Alien/Predator Novel Reviews

Started by Hudson, Aug 19, 2014, 04:55:43 PM

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Alien/Predator Novel Reviews (Read 50,481 times)

Xiggz456

Xiggz456

#180
"Cold War" completed. Very similar to its comic counterpart; however the first person perspective greatly enhanced the tension within the story. Some differences I noticed was Schaefer attacking a pred with a military shovel/axe here in the novel whereas he attacks the pred with his helmet in the comic. Ligachev in the comic whereas it's Ligacheva in the novel (the Russian ambassador's name differed as well). Nathan Archer still shifted scenes and perspectives mid-paragraph but maybe I was used to it so it bothered me less this time around. Fun read nonetheless and think I may prefer the novel experience more so than the comic for "Cold War".  On to "Big Game" (my favorite of the Pred comics).

TheBATMAN

TheBATMAN

#181
Quote from: Xiggz456 on Aug 26, 2018, 11:18:01 PM
Just read "Predator: Concrete Jungle" for the first time in novel form. Some differences from the comic include the Predator attacking an NYPD shooting range instead of the subway (I think this may have been to differentiate the subway scene from Predator 2 as the novel came out in '95 and the comic was out in '89). But it also added to the sense that the Predators were goading Schaefer by targeting his friends and enemies. Also in the comic Schaefer defeats the Predator in the jungle by smashing a salt shaker in its eye and pushing it off a cliff; in the book Schaefer goes to rip it's mask off, which makes the Predator re-adjust his mask allowing Schaefer to push the pred off the cliff. Also a lot more reference to Dutch (he pretty much tells Schaefer exactly what went down in Central America). As for Nathan Archer's writing... it was kind of weird. For example instead of a new spaced paragraph to start a new scene he would write "and two miles uptown so and so was doing this" and the perspective would shift to that character (in the same paragraph!). I found that jarring. But I still enjoyed this interpretation of "Concrete Jungle". Now on to "Cold War" (picked up the Predator omnibus so I'm making my way through it).

I've been meaning to revisit this beauty for years. After the lackluster 'The Predator' i'm itching now to go back to a time where these stories actually felt a part of the Pred 1/2 universe.

Another great addition I remember that I'm sure is missing from the comic is the group of Predators that come to retrieve their fallen comerade's body in the jungle and take out General Phillip's special forces team who also want it.

Xiggz456

Xiggz456

#182
Quote from: Hudson on Oct 06, 2018, 04:39:25 PM
Quote from: Xiggz456 on Aug 30, 2018, 12:02:06 AM
"Cold War" completed. Very similar to its comic counterpart; however the first person perspective greatly enhanced the tension within the story. Some differences I noticed was Schaefer attacking a pred with a military shovel/axe here in the novel whereas he attacks the pred with his helmet in the comic. Ligachev in the comic whereas it's Ligacheva in the novel (the Russian ambassador's name differed as well). Nathan Archer still shifted scenes and perspectives mid-paragraph but maybe I was used to it so it bothered me less this time around. Fun read nonetheless and think I may prefer the novel experience more so than the comic for "Cold War".  On to "Big Game" (my favorite of the Pred comics).

Have you completed Big Game yet? I really remember enjoying that comic, but seeing some reviews of the book describing it as bland. I haven't read any of those original three adaptations yet, definitely excited for Concrete Jungle as kind of a 'true' sequel to Predator.

Yes, it was written by the husband and wife writing duo known as Sandy Schofield (who also wrote Aliens: Rogue). I was a huge fan of the Rogue novelization and Big Game is probably my favorite Predator comic so I had high hopes with this one. The authors really emphasized the Navajo lore in this book (the comic only mildly touched on this) with each chapter starting with an excerpt from Nakai's twin brother (who died prior to birth) watching over Nakai from the spirit plane. So that may be where some people have trouble suspending their disbelief; however, I enjoyed this aspect and felt it helped create a more original Predator story. It really added to the feeling that Nakai's purpose/destiny was unfolding before my eyes to a point where the final sentence of the novel actually gave me goosebumps. My main complaint is that Nakai's grandfather is already dead during this novel which contradicts the second comic with Nakai "Blood on Two Witch Mesa" where his grandfather recounts an encounter with a Predator during the manifest destiny days. All in all I enjoyed this Predator novel and hope that we get another two omnibus's (omnibi?) with the Dark Horse Press novels.

HuDaFuK

HuDaFuK

#183
I was really excited for Cold War when I found out it was written by the same duo as Rogue, one of my favourite Alien books, but honestly I found the first two Predator novels so lacklustre I never got around to reading it.

I really must have a look at it one day.

