Shultz, Mark

AVERAGE REVIEW SCORE:

3 out of 5

(2 books)

Aliens Versus Predator Versus The Terminator

(Art by Mel Rubi and Christopher Ivy)

This book is very hard to rate.  On the one hand, it has a brilliant story concept in which Terminators are attempting to create a cyborg with Alien skin and the Predators are attempting to put a stop to it.  On the other, this book gives a general and hard to define feeling of being inadequate to its potential. 

I liked that the book reveals what happened to Ripley and Call after the end of 'Alien Resurrection' and liked the fact that Ripley joins the Predators even more.  There's a great moment when Ripley releases the Aliens from stasis to battle the Terminator/Aliens and thinks 'this is what I was born to do, to release the hounds of hell'. 

I think part of what I don't like about this book is that the movie icons aren't done justice.  The familiar Terminators soon give way to the new ones, which just aren't as cool, the Aliens are only featured very briefly and, worst of all, the Predators consistently get their arses kicked.  Rubi's artwork doesn't help matters either, lacking the dark and sinister tone that is so important to these giants of sci-fi horror.

3 out of 5

 

Superman And Batman Versus Aliens And Predator

(Art by Ariel Olivetti)

Another multi-crossover for some of the biggest names in comics and films.  The story here is that a volcanic eruption has disturbed a stranded colony of Predators who have been living underground in the Andes for thousands of years.  When the original colony ship crashed it was also carrying the Predators' favourite prey; the Aliens.  Encountering the interplanetary hunters in Gotham and Metropolis, Batman and Superman head to the Andes to investigate.  They then have to deal with the threat to mankind whilst caught between it and an overzealous military organisation. 

What I enjoyed most about this book is the way in which Superman and Batman react to the Aliens and Predators, who they have each encountered separately.  Superman, respectful of the threat posed by the offworlders, nevertheless is determined to save their lives at all costs.  Batman, on the other hand, is the far better prepared, his paranoia having led him to create weapons to use against both species.  He is also less concerned with their survival when measured against that of the human race. 

However, measured against this good use of DC's big names, there are two major downsides.  The first is that whilst Supes and the Bat are handled well, the Aliens and Predators aren't really.  None of the tension and horror of their respective film franchises is captured.  The Predators are basically treated as surly children and the Aliens seem almost an afterthought.  The other downside is that the book is just too damn short.  Originally released as just two comics, it doesn't have the length necessary to fully develop its storylines or ideas.

3 out of 5

Read more...

Aliens vs Predator (here)

DC (here)

Terminator (here)