The Complete Record of Alien Encounters - Part 3

by SM
    |     NETWORK INTERFACE 2037
A blow by blow examination of Alien behaviour on Fiorina 161. NOTE: For the terms of reference for this piece, please read the intro to Part 1 Contact #3-1 Ripley, E.L – Lieutenant (Commercial); Jorden, R. (aka Newt) - Minor; Hicks, D. – Corporal United States Colonial Marines Corps. 2nd Battalion, 9th Regiment Location: Cryogenic compartment, USS Sulaco – transit LV-426 – Gateway Date: August 8 2179 Contact with: Facehugger There’s an awful lot going on during the credit sequence of Alien3 and not all of it especially explicit. The opening goes like this: - Titles - Slow zoom on sleeping Ripley and Newt in darkened hypersleep chamber. - Title - Exterior shot of Sulaco tracking right to left. - Title - Interior shot somewhere on Sulaco (according to a name plate) panning left to reveal an Alien egg attached to some sort of support strut. The egg is upside down and open. - Title - Four facehugger digitals unfolding into the bottom of frame. - Title - Facehugger climbing the side of Newt’s cryotube. - Title - The glass on Newt’s cryotube cracks. - Titles - Alien acid starts eating into floor. Sparks from sub-flooring. - Title - Wisps of smoke drift towards some sort of sensor (smoke detector?). - Titles - Screen with an ECG wave. Top right it says ‘NP-02311’. Bottom left is ‘BK-977076’. ‘Stasis interrupted’ flashes on the screen bottom right accompanied by an automated voice saying “Stasis interrupted. Fire in cryogenic compartment.” Following the first screen is a red flashing emergency light and a neuroscan of someone with the facehugger on them. - Title - The voice continues “Repeat. Fire in cryogenic compartment. All personnel report to emergency escape vehicle.” We see a closer neuroscan of the hugger on someone’s face, which turns to it’s left then back again. - Title - Blood spreading across a white piece of material, accompanied by a screeching noise and the voice saying “Launch of deep space lifeboat will commence in t-minus 20 seconds.” - Titles - Red flashing light; some sort of cylinders with fluid; red flashing light again; Ripley eyes closed head having a spasm; computer screen with graphic profile of someone’s head and brain flashing; accompanied by a warning klaxon. - Title - Some hexagonal piece of equipment of the walls explodes, followed by Ripley stirring in hypersleep – her crytotube now broken. Mixed with the explosion is the sound of breaking glass. - Title - A large plume of fire explodes across the roof. No explosion sound, but sound of fire. - Titles - Ripley’s cryotube drops out of frame, cryotube slides down another tube. - Title - Tube slides into another darkened chamber; Newt’s tube drops into frame, door slides closed behind it. - Titles - A large cog on the wall turns, as smoke drifts past. - Titles - Ripley stirring in hypersleep crossfades into EEV dropping out of the Sulaco, to right of frame then pan right to reveal Fiorina and EEV tumbling towards it. Superimposed title says: “Fiorina “Fury” 161, Outer-Veil Mineral Ore Refinery, Double Y Chromosome – Work Correctional Facility” followed by “Maximum security” So what does it all mean? In a nutshell, the facehugger tried to get into Newt’s cryotube, was wounded by the splintering glass, the acid from which caused the fire, which in turn caused the cryotubes to be loaded into the EEV and evacuated. However, there’s a few other things going in this title sequence that bare further scrutiny. The main one being – where did the egg come from? There’s a few theories about this. Did the Queen rescue it from the hive before the fire got to it? We don’t see her carrying an egg throughout the remainder of Aliens, so where did she hide it? One possible explanation is in between the long spines on her back – we never see her from the rear so we can’t be sure. Or did she lay it during the flight up to the Sulaco? Why the need for the egg sac seen on sub-level 4 if the Queen can just lay an egg without it? Aliens have already shown they are efficient creatures, and thus far they don’t have any visible way of perpetuating the species without a Queen, short of an adult spontaneously morphing into a Queen (also can’t be ruled out), so the Queen laying an ‘emergency egg’ is not without merit. So she either laid it or rescued it. The egg seems to be the same size and looks pretty much the same as the ones we’ve seen previously. It may be bigger or smaller than normal, but without anything in the same shot to compare it against, this remains unproven and unlikely. Now how did it end up in the position we see it on the Sulaco? We know where the egg ISN’T Fig 3-1a. Because nothing sharing the frame with the egg matches what we’ve previously seen in the previous film, it isn’t in the cryogenics compartment, it isn’t in the mess, and it isn’t in the armoury adjacent to the hangar bay. Most likely possibilities are it’s in a section of the hangar bay that we don’t see in the previous film, or it’s in some part of the dropship we didn’t see in the previous film. However both these theories have holes. If it’s in the hangar bay how did it get there? We see the Queen get out of the landing gear bay, and any shot she isn’t in until she’s dumped out the airlock, either Ripley, Newt or Bishop is watching her – and would’ve noticed her sticking an egg somewhere. If it’s in/ on the dropship, why is there ‘Sulaco’ written on part of the structure near the egg. The number 2 dropship is dubbed ‘Smart Ass’, and one would assume it’s unlikely that it would have ‘Sulaco’ written on it anywhere. Unless of course dropships aren’t interchangable and are assigned to specific mother ships. For instance, the APC had ‘Sulaco’ printed on it’s front, so it’s specifically assigned to that ship. Why not the dropship? This would tend to point at the dropship as the more likely location. Some conspiracy theories blame Bishop, and say he was late picking up Ripley and Newt because he landed, snuck into the AP Station, stole an egg, and made it back out – all in fifteen minutes. Unfortunately this has even more holes. Bishop landed at dock 7 in the AP Station because it was the safest place to land in the disintegrating station. By landing down on ground level, he would be endangering Hicks – a violation of his core programming. The obvious counter for this is he was reprogrammed in a similar fashion to Ash. However, if human life meant nothing to him – and he was willing to endanger himself for the number one priority of obtaining an Alien egg, then why bother going back for Ripley? As soon as he had the egg he would’ve been out of there. Yet he did go back for Ripley, which means he hadn’t been reprogrammed, therefore Bishop did not put the egg on the Sulaco. To further back this up why didn’t a facehugger on a dropship attack Hicks, Ripley or Newt during the flight back, and what chance did Bishop have of putting an egg somewhere on the Sulaco