As Marvel’s very first original Alien series – after parent company Disney picked up the rights to the franchise in their Fox deal – the comic had a lot to live up to; especially since the previous license holders, Dark Horse, had done an awful lot of great work with the property since the late 80s.

And yet it can’t help but feel like a bit of a disappointment so far. The first issue showed a lot of promise, with a strong anti-corporate slant and a look at the freedom fighters taking on the all-powerful Weyland-Yutani, albeit using their own highly questionable methods to do so. The series rapidly moved on and took us back into far more familiar territory, however, with a few too many callbacks to Aliens and action that hewer far too close to James Cameron’s seminal 1986 Alien sequel too.

Yet there’s no denying that there’s still entertainment to be wrung from a premise of that nature, done right. And issue 4 – after a third issue that felt as if it was just treading water – gets us mostly back on track, with the stakes raised and the situation escalating on a more personal level for our main characters.

The art seems to be getting even more inconsistent, however, with the stiff and obviously photo-referenced art now joined by some very amateurish, perhaps rushed looking pencils – and even the cover feels a bit off in terms of its human likenesses, as well as a very chonky xenomorph).

Still, it does feel as if we’re almost back on track here – even if the promise of the intriguing first issue still hasn’t quite been fulfilled, by the end of the fourth chapter I was at least looking forward to the fifth.

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