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Alien, The Illustrated Story, by Archie Goodwin Book Review | SFReader.com
Alien, The Illustrated Story, by Archie Goodwin Genre: Horror Publisher: Titan Books Published: 2012 Review Posted: 8/25/2013 Reviewer Rating:
Reader Rating: 1 out of 10
Alien, The Illustrated Story, by Archie Goodwin
Book Review by Michael D. Griffiths
Have you read this book?
Alien, the Illustrated Story is quite an epic undertaking. It is even
more impressive that it occurred 33 years ago. I am a big fan of the
movie Alien and might be one of the few people reading this that
actually saw it in the theater. It is a movie that has more than stood
the test of time. The effects are just as powerful now as they were then
and the gritty, dirty feel to the ship will always counter play the
polished spacecraft fair of Star Wars and Star Trek. In my opinion,
Alien will strike closer to the reality, but that still remains to be
I am going to assume that anyone reading this knows the plot line to the
classic horror block buster Alien and will not insult your intelligence
by reviewing the tale. If you have somehow ended up reading this review
without seeing the movie, stop right now--jump on your bike, hoof it, or
drive right away to the nearest place that sells movies and buy it at
once. Seriously, you have to.
Okay, are we all on the same page now? Good.
So let's compare the comic to the movie. First off, the comic does take
some creative liberties, but in a good way in this case. I have been
reading comics for over 40 years and I have to say that I prefer story
boards that stay on task and do not get too loose. The creators pull
their craft off nicely here. Yes they keep the plot line tight, but also
allow themselves to 'bust out' when needed and take some artistic
I actually own a picture book that reenacts the entire Alien movie in
still shots. (Something that people enjoyed owning before home movies
existed) It is slightly amusing to read this graphic novel version and
the 'real deal' at the same time. It is interesting to see what frames
were focused on to make the tale come to life and obviously many of them
What else can I say? The artwork is great. They outline the story well.
It has a great feel. In space no one can hear you scream, baby.
If I had to point out a downside, I might include that there some
narration that borders on internal dialog, which we certainly do not get
in the movie. Sure, this is common fair for both comics and fiction in
general, but it does dip a bit into the, "Show Me, Don't Tell Me,"
aspect of story telling. It is a risk for the authors to even go there,
so hats off for trying, but still, I think it is mildly leading where
the screen play was not.
So, do you love Alien? I know I do. For me, it was a life changing
movie. Sure, I was already screwed up Horror nut, but this movie helped
push me over the edge. (An edge that was most likely miles behind me
already) I enjoy seeing the movie honored as it is deserved to be.
Archie Goodwin and Walter Simonson did so in 79 and Titan Books has now
done it again. I think Alien has become such an icon that it has been
swamped by its sequels and other fanfare. But back when movies were as
good as it got, Alien was as good as it got, and over thirty years
later, rare is the production that can even come close to touching the
feel that this film gave you. The comic adaptation is not only a classic
itself, but a must for any real horror fan that enjoys comics. It made
my week when I got this graphic novel in the mail and I am proud to add
it to my collection.
Click here to buy Alien, The Illustrated Story, by Archie Goodwin on Amazon