when the Queen ripped him in half within a minute of disembarking? Or did Bishop get an egg from the Derelict? This is even more unlikely. It took nearly ten minutes to get airborne and fly the short distance to the AP Station. Bishop flying out to the Derelict, finding and obtaining an egg, then flying back to the AP Station in less than fifteen minutes is even more implausible than him getting one from the AP Station itself. Another conspiracy theory revolves around Burke getting hold of an egg and getting Ferro and Spunkmeyer to fly it back to the Sulaco during the four hour gap between landing at Hadley’s Hope and the ambush on sub-level 3. Where this egg came from is unknown, as is why it wouldn’t open and attack either dropship pilot. And on top of all this there’s other things that make no sense like – why would Ferro and Spunkmeyer be taking orders from Burke? Maybe Gorman ordered them to? Unlikely, as the absence of Ferro and Spunkmeyer has the potential to endanger the squad – even in a supposedly secure area. Plus why would Burke need an egg when he had two live specimens already in stasis AND why would he try to impregnate Ripley and Newt if he already had an egg on the Sulaco? So conspiracy theories are out based on available info. The most logical location for the egg is it’s in the rear landing gear bay of the dropship, despite what we see at the beginning of the third film, which is inconclusive. So the egg has hatched and the facehugger is trying to get to Newt. This goes against what we’ve previously seen where eggs and huggers responded to movement; passively waiting for a host. Yet this one has opened without movement from any hosts and actively seeks them out. If this is indeed an ‘emergency egg’ one drawback maybe it can’t support a hugger for extended periods, so the creature goes looking for hosts, rather than simply waiting. Only one egg opened on the Derelict, so it’s not known whether the other eggs/ huggers detected Dallas and Lambert, but left them so they could take Kane back. The glass on Newt’s tube cracks, presumably cutting the hugger (off screen), the acid eats into some wiring and starts a fire. The smoke sets off alarms. The numbers on the screen with the ECG don’t tell us whose ECG it is, but from the “Stasis interrupted” warnings, this is most likely Newts. And it is also most likely that the neuroscan of the head and facehugger is also Newt. However, on closer inspection and comparison to the Kane and Jorden huggers, this one seems to be on an adult (in spite of some ghosting on the images which only further adds to the confusion) Fig 3-1b Fig 3-1bb. With Kane’s hugger the rearmost digitals clamp across the ears and the hugger covers up to the middle of the forehead. On a smaller host like Newt, it would cover the entire head. This hugger doesn’t, so it’s on either Hicks or Ripley (we’re assuming that the creature can discern between a human and a severely damaged synthetic). So is it their stasis that’s been interrupted? And why is the hugger on an adult, when Newt’s tube has been compromised? The next shot is the most confusing. A red liquid (almost certainly blood) soaking across some white material, accompanied by screeching reminiscent of the noise a facehugger makes. Neither Ripley nor Newt was wearing white, and Bishop bleeds white fluid. Hicks on the other hand had white bandages on his acid scarring. Is the fire interrupting EVERYONE’s stasis, and is something to do with the fire and hypersleep causing Hicks’ wounds to hemorrhage? Next up we have more signs of emergency, Ripley throwing her head back like she is convulsing, and a computer graphic of a skull with a flashing brain. It’s becoming obvious the fire is starting to distress the sleepers. Then some piece of equipment on the wall explodes Fig 3-1c. No hints are given what this is, but as we hear the sound of breaking glass, it seems it’s in the cryogenics compartment and it has smashed part of Ripley’s hypersleep pod. Though it may also be some bolts that need to be blown prior to the launch of the EEV, it doesn’t seem safe that such a large explosion would be inside the ship, and there’s nothing else to really explain Ripley’s cryotube breaking. Fire sweeps across the ceiling; things are getting out of hand, and the tubes are automatically loaded into the EEV. Newt’s slides into place next to Hicks, with one empty slot to Newt’s left for Ripley. Newt does NOT have a facehugger on her Fig 3-1d. We cannot see if Hicks does or not. A cog turns – in all probability a hatch on the EEV sealing. The EEV drops out of the Sulaco and tumbles towards Fiorina. A shot of Ripley sees her stirring in hypersleep, but she has no hugger attached to her Fig 3-1e. If we make the reasonable assumption the time from the hugger breaking Newts tube, spilling acid, the fire starting and the EEV’s being evacuated occurs in realtime, then Hicks is the only viable host based on the above evidence. The Sulaco’s computer says that the lifeboats will be launched in 20 seconds, and this occurs at 2 minutes and 18 seconds into the film (ref. VCD). If we take out the title cards, just 18 seconds of footage on the Sulaco elapse, further supporting what we’re seeing is in fact occurring in real time – or very close to it. And could the hugger have been responsible for Hicks’ bleeding? We must take into account though this hugger has already displayed signs of being slightly different, so a quick impregnation isn’t entirely out of the question, no matter how improbable it may sound. And another take on this whole sequence is it could be from one or multiple characters perspectives and as these characters are all sleeping, the events can take on a disjointed and dreamlike quality. Contact #3-2 Spike, dog, pet of prisoner Murphy T. Location: Emergency Escape Vehicle 2650 Date: August 9 2179 (Approx 0600 – 0700 hours) Contact with: Facehugger Shortly before this encounter we discover that both Hicks and Newt have been killed in the EEV crash, which presents us with further problems. We previously assumed that the facehugger on the Sulaco was attached to Hicks. Hicks is now dead – his entire head and shoulders maimed beyond recognition no less – with no obvious traces of the hugger, or any potential embryo it implanted. Newt is stuck in a silent scream trapped inside her tube, as if she woke up at some point, couldn’t get out of the tube and subsequently suffocated. Bishop also suffers further damage during the crash. Ripley is the sole survivor found by prisoner Frank, and is taken to the infirmary. The EEV wreckage is hoisted via crane into the prison complex, supervised by two prisoners on it’s roof (one of whom is very likely prisoner Murphy), while Murphy’s rottweiler dog Spike rides inside. Spike barks incessantly at something further inside the EEV beyond Bishop’s tube – a facehugger. How? We only saw one egg on the Sulaco and we only saw one hugger. Is this the same one? Previous experience