Been a while since I review volume one way back in June (Follow the LINK). With us, well into the creepy month of October, I felt it was right to have some scary comic reviews. For me the Xenomorph is the ultimate in the scare factor, it is completely uncaring, unforgiving and so cosmically horrifying that it is perfect for a good scare. Let us take a dive into the comic book stats and then we can move onto the review.
Illustrator: Damon Willis, John Nadeau, Kelley Jones, Paul Guinan, Tony Akins, Allen Nunis, Mike Richardson.
Commercial Fluff: Many humans have died horribly at the claws of the Alien. The surface of Earth has been devastated to cleanse the beasts from our world. But the commercial value of this scourge has never been in doubt, especially when the special properties of the Alien Queen's royal jelly are discovered. Will Mankind once again risk its very survival as a species in order to sleep with the Alien? Dark Horse Comics' critically acclaimed Aliens series set the bar for how the universe of a popular film could be expanded through graphic fiction. Aliens Omnibus Volume 2 collects more of these exciting series in a value-priced, quality-format omnibus, featuring over four hundred story pages in full color. Includes the complete story arcs of Genocide, Harvest and the never-before-collected, epic-length Colonial Marines.
Published Date: December 25th, 2007
Publisher: Dark Horse Book
Going to break the comic down into stories and go through each one. These won't be super in-depth as I plan on doing that with the novels when I find them. Ultimately like its predecessor, this graphic novel is made up of three stories, Genocide, Harvest and Colonial Marines. I had already reviewed the book Genocide (here), so I already had a feeling of how the story arc was changing with the inclusion of Queen or Royal Jelly so I was interested to see how this is picked up in the other stories. As with most things in life let us begin at the start.
Earth is a mess and big companies are making a killing in exchange to help clean it up. One such company is making a drug called Xeno-Zip, using trace amounts of Queen Jelly it is able to make people stronger and faster. But due to lack of supply, they attempted to make their own with unstable results, the main problem being people turning into Psychos. In steps the military to help secure a pure source in exchange for the psycho version for the marine corps. Of course, as soon as they make planetfall everything thing goes FUBAR, why are their two factions of Xenomorph? A fast-action paced story, with stereotypes straight out of an 80's action film. Fun enough read just like the book.
A strange tale that I hope the book does more justice to. In this tale, we follow a dying scientist who is using the royal jelly to prolong his life. But in order to this, he needs more jelly. With the help of his love interest, a robotic pet ant and a robotic Xenomorph, they attempt what I can only describe as a Jewel thief. Heading to the alien homeworld to raid the nest. Once again nothing goes to plan and we end up with a plasma rifle-armed robotic Xenomorph, fighting the alien hordes. This was a weird-ass tale, but I am intrigued to read the book now.
The selling point of the graphic novel. Colonial Marines was a 10 part series that faced a ton of issues during production. It had multiple writers work on it, issue numbers were cut and it ended up being delayed. This clearly comes across in the story, it so badly disjointed and I am pretty sure a marine who died in one part is alive in the artwork later in the story (HA). What you do get is a dead beat LT. who is tasked with looking after a bunch of down and out marines. Unfortunately, no story is that simple and soon Xenomorphs are running wild. The LT. character is all over the place as writers struggled to pick a motive and hang on to it. Leaving us to not care about anyone whilst the story collapses under its own weight. The highlight of this tale was the water versions of the Xenomorphs at the Kelp farm, this was worth the price of reading such crap.
Don't buy this graphic novel it is just a hot mess! The colonial marines story ruins an otherwise below average offering. I will move forwards onto Volume three but wow did this one leave a bad taste in my mouth.