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Written by Mason Tabor
Ellen Louise Ripley
Played by Sigourney Weaver, Ripley serves as the main character for the Alien movies. In Alien, she is the Warrant Officer. When her superiors leave the Nostromo to investigate the source of the alleged distress signal, Ripley assumes authority over the shuttle, but Ash, the Science Officer overrides her when she quarantines the officers outside the ship after Kane is attacked by an alien.
Ripley's story is one of survival, being threatened by the terrifying alien lurking somewhere on board, and also by the corrupt corporate interests of those who run the Nostromo, who seek to capture the alien for their own profit, even if that means Ripley must die.
Captain Dallas Koblenz Arthur
Played by Tom Skerritt, Dallas, along with Lambert and Kane, investigates the distress signal. Dallas' demise comes when he seeks to trap the Alien in an airlock, but he is quickly ambushed by the creature in the narrow labrynth of the air ventilation shafts, making for one of the most effective jump scares in modern cinema.
Science Officer Ash
Ash, played by Ian Holm, represents the scientific endeavor in the midst of the dark and mysterious unknown. He seeks to learn about the alien lifeform, despite the death and damage that might ensue consequently. He is the Science Officer who opposes Ripley's desire to survive, first by overriding her quarantine when Kane was attacked, and then again when she discovers he is planning to recover the alien at all costs. She confronts him and he attempts to kill her.
Ash is decapitated during the fight and is revealed to be an android. Afterward, the crew turns him back on, as it were, and questions him, confirming that he was on board to ensure the capture of the alien for the corporation. Ash's story is resonant with the character of Shelley's Frankenstein, who is also willing to perform morally condemnable actions in the name of science. Alien's science is further criticized because it renders its scientific authority as a robot designed solely for corporate gain.
Warrant Officer Gilbert Kane
Kane was part of the initial response party who boarded the alien spacecraft. Kane discovered a strange room full of eggs and is attacked by a small alien who implants an egg in his body. Ripley doesn't want him to board the craft due to this, but Ash overrides her command and Kane is brought aboard by Dallas and Lambert, unconscious. The egg hatches after he has seemingly recovered, erupting from his stomach and escaping into the ship, leaving Kane dead among his shipmates.
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