Comic Publishers

January 13, 2010

Dark Horse Reviews: Aliens vs. Predator: Three World War #1

Publisher: Dark Horse
Writer: Randy Stradley
Artist: Rick Leonardi
Cover: Raymond Swanland

“Three World War pt 1”: For those of you who didn’t get enough Predator and Aliens action in the recent releases from Dark Horse, definitely take a look at Aliens vs. Predator: Three World War!  I’ve been a fan of this franchise since Randy Strandley and Phil Norwood brought us the very first Aliens vs. Predator mini-series, which to me is still the definitive story in this franchise.  Now, over 20 years later, Stradley returns and gives the series a much needed twist by adding some new elements into the already volatile mix of Aliens, Predators, and humans.

Returning heroine and former ally of the Predators, Machico Noguchi, is called upon to help deal with a problem she’s quite familiar with.  However she’s very reluctant to help the military, and after embarrassing a soldier she hopes she has made it perfectly clear she’s done with the “Bugs” and the “Hunters.”  Not taking no for an answer the Colonel shows Noguchi a video of a group of Predators slaughtering a mining crew on a distant planet, though what gives her pause is the fact that this particular group is controlling the “bugs.”  She takes them inside the cabin and begins to recap events in Aliens vs. Predator and AvP: War, trying to familiarize the Colonel with the Predators but telling him that what he just showed her proves that one of the Predator’s old stories isn’t just a legend.  This rogue group is what the Predators call “Killers,” and for them there is no hunt and no honor, only the kill, and they have found a way to subjugate and control the “bugs.”  Apparently the “Killers” and “Hunters” went to war, and it was believed that the “Killers” had been wiped out; but upon seeing this proof of their existence, Machico tells the Colonel that she’ll help but they’re going to need a lot more if they want to stop them.

Since it’s been a while when we’ve last seen Noguchi, Stradley does a fine job with getting those familiar with the character reacquainted, while introducing her to new readers as well as the past events that lead up to this book.  So if this is your first venture to the AvP franchise you won’t be left with too many questions regarding this new chapter, as this issue is easy to follow and enjoy without too much prior knowledge.  Rick Leonardi’s visuals are good, though at times I was wondering why Noguchi’s looks change from a harder appearance and then to a softer one throughout her conversation with the Colonel.  Now this may just be me being picky, but I was a little aggravated that the mark on her forehead she received from Broken Tusk was either drawn wrong, or in one panel not even present; it’s a very distinctive scar and as much a part of her look as the “dreds” are on a Predator.  This is the same guy that did a great job on Star Wars: General Grievous, so I’m not too worried about the look of the series, I’m just expecting good things based on his track record.  The book does sport yet another fantastic cover by Raymond Swanland, and this is one of my favorites that he’s done along with a good looking alternate by Rick Leonardi.

Along with tying up plot points in the recent Aliens and Predator books, I’m interested to see if Stradley will touch on a key element that’s been mentioned throughout the various Aliens books and movies; the fact that turning the Aliens into biological weapons has been a goal of Earth’s scientists and military, and they have been unsuccessful compared to what the “Killers” have accomplished here.

Now I know there are those who would like to get the complete story of the past events, and for you I would recommend the Aliens vs. Predator Omnibus Vol. 1 to go along with Aliens vs. Predator: Three World War!

Infinite Speech



  1. billy

    I don’t care what anybody else thinks, these two characters are two of the best horror/sci-fi characters ever! Good review Speech.

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Enemy of Peanuts, Enemy of Peanuts, Enemy of Peanuts,, and others. said: Dark Horse Reviews: Aliens vs Predator: Three World War #1 #comics #avp […]

  3. Great review Speech! I’m not a huge AvP fan, but that cover looks amazing.

  4. InfiniteSpeech

    Thanks guys. Andy you definitely need to check out the original Alien and Predator movies they are cinematic greatness! With the Alien franchise some say stop at the 3rd but I don’t think you should go past the first two.

    The original AvP story by Stradley is great and a lot of what is in that series was put into the first movie…though I would have loved it if they would have stayed closer to that story instead of what was put on screen

  5. […] week Dark Horse Comics released Aliens vs. Predator: Three World War and on the heels of this it has been announced that […]

  6. […] dream that exceeded expectations!  Now Stradley is back with artist Rick Leonardi to bring us Aliens vs Predator: Three World War and he recently took a few minutes out of his day to chat it up with yours […]

  7. […] World War pt 2″:  Remember the Killer Predators that slaughtered that mining crew in the first issue? Well they are about to get some unexpected guests in the form of Colonial Marines sent to check […]

  8. […] that she’s worthy of an audience with them; now to see if they will assist against the Killer Predators that have attacked a human colony.  Well, after their talk the Hunters do decide to help because […]

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