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Core Characters
- Ellie Shaw: a true believer who believes that the Engineers made us, but that god made them. She wants to know why the Engineers made us, and why they abandoned us (combining in Holloway's attempted arc in actual-Prometheus).

- David: as he is. Curious, wishes to become human, holds the line between faith/belief and scientific fact. It is hinted that he is a more advanced model synthetic, specially commissioned for Weyland.

- Janek: a hardass military commander who has a degenerative disease and is being kept alive by drugs provided by the Weyland corporation. He is there to ensure that whatever Ellie finds isn't a threat to humanity, which makes his sacrifice at the end of the film the close of his character function.

- Peter Weyland: onboard the Prometheus in the escape pod Vickers occupied in actual-Prometheus. He has financed the expedition because he wants to meet his maker before he dies. He has a love/hate relationship with David, his son. He created David because he is sterile, and feels that in doing so he is a failure because he cannot create life (moving the arc from Ellie from actual-Prometheus).

Core Relationships
- Ellie and Janek: Janek begins the film contemptuous of Ellie as he believes their mission is harmful to Earth and doesn't think certain questions need to be answered. He is an atheist and happy to stay this way. By the film's end he is impressed with Ellie's fortitude, and dies taking down the alien vessel as he promised to do at the film's start.

- Ellie and Weyland: Weyland is openly contemptuous of Ellie's continued faith in light of what has been discovered on LV-223. He is an egomaniac who believes the Engineers created us to be special, a social experiment of somekind. He is killed by an Engineer at the film's end.

- Ellie and David: the core relationship, which hinges on David exploring his humanity through Ellie's faith. They grow to be friends by the film's end and are the sole survivors, and David has begun to simulate emotional behaviour (much like Bishop and Cal in the later films, as they are later models and can do this more effectively).

- Weyland and David: a minor relationship that serves to explain why David is more advanced than other synthetics of the time, and why Weyland trusts him enough to take him on the expedition. David is the only child Weyland has, but he is contemptuous of the fact that he is a machine. He sees David both as a triumph of technology, but also a personal failing (it is hinted that the Engineers see us humans the same way).

The Story (please note I have not read any books/comics from the Aliensverse, and am basing this solely on what I have seen in the Aliens films - this also discounts AvP and AvP2).

Elizabeth Shaw is an archeologist who discovers a series of cave paintings all around the Earth depicting the same tall humanoid creature pointing to the same set of stars. She calls in a favour from an employee friend of hers' at Weyland Corp, who uses the corporation's own star maps to identify the star cluster as LV-223. The search is picked up on by David, who reports it to Weyland, knowing that the old man has been following Shaw's work in various archeological journals. (He has taken an interest in amateur history since being bed-bound by his illness, or something). Weyland calls in Shaw and she divulges her theory to him: that the tall beings represented created humanity, and that the star clusters are an invitation to go and meet them, left to be found by humanity when we had reached sufficient technological advancement. (As Eddie Izzard put it, if your creations start on the blue one and make it to the grey one, you should come down and say hello.)

There is then a montage of the Prometheus being constructed, and we are introduced to Captain Janek, who is recruited by Weyland Corporation's board of directors to ensure that no "bad publicity" comes from the expedition. They believe he is a by-the-book soldier, but Janek confides to Shaw during their meeting that his primary concern is not letting any harm come to his wife and young son on Earth. He is also dying and being kept alive by Weyland pharmaceutical treatment, so he believes his life to be superfluous in the face of danger.

The Prometheus launches and it takes four years to get to LV-223. The crew awaken from their hypersleep and we are introduced to several redshirt team members for the obligatory horror element. This is where the relationship-building between David and Ellie begins to happen: he admits to watching her dreams and she admonishes him and explains that dreams are meant to be private. He seems to take this onboard. Weyland is an omniscient presence, residing in an isolated room/escape pod on the ship but never venturing out to talk to the crew.