suggests a hugger implants one embryo and dies. However our previous experience extends only as far as one example – Kane. As far as Ash leads us to believe it died after implantation – but Ash was rather duplicitous, so can we trust his judgement? Ash primary purpose was to ensure the return of specimens, so he wouldn’t have killed the hugger himself. As far as we know Kane’s hugger was sealed in the Nostromo’s infirmary, so maybe it did look for another host after it was done with Kane, but couldn’t escape. However it managed to burn through Kane’s faceplate – why didn’t it melt through the infirmary’s observation glass? Maybe it couldn’t – the hugger on the Sulaco didn’t melt through any of the cryotubes, so perhaps there are some materials that are resistant to hugger acid – same as the Medlab stasis tubes. Ripley used her previous experience to hypothesize one hugger per colonist on LV-426, but she has little hard evidence to go on. So it would seem that facehuggers are able to live on after embryo implantation – or at the very least this one can. Contact #3-3 Spike Location: Prison cells, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility complex Date: August 9 2179 (Approx 2130 hours) Contact with: Chestburster Prior to this, Murphy discovers Spike back at his cell, asking the dog where he’s been and that he’s been looking everywhere for him. Murphy also discovers some strange marks on the dog’s head, and though Murphy is baffled by the marks, it’s obvious to us the hugger on the EEV got him, and had Murphy looked in the EEV he no doubt would’ve found Spike Fig 3-3a. Earlier than this Ripley finds acid burns on Newt’s cryotubes in the EEV – and no sign of Spike or the hugger. After Medical Officer Johnathan Clemens performs an autopsy on Newt – revealing she drowned and no trace of embryo implantation – both Hicks and Newt are cremated in the prison furnace. As Hicks cause of death was a lot more obvious, no autopsy is performed. Who knows what would have been revealed if one had been. During the cremation service, Spike shows signs of distress – pacing back and forth, before collapsing and the chestburster tearing it’s way out. It has to punch it’s way through Spike’s belly a number of times – much more than with Kane or the colonist – before it emerges. And again we are introduced to something new. A chestburster with visible arms and legs and a head that is attached to the body via a neck, rather than the creature being one long snake-like organism. This burster also appears slightly larger that Kane’s or the female colonists, but it’s entirely likely this is due to the host being a dog rather than a human. For a start this chestburster, raises itself up on four legs shortly after birth Fig 3-3c, sloughs off a membrane like material, and reveals a formed inner jaw Fig 3-3b – absent from either previously viewed bursters. The difference in metabolic rates and physiology between human and canine would be a plausible cause for these changes. The chestburster retreats from it’s former host – why is unknown. The issue of how Aliens grow so fast is still unresolved at this point. If they even need to eat at all, it makes sense it would’ve eaten it’s fill from Spike’s remains, but it didn’t. It’s unlikely it heard someone returning from the funeral, as any such person would discover Spike’s body and raise it with the others. Possibly it heard people coming, but not Murphy, and these people returning couldn’t care less about Spike (prisoner Frank refers to him as “that stupid dog”) so have no reason to go to Murphy’s cell. Contact #3-4 Murphy, Thomas - Prisoner ** Location: Vent shaft 17, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility complex Date: August 10 2179 (Approx 0800 hours) Contact with: Adolescent Alien Obviously Murphy didn’t return to his quarters the night before or we would’ve discovered Spike dead and told somebody. So next morning he is cleaning a vent shaft and discovers a large piece of translucent material – very similar to what Brett found on the Nostromo just before his demise. Only this piece is significantly larger. Murphy studies it curiously before discarding it and continuing his work, then he notices something in a vent in the floor. Murphy sticks his head in the broken vent and sees something moving in the dark. He calls out to it thinking it is Spike, when the Alien whips around and fluid splashes in Murphy’s face Fig 3-4a. He screams, blinded and in pain, before stumbling and slipping into a huge fan, which cuts him to ribbons. A couple of interesting points here. Firstly Alien growth. Murphy mistook the Alien for Spike which tells us it wasn’t yet fully grown. Even in the shadows, it isn’t difficult to tell the difference between something the size of a dog and seven to eight foot tall Alien. Assuming we’re on working on Earth time and not Fiorina time (ie 24 hour days), the Alien was born over 10 hours previous and isn’t fully grown yet. While the one on the Nostromo seemed fully grown during the time it took ‘bury’ Kane and rig up some cattle prods. A guess for this time would be around 6 hours at the absolute maximim (emphasis on ‘guess’). Ripley told the inquiry in the second film that it wiped out the crew in less than 24 hours. At the growth rate observed on Fiorina, it wouldn’t have killed Brett till over 10 hours after Kane’s death. This doesn’t seem to fit the way the first film is presented, but as there are no clocks to be seen on the Nostromo anything is possible. Second interesting point – Did the Alien spit on Murphy? We’ve established previously that Alien drool is not acidic. So if it did, maybe Aliens have glands similar to some snakes who are able to spit venom, but don’t use it as saliva. If it is indeed spit, then it makes the Alien a much more formidable creature. Previously we’ve seen it relying on stealth or weight of numbers. Now it seems to be able to attack from a range beyond that of it’s arms and tail. One has to question why the Queen didn’t use this on Ripley, when her inner jaw couldn’t quite reach Ripley during the power loader battle. Perhaps the Queen doesn’t have this sort of attack in her arsenal – because, let’s face it, a Queen would normally be laying eggs and not engaging enemies of the hive. On the other hand maybe it isn’t spit at all. The Alien has just shed some of it’s skin. Maybe when it shed, it also bled leaving the hole that it then crawled into? Their is some Alien-like material in the same shot, which seems to be more shed skin, (but could be the hive “resin” as seen on LV-426) Fig 3-4b. Was the Alien still bleeding a little around the head from the recent shedding, and the force of turning it’s head towards Murphy, flung the blood at him. This seems unlikely as Brett found no acid corrosion when he found the skin on the Nostromo, so acid spit is the most likely scenario. Clemens finds evidence of acid corrosion at the edge of the hole, when later investigating Murphy’s