Alien #1 Review

Writer: Phillip Kennedy Johnson

Artist: Julius Ohta

Cover Artist: Bjorn Barends

Publisher: Marvel Comics

Reviewer: StoryBabbler

When one series ends, another begins. Marvel Comics has relaunched the Alien series, keeping the main writer Phillip Kennedy Johnson while bringing a new artist in Julius Ohta on to the series. Alien (2022) #1 is the beginning of a brand new story into the Alien franchise.

If you’re interested in this comic, series, related trades, or any of the others mentioned, then simply click on the title/link to snag a copy through Amazon as you read the Alien #1 Review.


Well, it’s the first relaunch of the Alien series by Marvel Comics, and we’ve got Phillip Kennedy Johnson still onboard as the writer with a new artst in Julius Ohta. Going off this book, it seems P.K. Johnson has got something new in store for Alien fans, hopefully it keeps people engaged from start to finish this time around. This review will have some SPOILERS for the second half of the comic.

The setup for this new issue is pretty solid but it has its natural drawbacks. Readers are presented with a bright new future for humans on the exoplanet Tobler-9 brought about by the Weyland-Yutani mega-corporation. But like many things in the Alien franchise, whatever Weyland-Yutani gets it hand on has a dark side to it and calamity soon follows. This bright futuristic side is brought to life by Julius Ohta, depicting towering technological cities, skyscrapers, and pristine building interiors that scream “bright future” before the collapse of everything. It also helps that Ohta contrasts the bright future with the sheer terror of the humans caught up in the horror.

However, the “real” story is about a group of new characters with exception physical prowess and skills who are living an idyllic life on an alien planet or moon until they’re disturbed by an invading military force. Once again, Ohta pulls it off with the wide range of facial expressions in the characters, and they pull off the action pretty well which builds anticipation for what he’ll do with the Xenomorphs. Turns out these group of people are former soldiers, and on top of that, they’re synthetics being called on to do a dangerous secret mission for the military involving the alien Xenomorphs.

Now, having synthetics as main characters is something of a big deal in P.K. Johnson’s story. This is mainly due to his past story arcs in the previous Alien comic series framed human synthetics as this secret threat operating under humanity’s notice that is slowly but surely trying to topple humanity and wipe them out using the Xenomorphs to create their “Post-Organic” Utopia. And now we’re getting human synthetics who aren’t villainous as the main characters, presented in the lens of the character trope of disillusioned soldiers getting called on to do one last job.

The strengths for this issue are the presentation, pacing, dialogue, premise, the art and colors, and the potential of the new cast. However, there are some flaws here. For starters, the comic book is too expository, especially in the second half of the comic focusing on the human synthetics. There’s clearly A LOT of ideas that P.K. Johnson is trying to add when it comes to relations between humans and human synthetics in his Alien run. But there’s so much dropped here that it can make you want to skip to the end. Then there’s also the matter that this feels more like the beginning of Part 1 of a story, not the conclusion of Part 1. But thankfully this story has some promise to it, and it’s going more action-horror this time around so it could be pretty exciting. We’ll see.

Final Thoughts:

Alien (2022) #1 brings a new story with a slow start. The first issue presents all the familiar elements of the world of the Alien franchise, while introducing a new cast of characters who will be facing the alien Xenomorphs. The first issue has a solid presentation with Julius Ohta’s art, but it’s also a little more expository than expected. However, this is still a fine beginning to what is hopefully a good Alien comic book story.


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