Having been a Dark Horse Comics fan from the very beginning (from the meager begins of the first Dark Horse Presents series to the very first black & white ALIENS limited series) I’ve come to expect new and bold things from this publisher who for the most part do not cater to the popular crowd. They were the ones behind the first ALIENS and Predator series as well as The Mask, Concrete, Barb Wire, and many, many more . The ALIENS series has been gone for many years due to over saturation in the market and dwindling value in the stories being told. After a while I began to think that the stories were all a little too similar to one another.
I was very happy to hear that they were revamping the series (thanks in part to the popularity of the two Alien Vs. Predator movies) and writer John Arcudi would be behind it (he’s also doing the new Predator series as well). Arcudi has been in the business a long time and he knows what he’s doing.
This new story concerns a group of scientists who make their way to Chione, an inhabited mining planet that has just recently unveiled the existence of alien structures of which the scientists are sent there to study and analyze. Everything seems to be going perfectly well until the mining inhabitants open fire on the scientists killing them all. It appears that the inhabitants of the planet live in fear that outsiders will come an steal their precious alien artifacts away. This uncontrollable fear is being caused by the alien artifacts themselves which puts all that come near into a euphoric state like an addictive drug driving them all into semi-madness. This madness leaves the Chione inhabitants susceptible to the alien infestation which was kept hidden until the alien structure was unearthed.
Unknown to the mining inhabitants of Chione there was a survivor of the group of scientists and the only reason he survived is because he’s a synthetic organism. This survivor David Sereda now finds himself tasks with trying to answer a distress signal on the planet before he is able to leave it. Sereda now finds himself pitted against homicidal inhabitants, an alien infestation, and the fact that some of his programming was damaged when he was originally gunned down by the natives.
Arcudi bases a lot of what follows in this series from the first two films in the series. The miners come across an alien structure that houses the embryos of the alien xenomorphs, which create an uncontrollable infestation. What Arcudi does well is present us with a sympathetic synthetic that may or may not have programming issues. Artwork is principally by Zach Howard whose work I’m not familiar with but does an excellent job with this new series. Another great asset to the series is Wes Dzioba’s colors which just make the whole series come alive like few of the other ALIEN series before. If this is a sign of new things to come for future series than I’m all for it.