Alien Xenomorph Biology Explained! (Because Science w/ Kyle Hill)

  • Published on May 18, 2017
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    The Alien franchise has shown us many forms of aliens from facehuggers to xenomorphs, but how does it all work? Kyle bursts through with an explanation in this week's Because Science!
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Comments • 3 266

  • Jaymib
    Jaymib 4 days ago

    I always figure that the blacl goo was reversed bio engeering of the xeno, has the ship with the aliens egg crashed on the near by moon.

  • Sean Marlow
    Sean Marlow 4 days ago

    2:30 it is not any spider that the wasp does it to, they do it to tarAntula s

  • Doctor Turtles
    Doctor Turtles 12 days ago


  • ConceitedCynic
    ConceitedCynic 20 days ago

    Better to just say it’s a biological weapon that bonds with the dna of any living creature to form something more deadly. For instance the face hugger mates with the dog to make the runner. A typical xenomorph only comes when combined with human dna.

  • The Own
    The Own 28 days ago

    Actually I don't think the Facehugger is actually dying after it lays a xeno embryo in it. I actually think it's them transferring themselves into another. The main central nervous system is acted all on the embryo and after it's done transferring the facehugger dies, reacting more on nerve reflex. Similar to a butterfly leaving it's cocoon

  • flaming douchebag
    flaming douchebag 28 days ago

    Do girls ever tell you that your hair looks better than theirs?

  • micheal lynch
    micheal lynch Month ago

    You look like Thor

  • Spark Reptile
    Spark Reptile Month ago

    You forgot one thing : the xenomorph is partenogenetic

  • Cameron_ Coyote
    Cameron_ Coyote Month ago

    This theory may need to be rexamined as of the additional of alien 'Covernant' which explains the evolution and genetic selection of the Nenomorph to the Prodomorph and then finally to the Xenomorph

  • Atlas
    Atlas Month ago

    "zuh goo" joke got old after the first usage

  • anonymous Person
    anonymous Person Month ago

    xenos dont need mates bc xeno queen is bisexual

  • Rice Grainz
    Rice Grainz Month ago

    Ze Goo

  • Kevin
    Kevin Month ago

    I also think that the Xenomorphs are also inspired from bot flies

  • Jose BERGER
    Jose BERGER Month ago

    Actcally the things you call zenomorphs arent what black goo Does to human its the strange form with a ficical form the black goo is zenomorph Dna mixed with something

  • FNAH
    FNAH Month ago

    Fun Fact: I don't have dreams

  • Noah Juarez
    Noah Juarez Month ago


  • Leveret Xu
    Leveret Xu 2 months ago

    what about the event of grown up xenomorph impregnates moms in the hospital directly without facehugger in AVP2? Why predaliens in this movie only able to breed xenomorph warriors and not new cross breed species between alien-predator-human?

    COMBINE 2 months ago

    Does actually the goo interact with human directly creating eggs? Aren't eggs produced by the Queen?
    I think the "classic" Giger's xenomorph species was created accidentally by Engineers or simply occured by evolution.
    There's no causal connection between the goo and the "classic" alien species. The goo is responsible only for metamorphoses in "Prometheus" movie (and maybe in "Covenant", but in Covenant goo used to simply kill Engineers and other animalish stuff, the actual alteration of species was caused by some puffball "spores", which can be a product of the goo, of course).

  • Creative- Name
    Creative- Name 2 months ago

    So what's the difference between the traditional xenomorph and the zombie xenomorph? I'm guessing the traditional xenomorph was created by some other nonhuman predatory species that interacted with the goo, and for some reason the biology of these creatures closely matches that of humans (the creature would have to be a cross between a mammal and an insect), which makes human hosts conducive to reproduction. The zombie xenomorph is the first time we ever see a human being changed from the goo, which would then become it's own species of xenomorph had it had the chance to reproduce. Or perhaps the goo causes mammalian species to become more insectoid, developing exoskeletons and more acidic blood. Are there any chemicals in the real world that can cause genetic changes like this? My guess is it would have to be radioactive since radioactive material can cause gene damage, but not changes in the genome like the goo does.

  • Piechowski Kamil
    Piechowski Kamil 2 months ago

    Facehugger + Engineer = Ultramorph

  • suicidal guest
    suicidal guest 2 months ago

    Why does he look like jesus

  • Suco de Ideias
    Suco de Ideias 2 months ago +1

    Isnt holding alot of pens complicated ?

  • Esteban Aristizabal
    Esteban Aristizabal 2 months ago

    What about xeno queen

  • Sovietic Panter
    Sovietic Panter 2 months ago

    It's a fucking space cockroach, my only weakness was turned into a movie...