Landing at LV-223 the crew discover the crashed alien ship as it is in actual-Prometheus, along with the black-goo-pod-room. They deduce that a dust storm is coming and all decide to stay in the crashed ship as they are fascinated by it, setting up a small portable lab in one of the ship's corridors. They also send off two mapping balls to map the rest of the ship. One of the scientists (lets call her Smith) and her team begin to examine the Black Goo whilst Shaw and David go off to explore the ship - David tells Ellie they should leave it to the machines. Shaw says she does not trust the machines to give a human perspective to things, and David reminds her he is a synthetic. She shrugs and says he has more humanity than the damn mapping balls. They have a talk about Shaw's belief in the Engineers and why she believes in them making us vs. Darwinism, creationism or straight up Garden of Eden stuff. She asks David what he believes, but he says he does not have the capacity to believe and will simply acknowledge what he is programmed with.

Night passes. Just as the dust storm lifts, Smith is attacked by one of the worm creatures from actual-Prometheus, who has snuck up on the team unawares. Shaw and David hurry to get her back to the ship, and Janek instantly places her in quarantine. Just as the quarantine room door closes, Smith gives birth to the squid creature. They try to vent the atmosphere from the room to kill it, but it has weaker acid blood than a Xenomorph and it melts its way into the bowels of the ship. Janek sends two red shirts after it.

Shaw reports to Weyland who is not happy about the progress. He is in the middle of admonishing her when David reports that the mapping balls have found a lifeform in what looks to be cryo-stasis. As Shaw, David and Weylamd are suiting up to go out and investigate, one of Smith's underlings brings the results of Smith's research into the Black Goo, and what happened to Smith. The Black Goo is a chemical agent that mutates whatever it comes into contact with into some form of biological weapon. The worm that attacked Smith was gestating inside the goo canisters they found, and was possibly a way of transmitting the goo in a certain way to ensure that a certain breed of weapon is obtained. (As a needle is needed to inject antibiotics, say.) The scientist reckons they have found the Engineer's chemical testing facility, after an experiment that has gone wrong or gotten loose somehow.

Janek overhears this and tells Shaw that he is not happy with the idea of the Prometheus carrying such things back to Earth and she agrees. He tells her he would destroy the ship before seeing his home world harmed. She tells him to do what he has to.

Meanwhile the two red shirts are killed by the squid thing in a ventilation shaft, and it lays proto-Xenos in them before dying. A second team sent out to locate the first simply finds their destroyed bodies and the dead squid, and deduce that they must have killed one another. A scuttling noise is heard as they move away, sickened by the sight.

Shaw, Weyland and David find the flight room from the original Alien film and the sleeping Engineer in his pod. They awaken him after David triggers the ship's mapping displays, and he attacks them, damaging David and killing Weyland after Weyland makes a speech about humanity's greatness which David verbally translates. Shaw escapes and contacts Janek as the Engineer ship prepares to take off, warning him that she saw Earth on the ship's mapping display and she believes it is going to wipe out humanity. Janek tells her he will stop the Engineer ship by suicide-running the Prometheus into it, but that he will eject Weyland's isolation pod so that she has a chance to survive.

He does so. The Engineer's ship crash lands and the Prometheus is destroyed.

Emotionally broken, Shaw makes her way to the isolation pod but as the door opens she is confronted by one of the proto-Xenomorphs. It has killed its brother and harvested the corpse for nutrients, growing to its full size (in much the same way as sharks gestate.) It tries to attack Shaw but she has had enough; she takes out a sidearm Janek insisted she carried earlier in the film and blasts it to smithereens as she screams at it for all of the death that has happened in the film.

She is then contacted by David, who has survived the Engineer and the ship crashing, and he tells her he knows there are other Engineer ships on the planet, and that if they work together, they can find out the answers Shaw is looking for.

The last words of the film are David saying "I believe our answers are out there, Miss Shaw. Shall we go and find them?"

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Becca

March 2013

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