Guard your orifices!
The Host may be a CW-style variation of it, but Stephenie Meyer‘s story of alien Souls invading the Earth follows a long and rich sci-fi tradition: that of militant extraterrestrials violently taking over human bodies. The mechanics of these body intrusions may vary — some implant themselves in the ears, others in the GI tract, others in the womb — but one thing is clear. These aliens really, really want to get up and close and personal with humans, with varying degrees of discomfort for the host.
So to help you avoid implantation yourself, we’ve given you an anatomical breakdown of where exactly you can find each type of invader in a typical human body. Sharpen your scalpels and check out this infographic:
Click on the image above for to get a larger view. And start taking notes from our handy key. Knowledge is your best defense!
1. Brain: Compared to some of these others, the way the Souls take over human bodies in The Host is pretty gentle. Via a surgical slit in the back of the neck, a Soul — a little light-up creature that looks like the plasma balls at a science museum you liked to touch when you were a kid — enters your nervous system and moves toward the neocortex, assuming all cognitive functions and erasing the personality of its host.
2. Nose: Technically, the tiny aliens in Meet Dave have built a spaceship that looks and sounds exactly like a human being (or at least a really awkward Eddie Murphy). They use its eyes as viewports, its mouth as a gangplank, and when they need to make a really rapid exit they get themselves snorted out of its nose. The scary thing, is that they’re small enough to invade the noses of actual humans as well. Yeah, you might want to get that lingering sinus infection checked out…
3. Ears: Khan Noonien Singh (Ricardo Montalban) used a Ceti Eel to extract information from Commander Chekov (Walter Koenig) and Captain Tyrell (Paul Winfield) in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. The eel, a native of barren wasteland Ceti Alpha V, burrows into a human’s ear and all the way into his or her brain. Once there, it renders the host completely vulnerable to suggestion. Meaning that Khan could tell Chekov and Tyrell exactly what he’d want them to do, and they would do it no matter what.
4. Mouth: Time-traveling Romulan freighter captain Nero (Eric Bana) in 2009’s Star Trek was a kindred spirit of Khan in terms of using alien parasites to bend human prisoners to his will. His Centaurian slug, however, enters its host through the mouth, then tunnels in toward the brain stem. Nero was able to use one to get Capt. Christopher Pike (Bruce Greenwood) to reveal all of Starfleet’s defense codes.
5. Chest: The parasitic aliens of LV-423 in Alien begin their takeover of the human body by wrapping their tentacles around a person’s head and hugging the face. When it suddenly departs, you think you’re free. But actually it’s deposited an egg inside you that will incubate in your chest cavity, until suddenly it bursts out when you’re chillin’ with your space-trucker friends.
6. Womb: Dr. Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) had unprotected sex with her lover Charlie (Logan Marshall-Green) while exploring a mysterious alien world. So the possibility of getting pregnant was already very real. But what she didn’t realize was that Charlie had been infected with an extraterrestrial virus that was rewriting his genetic code. And so he didn’t impregnate her with a human child but with a rapidly growing alien parasite that lodged in her womb. Not many would have the fortitude to perform a C-section on herself to abort this unwanted pregnancy like Dr. Shaw did.
7. Hand: Okay, this isn’t really an extraterrestrial parasite, but it is a condition known as “Alien Hand Syndrome,” in which a person can’t control the actions of their limbs. In the case of Dr. Strangelove that meant his hand kept spontaneously giving the fascist salute, which we suspect may have been a Freudian slip in mime form for the ex-Nazi scientist. Laughs aside, it is a real condition. Think of it like a much more embarrassing version of “restless leg syndrome,” if anything can be more embarassing than “restless leg syndrome.”
Follow Christian Blauvelt on Twitter @Ctblauvelt
[Photo Credit: Hollywood.com Illustration]