Aliens (1986) : another look by: GF Willmetts (small article).

Watching ‘Aliens’ (1986) again, there are some interesting dilemmas to ponder on. Sorry if this piece is a little more scattered than I normally write but as all of us here are pretty familiar with the film, I’m jumping to the chase.


The flight from Earth to LV-426 has always bothered me. Sending a message between the two and being considered over-due is 17 days. Presumably, a few extra days are added to double-check. If it take 20 days to get prep and get there, then it must have been at least a month since the first facehugger egg was found. Newt might have been the final survivor but you have to wonder about the girl the colonial marines found in their first trip into the nest and how she managed to survive so long as well. Those air vents were either very busy or she found somewhere else to hide.

Now LV-426 is supposed to be 39 light years from Earth. We don’t really know how fast the Nostromo was travelling back to Earth but had to exceed light speed or at least up to that speed before it coasts along to conserve fuel as you would hardly want to accelerate all the way home. That would explain why it was slow enough to pick up the alarm from LV-426 and slow down on entering that star system. Then again, the company no doubt had Ash adjust the velocity to slow down at that point. Odd thing though, you do have to wonder why Weyland-Yutani or even a civilian or military team didn’t investigate what happened to it. Granted the company would want to keep some aspects of its delay quiet but you would have to wonder on how they could lose such an expensive starship and cargo.

The Sulaco as a battleship and significantly smaller got there very quickly, the crew hibernating to conserve resources, travelling at many times the speed of light although like the Nostromo would be decelerating over a long period. All done by sums and not continually accelerating. Even so, travel must have taken about 10 days to have been there within that month.

If the atmosphere processing plants is fully automated, why is there a colony there at such as early stage.

This is another one that I had a serious ponder about. As LC-426 has a nearly breathable atmosphere then they might have arrived later. As the place is essentially a rock, one would presume that mining is the main objective. However, it’s hardly the situation of building better worlds. It would be a lot safer to do the mining in a vacuum than to risk sparks.


When Ripley is shown the alien nest, she says she hasn’t seen anything like it before and yet it you look at the extended version of ‘Alien’ this is the kind of stuff she found the dying Dallas in. Maybe she forgot or stress put it out of her mind.


If Bishop has inhibitions at putting human life at risk, why would he obey Carter Burke’s orders to take the two facehugger specimens back to Earth knowing the danger they represented.

I had a thought about that and it would tend to suggest that Burke, as a company man, would have access to some over-ride commands that Bishop would describe as ‘insisting’.

Why would the Queen xenomorph be needed to lay more eggs when there were so many left in the alien spaceship unless, of course, they might not be that long-lived.

An odd statistic. Ripley explains to the marines that it took 24 hours for one alien to wipe out her crew. With them, it took less than 8 hours in two assaults. Granted that there were more xenomorphs but only about 5 attacked together at any one time. Although the queen was producing many eggs, considering that only 5 warriors was left at the end, there appears no regard to how many are lost in an assault. Hardly a natural species that is looking out for its own survival.

This piece was written with half a mind to inspire some response although I have supplied some of the solutions. I doubt if such thoughts went through production at the time or even later. With all the ‘Aliens’ franchise, we only get hints of the reality and often a wonder no one has thought to show what else happens in this reality. Mind you, they could always do a film series.

(c) GF Willmetts

March 2016


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