Written by: Matt Molgaard
There are few franchises that do for me what the Alien franchise does. One of my earliest genre experiences, Ridley Scott’s Alien was one of the very first horror films I had the pleasure of viewing and the franchise has clung to me like an STD ever since. So when a new comic book or graphic novel hits the masses, I’m all over it. Aliens: Salvation – a rerelease long in the making included.
The story – or what I can tell you of the story without spoiling a stellar read – centers on two individuals who find themselves stranded on a foreign planet after something evil is discovered in their ship. The ship goes down and only two manage to escape: a looney religious cook and a captain who’s seen his sensibility head south. Can they survive, stranded in the middle of No Man’s Land? Probably, if not for the aliens who lurk about, eager to find a host for their menacing offspring.
There’s a whole hell of a lot more to this story, but again, diving too deep into details is going to kill a top notch read, and I’m not having that around these parts. But, let it be known that Dave Gibbons who crafts the tale does a wonderful job of bringing human and alien conflicts together. We care about the characters he introduces and we’re sympathetic to a number of troubles these two men face. When compared with the countless other Alien graphic novels out there, Salvation really shines.
A big part of that shine comes from the amazing Mike Mignola. A very, very longtime favorite of mine (you know Mignola from his epic Hellboy books), Mignola steps up to provide the artwork for the book, and his original brand of imagery (seriously, no one does it like Mike!) is absolutely marvelous. He was destined to draw this book. It just wouldn’t be the same without his familiar yet unique style (there’s a dream sequence in the book that looks insanely eerie and can be mistaken for no one’s work other than Mignola’s), which brings new life to the aliens and keeps the eyes plastered to every page. Mr. Mignola, you sir are an absolute wizard with the pen, whether illustrating or whipping together a beautiful narrative.
Aliens: Salvation is one of those must-have one-shots. It’s a riveting read that plays faithful to the mythos as we know it, yet offers up a refreshing tale of terror and desperation. The book reads smoothly, looks amazing and lurks in the memory bank after the final page has been turned. Dark Horse has a masterful work to offer fans, and we recommend you wake up and make a purchase immediately. You’ll thank us for the recommendation later!