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William Gibson's Alien 3

(William Gibson's Alien 3 #1-5)

3.12  ·  Rating details ·  334 ratings  ·  64 reviews
This is the official adaptation of the original screenplay for Alien 3, written by William Gibson, the award-winning science fiction author of the cyberpunk cult classic Neuromancer. You'll see familiar characters and places—but not all is the same in this horrifying Cold War thriller!

After the deadly events of the film Aliens, the spaceship Sulaco carrying the sleeping bo
Hardcover, 136 pages
Published August 6th 2019 by Dark Horse Books
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3.12  · 
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 ·  334 ratings  ·  64 reviews

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Lashaan Balasingam (Bookidote)

You can find my review on my blog by clicking here.

Following the incredible success of both the original Alien (1979) movie directed by Ridley Scott and its sequel Aliens (1986) directed by James Cameron, it was only a matter of time before another project was set loose at the box office to further explore the horrifying world filled with xenomorphs. Unfortunately, the third installment knew more problems than mankind could ever deal with, as issues during production arose from left and right, s
May 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
Good call on not picking this up for the third movie, its not a bad horror story, but its certainly not Alien material. There's some major flaws here, some that could even ruin the franchise in the process, for one there's the new Alien transformation, which makes absolutely no sense, its like Gibson didn't even watched the previous movies, the red-eyed Alien was totally random, and not using Ripley for the entirety of the story, goddamn... she's the main hero of the original series dude, you do ...more
Mar 31, 2019 rated it did not like it
Why is it that whenever a new chapter in the Alien saga is to be written there’s a need to change the creatures? The first movie portrayed a horrifying monster never seen before. In the second movie they suddenly had a queen. In the third the face huggers could infect more than one host, in the fourth they were cloned and we got a hybrid as well. And don’t get me started on the Aliens vs. Predator mess or *shudder* the Prometheus films.
We get the same crap here. Suddenly the Aliens can infect hu
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
The story was a bit confusing and the characters had a few solutions that were a little too convenient. Still, I found this to be a lot of fun. I liked seeing Bishop and Hicks more, kinda wish this was the script used for Alien 3.
May 27, 2019 rated it liked it
I was hoping for the sequel that Aliens really deserved and there are moments in this, but it is still kind of a mess. Gibson says in an introduction that it was his first attempt at a screenplay and "work for hire," and he does a pretty good job, but there are some weird things here that just don't fit with the earlier iterations of the story (such as the alien lifecycle, which is quite a bit different this time out). Also, it's quite strange that Ripley is not really present at all, other than ...more
Gavin Waskett
William Gibson’s Alien 3

Okay so this isn’t the Hardback Collection, as that isn’t due out till August but the five individual comics that I’ve saved up to read in one go.

Now, I’m a self-confessed Alien fan, Aliens is probably my favourite movie of all time and I’ve been waiting for this graphic version since it was announced and waiting for William Gibson’s Alien 3 for even longer. Though I would’ve preferred to see his first draft brought to life which was much more like Aliens than Alien.