death. Contact #3-5 Rains, Daniel - Prisoner; Boggs, Edward - Prisoner; Golic, Walter - Prisoner Location: Unknown corridor, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility complex Date: August 10 2179 (Approx 2000 hours) Contact with: Adult Alien In the bowels of the prison complex, prisoners Boggs, Rains, and Golic are mapping a large chamber, while using candles to mark their route – like Hansel and Gretel and their breadcrumbs. Suddenly Rains notices the candles blowing out one by one. Thinking it’s a draft from an air shaft, Rains goes back to relight them. On his way, he notices something running past nearby, disturbing some storage barrels Fig 3-5a. Thinking it’s another prisoner mucking about, he continues, and another candle is blown out. He stops when he notices a puddle of liquid next to him, with more liquid dribbling into it. He brings his torch down for a closer look, and the Alien, now fully grown, rears it’s head up and attacks him. Rains’ death is very similar to Lambert’s in that it is prolonged and we really don’t know what Alien is doing to him Fig 3-5b. Boggs and Golic don’t stick around to find out either. They run in a blind panic down a series of tunnels and air shafts – and find themselves back where they started. Golic takes a close look at Rains’ extremely bloodied form. There is a large amount of blood around the left forehead area suggesting the Alien finally put Rains out of his misery with a bite to the head Fig 3-5c. Boggs meanwhile cautiously backs towards a wall, looking around for Rains’ attacker, when he hears something clanking against a metal pipe above him. He looks up just in time to see the Alien lunge from a duct in the wall and drag him up. Boggs struggles and screams before the back of his head explodes Fig 3-5d Fig 3-5dd. Golic is sprayed with Boggs’ blood and when the Alien bares it’s blood coated lips, Golic flees, screaming. What was happening with the candles? Boggs suggests it’s wind from a vent shaft blowing them out. However the only air we see circulating is very slightest of breezes, which occasionally can be seen blowing the smoke from the prisoners flare torches. Most of the time the smoke from the flares is drifting straight up, unaffected by any breeze. Another theory for the candles blowing out is either a) the Alien is running past them in the dark, and the breeze generated blows them out or b) the Alien is in fact blowing them out with it’s mouth. Rains sees something disturbing some barrels as it runs past at one point. We quickly learn that this is the Alien, all but invisible in the darkness. Most of the shots of candles blowing out are either close-ups or shots that are surrounded in darkness, so we couldn’t even see the Alien if it was running past or blowing them out. If the Alien can in fact exhale then the candles going out one by one, slowly making their way towards the prisoners would suggest the Alien is in fact stalking it’s prey or trying to split them up. While an Alien with it’s curved head wouldn’t appear to leave much of a breeze in it’s wake and there doesn’t appear to be any naturally occurring breezes, ultimately all three theories are unproven. As has been mentioned there are similarities with Rains’ death and Lambert’s death (see contact #1-8). When we look at the deaths of Brett, Parker, or Ferro – they were all over pretty quickly. Rains on the other hand, screams and yells for the other to help him, struggling with the Alien for about 20 seconds. In a somewhat unusual position too – the Alien’s head appears to be close to the ground, while Rains doesn’t look like he’s touching the ground at all. Is this the same sort of thing that happened to Lambert? When Boggs and Golic find Rains’ body he still has his jacket on, and we not given any indication that his clothes had been removed as they had with Lambert. There is a bloody wound on his forehead, and as mentioned seems to be the signature ‘head bite’. There is also blood on his jacket and the walls hinting at further wounds. Bogg’s is grabbed from above, and struggles screaming. The Alien has somehow crammed itself into a narrow gap between the wall and the ceiling. It’s difficult to determine what exactly happened to Boggs, as we see the back of his head explode as his head snaps back, hinting that the Alien cored his head with it’s inner jaw. However we don’t actually see the inner jaw. Possibly it’s too fast and from the angle were viewing from it’s not visible. Contact #3-6 Clemens, Johnathan - Medical Officer; Ripley, E.L; Golic, W. Location: Infirmary, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility complex Date: August 10 2179 (Approx 2200 hours) Contact with: Adult Alien As Clemens is giving Ripley an injection for her post-hypersleep nausea, a shadow drops down behind the curtain behind him. Both Ripley and Golic see and Clemens notices them looking. He spins around as the Alien grabs him (and a large chunk of curtain) by the sides of the head. He is lifted off his feet and the curtain tears as he thrashes around kicking over instrument trays. Golic and Ripley recoil as the Alien’s inner jaw punches a hole in Clemens head just over his left eye Fig 3-6a Fig 3-6aa. The creature then drops the M.O. and heads over to Ripley. She backs up against the wall and the Alien approaches her on all fours. She turns away from it, as it opens it’s slavering mouth, and it’s inner jaw slowly slides out Fig 3-6b. Ripley shuts her eyes, thinking that fate has finally caught up with her, but it slowly retracts the jaw and backs off. It grabs Clemens’ body, still wrapped up in the ruined curtain, and disappears into a ceiling vent. This is first really good look at this new Alien, and we can see that it has no dorsal spine or tubes, and it’s legs (hind legs when on all fours) are similar to that of it’s host (elongated foot). Why the spikes/ tubes are missing is not addressed at this point, nor is why it would attack Clemens and Rains standing, but approach Ripley on all fours. Ripley says later that she’s “never seen one like this before. It moves differently” though she doesn’t offer speculation as to why this might be, and no one mentions Spike. The lack of spine/ tubes may be to do with the Aliens usual method of locomotion – all fours. The spine and tubes would interfere with the Alien being able to turn it’s elongated head. However, the Aliens on LV-426 also went around on all fours on occasion, and the tubes didn’t seem to cause them any harm. In fact in some shots in the ceiling crawlspace and airducts at Hadley’s Hope, we see that the tubes are in fact not rigid but flexible, therefore enabling the creatures to fit into tighter spaces. All previously seen Aliens get around on two legs most of the time though, and while a question mark hangs over why this Alien lack the dorsal appendages, the most obvious theory at this point is they interfere with it’s head, and coming from Spike it usually goes around on four