Alien3 is a three-issue comic book adaptation of the film of the same name that was first published by Dark Horse Comics from June-July 1992. It was written by Steven Grant, based on the original screenplay by David Giler and Walter Hill, and was pencilled by Christopher Taylor, inked by Rick Magyar, colored by Matt Webb, lettered by Jim Massara and Clem Robins, and edited by Barbara Kesel, with cover art by Arthur Suydam.

In Dark Horse's Aliens comics line, Alien3 was preceded by Aliens: Harvest and Alien3: Alone, published concurrently with the movie adaptation Aliens: Newt's Tale, and was followed by Aliens: Renegade.

Publisher's Summary[]

#1: Ripley, probably the most practiced Alien-fighter in known space, finds herself up against the beast one more time in this adaptation of the most eagerly awaited film of the summer!

#2: What's the only thing worse than having to face an alien? Doing it AGAIN! And now Ripley's up against them for the third time.

#3: Ripley finds that the most horrifying thing about fighting Aliens may actually be the battle within.

Differences from the Film[]

Unlike the novelization of Alien3, which generally follows the plot of the extended Special Edition of the film, the comic adaptation exists somewhere between the extended alternate cut and the theatrical version of the movie, including some (but not all) of the additional scenes from the former whilst also containing certain plot points only found in the latter. On top of this, it also has some exclusive scenes that did not make it into either cut of the film or the novel.

