Aliens: Dead Orbit #1

by Forrest.H on April 26, 2017

Writer: James Stokoe
Artist: James Stokoe
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
A gritty, claustrophobic and relatively isolated issue serves as a wonderfully dark introduction to Stokoe’s Aliens run.

Akin to the mind-numbingly cool, detailed, efforts of Geof Darrow (who has a variant cover here, imagine that), Stokoe’s artistic endeavors here speak entirely for themselves. They speak well. Dark, layered and fully realized – in keeping with the Aliens aesthetic but with Stokoe’s own, Manga-like, twist – the issue’s art is its main drawing point. The lettering could use some work as I had to re-read entire pages, lost in the scribbly off-weight nature of the speech but things elsewhere are so stellar that it’s a minor, still noticeable, concession.

The narrative then, is secondary, but still fraught with tension and palatable. I think it ends up falling more in line with the original Alien in terms of aesthetic, pacing and tone but it fits equally well with the Aliens world, too. There is a good, forward progression, a sense of unease through burnt, awakened corpses and the like, that when finally delivered on by the issue’s end is obvious but satisfyingly horrible – as an Aliens comic should be.

This is a solid, tense issue penned and realized by an incredibly talented artist. I recommend fans of the property check it out as soon as possible, Alien Day being as good a reason as any. 

Our Score:


A Look Inside