Aliens the original comics series (30th anniversary Edition), a Dark Horse Comics Graphic Novel (2016)

In 1979 director Ridley Scott unleashed a science fiction horror movie called Alien onto the unsuspecting human race. With the tagline “In space no one can hear you scream”, there was plenty of screaming that was done in the movie theatres. Needless to say, the movie became an instant classic and set up a new benchmark for horrorfilms. Seven years later the sequel Aliens was released, and it has become my alltime favorite science fiction movie. Not only did it feature a great story, fantastic special effects, and plenty of exciting and thrilling scenes, but there were also a bunch of unforgettable characters. Two of them, Corporal Hicks and the young girl Newt, actually survived at the end of the film. Unfortunately in Alien 3 they were killed off in 10 seconds at the start of that movie. There were many fans that were very mad at the way that this was done, and it did not show those characters the respect they deserved.

Well, I guess it’s safe to say this guy is pretty much toast. 

In 1987 Dark Horse comics was approached to do a comicbook series that continued the storyline from Aliens. That black and white comic became a huge succes and afterwards many more books were produced. Last year the first six issues were reprinted and released in a very beautiful hardcover graphic novel. Since these comics were made before the release of Alien 3, it tells a completely different story. As such you could compare it to the books of the Star Wars Expanded Universe, that now officially aren’t canon anymore since Disney took over. But honestly I could not care less about that, as this book was highly enjoyable to read.

Nope, still seeing monsters. 

The comics take place on Earth, a few years after the events of Aliens. Newt is now a grown woman, and Hicks is still with the Colonial Marines, even though his colleagues seem to despise him. Both Newt and Hicks have their own traumas to deal with, and find it really difficult to cope with their experiences on the doomed colony of LV-426. But dark forces are at work on Earth. It seems that the Aliens are highly wanted material for the bioweapons industry. Certain things are being set into motion to bring the creatures to Earth. Hicks meanwhile is hired for a mission to the homeworld of the Aliens, and along the way will get reunited with Newt. But time seems to be running out for everyone, as something goes horribly wrong while trying to capture the Aliens. And soon Earth will become the target for a new hive…..

The coastguard sure has changed. 

This 30th anniversary edition is a truly beautiful graphic novel. All the pages have a black finish on the outside, and every page is made of very sturdy paper. As mentioned the book contains issues 1-6 of the original comic. Also included is a short story called Lucky, and a pin-up gallery of the covers and some additional art. Rounding out the book is a fore-and afterword by both author Mark Verheiden and artist Mark A. Nelson. The black and white art for these comics is truly amazing and really recaptures the spirit of the movies. Ofcourse the movies were, at times, pretty graphic, and that also comes back in this book. That’s why this certainly won’t be for the faint at heart. The storyline is very good, and honestly much better than the Alien 3 movie. Sadly the company at the time did not have the rights to the Ripley character, so you won’t be seeing her in any of these pages.

Game over man, game over! 

This book is simply put a must buy for every Aliens fan. The book looks great and has been a joy to read from start to finish. Even though most of the storylines are complete, the ending has left things wide open. Ofcourse the series was later continued with further issues. What might interest you to know, is that after Alien 3 was released, Dark Horse decided to change the names of Newt and Hicks to Billie and Wilks. This was ofcourse done to ensure that the comicbook could still remain canon. Here though, they reprinted the books in the way they were originally released. I highly recommend this book to every Alien and science fiction comics fan out there.

I give Aliens: the original comics series (30th Anniversary Edition), a 9 out of 10 score.


16 thoughts on “Aliens the original comics series (30th anniversary Edition), a Dark Horse Comics Graphic Novel (2016)”

    1. It really was a good read. After these issues they also gained the rights for the Ripley character, so later on she gets thrown I to the mix as well. Dark Horse comics to this day continues to publish Aliens and Predator comics, even stories based on the Prometheus movie. Great stuff 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I didn’t know that there are Alien comic books! The artwork looks amazing. I’m also up for any alternative plot to Alien 3, so I’ll check this out for sure. Thanks for this great post. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are welcome 😊I have actually lost count of the number of comic books that are now available for purchase for Aliens as well as their counterparts the Predators. A good place to start is the Dark Horse Comics app, that you can download in the app store. Hope you will enjoy reading them 😊

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  2. It’s great to see sucha iconic movie have its very own graphic novel. It’s one I would favour over the third movie. If there was ever a time I would read comics, my choice is usually a graphic novel style because I love the narration of it, layout and feel of a hardcover artwork book. I’ve only read and have a few that are underrated but they have quite the artistry of this sketch work which I adore. I’m glad it was a great read for you as this post was for me. 🙂

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    1. Thanks again for the very kind words. I really appreciate it every single time 😊 This book was seriously cool. I loved the Black and white artwork, which somehow just seemed right for this universe. Abd trust me, the story was way better than Alien 3 😊

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  3. That monster is all skeleton and muscles.. scary looking 🙂 I have noticed graphic novels are becoming popular recently. I’m glad to know that this is a good read. How thick is the book? Aliens, I don’t think I have read any related to it before, but I do enjoy science fiction every once in awhile 🙂 Great review Michel!

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    1. Thank you very much 😊 Yep there are definitely quite a few scary monsters in there. The book including the pin-up gallery is 200 pages long. This is a special edition graphic novel, but Dark Horse has also released a couple of Omnibus versions that contain more issues. There have been quite a number of comics based on this franchise, which is cool 😊

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  4. I had no idea Alien comic existed but I am glad they do 😀

    “It seems that the Aliens are highly wanted material for the bioweapons industry.”

    Of course humans want to make weapons out of things that would gruesomely kill them in 1.5 seconds. Of-frickin-course.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are, and they are awesome 😊 If you want a good place to start, you can download the Dark Horse comics app. They even have a bunch of comics for free, so you can read some samples and see if they are to your liking 😊

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Lol…well I would recommend not to embrace them. I hear they can be quite hazardous to your health 😂 Seriously though, these comics are great, and you are right about the black and white tones for it, it suits the series perfectly. The comics are highly enjoyable and there are quite a few of them out there. If you are interested I would recommend a visit to the publisher’s website (Dark Horse comics), to get a taste for them. They also have a free virtual comics app, that even has some free issues you can explore. Hope this helps 😊

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