legs. Not knowing exactly what the tubes are for isn’t much help either. Also not addressed is why the Alien doesn’t attack Ripley. It comes extremely close, brushing against her face as it extends it’s jaw, but isn’t especially aggressive towards her. Almost as if it’s sussing her out. It also ignores Golic – an obvious target if ever there was one, being tied up to a bed. Note there is no blood on the inner jaw it extends towards Ripley, even though it just had bitten into Clemens head seconds before. As the blood isn’t oozing out of the Alien’s mouth onto the floor, one can only assume this blood was ingested. Again, like Brett we see the Alien carrying off a dead victim. With the absence of the Queen, this Alien seems to be systematically killing the local populace off. For what purpose? Possibly for food, but yet again - unknown. Contact #3-7 Andrews, Harold - Superintendent Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Location: Mess Hall, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility complex Date: August 10 2179 (Approx 2200 hours) Contact with: Adult Alien Unfortunately for Superintendent Andrews, when Ripley chooses to burst into mess hall alerting everyone to Clemens death, he is standing under an uncovered ceiling vent. As he is explaining about the deaths of Murphy, and disappearance of Boggs and Rains (believed murdered by Golic), the Alien lunges out of the opening, tangled in electrical wiring and grabs the warden by the sides of the head. He is hauled into the ceiling space screaming, and blood starts splashing onto the floor (along with the squash ball he has a habit of squeezing) – leaving little doubt as to his fate. The next scene sees Prisoner Jude mopping up the bloody floor, and we can safely assume that neither body of the last two victims was recovered. And as Andrews was in the middle of asking for volunteers to search for Boggs and Rains when he was taken, we can also assume that the prisoners now know what happened to them too. Ripley mentions after Andrews death that in her experience that Aliens are “afraid of fire; not much else” and a plan is formulated based on this hypothesis. Mind you it is questionable as to how Ripley arrived at this conclusion. We’ve never seen an Alien struck by a flame thrower, and the Narcissus engines did not set the Alien alight. The Queen was enraged when Ripley threatened to torch her eggs (which turned out to be quite flammable), and recoiled from the powerloader’s blowtorch, but she did seem to suffer any ill effects from the inferno on sub-level 4, nor from the multiple grenade explosions. So Ripley’s hypothesis seems fairly correct after all. As pointed out earlier (contact #2-24) Aliens may not like fire; but it doesn’t seem to harm them. Contact #3-8 Frank – Prisoner Location: Vent access shaft, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility complex Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien Shortly before Frank is attacked, Prisoner David finds a wire grate that as been torn open, and has drool coming from it. He states the obvious by saying “There’s definitely something in here with us.” Fig 3-8a Frank is climbing up a narrow shaft with a bucket of the explosive chemical Quinitricetyline, when he accidently drops a mining flare (to be used to start the fire to flush the Alien out of the ducts and into a toxic waste dump). The flare lands on the lip of a horizontal tunnel just below him, and he climbs down a few rungs to get it. As he does we see straight up as the Alien comes into view at the top of the shaft. Frank reaches for the flare, grabs it then continues up – then the Alien hisses and attacks Fig 3-8b. Once again it seems to have grabbed Frank around the head as it did Clemens and Andrews. He screams and drops his bucket and flare. The bucket lands first, and the flare falls into a large puddle of Quinitricetyline, which in turn ignites the rest of the chemical the prisoners had been painting around the corridors. The aftermath reveals that 10 prisoners are dead. Whether this includes Frank or not is unclear. Contact #3-9 Ripley E.L.; Aaron, Francis – Warder Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Location: Emergency Escape Vehicle 2650, rubbish dump, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Queen Embryo After the fire Ripley decides to take some action about her constant nausea and goes to the EEV wreckage. She gets in her hypersleep capsule as Aaron shows up. Aaron runs a neuroscan, searching for “hemorrhaging” and “hairline fractures at the base of the skull”. Instead as the scanner goes over Ripley’s chest area, Aaron sees something that doesn’t belong – which is confirmed when the scanner turns up “FOREIGN TISSUE TYPE”. Ripley has an Alien inside her. Finally it is revealed where the embryo actually sits inside the host. We can see Ripley’s heart pumping away and from the camera and scanner angle it seems to be between the heart and right hand lung Fig 3-9a. It doesn’t seem to be inside any organ, but merely floating in the chest cavity Fig 3-9b. How it got there is anyone’s guess. When the hugger inserts it’s tube into the host’s throat, does it somehow pierce the esophagus (acid?) and insert an egg in the cavity. Inserting the egg anywhere else (lung, stomach) would run the risk of harming the host’s normal bodily functions – but then so would piercing the esophagus. Maybe more so. To this end it has been theorised that the facehugger injects something to host that reacts with the hosts own DNA to form an embryo. Much like a sperm and ovum form an embryo in a mammal. But a much more imporant question is how Ripley came to be impregnated. Taking the opening titles on face value, it’s more than likely the hugger was attached to Hicks. Did the hugger, attach itself to Ripley when it was done with Hicks? Her cryotube was already breached making it easier for the hugger to gain access, but this suggests the hugger can in fact implant THREE embryos – unless it rejected Hicks’ due to his injuries, which the hugger itself could’ve directly or indirectly exacerbated. As with Kane, Ripley has no memory of the hugger being attached to her, but as she was in hypersleep it’s doubtful she would’ve remembered much of anything. Further scrutiny of the neuroscan reveals some odd protrusions on the embryo’s head, which leads Ripley to the conclusion that this is in fact a Queen. How she seems so sure of this is not known. If it is indeed, this may go some way to explaining how Queen’s are created – ie. They involve a special facehugger that can implant hosts with a Queen and normal adult Alien to act as it’s protector. Hence the reason the Alien didn’t kill Ripley in the infirmary. This can also go some way to supporting the ‘emergency egg’ theory. The Queen lays one special egg that bears a hugger capable of impregnating multiple hosts, thereby ensuring the propagation of the species. Contact #3-10 Ripley E.L. Location: Unknown maintenance