  • millitary 95 / rybear 1977

    One question....... how cold is "the goo"

  • Lisa Eames
    Lisa Eames 2 months ago

    What about the predalen

  • Lexander Douglas
    Lexander Douglas 2 months ago

    HOW DID you survive that Facehugger that burst out of your chest (PLEASE DON'T JUDGE MY GRANDMA)

  • Araceli Mora Reyes
    Araceli Mora Reyes 2 months ago

    I have never seen the xenon have sex.

  • Dark Lord
    Dark Lord 2 months ago +1

    Isn’t it an evolutionary disadvantage to be SO relient on other organisms? Like they can’t survive without other animals. That’s like us having sex with a tiger to have babies

  • Galaxy News
    Galaxy News 2 months ago

    Kyle, I was wondering what movie YOU think is worse Alien3 or Alien: Resurrection

  • trenton taylor
    trenton taylor 2 months ago

    8:16 theres no facehugger there XD

  • nast the smool potato!!!!

    I never get dreams and a bulky nightmare but mostly not as bad as kids be XD BTW IM 13 AND I'm not scared XD

  • I need a good Youtube name

    A human doesn't transform into a xeno, they transform into a drone which turns into a warrior to praetorian and then queen. if there already was a queen, the praetorian might transform into a carrier or ravager. The "dog" alien or runner transforms into a Chrysalis, smasher, or crusher, I don't remember exactly this strain's life cycle.

  • G Grime
    G Grime 3 months ago

    Xenomorphs don't mate there like ants in a way but some xenos eventually molt into queen xenos and the queen puts itself on a wall grows a egg sack and starts laying tons and tons of eggs and they hatch face huggers that mostly leave the nest to find a host by there self unless there are hosts already trapped in hive walls with only there face sticking out making them helpless

  • archon099
    archon099 3 months ago

    Wasn't the alien from Alien 3 formed from a face-hugger using a dog as the host? That's why it was so different from the humanoid ones. But yes, that movie was indeed bad, lol.

  • Aer
    Aer 3 months ago

    Almost like Prometheus shouldn't have ever existed

  • Ollis Solrain
    Ollis Solrain 3 months ago

    Waylin wanted strong Replicants lol

  • Jeff Pattison
    Jeff Pattison 3 months ago

    Good explaination. It shows how the original concept really went off the rails. I think Bannon and Shusett imagined it as a natural species, but it is too specifically adapted to prey on humans and attack the structures of modern civilization to be that. Scott thought it was a bioweapon, but horizontal gene transfer messes that up. It’s great for artistic expression, but a weapon that adapts its way around designed safeties or loses its potency by picking up weak genes is not particularly useful for ensuring the clearing of planets of sentient life. That black goo, aka monster sauce, is not a much better concept, because it too is an uncontrollable doomsday weapon.
    I tend to look at the engineers as gardners, manipulating the biospheres of habitable planets to produce the resources that they need. To them, we are just weeds that need to be pulled when we threaten their vegitables.

  • pink smog
    pink smog 3 months ago

    THANK YOU! I got so mad when they took their helmets off in Prometheus!

  • ziljin
    ziljin 3 months ago +1

    I love how he says ZE GOO!

  • Gabriel Nicolas
    Gabriel Nicolas 3 months ago

    8:15 its basically evolution

  • ci rob
    ci rob 3 months ago

    Nice theory of evolution

  • SepremeDuckling_Yt at robox

    What does zuh goo do to a xeno morph

  • Ronnie Dorsey
    Ronnie Dorsey 3 months ago

    Watching this on TV lol, didn't know you would be on cable

  • TheManCone Yo
    TheManCone Yo 3 months ago

    Great video one very well could theorise just on the movies alone that an alien could simply sting someone turning them into an egg sac that would give birth to several drones and eventually a queen to help establish a hive and the warrior class smooth domed ones would be birth from face huggers to help protect the queen or establish a new hive and in rare cases a drone would turn into a pretorian gaining the stinging reproduction ability you could even squeeze the raven into the cycle saying it is the result of one queen being present with one drone it would not evole into a pretorian but need to establish a paremiter and be able to ward off possible threats a single drone couldn't handle outside of a swarm.

  • Bryan De la Hoz
    Bryan De la Hoz 3 months ago

    It's a little disturbing that no one commented that 1.733 is the square root of 3, not the cubic root.

  • Megopteryx
    Megopteryx 3 months ago

    Ze goo

  • jose soto
    jose soto 4 months ago

    lol "Vagina Snake"

  • Jannes Planting
    Jannes Planting 4 months ago

    To me they all just look like a bunch of messed up Chozo Statues...

