ByEric Hanson, writer at Creators.co
Eric Hanson holds a Bachelor's in Film Studies. Some of his favorite films include To Kill a Mockingbird, 2001, and Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Eric Hanson

One of the most hotly anticipated films of 2017 is , the fifth standalone film in the massively popular series about mankind's encounters with a deadly extraterrestrial predator. Fans of the series got some exciting news earlier this week with the release of this trailer for the film, the most revealing one yet.

These two minutes and 30 seconds tell us an awful lot about director 's third outing into the series that made him a Hollywood superstar. It showcases a more complete look at the feel of the film, makes some revealing hints about the cast, and showcases the return of the famous monster to the big screen.

What exactly does this trailer tell us so far? For the more wary amongst us, this may contain spoilers. Read forward at the risk of facehugging.

1. The Style Of Prometheus Will Meet The Horror Of Alien

Our heroine clings to the base of the Covenant as it attempts an escape from this hostile world. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
Our heroine clings to the base of the Covenant as it attempts an escape from this hostile world. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

Though both movies featured the same director, the original 1979 Alien and the 2012 are vastly different films with equally different visual styles. Alien was a world of tight corridors and darkened ventilation shafts while Prometheus was a world of wide vistas and vast landscapes.

This new trailer shows an attempt to marry the two styles. Much of the trailer shows the crew of the Covenant exploring this alien world, a place of mountains, forests and waterfalls — a first for this series, which has generally tried to capture a more industrial look.

Daniels and Tennessee ready for battle on board their ship. [Credit; 20th Century Fox]
Daniels and Tennessee ready for battle on board their ship. [Credit; 20th Century Fox]

However, this trailer is a half-and-half affair, equal parts wide vistas and tight corridors. Much of what we see takes place on board the Covenant as the crew is forced to contend with a wide variety of cosmic horrors.

Though the set design doesn't match up with the previous films, it does show an attempt to recapture the claustrophobic mood that made Alien a classic.

2. The Fate Of Dr. Shaw May Have Been Revealed

The character of Dr. Elizabeth Shaw was a major driving force in the highly polarizing Prometheus. Her involvement in this film has been the subject of much debate, as she has been listed as a cast member for some time. This latest trailer shows a revealing hint at her presence in the latest Alien film. While Daniels is exploring this strange planet, she finds Dr. Shaw's nametag.

Daniels finds Dr. Shaw's nametag. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
Daniels finds Dr. Shaw's nametag. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

The actress who played Shaw is not seen in the flesh, and this presence of her name tag, which she would have been keeping on her, says that something may have happened to her. She possibly passed away between films, or maybe even fell victim to the monsters that inhabit the planet. Her inclusion in the cast may be little more than a recorded message. We shall see.

3. Danny McBride Appears To Have A Big Role — And James Franco Doesn't

One of the most prominently featured cast members in the trailer is Tennessee, played by . It was earlier speculated that McBride might have been a devious type, following the mold of Paul Reiser's sinister turn in . Here, however, he appears to be on the up and up, tagging along with as the two battle the planet's bio-mechanical horrors.

Danny McBride plays Tennessee. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
Danny McBride plays Tennessee. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

So it appears McBride will last quite awhile in this film as the character of Tennessee based on his screen time. Another prominent cast member doesn't appear to be so fortunate.

One of the actors featured in the previously released "Last Supper" teaser was , who plays Captain Branson, leader of the ill-fated Covenant mission to colonize a distant world. The previous clip showed him heading off to hypersleep while his crew had a party and shared some laughs before joining him.

James Franco as the captain of the Covenant. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
James Franco as the captain of the Covenant. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

James Franco, however, was strangely absent from the this latest trailer, and that is very telling. We don't see a lot of him exploring the planet with the rest of the characters, and he's not in the middle of the fight with the creatures that rapidly kill off his crew. Perhaps he is one of the first people to die?

He may not even make it to the planet alive, something going wrong with his hypersleep chamber. Or maybe he is hidden away in hypersleep for most of the film, only to appear at an opportune moment. Whatever the case, we may not be seeing too much of him.

4. The Hooded Figure Is Likely David

A hooded figure intervenes during a monster attack. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
A hooded figure intervenes during a monster attack. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

One of the biggest moments in the trailer was the introduction of a mysterious hooded figure who seems to rescue the crew during an attack by a monster. This figure is more than likely David, the surviving android from the last film. This does open up some interesting questions. After all, David was just a head by the conclusion of Prometheus. How did he get the rest of himself back? Did he have something to do with Shaw's absence? Why a robe?

The hooded figure walks down a strange landscape. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
The hooded figure walks down a strange landscape. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

One of the most impressive shots from the trailer was this hooded figure walking down a desolate and mysterious landscape towards a mysterious structure that bears some resemblance to earlier concept art for the original Alien. What is this place? Do the mysterious Engineers have something to do with it? Could this have something to do with how the headless David got his body back?

5. The Alien Returns, Along With Some Other Monsters

One of the monsters looks like the Deacon at the end of Prometheus. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
One of the monsters looks like the Deacon at the end of Prometheus. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

The talk of the town is the reintroduction of the famous monster back in the series, a cast member that was sorely missed in Prometheus. However, the monster appears not to have come alone. A creature is briefly glimpsed that looks an awful lot like the Deacon, the monster at the end of Prometheus that was apparently a precursor to the original Alien.

One of the crew falls victim to an apparent chestbursting. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
One of the crew falls victim to an apparent chestbursting. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

We did, however, get some nice iconography that shows an apparent return of the monster fans have grown to love. We are treated to a brief shot of one of the crew members laying on the ground, convulsing as something appears to be bursting from their chest.

A nice look at the famous monster's return to the big screen. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
A nice look at the famous monster's return to the big screen. [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

And of course, by trailer's end, we witness the return of the series' real star. There are some subtle changes to its design — it looks less bio-mechanical and more fleshy — but the elongated head, the glazed black and gray skin, and the shining chrome teeth, leaping straight at the camera as if ready to tear your face off through the screen, bring back a lot of memories.

It is unlikely this film will live up to the original classic, but Covenant so far looks at the very least like a step in the right direction for this long-troubled series. That alone is worth celebrating.

What are your thoughts on the new trailer for Alien: Covenant? Are you still looking forward? Let us know below!

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