• Aliens: Fire And Stone #1

    Aliens: Fire And Stone #1
    Published by: Dark Horse Comics
    Published on: September 24th, 2014.
    Written by: Chris Roberson
    Art by: Patric Reynolds
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    This latest entry in the Dark Horse Aliens comic adaption line begins with a text piece that tells us that Doctor Elizabeth Shaw found a star map to LV-223 that she took as a literal sign from God. When she and the crew of the Prometheus arrived to explore, they found that they we are not alone in this universe and that maybe God isn’t such a nice guy after all. Shaw and an Android named David survived the ordeal and took off, hoping to find some answers unaware that what they left behind could turn into something far more horrifying than they could ever imagine. Sound familiar? If you read the recently released Prometheus: Fire And Stone #1 then it should, but this issue takes place BEFORE that story, though obviously they are going to tie in.

    It’s July 3rd, 2179 when the comic begins and at a terraforming base on LV-426 called Hadley’s Hope some familiar looking aliens are laying waste to an unfortunate group of humans. A group of survivors, led by a middle aged guy named Russell, an engineer, and a greenhouse supervisor named Genevieve decide to get off the moon and use an ore drilling ship as their method of escape. A prospector named Nolan Cale helps them out but the monsters give chase, heading right up to the doors of the massive old ship which isn’t really meant for space travel – it will at least reach orbit, however. The hatches are closed but not before some aliens got in. Cale knows this, but he tells Russell ‘we’re good’ and off they go. Regardless, they pilot the ship to another nearby moon and after a rough but successful landing (that knocks Cale out) find that what should have been a lifeless rock actually has a breathable atmosphere and plentiful vegetation. They head into the cargo hold to get some gear, and…

    We don’t know yet how this four issue series is going to tie into the Prometheus storyline or into the AVP universe, only that it will. Writer Chris Roberson does a decent job of building some suspense in this first issue even if so far the comic isn’t really breaking any new ground: it is at this point about a group of people trying not to get killed by the aliens. We’ve seen this before, but hey, the guy’s got three more issues to do something unique here and the potential is there. Let’s see how it goes. The characters aren’t all that fleshed out yet but they are likeable enough and it’ll be interesting to see how Cale’s decision to keep his mouth shut about what he saw come back to haunt him.

    The artwork, courtesy of Patric Reyolds, is impressive. His style is a bit sketchy but heavy on thick, black ink work so it manages to do a really good job of conveying action and movement while still maintaining that certain sense of ominous darkness you want out of a good Aliens related story. He does a great job of creating some claustrophobic visuals inside the base early on and then later inside the ship, but an equally good job of creating a sense of openness once the survivors land on the second moon. In short, his art fits the story really nicely and it proves to have that right mix of heavy ink and solid detail. The colors from Dave Stewart compliment his style nicely and while things definitely lean more towards dark color tone here, the orange skies during the attack on first moon provide a nice contrast to the black aliens.

    Of course, it all ends with a big old cliffhanger but you’d be a fool not to expect that from a four issue mini-series. This sets up the possibility of interesting things to come and proves to be a solid first issue. The fact that it’s ‘for Giger’ is a nice touch too.