  • Dereck Heineman
    Dereck Heineman 4 months ago

    Why were the comics completely ignored. They almost fully explain the lifecycle of the xenomorph

  • wallawallaboy
    wallawallaboy 4 months ago

    I wonder if you could fit the dog in by suggesting that maybe the egg also had some of this black goo to alter the egg to accept some of the dog traits

  • Hillary Clinton's racist Kara Swisher interview

    *Kyle is incorrect - Xenomorphs don't mate - nor do they need to. The films, comics, novels, etc reveal that Facehuggers can alter their embryos to become Queens - and a Drone can actually alter its DNA to become a Queen, when none is present. Human hosts can also be captured and can be turned into eggs. There is no sex within the Xenomorph species. Kyle needs to do his homework.*

    • Araceli Mora Reyes
      Araceli Mora Reyes 2 months ago


    • Ryan Swafford
      Ryan Swafford 2 months ago

      The entire purpose of mating is to get genetic diversity. They get that from the host. Thus, they have no need for mating or even sexes. The "queen" is just laying barely conscious, intermediate delivery organisms.

  • Joseph Nicely
    Joseph Nicely 4 months ago

    Alien3 comment=awesome.

  • SuperBendy Logan
    SuperBendy Logan 4 months ago


  • Michael Thomas
    Michael Thomas 4 months ago

    So are you saying the predators(yautja) have been hunting xenos since the early stages of human existence because yautja have hunted xenos for tens of thousands of years

  • Baptiste Robert
    Baptiste Robert 4 months ago

    Prometheus never happened

  • Damon Anton
    Damon Anton 4 months ago

    This is the vsauce of movies

  • Matthew Bennett
    Matthew Bennett 4 months ago

    You're so wrong about everything and I hate your face

  • T-rex Hunter
    T-rex Hunter 4 months ago

    Actually... xenomorphs dont mate, the xenomorph queen lays eggs every few seconds, its born from a royal fachugger

  • Jingo Unchained
    Jingo Unchained 4 months ago

    Prometheus was an abomination

  • Seth Begley
    Seth Begley 4 months ago +1

    Mac weldin'

    The act of constructing a McDonald's foundation.

  • Joshua Morman
    Joshua Morman 4 months ago

    I like how you approached it but I think xenomorphs don’t need a male and female to reproduce, the females queen can lay eggs on their own simply by consuming enough food, the purpose male xenomorphs serve is to protect the queen since only females can lay eggs and males become praetorians but not queens while females become queens after becoming praetorians or its even possible that they are all neither male or female

  • Mark Anderson
    Mark Anderson 4 months ago

    So Xenomorph goo is Mutant Aids.

  • herp derp
    herp derp 4 months ago

    are you inside a glass box?

  • Biljana Stekovic
    Biljana Stekovic 4 months ago

    ze goo ZE GOO ZE GOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! STOP SAYING IT!

    TENNO UNIVERSE 4 months ago

    flame throwers are your best friend

  • Haylene De Clercq
    Haylene De Clercq 4 months ago

    Z E G O O !

  • TheRafa123
    TheRafa123 4 months ago

    The life of a xeno:From a egg (neomoprh i think) that hatches wen a host is near the face huger inside the egg and get on his god dam face and gives me xeno baby ;D the face huger gives him a supli of oxygen after some time the xeno chest buster that in like a day grows in a adult drone after some time that adult goes into a warrior and pretorian that cac go into a Queen that grows a sack of eggs the she lais down the drowns make the nest that the Queen stays in normal xeno or warriors dont have to mate they dont mate a drone evolvs step by step in a Queen but there are super face hugers that have queeb babys embryos ;D and a drone to protect the new born Queen no mateing involvd no mateing beetween xenos (excuse ma ba engleash)

  • RockDragon
    RockDragon 4 months ago

    ZE GOO

  • Jules Savvy-Bennett
    Jules Savvy-Bennett 4 months ago

    Do you write backwards or do you write normally and flip the video

  • the laws of physics boi

    Zee goo! (Dun dun dunnnn)

  • Alex Fraser
    Alex Fraser 4 months ago

    I kind of want a tarantula hawk wasp as a pet now. Spiders wouldn't go anywhere near me.

  • NeoDragonCount
    NeoDragonCount 4 months ago

    Prometheus ruined the Alien franchise for me. It was much better when Xenomorphs were simply a deadly extraterrestrial fauna that the foolish humans thought they could control.

  • MI6 Agent
    MI6 Agent 4 months ago

    *ZE GOOH*

  • Sowilo Sky
    Sowilo Sky 4 months ago

    drills with its but makes me giggle every time

  • Eddie Arnold
    Eddie Arnold 4 months ago

    What about the squid thing from Prometheus that the woman gives birth to

  • LukeSparow
    LukeSparow 4 months ago

    Goddamnit Promethius was so dumb.