  • The comic has a cold opening, starting with the EEV entering Fiorina 161's atmosphere. The reader does not find out what happened on board the Sulaco or why it was necessary to evacuate the ship until Ripley reactivates Bishop later in the story.
  • The Queen Chestburster is first implanted into Newt in the comic, not Ripley. However, when Newt begins to drown following the EEV crash, the infant Chestburster emerges from her mouth and enters Ripley's body. This sequence was planned for the film but never made it into either cut.
  • The Dragon gestates inside a dog in the comic, as in the theatrical release, although the dog is called Sparky, not Spike.
  • Before Andrews informs the inmates of the EEV crash, Dillon leads them in prayer. This scene is included in the novelization and was later added to the Special Edition.
  • The comic is never clear on where the Facehugger that attacks the dog comes from. Although it is assumed to have come down in the EEV, it is never seen, with the aftermath of its assault — the wounds on Sparky's face — being the only clue as to its existence.
  • Instead of maintaining the blast furnace, Clemens tells Ripley the inmates are on Fiorina to monitor the toxic waste dumped there, and manufacture lead shielding to keep any leaks contained. This take on events was filmed, but changed in the finished movie.
  • Clemens asks Ripley if Newt was her daughter before the autopsy, but she says no. This line is included in the novelization and was later added to the Special Edition.
  • After the funeral, Ripley discovers lice in her hair. This scene was filmed but not used. It is, however, featured in the novel.
  • Before Ripley walks in on the prisoners at breakfast, Dillon listens to Boggs and Rains complain about Golic. This scene is included in the novelization and was later added to the Special Edition.
  • Boggs is white in the comic, as are Arthur and almost all of the other inmates. This change was probably made to make it easier for readers to identify Dillon, as the comic does not use the actors' likenesses.
  • Murphy is cleaning a room when he is attacked, not a vent shaft, and he sings "Paint It Black" by the Rolling Stones. This was originally what he sang in the film, but it was changed before release, likely for rights reasons. In the comic, he is not completely diced by the fan but merely decapitated.
  • The scene where Clemens meets with Andrews in his office is longer, containing some of the added dialogue from the Special Edition version, but not all of it, whilst also including several lines at the end that appear in neither version of the film. In the additional dialogue, Andrews reminds Clemens that his loyalty is to the company and asks him to keep a close eye on Ripley. This additional dialogue is also in the novelization.
  • Bishop's body is completely decapitated following the crash, and Ripley sets him up on a table much like Ash in Alien. This is also the case in the novelization.
  • When talking to Ripley, Bishop additionally mentions that the Alien came with them "in the little girl".
  • When Clemens is tending to Ripley after she has been confined to the infirmary by Andrews, the restrained Golic tells her about his youth. This extended scene was added to the Special Edition.
  • Instead of killing him with a Headbite, the Dragon decapitates Clemens with its tail.
  • As it flees from the infirmary, Golic asks the Dragon to release him so he can help it, but it ignores him. This added dialogue is in the novelization.
  • Following the death of Andrews, Dillon leads the prisoners in prayer, welcoming the Dragon as divine judgement. However, off to one side, several inmates disagree with his outlook on the situation. This scene appears in the novelization and was later added to the Special Edition.
  • Before we see the inmates painting the quinitricetyline inside the vents, Arthur and Troy are shown checking a huge pile of batteries to find ones that work. This scene features in the novelization (although the prisoners are said to be checking light bulbs instead of batteries) and was later included in the Special Edition.
  • While painting the quinitricetyline inside the vents, Kevin complains about the smell. This added dialogue is also in the novelization and was later added to the Special Edition.
  • During the explosion and fire, the Dragon emerges and begins actively killing prisoners amidst the flames. This is included in the novel.
  • Despite the premature explosion, the plan to capture the Xenomorph in the nuclear waste tank succeeds. This was perhaps the most drastic change added to the Special Edition of the film, and also occurs in the novelization.
  • After the fire, Morse has a bandage around his head, likely to make him easier to identify.
  • Ripley has her scan inside the EEV far earlier in the comic, immediately after the fire. While the scan scene takes place here in the theatrical cut, it occurs considerably later in the Special Edition, after several other scenes have taken place; while many of these additional scenes also appear in the comic, they take place after the scan, unlike in the film.
  • The embryo is gestating inside Ripley's throat in the comic, not her abdomen.
  • After the scan, Ripley and Aaron contact Weyland-Yutani asking for permission to destroy the Xenomorph, but they deny permission. This scene is in the Special Edition of the film, but is extended at the start in the comic to include Aaron sending a message informing the company of the deaths of Andrews, Clemens and the inmates in the fire. The longer version also appears in the novelization.
  • As Golic's story about a creature killing the other inmates has been proven true, Morse releases him from his restraints. However, Golic them knocks him out and goes to where the Dragon is trapped, turning it loose once more at the cost of his life. This sequence is also in the novelization and was later added to the Special Edition.
  • Ripley goes to see Dillon in his cell, asking him to help kill the Xenomorph, realizing that it could spell disaster for the human race if Weyland-Yutani get their hands on it, but he does not care. Morse than arrives, informing them of what Golic has done. This scene is also in the novelization and was added to the Special Edition.
  • While arguing outside the now empty nuclear waste tank, Aaron actually punches Morse for his abrasive attitude. This also happens in the novelization.
  • Following the argument outside the waste tank, Ripley sneaks off to inform Weyland-Yutani that the entire prison has gone toxic, hoping to stop them coming to recover the Xenomorph. While this scene is in the film, it occurs later, and Ripley instead sneaks off to scan herself in the EEV at this point.
  • During the first round of chasing in the foundry, the plan quickly goes awry and the prisoners begin to make things up as they go. This also happens in the novelization and is added to the Special Edition.
  • The piston is not started early in the comic, but the Dragon still manages to escape, getting behind the piston head and leading to more chasing. This is what happens in the novel.
  • Jude actually makes it to the piston chamber when he is being chased down by the Dragon, before being pulled back through the door. In the film, he is gorily killed before he makes it. This version of events is also used in the novelization.
  • The Dragon kills Gregor by tearing his arm off, rather than giving him a Headbite. Immediately following the attack, Morse begs and prays for his life as he cowers in the corner.
  • Dillon successfully escapes the lead mold before the metal is poured, and with the Dragon seemingly dead Ripley asks him to kill her, as he had promised. He prepares to strangle her but finds he is unable to do it, and at that moment the Dragon re-emerges and drags him back into the molten lead. This is how Dillon dies in the novel.
  • When Ripley douses the Dragon in water, causing it to explode, the deluge also causes a thermal explosion in the mold, starting a raging fire. This also happens in the novelization.
  • The Chestburster bursts from Ripley before she can throw herself to her death, and she catches it and breaks its neck before it can fully emerge from her body. She then falls backwards into the furnace.

Reprint History[]

Dark Horse International[]

Alien3 was reprinted in the United Kingdom in 3 parts in Alien3 Movie Special #1-3, from August-September 1992.

Marvel Comics[]

Following Marvel Comics' acquisition of the rights to Alien comic books, the series was collected as part of Marvel's Aliens: The Original Years Volume 1 collection, alongside many other early Dark Horse stories. This marked the first time Alien3 had ever been collected alongside other Aliens comics. The collection was released in May 2021.


Issue covers[]

See Also[]