access room, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien Hoping for a quick death at the hands of the Alien, Ripley goes looking for it – to provoke it into taking her life. She sees what she believes to the be Alien crouched on the ground Fig 3-10a, and attacks with a long metal pole – only to see it shatter and spill hundreds of small insects onto the ground. It’s just a large pipe and not the Alien at all. Ripley blinks in disbelief – she had been so sure it was the creature, but it turned out to be a hallucination. Was this was caused by the Queen embryo, or just Ripley suffering from the trauma of losing her friends, or her coming to terms with her condition, or simply exhaustion? There’s nothing concrete to suggest the embryo was responsible, though on the other hand Ripley is certain it’s a Queen when talking later to Dillon – can the embryo somehow communicate with the host on some level, and in this instance was protecting the Alien by diverting Ripley’s attention? The Alien reveals itself shortly after this, crawling out of a mass of pipes in the ceiling. Ripley had been looking in the right spot, but as shown in the next scene – it did nothing to harm her in any way. Which forms the basis of the prisoners plan to trap and destroy the beast by drowning it in hot lead. Contact #3-11 Unnamed prisoner (possibly Vincent); Kevin - Prisoner Location: Channel B, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien We have to step out of the Alien universe briefly in order to explore who exactly gets attacked first when the prisoners put their plan into action. Clemens says there is a custodial staff of 25 on Fiorina, but we don’t know if this includes Andrews, Aaron and Clemens. Andrews later says there are 25 prisoners. Not all of these are named. If we look to sources outside the films (novelisations, scripts) the 25 inhabitants of Fiorina are Aaron, Andrews, Arthur, Boggs, Christopher, Clemens, David, Dillon, Ed, Eric, Frank, Gillis, Golic, Gregor, Janni, Jude, Kevin, Lawrence, Martin, Morse, Murphy, Rains, Troy, Vincent, and William. Before the fire, Murphy, Rains, Boggs, Clemens and Andrews are dead. Dillon says 10 die in the fire. Just before the prisoners execute their plan, Dillon and Ripley address Aaron, Morse, Kevin, William, Eric, David, Gregor, Jude and Troy. So there are 10 inhabitants left, meaning those killed in the explosion and fire are Arthur (confirmed – he was the tenth found by Morse), Christopher, Ed, Frank (confirmed – killed by Alien), Gillis, Golic, Janni, Lawrence, Martin and Vincent. The script lists Vincent as the first victim of the bait and chase sequence – however he is already dead. One could theorise the Alien stole the body from the morgue (if that is indeed where the prisoners bodies were kept) and was simply eating. However there is a torch burning next to the body and what seems to be fresh blood on the wall, suggesting it was killed recently and the conundrum remains. One way around this would be to go with Andrews comment that there ARE in fact 25 prisoners – two of which are unnamed (or rather oddly named as ‘Stunt X’ etc.), and it is in fact Golic who is attacked first – but this leaves one prisoner unaccounted for in the wash up. Another less credible way around it is - it is in fact Vincent despite the fact he was previously thought dead. He was alive and in the infirmary (ie. Off screen) throughout all the preceding scenes. Anyway, let’s move on. Kevin hears someone screaming and goes to check it out. He finds one of the brothers lying dead, and the Alien crouched over him seemingly eating, and moving it’s pelvic area in a manner suggestive of a dog humping a leg Fig 3-11a. Perhaps an unfortunate side effect of the Alien inheriting canine DNA? The Alien senses Kevin’s approach and turns to face him. Kevin taunts the creature before taking off. The Alien pursues and for the first time we see from an Alien’s point of view. It’s not much different from normal human vision, but as seen through a horizontally concave lense Fig 3-11b. Also the Alien’s hearing differs again slightly from human in that rather than the echo around the leadworks we hear from Morse earlier or Dillon later, there is a reverb with a much shorter delay on the sound of the prisoners shouting when we see from the creature’s POV. Kevin just manages to evade the Alien by rounding a corner and closing a door. The Alien rams the door leaving a very large dent Fig 3-11c. Contact #3-12 Jude, Alan. - Prisoner Location: East Wing, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien While the Alien still seems to be waiting at Kevin’s door, Jude hurls abuse at it and it now starts after him. Like it’s brethren on Acheron, this Alien has no problems running around on walls and ceilings if it so chooses. Jude bolts through a door with the Alien hot on his heals, David closes it behind him. Jude then ducks through door C-7 and seals it. Believing himself safe, he takes a look through the small window in the door – and the Alien smashes through the window trying to grab him. The creature looks after Jude – seemingly frustrated - as he runs away, meeting up with Kevin further down the corridor. Contact #3-13 David – Prisoner Location: F Channel, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien If confusion wasn’t descending on the prisoners before, it certainly is now. David is wandering down a corridor looking the Alien, when he spots it on the ceiling. It doesn’t immediately attack, but waits until after he’s thrown his torch at it Fig 3-13a. He too bolts off down a series of corridors, screaming for others to come to his aid. Both Troy and Morse both listen for David, but ultimately seem lost. Eventually David appears to gain a bit of ground on the Alien, and just manages to close door 3 blocking it’s path. Interesting to note that the Alien isn’t moving as quickly when it’s approaching David’s door. Much like the Nostromo Alien, that moved slowly for the most part but was capable of lightning fast attacks. This is perhaps linked to the amount of food intake. This Alien has certainly had much more opportunities to feed – if that is indeed what it is doing – which may explain it’s athletic ability. However like some terrestrial hunters, cheetahs for example, it may only be able to move fast for short periods, and the length of those periods is determined by it’s food intake. Nevertheless in this instance, the Alien is again foiled by a closed door. Contact #3-14 Troy – Prisoner Location: F Channel, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien Obviously not hearing David shouting that his door is closed, Troy, coming from his previous position in the piston chamber, blunders into the Alien on the other side. It simply waits for him, and as he rounds the corner, it screams, he screams, and that’s all she wrote. Contact #3-15 David Location: F Channel, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien After Troy is attacked, Dillon