The Most Popular Alien Species in Science Fiction and Why They Are So Interesting
There are a lot of things that make up a good science fiction story, from interesting characters to an engaging plot. One thing that is often overlooked though, is what exactly makes the antagonist tick. No matter how interesting your protagonist may be, without a compelling bad guy they aren’t going to be all that fun to read about and could even come across as one-dimensional.
One of the most popular ways to create a believable and interesting antagonist is to make them an alien species. This can add a whole new layer of intrigue and mystery to the story, while also providing a unique challenge for the hero or heroes to overcome. In this article, we will take a look at some of the most popular alien species ever featured in science fiction and examine exactly what it is that makes them so interesting.
1) The Klingons of Star Trek
One of the best examples of this, and an easy place to start, is with Star Trek’s Klingon Race. Introduced in Season 2 of the original series, they were invited to join the Federation of Planets but refused on account of their “militaristic” nature. Since then we have seen them both ally and fight against The Federation, always remaining one of the most popular and well-known alien species in all of science fiction.
There are many things that make Klingons so interesting, but one of the biggest is their culture and society. They are a warrior race with a strong sense of honour, which often leads to conflict with other species. This, combined with their unique look and style, has ensured them a place as one of the best alien species in all of science fiction.
2) The Vorlons and Shadows from Babylon 5
Like with Star Trek’s Klingons, we have seen both sides of the Vorlon/Shadow conflict again and again throughout Babylon 5. On the bright side are The Vorlons, one of the oldest and most advanced alien species in all of science fiction. They were responsible for creating The Shadows though, a dark and sinister race which they later became at war with.
Although we never get to see much of their home world, it is that lack of knowledge that makes them so interesting. It also doesn’t hurt that they have a unique appearance and a well-developed culture, something which is common among the best alien species in all of science fiction.
3) The Gaim from The Saga of the Seven Suns
Next up we have a race called The Gaim, who come from ‘The Saga of the Seven Suns’ novel series. The Gaim are a race of insect-like aliens who are one of the main antagonists in the series. What makes them so interesting is their unique biology and society. For example, Gaim reproduce by laying eggs and the young are raised by the entire colony, not just their parents. This creates a strong sense of community and culture which is fascinating to read about.
4) The Na’vi from Avatar
Finally, we have the Na’vi of James Cameron’s Avatar. They are probably one of the best known alien species in all science fiction cinema thanks to both their interesting culture and unique biology. Since they live on a moon with no large bodies of water, they evolved without needing to swim. This means that they have a strong spiritual connection to all forms of life, which is explored in great detail in the movie.
In conclusion, there are many reasons why alien species make for such interesting antagonists in science fiction stories. Whether it be their unique culture and society or their strange biology and appearance, they always manage to capture our imagination. So, if you are looking for a fascinating and challenging antagonist to add to your story, consider using an alien species. You won’t regret it!
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