The Scariest Thing About the Alien Franchise

One of the most iconic space monsters in cinematic history gets put under the Does if Fly? microscope as we examine the terrifying questions of the Xenomorph life cycle. Not for the faint of heart!

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In space, no one can hear you…put hideous alien monsters up for this kind of scrutiny! Perhaps the most iconic extraterrestrial terror in cinematic history, the titular aliens of Ridley Scott’s masterful Alien and its subsequent franchise are recognizable not only by their distinct look, but their uniquely terrifying properties. 

We’re asking all the big questions in this episode. Just how worried should we be about the kinds of parasites that can do, well, what these aliens so famously do? Is that gestation period something seen elsewhere in (terrestrial) nature? And what the hell is up with their acid blood, anyway? And while these are very specific fictional bio-horror creatures with roots in nature, what was their inspiration and how were they designed for the screen? Like the film, this episode of Does it Fly? is not for the faint of heart. 

And that’s only the beginning of the fun in our latest episode! Remember that you can join in on the conversation in the comments on our YouTube page, so be sure to like, subscribe, and come back for more!


Do you want to delve a little deeper into the facts, concepts, and stories Hakeem and Tamara referenced in today’s episode? Here are a few recommendations!

Parasitoid Wasps

“The alien life cycle [as depicted in the movies] in part mimics parasitic or parasitoid animals here on Earth like parasitoid wasps who lay their eggs in caterpillars. But it’s different!” See also: Insect Life Cycles and Horizontal Gene Transfer

Tongue-eating Louse

“You know what this reminds me of? It’s so gross. Are you familiar with these arthropods that eat a fish’s tongue, replaces it, and then lives there as its tongue? They attach themselves to the base of the tongue they just ate and live life and eat with the fish. So the fish catches the food [but these creatures get the benefit].”

H.R. Giger’s Necronom IV

“For those of you who may not be familiar, H.R. Giger is an artist and his work is biomechanical. It combines mechanical forms with humanoid forms and it’s really creepy. It’s dark and it usually has sexual overtones. It’s reptilian, it’s insectoid, it’s really scary. And the actual design from the fully-grown Xenomorph is pulled directly from his work Necronom IV.”

Hydrofluoric Acid

“Speaking of the aliens’ acid blood…you can’t tell hydrofluoric acid apart from water. You could pour it on your hand and you wouldn’t feel a thing. It consumes calcium. When you go into training they show you all of these horrible training movies about what happens when you don’t do the proper care. What you’re supposed to do is wash it with water for a long time, and then there’s a cream that contains calcium that you put on it, because [the acid] migrates to where the calcium is. If you don’t do that and you go home that night, you’ll wake up with mangled limbs because the hydrofluoric acid consumes the calcium in your bones.”


While the Alien franchise is as vast and ever-expanding as the cosmos itself, we only focused on the first three films in the franchise to get into the (gross) specifics necessary about alien incubation for this episode.


Not only one of the greatest sci-fi movies of all time, but one of the greatest horror movies of all time! The word “masterpiece” is thrown around a little too freely these days, but in the case of Ridley Scott’s first sci-fi film it might not be high enough praise.  


James Cameron picked up the ball from Ridley Scott, kept almost everything that made the original so great, and added a hefty dose of blockbuster action. Who says sequels can’t rival the original? It’s just a matter of whether you want a little more action with your gooey alien horror or more suspense that determines which of these films you prefer.

Alien 3

Not as bad as you’ve heard and probably a lot better than you remember it! Not to mention it’s an early feature film directorial effort by a fella named David Fincher. Ever heard of him? 


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