heads into the corridors from the piston chamber himself, while Prisoner Eric’s nervousness is rapidly starting to overcome him. Next we see from the Alien’s POV again. It is on the ceiling, presumably somewhere around door F-3, lurking around an open air vent, as shouts can be heard nearby Fig 3-15a. David looks though the window in F-3 searching for the Alien, but unbeknownst to him it is already dropping down behind him. He turns, no doubt warned by the sound of copious amounts of drool spattering onto the floor, and the Alien bares it’s inner-jaw. David’s short scream is cut off as the inner-jaw doesn’t just take a chunk out of the front of his head as per Brett (#1-6) or Parker (#1-8), but instead goes straight through his head AND the window David was just looking through Fig 3-15b. If we say the Alien was standing within 30 centimetres of David and David’s head is about 20 centimetres thick, and the jaw penetrates the other side, the inner jaw itself could be up to 70 centimetres long. Previously inner jaws have been perceived to be up to a foot long (30 cm), but the Alien has been closer to the victim in these instances. Although the Alien may have lunged closer to David an instant prior to the attack, there’s really nothing concrete to rule out the Alien’s inner jaw being over 2 feet (60 cm) in length. Also in this contact we see that doors aren’t necessarily a barrier to the Alien, and it can find ways around obstacles, displaying rudimentary problem solving ability. Contact #3-16 Eric – Prisoner Location: Piston chamber, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien Eric only sees the Alien for a second as it runs from one side of the Leadworks to the other, but it’s enough to scare him silly, and he immediately bolts for the piston switch. Ripley just manages to convince him that it’s gone and to calm him down somewhat before the switch is thrown. Ripley, suffers a brief chest pain as Eric returns to his post, indicating that the birth of her embryo is rapidly approaching. Having dealt with David and Troy one one side of the leadworks, the Alien is now over the other side, where both Kevin and Jude have moved from their previous encounters, and Dillon, Morse, Gregor and William are waiting to play their part. Contact #3-17 Kevin, Dillon, L. – Prisoner Location: Unnamed channel, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien Kevin is walking warily down a corridor, and upon going through a door, senses something and shines his torch towards the ceiling, where – sure enough – the Alien is waiting and dives on him. Dillon hears his screams and approaches with an axe. Upon seeing Kevin and the Alien on the ceiling he drops his weapon and runs to his friends aid. Whatever the creature is doing to Kevin is kept off screen, as we only see his kicking legs and the Alien’s tail dangling into frame Fig 3-17a. Dillon grabs Kevin’s legs, tells him not to struggle, and either due to Dillon’s pulling or whatever fight Kevin was putting up, the Alien lets him go. Dillon starts dragging him down the corridor away from the beast, and we see Kevin is bleeding rather badly from a neck wound Fig 3-17b. The Alien follows them to the piston chamber. Why did the Alien choose to toy with Kevin, or indeed Rains, Boggs, Clemens or Frank, but instead kill David with one quick strike? Is it possibly something to do with being angry? Kevin commented earlier that “This thing is really pissed off!!” However being “pissed off” seems to be a constant state of being for this particular Alien. Did it get angry with David for forcing it to find another way around the door, and therefore used it’s strike-teeth to core his head? You’d think if it was capable of anger, it would’ve killed him slowly. Once more the Alien’s inner motives are a mystery. Contact #3-18 Kevin, Dillon,. L., Ripley, E.L. Location: Piston chamber, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien Dillon drags the dying Kevin into the piston chamber and Ripley moves to help, after instructing Eric to man the piston switch. As Dillon and Ripley try to help Kevin, the Alien sticks it’s head through a door into the piston chamber. Ripley notices it and tells Dillon to leave the now dead Kevin to try and lure the Alien in. Ripley and Dillon back off from Kevin’s body and the Alien looks side to side as if assessing the situation, perhaps sensing the trap. It backs slowly back into the tunnel – then pounces. As it bites Kevin squarely in the groin, we get a good sense of the Alien’s immense size Fig 3-18a. Due to the perspective it’s difficult to be really accurate, but if we assume Kevin is about 2 feet across the shoulders, it makes the Alien’s head nearly 4 feet long. Eric throws the switch, but it seems our earlier assumptions proved correct. Rather than mauling a victim on the spot a la Rains or Frank, the Alien realises it’s a trap and drags Kevin’s body back into the tunnel. Ripley, Eric and Dillon then head into the tunnels themselves, making sure the Alien doesn’t get behind the piston before it seals the leadworks up. Contact # 3-19 Eric Location: Unnamed channel, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien As this piston starts Ripley ushers Eric into a corridor on one side of the Leadworks while she heads to the opposite side. Shortly afterwards Ripley, her chest pains starting to come more frequently, stumbles across Eric’s body Fig 3-19a. Though he is dead, his death has been left off screen. He is bloodied around the neck, so probably suffered an attack similar to Kevin’s. There are a couple of odd things about this death. One, as mentioned, Eric was on the other side of the leadworks, so how was Ripley able to stumble across his body? One possible explanation is Ripley ended up on the other side, after running down a number of channels and sealing the doors. How she got there so fast is anyone’s guess. Another possible explanation is the Alien grabbed Eric and took him over to the other side of the leadworks, then dumped him. However the Alien was on the same side of the leadworks as Ripley; not Eric. Thus leaving us with the more plausible answer that Eric did what he needed to do, then ran behind the piston to the other side and was killed there. The other odd thing about Eric is how Ripley finds him. She rounds a corner, and finds him lying there – or so we’re lead to believe. We only see his head and shoulders, but judging from the shot, they are lying about waist height – not on the ground. It’s possible Eric’s body is lying on a piece of old equipment (barrels like the one’s used for the quinitricetyline?). It’s also interesting to note how quickly Eric was killed. Most of the closing stage of the film happen more or less in real time. Dillon says they have “four or five minutes” before the piston locks into the lead mold. In fact it takes four minutes and thirty four seconds. So from Eric disappearing into the tunnel to reappearing dead on the other side of