Apr 03, 2019 rated it it was ok
To be honest, just the story itself that Gibson came up with is pretty unremarkable, a pretty dry continuation of Aliens but with fewer characters, and an additional political angle. What's surprising is how it actually docks Ripley for 95% of the action. No wonder it wasn't used. Fincher's story was more interesting, even if it was considered mega-dark just for doing away with Newt. But even the adaptation is lacking in places. For one thing some of the characters look too much alike, even in t ...more
Joshua Shioshita
So a few things - I'm a big fan of William Gibson, Neuromancer is one of my favorite books and I love the Alien franchise (give or take a few movies in there). I'm in the minority, but I also like the Alien 3 we got in theaters. I understand people's gripes with it, I miss Hicks and Newt too, but I watched the crap out of it in the 90s on a banged up VHS when my parents weren't looking and it holds a strange place in my heart. That being said, I always wanted to know what William Gibson's script ...more
Aug 05, 2019 rated it it was ok
Pretty dissapointing Aliens story. No Ripley slow plotting and weird aliens that aren't the aliens. Kinda see why this wasnt made into a film
Jake Hahn
Jun 10, 2019 rated it did not like it
This was one of June's free Audible Originals. It is trash just like every other free Audible Original I have ever listened to. Complete waste of time.
Ross Coulbeck
Jun 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dan Choquette
Aug 11, 2019 rated it it was ok
I still remember when I heard that William Gibson was writing the sequel to Aliens. It was the early 90's and I was still high on having finished the awesomeness that was Neuromancer and Count Zero (and Snow Crash, but that is a different author.) Could he bring the same kind of edgy cool that he brought to the cyberpunk genre? Alas, it was not to be, as Alien 3 as filmed went in a different direction. But this book gives us a chance to see what if...
The story begins much like the Alien 3 we kn
Jun 04, 2019 rated it liked it
So this is the graphic novel version of one of the more infamous scripts of Alien 3 that hit the cutting room floor as there was something like 4-6 scripts that it went through in its very troubled production. So first of all, I liked this overall more than the movie that Alien 3 became. I feel that the movie Alien 3 is nothing more than a terrible rehash of the first movie and the killing off of Newt and Hicks is awful (this movie is 27 years old so I'm not spoiling anything at this point, if y ...more
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
It was nice to get a chance to see what Gibson's screenplay might have played out as but having read this it's obvious to me why it wasn't made. First off, Ripley is only technically in it and does nothing, Newt gets shipped off to Earth quickly and we're left with Hicks, who, without Michael Biehn's charisma and performance here is just a generic marine. Bishop is the only one who actually has character. The story starts off very promising and then goes the way of Alien Resurrection. Not to men ...more
George Goodall
Jul 16, 2019 rated it liked it
NOTE -- this review refers to the Audible production of Alien 3 rather than the graphic novel.

William Gibson does Aliens. What's not to like?

This story comes from a half-forgotten screenplay that William Gibson put together as a potential sequel to Aliens. The story picks up immediately from the end of the movie and we see the familiar characters: Ripley, Newt, Bishop, etc.

The Sulaco is limping its way home but is redirected to a research station by nefarious elements within Weyland-Yutani. The
Joey Nardinelli
Aug 07, 2019 rated it liked it
Well this was kind of a bummer. The foreword by Gibson promises an original treatment for Alien 3 that espouses real love for the franchise but I feel like this narrative, as it ended up coming together in this comic, was actually a lot of retread territory already written out in the Alien EU. Some of the stuff with recombinant DNA felt similar to what we’ve seen in Scott’s last two films entries, for better or worse (it actually seems better explained in this graphic novel). I really wish the d ...more
Aug 09, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jun 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: sci-fi, 2019, audio, audible
I love the Alien universe. I have been hooked ever since the first movie. This was a much-needed glimpse into the events that occurred after Ripley and the other survivors left Hadleys Hope in the Sulaco. We get to see the fate of Newt, Hicks, and Bishop. Could this have been the 3rd movie in the series as is? No, even though the audioplay is around 3 hours, I don't think there is enough depth to make it as a feature movie. I needed to know what happened here, and it definitely tells a great sto ...more
Aug 12, 2019 rated it did not like it
As many Alien fans know, there was a script for Alien 3 that was abandoned and we got the Alien 3 we have now.

This is that script, as written by William Gibson. Well, this is an adapted version of that script. Personally, I wasn't as enraged as others about Alien 3. There were things I wished differently, like not immediately killing off Newt and Hicks.

So I was curious, what was the script that could have been Alien 3. I was excited to check it out!

Unfortunately for me, I see why it wasn't adopt
Laura Ruetz
Aug 20, 2019 rated it liked it
I was so excited for this. Neuromancer by William Gibson is one of my favorite books, it is dark, gritty and utterly riveting. So, a graphic novel treatment of the Aliens 3 script that never saw the big screen, written by William Gibson, yes please!

In his forward, he clearly says he had not written a screenplay before, but was excited as he is a fan of the movies. While this has some cool elements, such as a new type of xenomorph (not going to give it away because spoilers suck) but the story i
Joel Jenkins
Jun 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
This Aliens follow-up written by cyberpunk godfather William Gibson focuses more on Bishop, Hicks and Newt (to some degree) and leaves Ripley out of most of the story. It introduces some nice political twists with a rival to the Corporations (Capitalism run amuck) in a Totalitarian Communist-style government that runs another sector of space. Both are vying to control the ultimate weapon (the aliens) and find out that there is no way to control them.

