Aliens: 45 Seconds is a comic book short story that was first published by Dark Horse Comics in Aliens: Special in June 1997. Published in black and white, the story was written by Darko Macan, illustrated by Frank Teran, and edited by Philip Amara and Scott Allie.

Publisher's Summary[]

Grendel Tales and X-wing Rogue Squadron writer Darko Macan and Punisher and X-Men artist Frank Teran tell the tale of a Colonial Marine sent to clean out an infestation. He's got a job to do, a pulse bomb with a 45-second detonator, and the clock's ticking.



Inside a facility, an unnamed Marine finds himself the sole survivor of a disastrous operation involving a Xenomorph outbreak. After setting a bomb to detonate in 45 seconds inside a Hive, he attempts to flee, before coming face to face with a Queen. Their skirmish is promptly interrupted by the bomb exploding, ending in the Marine being drenched by acid blood.

Suddenly, the Marine awakens inside the hanger of his dropship, the prior events merely a nightmare moments before his actual combat drop on the facility.

Reprint History[]

Dark Horse Comics[]

Aliens: 45 Seconds was eventually collected as part of Aliens Omnibus: Volume 6 in December 2008.

The comic was released digitally through Dark Horse Digital on August 14, 2013, collected with Aliens: Border Lines, Aliens: Elder Gods and Aliens: Once in a Lifetime and reusing John Bolton's cover art for the novel Aliens: Labyrinth.

Marvel Comics[]

Following Marvel Comics' acquisition of the rights to Alien comic books, the comic was collected as part of Marvel's Aliens: The Original Years Volume 3 collection, alongside many other later Dark Horse stories. The collection was released on November 22, 2022.

Behind the Scenes[]

45 Seconds is notably one of seven black and white Aliens comics from Dark Horse that have never been reprinted in color, the others being Aliens: Countdown, Aliens: Headhunters, Aliens: Border Lines, Aliens: Elder Gods, Aliens: Tourist Season and Aliens: Once in a Lifetime.

Critically acclaimed Croatian writer Darko Macan wrote a number of Aliens stories for Dark Horse and also wrote several Star Wars comics for Dark Horse, including the miniseries Star Wars: Chewbacca, Star Wars: Jedi vs. Sith and Star Wars: X-Wing Rogue Squadron - The Phantom Affair.