the leadworks takes just 12 seconds. During this time the Alien has dispensed with Kevin, killed Eric and already taken off after Jude again. That’s one quick Alien. Contact #3-20 Jude, A. Location: Unnamed channel, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien After finding Eric, Ripley encounters another dead body dangling out of an airduct, still clutching a torch. Ripley takes the torch, but we don’t find out who it is. The surviving prisoners at this point are Morse, Dillon, William, Gregor and Jude. Jude is currently being chased by the Alien, so it’s not him. Dillon is around the piston chamber, while neither Morse, Gregor or William was ever carrying a torch. David throws his at the Alien before he is killed so it’s not him. In fact the only person it could possibly be (all assumptions aside) is Troy – who was still carrying his torch when the Alien got him. But on to Jude, who is now running for his life, with the Alien just behind him. Dillon waits in the piston chamber, urging Jude on. Jude tries to close doors behind him, but the Alien is either too fast or the doors don’t operate properly (as Morse’s did prior to the start of the chase). Just a few feet from his goal, the Alien dives down from the ceiling and snaps up Jude. His legs flail into through the door into the piston chamber, and the door closes, shutting Jude behind it Fig 3-20a. Judging from the way Jude’s legs swing through the door and the huge amount of blood that sprays over the closing door and walls, it’s likely the Alien severed Jude’s carotid artery, or indeed tore his whole head off Fig 3-20b. Alternatively, we‘ve seen how long the inner jaw can be – perhaps it impaled Jude straight through the chest and heart? Contact #3-21 Gregor – Prisoner; Morse, Robert – Prisoner; Ripley, E.L.; Dillon, L. Location: Unnamed channel, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien As the Weyland Yutani bioweapons personnel enter the facility, and Ripley’s embryo rapidly approaches birth, both Gregor and Morse continue with the plan to trap the Alien. Running down intersecting channels, the smash straight into each other. No one is hurt, but both are initially scared stupid, then relieved. They joke around briefly, unbeknownst that the Alien is nearby. Gregor slowly gets to his feet, using the wall to help support him, when the Alien attacks like a freight train. Gregor is slashed across the throat by the Alien and slowly sinks back to the ground Fig 3-21a. It’s very difficult to tell what exactly slashes Gregor, but best guess based on slow motion playback is the Alien’s tail. Morse is sprayed with blood and starts to crawl away as the Alien starts chewing on Gregor’s body. Like Kevin the Alien has again gone for the throat, but unlike Kevin, Gregor seems to be killed outright and not mauled and chewed while still alive. There does not seem to be any pattern, nor rhyme, nor reason for the Alien’s attacks. In this way it is similar to the Alien on the Nostromo. That creature killed Brett and dragged him away, same as Clemens. It also dragged Dallas away, presumably to be eaten later. This is similar to Andrews, though there’s a better than even chance Andrews died a lot sooner than Dallas. The Aliens on Acheron captured Dietrich, Apone and Newt that we know of, yet it’s highly likely they killed Burke on sight. The Aliens on Acheron also had a hive and Queen. Eggs were plentiful, and hosts were required. There was no Queen on the Nostromo, nor were there eggs. On Fiorina, we know there is a Queen coming, so is the Alien removing threats? Or making a stockpile of food for the Queen? The Alien never really takes time to devour it’s prey. It’s almost as if it takes just enough sustenance before moving on to the next victim. Perhaps, if it had the time (say after everyone was dead) it WOULD in fact devour the bodies. And perhaps what is happening on Fiorina is exactly what went at Hadley’s Hope before that particular Queen was born. Once the Queen was born, victims were collected to be hosts, rather than for food. Ripley comments that the Alien will nest “near the zebras” – meaning near the main living quarters of the prisoners. And although Ripley knows exactly where to find the Alien (see Contact #3-9), we don’t see any evidence of a nest. Maybe it was waiting for the Queen’s birth, and defer to the matriarchs decision on nest location. If the hive on Acheron is anything to go by, a Fiorina nest would be located somewhere around the furnace. The Alien seems content to let Morse crawl away at this point as it tucks into Gregor. Morse then comes across Ripley, blocking his way. Ripley tells him to move and starts goading the Alien to leave the body and come after her. She has to actually start hitting it with her torch for it to take any notice of her. Morse goes on ahead of Ripley and ducks down a side corridor. Ripley’s torch burns out so she tries to grab the Alien’s flailing tail in some sort of effort to get it back to the piston chamber Fig 3-21b. Dillon appears and thinking Ripley has gone crazy, tries to drag her out of harms way. As soon as Dillon grabs Ripley, the Alien immediately reacts, baring it’s teeth and hissing. The Alien is fearful that Dillon will hurt Ripley and therefore the Queen, and Dillon and Ripley use this. Dillon holds Ripley in such a position to make the Alien think he means her harm. It follows at a safe distance, crawling onto the ceiling again, and into the piston chamber. Morse follows the Alien. Contact #3-21 Continued at Location: Piston chamber/ lead mold, Leadworks, Fiorina 161 Work Correctional Facility Date: August 11 2179 Contact with: Adult Alien In the piston chamber, the Alien looks from the advancing piston to Ripley and Dillon. Behind it, Morse stands in awe of the beast, and we get another good look at just how big it is Fig 3-21c. Ripley and Dillon scream at Morse to close the door and trap it in the chamber with them, but he seems transfixed by the Alien. It’s only when it turns to him and makes back for the door that he snaps out of it and hits the button to shut the door. The piston slams shut behind the Alien and now the only way out is up. Ripley tells Dillon she’s staying in the mold when Morse dumps it, but Dillon reminds her of their deal – “it dies first; then you.” The two of them start climbing up the side of the mold, and at the other end the Alien mirrors their movements. Dillon elects to stay behind, telling Ripley he has to hold it there and to pour the lead. Dillon removes his glasses and stands defiantly against the creature. It attacks, and yet Dillon still defies it, varying between shouting at Ripley to pour the lead and taunts at the creature, asking if “that’s the best [it] can do?” Dillon’s screams finally cease the second Morse locks the overhead gantry into place and pours the lead. The creature is submerged under ten tonnes of the molten lead. To Contact #3-22

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