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SYFY WIRE Resident Alien

Harry & Asta Are Having a Baby?! Resident Alien Comic Creators Reveal New Book, Talk "Surreal" Success of SYFY Hit

In the latest chapter of Dark Horse's Resident Alien saga, Harry and Asta prepare for the birth of an interspecies baby.

By Josh Weiss

Back in February, SYFY WIRE exclusively broke the news of a brand-new Resident Alien storyline from the IP's original co-creators: writer Peter Hogan and illustrator Steve Parkhouse. The former actually appeared in the Season 3 finale of the hit SYFY adaptation as one of the computer technicians working under the jurisdiction of General McCallister (Linda Hamilton).

How to Watch

Watch Resident Alien on SYFY and Peacock.

Subtitled The Book of Life and launching this June, the eighth volume in the Dark Horse-published series finds Harry Vanderspeigle and Asta Twelvetrees preparing for the birth of an interspecies baby. That's right, in the comics the two fan favorite characters are romantically involved. Of course, this revelation may come as a major surprise to loyal viewers of the critically-acclaimed TV show, where the dynamic between Asta (Sara Tomko) and Harry (Alan Tudyk) is framed as that of exasperated parent and immature child.

We recently caught up with Hogan and Parkhouse over email to learn more about The Book of Life and get their thoughts on the television series' recent explosion in popularity.

For More on Resident Alien:

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Why Resident Alien Featured an “In Memory” Honor For Kenny Frost in the Season 3 Finale
One of Resident Alien's Funniest Season 3 Moments is TikTok's Latest Viral Meme

Resident Alien Comic Creators Discuss New Book & SYFY's Hit TV Series

In the most recent volume of the Resident Alien saga, Book of Love, we saw Harry finding love and starting a new life with Asta. What kind of new experiences can we expect Harry and Co. to face in this latest chapter, Book of Life?

HOGAN: Well, at the end of Book of Love, Asta had just discovered that she might be pregnant. So, now we’ll find out what happens next and how they both feel about it. Other than that, it’ll be about a lot of other things to do with family — including Asta’s aunt — as Harry and Asta deal with personal growth, and also personal grief. 

The cover of Resident Alien: Book of Life

In your 12+ years of working on the Resident Alien series, what are some of your biggest lessons you took away in developing Harry’s story both from a literary and illustrative standpoint? Likewise, what were some of the challenges you’ve faced?   

HOGAN: The whole thing’s been a learning curve. When Dark Horse signed us up, it was originally for just three appearances in the Dark Horse Presents anthology. Then we got the go ahead for the first book, and then the second book, and so on. It all grew very slowly and organically. There wasn’t an overall plan from the outset, just changes that arose from what we were doing. The whole process was very intuitive, and you learn to trust that. 

PARKHOUSE: I think the biggest challenge, artistically speaking, has been maintaining the balance of scale between local and cosmic events — and trying to make them both seem credible. But since I'm neither an anthropologist nor an engineer, I have to create a background that would appear familiar to most readers. And it's against that backdrop that a larger picture can take shape. That larger picture is necessarily formed from my imagination rather than any knowledge of advanced technology or any culture other than my own. This all demands a measure of restraint — made easier by the inclusion of natural landscapes, which I'm hoping that people from all cultures can recognize.

Can you tease any hints as to where you plan to take Harry and the rest of the Patience residents in future chapters of Resident Alien?

HOGAN: A little bit. The next one will be called The Book of Changes, and it contains more aliens, and more Men in Black. The changes referred to will affect not only Harry’s personal life, but also far beyond — because the result of Harry’s presence on Earth has changed the status of our entire planet, which has huge repercussions for its future. 

PARKHOUSE: The only plan I would have would be to follow the script.

Resident Alien has seemed to have a major aspect of solving mysteries and crime. Was this always meant to be the focus of how you developed Harry’s story or was it something that you decided to delve more into with each new series?

HOGAN: I just thought that if you rubbed two genres together, you might get some interesting sparks, and that turned out to be true. But I was also aware from the start that if you had too many murders happening in one small town, it would just be unbelievable and stupid. So, I tried to vary the nature of those murders, and then broadened it out to include other crimes as well. In the later books, Harry ends up having his hands full with other things, so the crime investigation aspect slowly drops away, which just felt like a natural progression.

PARKHOUSE: I'm reluctant to speak on Peter's behalf, but I think that particular focus has leveled off as the series has developed. The early episodes made a point of examining local inhabitants and their fears and foibles with the intention of establishing a credible environment. It also gave me the opportunity to find my route into depicting that environment. The major characters needed to belong to that small community — so that once again, some credibility would balance out the incredible events that would eventually transpire.

What do you think of the recent rise in popularity for the Resident Alien TV series?

HOGAN: I think it’s great. The fact that the show got made at all has always been very surreal and dreamlike to me, and now it’s become even more so. Not complaining, though — the more the merrier … also, everyone should buy all the books! 

PARKHOUSE: It makes me very happy. The TV show is very different from the books, but their essence has been preserved.  I've had some small, but extremely cordial, contact with members of the production team and cast. I've been hugely encouraged by their appreciation of the books. They're great people and they deserve every success.

Harry Vanderspeigle rests on a cage holding Baby Alien within on Resident Alien Episode 308.

What have been your favorite moments from the show so far? Are there any moments or scenes in the comics that you’d like to see adapted in the show?

HOGAN: Well, most episodes have had something that made me laugh out loud, and the third season — especially the finale — featured some of the best stuff so far. As to the bits where the show has done their version of something from the books … I personally find them a bit weird, because it’s such a mixture, partly me and partly them. I think I prefer to just watch them do their own thing instead. 

PARKHOUSE: My continuing favorite aspect of the show has been the wonderful performances by all the cast, the quality of the writing, and the general production values all round. It doesn't take itself too seriously and it has the feel of a happy ship. There have already been many visual references to the books. The opening scenes with Harry on the lake mirrored my drawings with alarming accuracy. There have also been some studio props based on details from the books that may not always be highly visible — but the time and trouble was taken to include them.

Catch up on all three seasons of SYFY's Resident Alien are now streaming on Peacock right here!