Bryan Fuller has wandered into the midst of the ongoing fan debate about the future of the Alien franchise. When asked at Vulture Festival Saturday if he enjoyed the latest, Alien: Covenant, the Hannibal and American Gods creator, who was wearing a flower crown created for him by fans, had a brutally blunt answer: “No.” (Vulture’s own David Edelstein was more mixed.)
“I think the last two movies have had too many similarities to bad Friday the 13th sequels and not enough similarities to good Alien movies,” Fuller said. He clarified that Prometheus and Covenant were “so masterfully executed on a technical level, gorgeously composed and produced,” but his frustrations come down to one fundamental issue: “really smart characters doing really stupid things.”
Fuller also had a bone to pick with the chest-bursting scene in Covenant. “So, you see this chest-burster [in Alien] and how disturbing and snakelike it is, and then the other chest-burster in Alien: Covenant is just [a baby alien] standing up,” he laughed. “It’s like, He has good posture.”
Growing up on a diet of Fangoria magazine, movie novelizations, and the elusive photo novels, Fuller said that the original Alien inspired his future path. While taking an experimental psychology course in school, he wrote a case study about Alien, which dissected “the penis-headed monster” and “the dissolution of family.”
“My instructor said, ‘You don’t belong here, you need to go to film school,’” Fuller recalled.