Alien Invasions We Won’t See Coming

Skyline opens nationwide in theaters this Friday. Believe it or not, this is not an action film about franchised chili parlor employees, a disappointment I had to come to grips with myself. But be that as it may, Skyline does present us with a frightening supposition of our inevitable demise at the hands of our alien overlords. Directed by the fraternal directing team that brought us AVP: Requiem, we can only hope the brothers Strause didn’t exhaust all their magic on that one genius film.

But in all seriousness, we are under constant threat of alien invasion, and as much as Hollywood offers us these amusing distractions, we are perpetually on the brink of intergalactic warfare. And while Skyline may employ the stereotypical “scary” aliens as the harbingers of doom, the reality is that the beings for which we really need to be watching the skies are far more covert in their evilness.  Here are the best alien invaders that you never saw coming…


ALFBrown, fuzzy — a Fozzie bear from planet Melmac? Sure, these are all apt descriptions for the wisecracking new addition to the Tanner family, yet why the moniker of future enslaver of the human race is not bestowed upon him is beyond me. This is a creature that was forced to come to this planet because his own world was destroyed by nuclear war, and where does he land? Earth…in the ’80s! We were still in the midst of the Cold War and stockpiling warheads like crazy; ALF would conquer us if only to ensure no encore of his misfortune. Hell, in an early episode, he tried to persuade the president to stop the nuclear arms program, so obviously he isn’t shy about involving himself in a power struggle. All I’m saying is that when the cats begin to go missing, the end is nigh.


E.T.Yeah, the whole “ouch” finger thing was cute and, sure, the flying bicycles were heart-warming. But how can you honestly say that E.T. is not out to conquer Earth? He’s bitter about being left on Earth, he practices powerful magic, and he has a creepy knack for eluding his enemies provided that there are enough stuffed animals around. E.T.’s master plan was to manipulate children into doing his bidding and, given that he convinced a group of them to defy a clandestine government agency, I’d say it was a pretty effective plan. Besides, as we saw in the later version of the film, it’s going to be really hard to stop him if our law enforcement officials have all their guns replaced by walkie-talkies.


Return of the Jedi EwoksYeah, go ahead and believe that these furry denizens of Endor’s moon are merely a marketing gimmick cooked up by Hasbro and Lucas. That is exactly what they want you to think. They may be sickeningly cutesy and impossibly cuddly, but inside each of these monsters beats the heart of a revolutionary. The best warriors in the universe, including a next-generation Jedi, can’t bring down the evil empire, but a bunch of mutant teddy bears get the job done with rocks and sticks? The only thing keeping our planet safe from Ewok occupation is their inability to construct or operate a spacecraft.


StarmanThis one may be a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy on our part should it occur. So…we send out the Voyager II space probe and invite life forms to come to Earth — sounds benevolent enough, right? But then we shoot down the first ship that accepts our invitation because we aren’t exactly the brightest species in the universe. While our hero in John Carpenter’s intimate sci-fi film doesn’t lash out against us, some of his compatriots may not be so forgiving of our intergalactic snafu. Also, that ability to genetically replicate anyone and grow from baby to man in minutes is just plain unsettling.


Star Trek VulcanCall me crazy if you like, but those stoic, peace-loving freaks are up to something. Yes, they are all about live-and-let-live-long-and-prosper, but I think it’s all part of an act, a calculated waiting game. When they do rise up and set their sights on Earth, we are six kinds of screwed. Their infallible logic will make them great battle strategists while their Vulcan nerve-pinch will provide victory in any close-quarters combat situation. Plus, with that mind-melding ability, it turns out they are extremely hard to keep dead. What resource do we harbor that Vulcans could possibly desire? Supercuts. Those guys have been sporting the same Beatles mop for decades and would kill for a crew cut or pompadour.