In Alien: Covenant we learn that David has been experimenting with, and modifying, the engineers bio technology, and in doing so created the face huggers which are vital to the alien lifecycle.

In other alien sequels we see the alien queen laying eggs/face huggers. Given that no queen appears in Covenant David must have produced the face huggers by other means.

Have queens been effectively retconned out of canon by Covenant?


There's a hint in Advent that David is working to create the queen:

There is one thing left to perfect. My queen.

However I was under the impression that the xenomorphs were effectively a reset button, not David's ultimate goal. Given xenomorphs need hosts to reproduce, having them reproduce boundlessly seems self defeating, and far from the perfection David aspires to.

  • 4
    I can make cookies in my air-fryer. Does that mean that ovens don't exist any more?
    – Valorum
    Oct 22, 2022 at 12:12

1 Answer 1



Ian Nathan, the author of Alien Vault and Ridley Scott: A Retrospective, appeared on the Perfect Organism Podcast at the end of 2020 where he talked about his time on the set of Alien: Covenant while producing the behind-the-scenes material. Ian spoke about being in the creature effects shop, where he asked about the Queen and was told:

"Don’t mention the Queen around Ridley. There is no Queen as far as Ridley is concerned. It doesn’t fit into his universe, his idea of the biology. There is no Queen, that’s Cameron’s thing."


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    This seems adjacent to the idea of what even is canon in general and specifically for the Alien franchise. How could arguably the best story in the franchise be no longer canon? Which fans are going to decide that Aliens is no longer part of their fandom? In other words, is it the fans or the creators who decide what is canon? I think in the end, it’s actually the fans. Oct 22, 2022 at 15:17
  • @ToddWilcox That's a fair point, but I think in this particular case I'd prefer to think of them as different universes with the same starting point, a bit like Star Trek with the prime timeline and Kelvin timeline. So with alien we have the Ridley-verse which is more scifi, and the Cameron-verse which is more action oriented.
    – Ian Newson
    Oct 22, 2022 at 16:26

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