Comic Book Review: Aliens: Resistance #1
Now I don’t know anything much about Alien: Isolation, but who doesn’t want to see the daughter of Ripley in action? And that is only one half of the anticipation for this book when we also have the returning Zula Hendricks to the world of Aliens. I was jumping for joy when Resistance was announced because once again we are seeing how these stories all connect. Plenty of these books are excellent on their own, but nothing is better than those bits and pieces which tell you that these characters are part of a grander scheme.
There was only one thing about Aliens: Resistance #1 that you would have to be cautious about, and that is the fact that not everyone may be on the same page about the stories leading up to this point. This is one of those times where the best approach is treating the first issue as if everyone is new to the story. Some may be more familiar with Amanda’s story, Zula’s story, or both. For me, I was more familiar with Zula’s story. Fortunately that didn’t seem like it needed too much explanation aside from Amanda’s experiences. It was risky that there was so much reflection upon her past that not everyone would be aware of. For the most part this first issue was welcoming, but this creative team will have to work on adding a bit more context if they are to keep pushing some of the things that Amanda is still working through.
With that said, Amanda and Zula off the bat were characters you could connect with because of the way that they walked away from their experiences with the Weyland-Yutani Corporation. As I always say, I love the way that this corporation is seen as the big bad of this universe. The Xenomoprhs are a nightmare, but not as much as the people who want to use such a nightmare as a weapon. Because that always goes the way they want it to, right? With that said, it was cool to see how these two found a common goal in making sure that Weyland-Yutani doesn’t get their way with these bio-weapons. This is a bold move for both of them. They have been knocked down, silenced, battered, traumatized, but here they are still fighting back. Some will look at them and say this is an empowerment thing, but a real fan will see these two as the product of what happens when you toss too many people into the fire for the sake of greed. Establishing that motivation for these two characters was key to driving this story forward, and Brian Wood nailed it. I’m actually glad he was the one writing this story since he did such an amazing job with the personal story that was Aliens: Defiance.
Small details from this story also stuck out for the lapse in time that took place after the events of both of their stories. It was a point of interest to see just on a small scale what this corporation was capable of creating with what was recovered from the Xenomoprhs. That was a terrifying display, as well as seeing the technological advancements they have been able to accomplish. To say that this will be a challenge for Amanda and Zula is quite the understatement for what has been established about the threat of Weyland-Yutani.
I can’t say that I was too surprised to see Dan Jackson as the colorist for another one of these books. It’s honestly a smart choice to bring someone aboard who is so familiar with the visual look to this world and characters. Not to mention someone who tends to produce quality work for the interiors. Robert Carey isn’t a penciler that I am too familiar with, but I did enjoy what we got out of this first issue. It was solid work with consistency from start to finish. The characters were expressive, the tech was intricate in design, and the action scenes were met with quick execution. A lot of what stood out best was what you saw through a close-up perspective. Carey does this better than most because there’s still a lot that he will try to put detail in without blurring out or overlaying with shadows. That aside, the layout of the interiors again grabs your attention for the episodic atmosphere created from the transition of panels from scene to scene.
Aliens: Resistance #1 serves as a strong start for this next chapter in the lives of Amanda Ripley and Zula Hendricks. These are survivors on a mission, and that mission is the next craziest thing to taking on Xenomorphs. As I said above, it is a great feeling as an Aliens fan to know that there is always a plan for these characters that a team-up like this is possible.