Aliens & Pop Culture
Earthlings have been extremely interested in the prospect of alien life since, well, forever. Don’t believe us? Check out pop culture. Movies, music, books, and games all share the common theme of extraterrestrial visitors, or on the sinister side – extraterrestrial invaders. Join us as we take a quick trip through some of Hollywood’s greatest, scariest, and most amazing alien characters over the years. In no particular order, here are the contenders:
1. Xenomorph (Alien Series)
How could we not start with the alien? Terrifying, detailed, and beyond iconic, the Alien franchise helped put the xenomorph on the world’s radar with its horrifying entrance and otherworldly look. Granted, it’s not the friendliest alien out there, so it won’t win any awards for helping humans connect with extraterrestrial life forms in a meaningful way, but we’ll give credit where it’s due for a renowned movie performance.
2. Spock (Star Trek)
Known and loved by all, Trekkies or not, Mr. Spock is maybe not your first thought when it comes to alien life. However, the half-Vulcan, half-human officer has been a part of the hearts of many since the late 60s when Star Trek first hit the scene. Although he doesn’t look like a “typical” alien, Mr. Spock serves as a great reminder that extraterrestrial life may not be threatening or dangerous, but friendly and more like us than we might think.
3. Space Nomads (Independence Day)
Covered in high-tech armor, crazy powerful, and eerily cool, Independence Day’s Space Nomads left quite the impression on audiences… And not just because they destroyed a massive portion of the world’s population with giant spaceships before they even showed their faces. These aliens may be one of the most dedicated groups in movie history thanks to their endless motivation to wipe out the planet. Thankfully, though, Independence Day has prepared us if aliens ever tap into our satellites to take over. We’ll be ready.
4. The Worm Guys (Men in Black)
Honestly, there were a lot of praise-worthy aliens in this movie, (Remember Frank the Pug?!) but the worm guys were the comedic relief we desperately needed in this list. 1997’s Men in Black was a breakout hit with great effects and even better aliens. Will Smith’s Agent Jay might have been speechless in their presence, but the rest of us were too busy smiling to notice. They win our “most likely to be friends with” award, because c’mon! How fun would that be?
5. E.T. (E.T. The Extra Terrestrial)
Of course we had to include everyone’s favorite extraterrestrial! E.T. is friendly, loveable, cute (kind of?) and appeals to everyone, young and old. This alien was also responsible for one of the most classic shots in movie history when his silhouetted bike passed across the sky in front of a full moon. We won’t argue that the other aliens on this list made an impact in pop culture, but E.T. just might take the cake. Or should we say Reese’s Pieces?
6. Yoda (Star Wars)
It wouldn’t be a list of popular aliens without one little green man. This one just so happens to be a world-famous alien! From Star Wars he is – it’s Master Yoda! Powerful in the ways of the Force, Yoda is not only a Jedi master, but is also full of wisdom and incredibly strong for an old man. Still as relevant today as he was during his debut in The Empire Strikes Back, Yoda is poised to be the “ultimate” alien, ranking high in pop culture importance for decades. More than any other extraterrestrial on this list, Yoda provides strength, power, intelligence, helpfulness, and wins the overall appreciation from audiences for his contributions not only our current day Earth, but also to a galaxy far far away.
So now that you’ve seen our list, feel free to make your own! Which popular aliens do you love and why? Who would you add or subtract from our favorites?