Script: Mark Verheiden
Art: Den Beauvais
Lettering: Willie Schubert
Cover illustration: Den Beauvais
Nightmare Asylum picks up where Outbreak finished, with Wilkes Billy on an automated transport ship heading to an unknown off-world location. En route they discover the cargo is in fact infected humans and three aliens have escaped stasis, which have to be eliminated. They arrive at a military base run by General Spears who is in the process of creating an army of trained Aliens which he believes can be used to re-conquer Earth. Things go awry however when a mutiny accidentally releases the Aliens. Wilks and Billie manage to escape the base on Spears’ Earth bound transport. The pair flee the ship just before it lands on Earth, where Spears faces the ultimate betrayal. Meanwhile on Gateway space station there is a reunion with Ripley.
Nightmare Asylum is one of my favourite Aliens books and apparently is for many others! This was the first time I’d ever seen a painted artwork in a comic and it blew my mind!
The plot is admittedly fairly weak, but it does represent the first appearance of what would become a fairly standard story line for the Aliens universe: a secret base where the military are conducting scientific experiments on the Alien to produce some form of super product, outsiders enter this environment upset it, which causes the aliens to escape and holy hell breaks loose! Whilst the plot is fairly basic it is both fast-paced and action packed making it a real page turner!
What elevates this story, for me, is the artwork, which is beautiful. The artist, Denis Beauvais, has clearly utilized imagery from the second film to create it and it really shows. I would go as far as to say that this is the best and closest representation of the alien universe in inks so far!
Overall a decent continuation to the Aliens trilogy of books, a fairly simple action-packed story is elevated by stunning art work.