Aliens

Dark Horse Presents 121 (May 1997)

The issue opens with Zero Boy and Pander’s Jack Zero, which starts out a little awkwardly… but then quickly establishes itself as a good Western. Pander’s art looks fantastic, bringing a lot of energy to the setting and Zero Boy’s script is thoughtful. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same about Nixey’s Trout installment this issue. […]

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Dark Horse Presents 117 (January 1997)

Okay, Dr. Spin and Trypto come around a little here. First, Rennie finally finds some kind of narrative for his characters (reassembling a disbanded team) to go along with all the comic book jokes. Though he does coin the title, “Infinite Crisis,” here. A shame he couldn’t sue DC. Langridge’s art is excellent, but the […]

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Dark Horse Presents 102 (October 1995)

Shockingly, the Niles story story this issue–one of his Cal McDonald ones–is mildly inoffensive. It’s poorly written detective narration, but at least he’s work in a recognized genre (badly written detective narration). It’s stupid and Casey Jones’s art isn’t any good… but it’s not intolerable. Oh, the Marz and Wrightson Aliens story ends this issue […]

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Dark Horse Presents 56 (November 1991)

This oversized issue opens and closes with an Aliens two-parter. Loose art from Guinan and Akins doesn’t help Arcudi’s script. It’s absolutely incomprehensible if you don’t read the Aliens series. Byrne finally produces a Next Men I’m not interested in. It’s two government guys revealing all. The art’s really, really mediocre. It’s like even Byrne […]

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Dark Horse Presents Fifth Anniversary Special (April 1991)

This special is far from an accurate representation of Dark Horse Presents. Everything looks very professional. The Aerialist and Heartbreakers installments are both long needed establishments of the series’ ground situation. I even liked the Heartbreakers one (Bennett’s writing is far stronger from the clones’ perspective, versus their creator). There’s also lots of disposable stuff–Concrete, […]

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Dark Horse Presents 43 (August 1990)

Guinan’s Aliens finish is incredibly weak, featuring not just an Alien reference but some guy in the future running around in an Indiana Jones outfit. The plotting is so weak, it might be construed as a spoof… But I think Guinan’s serious. He’s got some very profound-sounding exposition. Davis does a one page riff on […]

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Dark Horse Presents 42 (July 1990)

So Guinan’s approach to the Aliens mythology is astonishingly unenthusiastic. By some accounts his Heartbreakers collaborator Anina Bennett assisted on the writing, so maybe some of it is her fault. Guinan sets the story on a planet full of pyramids, with zero wonderment about this awesome alien civilization. Then he does some silly stuff with […]

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Dark Horse Presents 36 (February 1990)

The Aliens vs. Predator story is most impressive for Norwood’s illustration… but not of aliens or Predators. The story opens on some alien world and it’s just breathtaking. Once the actual story starts (Stradley’s two conversationalists talking about hunting experiences while Predators hunt aliens), it can’t compete with those visuals. Still, for what amounts to […]

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Dark Horse Presents 34 (November 1989)

Race of Scorpions gets even more amazing this issue… Duranona tells the reader what happens to the story’s protagonists in a little text paragraph at the end of the story. The actual story was spent on some supporting cast members. It’s sort of amazing how poorly plotted this story gets. Dark Horse really just didn’t […]

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Dark Horse Presents 24 (November 1988)

And here debuts the licensed property… Aliens. Luckily, it’s a really decent eight pages. Nelson and Verheiden almost make it feel like it’s just a comic book, not a movie tie-in. What’s really interesting is the aliens. Nelson’s able to draw so much fluidity into his own creatures, when he’s got to draw the movie […]

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Aliens vs. Predator 4 (December 1990)

It’s a weak close, partially because Stradley probably needed another issue to fully develop the relationship between the protagonist and the friendly Predator (he also needed space to give it a proper ending), but mostly because Chris Warner is no replacement for Norwood. Warner kills that beautiful design sense Norwood brings to the book. Instead […]

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Aliens vs. Predator 3 (October 1990)

The change in inkers makes Aliens vs. Predator look exactly as drab and boring as I’d expected the first few issues to look. Campanella can’t do much to Stradley’s figures, but he rounds out the faces–not all the time, which makes the art disjointed–but definitely in close ups. Everyone looks like they’ve had the definition […]

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Aliens vs. Predator 2 (August 1990)

The issue opens with some weak dream exposition. It doesn’t fit the narrator’s voice–Stradley never establishes why he’s using it (I think it’s a callback to the Aliens series where people have nightmares around the aliens)–and it’s a weak opening. But then Stradley recovers beautifully. Until the end of this issue, Aliens vs. Predator is […]

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Aliens vs. Predator 1 (June 1990)

Norwood’s very design-oriented–he’s a Hollywood storyboard guy–and the art suffers for it. The setting, the designs of the human settlement on an alien planet, is great. The panel composition is stunning. The figures are awkward and bad. Everyone’s proportions are off a little bit. They’re too stout for their height. Stradley’s writing here is really […]

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Aliens vs. Predator 0 (July 1990)

Stradley’s issue is two bored cargo spaceship having a conversation while Norwood’s art shows us all about the Predators getting ready for the Aliens vs. Predator series. First it’s showing the alien eggs, then it’s a bunch of fighting for dominance. The off panel dialogue back and forth constantly relates to the dialogue-less action going […]

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Aliens 6 (July 1989)

The whole series collapses here, thanks to Verheiden’s absurd sense of self-importance. In six issues, he destroys the planet Earth. Wait, no, he doesn’t. In one issue he destroys the planet Earth. He didn’t really hint at that plan until this issue either. He uses Newt as a narrator again and it’s just as bad […]

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Aliens 5 (June 1989)

Yuck. Verheiden writes the majority of the issue–maybe all of it, I can’t remember, my brain is on strike–from Newt’s perspective. He narrates the issue with her. It’s awful female narration by a male comic book writer. Probably not the worst ever, but it’s hideous. The plotting isn’t bad–though I’m not sure why Hicks is […]

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Aliens 4 (April 1989)

Almost the entire issue is told in summary–it’s not bad, actually, since Verheiden is using a layered narrative (he’s gone on to write crappy Superman/Batman comics, hasn’t he? That’s unfortunate). He resolves the whole thing with the aliens on earth, which is both good and bad. It’s nice he was able to resolve it in […]

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Aliens 3 (January 1989)

Has Warren Ellis read this issue? Because it reminds me a lot of his first issue for Ultimate Nightmare. It’s better than that comic, but very similar. Verheiden opens the issue with a bunch of psychological reports of people freaking out because of the alien–just being near it. It’s a cool idea, the aliens driving […]

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Aliens 2 (September 1988)

The second issue is, generally, fine. Verheiden tries to fit way too much in and his use of Hicks as a narrator is problematic (Hicks is very well-spoken for someone who didn’t talk in the movie much… maybe he just read a lot and kept to himself). The art becomes a bit of an issue, […]

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Aliens 1 (May 1988)

Here’s why I trust Dark Horse on licensed properties. It’s a misplaced trust, I’ve learned as I’ve gone back to read their comics as an adult, but Aliens still holds up. It’s an earnest attempt to make a sequel to the movie, but it also adapts for the comic form. There are dream sequences and […]

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