Alien Resurrection introduced a new kind of Alien. It wasn’t just another animal hybrid, this time it was the result of Alien and human DNA contamination. Like Ripley 8, the Queen that was removed from within her had the same genetic crossovers. Due to the blending of Alien and human DNA within her, the Queen developed a second breeding cycle. She soon grew an external womb and from within it, the Newborn was given life.
Over three metres tall, a good metre taller than most adult Aliens, the Newborn is unlike any other Alien ever seen. Due to the combination of human and alien, its appearance is a cross between the two. Outwardly it has more features in common with a human than an alien such as eyes, a nose and a tongue. Unlike the adult aliens seen in other films – and even in Alien Resurrection – it has white/yellow skin rather than the common black and the mutation brown colour. The creature also appears to be somewhat stronger than the normal aliens – it was capable of knocking the Queen’s face off without much trouble.
Increased strength wasn’t the only trait that the Newborn inherited from the alien creatures. It also had acidic blood, like Ripley 8 too, but it is unknown just how acidic the Newborn’s is. The Newborn itself is rather unpredictable. While it killed the Alien Queen, it also killed Distephano. It showed no allegiance to either species, only to Ripley 8 which it believed to be its mother. Unlike the aliens, the Newborn showed emotions. It often looked sad at times, while visibly angry too.
It would seem that the Newborn also inherited certain human traits through the Alien genetic memory. The Newborn appeared to be able to understand Ripley 8 when she was talking to it. The Newborn also seemed to lack the method of communication that the Aliens – and Ripley 8 to a degree – utilized. Whether it be some form of telepathy or not, Ripley 8 couldn’t sense the Newborn aboard the Betty and the Queen wasn’t able to know what its intentions were when the creature was born.
It is very likely that the Newborn we saw was only its first stage of growth – similar to the Chestburster. As seen, the Newborn has a paler skin to that of the other aliens, but Chestbursters also have a different skin colour. It is very likely that the Newborn may have grown in size and molted to look more like the aliens.
Movies – Alien Resurrection (1997)
Writer, Joss Whedon was given almost full creative control while writing Alien Resurrection, apart from to bring Ripley back somehow, he had no other guidelines. In his very first draft he included the idea of a Newborn. However, unlike the final version of the Newborn, in the first draft it wasn’t a Human-Alien hybrid. It was a spider-like creature with pincers and no eyes:
“Something emerges from the wound. An alien, to be sure, but nothing we’ve seen so far, its forelegs arch out of its back like spiders legs, its back legs set on enormous haunches, thick and powerful. Its head is long, eyeless, like the others, but along its white expanse red veins, coming out of the skin and running like thick black hairs to the back. It has retracted pincers at the side of head that come out when its tongue does. Its much bigger the the others, nearly the size of the queen herself. And it’s bone white.”
The final design for the Newborn was inspired by a piece of artwork Chris Halls had drawn of an alien creature. Woodruff and Gillis then tried to mould Hall’s design with the features that director, Jean-Pierre Jeunet wanted in the Newborn. Things such as eyes and a more human inspired form. Something else that Jean-Pierre was adamant about was that the Newborn had some form of genitals. After a while, Jean-Pierre changed his mind, citing “even for a Frenchman it was too much.” The genitals were digitally removed from the film.
The Movie – Alien Resurrection
The Newborn was introduced late into the film when Ripley 8 was captured by the aliens and taken to the Queen’s hive. There, she witnessed the birth of the Newborn. After being born for barely a minute, the Newborn turned on its true mother, the Queen and killed her. Soon, the Newborn crossed over to Ripley 8 who it believed to be its mother.
A distraction from Gediman provided Ripley 8 with the chance to escape. As the Newborn killed Gediman, Ripley 8 climbed up and escaped. Ripley 8 managed to get onto the Betty before it launched, but so did the Newborn. When Call went to close the cargo bay doors so the ship could enter space, she discovered the Newborn which closed the doors. When the ship started to move, Call managed to escape and hid.
Distephano was sent to turn on the auxiliary pump to help the Betty stabilize as it entered Earth’s atmosphere. Angered by the interruption, the Newborn crushed Distephano’s head. When neither Call or Distephano returned to the cockpit, Ripley 8 went down there. Ripley 8 ordered the Newborn to let go of Call, which it does and the two begin to caress each other.
Ripley 8 intentionally cuts her hand on the Newborn and uses her acid blood to melt a hole through the window of the cargo bay doors. As the Betty heads towards the Earth, the Newborn is sucked through the hole and endures a painful death.