It's done in the style of a radio drama, but o
Doug Gillan
Jul 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
The Universe A Alien 3, David Fincher's first feature film with story by Vincent Ward and screenplay by Walter Hill and two others, was OK, but not Fincher's best movie. William Gibson's Alien 3 exists in Universe B and as a screenplay and audiobook. In the audiobook, Lance Henriksen and Michael Biehn reprise their roles as Bishop, the synth, and Hicks, the Marine grunt, respectively. I found it to be an interesting sequel and wish that we could have seen the movie. The plot follows more directl ...more
Aug 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
Too bad this didn't make it to the big screen (or even the little screen), or maybe turn up as a full-blown novel; having said that, this format is definitely better than nothing. I won't spoil anything here, but I will say that I really enjoyed the story. Please do read the forward by Gibson - after finishing the graphic novel, I definitely share his opinion on the guidance he was given as to the major story arc, but I like what he did with what he was tasked with. I loved the art in this book, ...more
Aug 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommended to jim by: no one
Perhaps because it's the first Alien-related anything I knew about, I never hated Alien 3. That said, this still seems like it would have been the better film. Certainly a more satisfying conclusion for everyone else who survived Aliens. As it is, it's a pretty good comic, although I'm still more interested in getting back to Brian Wood's take in the current books. I think we can all be done with Ripley at this point, right?
Aug 20, 2019 rated it liked it
Overly plotty and too full of cannon fodder characters. I found the art a little sloppy, in that I had a hard time distinguishing the faces, and I often found the location geography confusing. Still, a fascinating and worthwhile read for an Alien 3 superfan such as myself. If this movie had been made it would not have been any more popular than the one we got, and potentially even less so, if for no other reason than the complete disregard for Ripley as a functional character. The choice to focu ...more
Apr 09, 2019 rated it liked it
This was a little hard to follow. I found myself rereading things to understand what exactly what happening where. (A failing of the art to distinguish characters and environments.) I don't love the direction this would have evolved the xenomorphs, but I like the way it follows up with Weyland Yutani as the real villain of the Alien universe. The uneven story is more interesting than any of the films released after Aliens though. It just needed more pages to be more than some discordant plot pie ...more
Aug 14, 2019 rated it did not like it
I usually enjoy all Alien comics and was very excited to read the original intention (or any cohesive story!) for the third installment. This had some interesting visuals but I wasn’t able to follow this narrative at all. None of the characters motives or allegiances/politics were very clear, even those of the corporation. I couldn’t even get invested in the action sequences because the blocking of them was not established and therefore wasn’t grounded- making it impossible to tell what was happ ...more
Bonnie Jennings
Jun 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
I liked this much better than the prison planet. If you've seen Prometheus and Covenant this makes much more sense. The mutagen (the black substance) the crew comes into contact with changes in various ways depending on the host. It is airborne on the engineers home planet and infects them easily. Why couldn't it mutate the crew?
I did miss Ripley in this version and it seemed too short, like it was unfinished. How does it fit into alien 4? Where does Ripley end up?

Richard Brooks
Aug 16, 2019 rated it liked it
I live the alien films and alien 3 is one of my favorites so this what if was definitely on my list to read. William Gibson is a great writer whose tech prose and prophetic futurist visions are engaging.
So it was disappointing to see none of that in this book which was a run of the mill monsters in space story. I liked the body horror elements of it and the Cold War In idea was fun but the rest was purely garbage. I can see why they didn’t use his script.
Apr 29, 2019 rated it liked it
Good story, Chekhov would be proud, but I think I'd prefer to have read it in the original movie script format. This comic suffers from some characters that are hard to differentiate, changes of scene that are confusing, and a disappointing lack of slower pacing and atmosphere in the form of full page spreads for example.

Would have been a good movie I reckon, although I can certainly understand why it wasn't chosen.
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the Goodreads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

William Ford Gibson is an American-Canadian writer who has been called the father of the cyberpunk subgenre of science fiction, having coined the term cyberspace in 1982 and popularized it in his first novel, Neuromancer(1984), which has sold more than 6.5 million copies wor

Other books in the series

William Gibson's Alien 3 (5 books)
  • William Gibson's Alien 3 #1
  • William Gibson's Alien 3 #2
  • William Gibson's Alien 3 #3
  • William Gibson's Alien 3 #4
  • William Gibson's Alien 3 #5