Samhain13

Samhain13

#184
Cold War and Concrete Jungle bothered me with the whole "Dutch's brother knocks predators in hand-to-hand combat" thing. It should be pretty clear from PREDATOR that no matter how strong the guy is he won't stand a chance due to streng difference. I don't get why couldn't the writers just make the characters focus on guns instead.

Big Game was better than both, don't remember how the predator is taken out, but I don't think is by pushing or hitting him with his own mask, the predator in this one was more interesting.

Still none were as bad as Forever Midnight, now that one did everything, humanized predators to the point of satire, completely changed the way they were portrayed and behaved in the movies, bad characters, lots of cannon fodder predators, laughable additions to predators' biology.

razeak

razeak

#185
Yes, any human doing more than a bruise using their bare hands to a Predator seems absolutely silly. I guess Dutch's backhand had enough force to snap the Predator's head around for a second, but I doubt there was much in the way of concussive force with a head like that. I've boxed and wrestled for 20 years and it just seems unlikely in my opinion to do more than sting to something like that. Maybe it would be akin to punching a gorilla.

I'm listening to the Out of the Shadows audio drama. It's good overall. Definitely a lesson in reading dialogue aloud before you finalize it. The emotion in the voices doesn't quite live up to the severity of their situation at times like when the acid hits the viewport.


razeak

razeak

#186
I finished the Out of the Shadows audio drama. As before, good overall. The story wooooooorks, but feels a little hamfisted. I enjoyed the novel and the drama. Would fit better as an elseworlds type story imo. It just feels like it steals a little bit of the thunder of Aliens narrative wise.

I started River of Pain. Wow the dialog is jarring. Not a fan of Anne or her dialog. Yikes.

SM

SM

#187
I enjoyed RoP as a book more than OotS, but the OotS audio drama was WAY better than the RoP drama.

razeak

razeak

#188
I feel the same way so far. Still new territory for me either the audio dramas. Interesting stuff.

HuDaFuK

HuDaFuK

#189
Quote from: SM on Oct 19, 2018, 11:15:52 PMI enjoyed RoP as a book more than OotS, but the OotS audio drama was WAY better than the RoP drama.

Likewise re:the dramas, which is a little surprising because the River of Pain voice cast was bloody superb.

SM

SM

#190
I know.  Too much overacting - particularly from Salmon, who is usually pretty good.

razeak

razeak

#191
I finished the audio drama. Decent to good story. It's a bit reptitive, but the voice acting was absolutely laughable. Theybhad a scene toward the end that the actor sounded like he was intentionally mocking an American Southerners accent in a very overblown way. Much of it was way too wordy and if people spoke like that all the time, I would become a hermit.

Huggs

Huggs

#192
There's a few rough lines here and there, but I loved it. The narcissus recovery was a particular favorite scene of mine. Shadows is undoubtedly the superior, but after like 5 listens of each, I'd say it's not by much. Even it had a few wild lines, like the "vestibule" thing.

Regardless of their flaws, I hope they keep these dramas coming. This is good entertainment. Much more solid than I'd ever expected, and far closer to a good Aliens film than the new movies.

Now if only they would do a predator one.

razeak

razeak

#193
I enjoyed it. I just got pulled out too much by the issues above. I definitely hope they keep doing the dramas. I drive a lot for work travel to teach in different areas of the state so I may find myself finding more from the genre.

Xiggz456

Xiggz456

#194
Finally picked up and read Vol 5 of Titan's omnibus which includes the first two Dark Horse Press releases Original Sin and DNA War. I missed out on the DH Press novels when they were first released so I was pretty excited to read these.

First up, "Original Sin" a sequel to "Resurrection" (which is a bold choice in the first place) following Ripley 8 and the crew of the Betty on another Aliens adventure. Michael Jan Friedman hits us with quite the bombshell here detailing a secret organization who's been in contact with the space jockey species for quite some time, exchanging humans (to breed Xenos with) for peace. This mirrors a fairly common conspiracy theory regarding a pact between humans and Grey aliens "allowing" the abduction and experimentation of humans in exchange for technology and peace. The novel details how this organization's insider information led to the issuance of order 937 and thus, the events of Alien (Hence the title "Original Sin"); however, this revelation ultimately leads us to the organization's target: a small nature preserve space station with a handful of people. Ripley and company, having recently gained insight into Loki's dealings, arrives at the preserve and essentially saves the day, The End. It almost felt as if this were the first episode to a series as the only intriguing part was over before it ever even took hold. I did enjoy the imagery of xenos stalking the characters through a jungle setting. I also generally enjoyed the dialogue as I was able to "hear" the characters' voices. All in all it was a decent read.

I'll post my review of DNA War in another post.


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