How To Kill An Alien

Extraterrestrial scum invading the planet? Tool up at the SFX armoury and make ET wish he’d never entered the Milky Way. Jordan Farley reveals the Top 10 alien annihilation aids

Humanity can’t just rely on the germs in our atmosphere, or Slim Whitman’s “Indian Love Call” to wipe out bulbous-brained alien invaders for us. It’s important to take matters into our own hands. With that in mind you can’t go far wrong with our list of the top 10 alien killers in movie (and in one case TV) history. From Xenomorphs to hideous shapeshifting monstrosities, you have to choose your weapon carefully. After all, what good is a Pulse Rifle going to be against one of Starship Troopers’ giant armoured bugs as it blasts plasma out of its backside?

Choosing the right weapon is half the battle. The rest is up to you. Good hunting, soldier!
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10 Movie: Alien Resurrection

Weapon: Christie’s arm anchored pistols

Despite its place as the unwanted mutant offspring of the Alien series, Alien Resurrection does have a couple of things going for it – namely two superb sequences (the clone room
and the underwater escape) and Christie’s incredible concealed pistols, complete with Taxi Driver -style arm anchors for quick draws. Best of all, though, are the gun’s ingenious ricocheting bullets, ideal for those seemingly impossible shots.

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9 Movie: The Fifth Element

Weapon: Zorg’s ZF-1 Pod Gun

The Swiss army knife of, er, guns Zorg’s ZF-1 Pod Gun is a machine gun (with a handy replay button), rocket launcher, arrow launcher (explosive or poisonous gas heads optional), net launcher, flame thrower and freeze ray all in one. It’s light, suitable for righties or lefties, undetectable by x-ray, and has a 3,000 round clip. Perfect for when you absolutely, positively have to ensure that slimy alien invader is toast.
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8 Movie: Starship Troopers

Weapon: MK55 Tactical Nuclear Launcher

A portable mini-nuke launcher in the guise of an RPG, the MK55 is roughneck Johnny Rico’s weapon of choice to wipe out a giant Plasma Bug in one shot. Curiously, despite the missiles being front loaded, the weapon is still operated in pairs, with a partner tapping the trigger man’s helmet despite the fact he can see perfectly well that the weapon is loaded!
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7 TV Show: Stargate SG-1

Weapon: Zat Gun

Although less powerful than a Goa’uld staff weapon, the Zat’nik’tel (aka Zat Gun) – has several unique properties. Firstly it is handheld, curling up like a snake when not in use. One shot from the Zat gun is enough to incapacitate a victim while a follow-up kills them. Originally a third shot was shown to disintegrate victims, but this was retconned out in later episodes, even being dismissed as “The Stupidest thing...” in “Wormhole X-Treme!” Finally, a Zat blast can be transmitted through conductive surfaces or used to power/overload electronics.
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6 Movie: Predator

Weapon: Plasma Caster (aka Shoulder Cannon)

Although technically an alien weapon to begin with, much like District 9 ’s Tesla Rifle, the Plasma Caster is also used to exterminate ETs, in particular AvP’s vicious Xenomorphs. Shoulder mounted and controlled via a targeting system in the helmet, the Plasma Caster is capable of firing powerful long-range bursts of plasma at a rapid rate and can even be used as a hand-held firearm if necessary.
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5 Movie: Doom

Weapon: BFG

Although the game asked you to mow down an endless stream of demonic beasties straight from Hell, in the movie the Bio Force Gun version 3.14 (or Big F*cough*ing Gun as it’s better known) is put to better use obliterating humans mutated by Martian DNA. Bigger than the average rocket launcher, and with more bang for your buck, the BFG fires a devastating blue plasma burst which disintegrates the target instantly, and burns away at the impact zone for minutes after.
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4 Movie: District 9

Weapon: Tesla Rifle

A gun so awesome we’d be willing to sniff some alien juju and commit to a life as a giant prawn if it meant being able to use this DNA activated, electric rifle. One shot’s enough to instantly explode a human target in a shower of blood, it’s got incredible range and can even be wielded while in a mech suit. Let’s hope the prawns don’t cotton on and turn the Tesla Rifle on their captors.
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3 Movie: Men In Black

Weapon: Noisy Cricket

They say the best things come in small packages, but in the case of Agent J’s deceptively minuscule trainee firearm the old adage proves a significant understatement. Capable of blowing a hole in the side of an 18-wheeler, and with a kick-back that’ll send you flying into last week, the Noisy Cricket is the best way to deal with uncooperative illegal aliens (literally).
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2 Movie: The Thing

Weapon: Flame-thrower

What could be more suitable for killing a creature that’s been trapped in ice for, presumably, thousands of years than a toasty flame-thrower? The short-range weapon (which also makes a memorable appearance in Aliens , of course) is the only way to ensure no part of the titular shapeshifting nasty survives. And it does give an immense amount of satisfaction when unleashing pent-up anger.
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1 Movie: Aliens

Weapon: M41-A Pulse Rifle

The perfect choice for a bug hunt, the M41-A features an underslung pump action grenade launcher, 10x24mm armour-piercing caseless cartridges and a handy electronic ammo counter. The pulse bit comes from the unique electronic firing mechanism, which uses electronic pulses rather than a firing pin. But remember, stay frosty.