and begins harvesting eggs, intent on creating bio-weapons. A weird cult that believes the Aliens to be God's spiritual rebirth breaks in and its members voluntarily give themselves up for facehugging. They spread the Alien infection across the planet and Earth is soon overrun.

While traveling to the home wold, Newt falls in love with a Marine named Bueller. Arriving in orbit the home world, their ship is boarded and taken over by the mercenaries, thanks to the assistance of the squad's traitorous leader, who promptly is executed by the mercenaries' amoral leader Massey. Newt is overlooked in this process, and hides in the ship's ventilation shafts. The squad is sent by the mercenaries towards the hive with the intent of having them infected with Alien facehuggers to allow for further research, but the mercenaries are forced into the hive themselves when attacked by another hostile species on the planet, this one capable of flight. The squad gathers weapons, and go into the hive to rescue their surviving attackers. The casualties taken during this operation reveal why they undertook this course of action: they are all unknowing synthetic humans, created and trained to be utterly expendable cannon-fodder, but nevertheless installed with an overpowering instinct to save human life.

Back on the ship, Newt kills Massey, but is distraught to learn that Bueller, while surviving being torn in half, is one of the synthetics. Hicks almost kills them all by waiting until he has planted the nest-destroying charges before taking off, but they receive last-minute Alien-killing assistance from a living "Space Jockey", a member of the enigmatic species who originally built and launched the derelict ship whose cargo of eggs led to humanity's first encounter with the Aliens. Newt is able to receive terrifying and cryptic psychic messages from the Jockey. Hicks and Newt receive word of the Alien invasion of Earth, but decide to return home anyway, accompanied by the Jockey in his/its own ship. Upon arrival, they are told by a general that Earth's armed forces are abandoning the planet, planning to return once the Alien infestation has run its course and repopulate. There is a mass exodus from Earth, most of the survivors being military. Hicks, Newt and Butler join this flight, commandeering one of the fleet's many unmanned cargo ships. The Jockey remains behind in orbit; as she departs, Newt receives a final psychic warning that any returning humans will find it still there.. waiting.

Nightmare Asylum[edit]

Script by Mark Verheiden, art and title illustration by Den Beauvais and lettering by Willie Schubert.

Plot summary[edit]

The story continues where Outbreak left off, with Newt, the synthetic Butler, and Hicks a short time after having escaped the alien-infested Earth on a cargo ship. The crew discovers the ship is ferrying aliens to an unknown destination. After killing the aliens, the ship autopilots to a military post commanded by General Spears, who is breeding and attempting to train aliens to fight against their own kind on Earth. He is depicted as ruthless, and is called insane by several characters. Throughout the story it is revealed that Spears is extremely paranoid about his own safety and the safety of his aliens, and is willing to sacrifice his own troops without hesitation. As the story progresses, the aliens inevitably escape captivity and begin taking over the military base. Hicks and Newt manage to hide on the same ship General Spears uses to escape. Once aboard the ship Hicks and Newt realize it is full of "trained" aliens that Spears intends on using to take back the infested Earth. The synthetic Butler also manages to send a transmission saying goodbye to Newt as they were separated in the middle of the story. Since Butler is a synthetic and torn in two the aliens do not engage him in any way. Butler is left alone and abandoned in the military base. Before Spears lands on Earth Hicks and Newt jettison out in a small escape pod towards a different space station called Gateway, which becomes a haven for the few people capable of reaching, aware that their chances of survival on Earth are slim. Once Spears lands on Earth he releases his "trained" aliens and expects them to attack the Earth-bred aliens. The "trained" aliens end up turning on Spears. In the end Spears realizes that the aliens were never actually trained, but simply remaining patient throughout their supposed training. The Queen and the other aliens had every intention of getting to Earth and killing Spears. Spears is brutally killed at the end of this realization.

On the final page, Ellen Ripley appears, heavily armed, saying the time has come to take the battle to the xenomorphs.

Publications[edit]

Dark Horse has produced a number of Aliens comic books and collected volumes:

Aliens series:

Aliens Omnibus collection series:

  • Volume 1 (collects Outbreak, Nightmare Asylum, Female War, Theory of Alien Propagation, and The Alien, 384 pages, July 2007, ISBN 1-59307-727-0)[1]
  • Volume 2 (collects Genocide, Harvest and Colonial Marines, 448 pages, December 2007, ISBN 1-59307-828-5)[2]
  • Volume 3 (collects Rogue, Sacrifice, Labyrinth, Salvation, Advent/Terminus, Reapers, and Horror Show, 376 pages, March 2008, ISBN 1-59307-872-2)[3]
  • Volume 4 (collects Music of the Spears, Stronghold, Frenzy, Taste, Mondo Pest, and Mondo Heat, 376 pages, July 2008, ISBN 1-59307-926-5)[4]
  • Volume 5 (collects Alchemy, Kidnapped, Cargo, Survival, Alien, Earth Angel, Incubation, Havoc, Lovesick, and Lucky, 364 pages, November 2008, ISBN 1-59307-991-5)[5]
  • Volume 6 (collects Apocalypse, Once in a Lifetime, Xenogenesis, Headhunters, Tourist Season, Pig, Border Lines, 45 Seconds, Elder Gods, Purge, Glass Corridor, Stalker, and Wraith, 376 Pages, December 2008, ISBN 1-59582-214-3) [6]

Crossovers[edit]

There have been other comic crossovers:

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Dark Horse Comics > Profile > Aliens Omnibus Volume 1". Darkhorse.com. 2007-07-11. Archived from the original on July 5, 2008. Retrieved 2011-07-19. 
  2. ^ "Dark Horse Comics > Profile > Aliens Omnibus Volume 2". Darkhorse.com. 2007-12-12. Archived from the original on July 5, 2008. Retrieved 2011-07-19. 
  3. ^ "Dark Horse Comics > Profile > Aliens Omnibus Volume 3". Darkhorse.com. 2008-03-05. Archived from the original on April 28, 2008. Retrieved 2011-07-19. 
  4. ^ "Dark Horse Comics > Profile > Aliens Omnibus Volume 4". Darkhorse.com. 2008-07-09. Archived from the original on July 7, 2008. Retrieved 2011-07-19. 
  5. ^ "Dark Horse Comics > Profile > Aliens Omnibus Volume 5". Darkhorse.com. 2008-10-29. Archived from the original on July 7, 2008. Retrieved 2011-07-19. 
  6. ^ "Dark Horse Comics > Profile > Aliens Omnibus Volume 6". Darkhorse.com. 2008-12-31. Archived from the original on 10 June 2011. Retrieved 2011-07-19. 

External links[edit]