  • bigemcginn robbert james

    Another good theory I have heard is how the goo will process the DNA of whatever it has come in contact with and change it into a perfect predator to whatever that thing is

  • Dragon Gamer 2000
    Dragon Gamer 2000 4 months ago +1

    So the movies is about a black goo.... Ok

  • Updated NPC
    Updated NPC 4 months ago


  • composerdoh
    composerdoh 4 months ago

    Great video, Science Thor. I wish you'd touched more on the implausibility of elements, or more interesting bio-chemical issues, though. Like how acid "blood" could effectively transfer nutrients within an organism, or how a kitten/small cat sized parasitic creature could feed/gestate inside John Hurt for so long without being detected by the super-advanced humans, or seemingly even his own immune system!
    I would question the plausibility of alien creatures feeding on humans, as the parasites you reference do so due to millions of years of evolving side-by-side. These wasp larvae cannot digest trees or blades of grass, or even crabs, or sharks and they actually SHARE DNA with all those things! So I can't see how realistic it is for aliens to eat humans or vice-versa, when we would presumably have FAR less genetically in common with them. But you kind-of addressed this with the "black goo" thing.

  • Sarcalogos Tortolero
    Sarcalogos Tortolero 4 months ago

    So he DID put his pp in the vagina snake

    MR. GOONCH 5 months ago +1

    The hawk wasps is just a small chazador!

  • AidnbGaming
    AidnbGaming 5 months ago

    Who else heard zu goo the whole time?

  • Rathanor
    Rathanor 5 months ago

    dude you forgot to explain the general morphophysiology of a xenomorph. you only tackled it's reproductive physiology. what about it's anatomy? organ physiology?

  • Shadx27
    Shadx27 5 months ago

    Well, xenomorphs due break one rule very hard, but you have to suspend your disbelief for movies. The rule they break? Rule of conservation. (Hatcher to full size alien without eating?) They gain mass from nothing. They create chemicals (mainly acids and such) without the ingredients for it. Etc. However, still scary good times.

  • El Duderino
    El Duderino 5 months ago

    Who gives a shit about all this new "Alien" stuff? It surely is as elaborated and thought through as the Episode-movies of another abused Sci-Fi-Franchise...
    Too decadent. Sometimes art shows itself when something is as simple and straightforward as possible. Alien 1-3 and Star Wars 1-3 were exactly that.
    Hollywood really sucks these days. And it seems to get worse and worse, with every year...

  • matthew styles
    matthew styles 5 months ago +1

    Denim shirt really? Ok jay lenno

  • Ghengis Khan
    Ghengis Khan 5 months ago

    how do they not melt with acidic blood with a ph level of -31

  • Wesley Kitchen
    Wesley Kitchen 5 months ago

    Xenomorphs can't reproduce. The queen xenomorphs keeps making eggs I a certain spot

  • aazhie
    aazhie 5 months ago

    Makes me wonder if the hammerpedes were a dead end reproductively for the goo, or if there were tiny adorable queen 'pedes

  • Clairvoyant81
    Clairvoyant81 5 months ago

    Don't really get why the dog xeno doesn't fit in there... seems to be the exact same thing, although they could have gone further with changing the design compared to the human xenos from the first two, but other than that, that dog xenomorph works perfectly fine within the "lore".
    Off to watch your follow-up video.

  • chaz
    chaz 5 months ago

    Good luck explaining this even Ridley has no idea what aliens is anymore

  • Jason Konst
    Jason Konst 5 months ago

    Xeno means unknown and not strange

  • Федя Крюков
    Федя Крюков 5 months ago

    Wait a sec. At the beginning there was darkness... I mean, according to Promethius movie there was somekind of real xenomorph (shown on a wall picture in the Promethius) who once 'empregnanted' an engineer with a 'new life' by the facehagging process thus becoming somekind of a messiah for the engineers as they completely lost the ability to give life (e.g. reproduce) by that time. But using the xenomorph's genetic material the engineers could somehow 'seed' the worlds with their genes through the painful self-sacrifice rite shown in the movie in an attempt to recreate the 'paradise' (e.g. 'engineerhood' without mating problems) through the brute force of a natural gene-recombination by starting evolution process anew time and the time again and destroying all failed experiments. And the black goo, exactly as you told, is just a weaponised by-product of engineer's initial experiments with xenomorphic genetic material. It's all in the first draft of the script for Promethius. So xenomorphs are somekind of ancient race with a bit complex reproduction process who existed thousands of years before humans and interacted with engineers using embryo-implantation long before David who just seemed to try to make purestrand xenomorph out of the genetic hymerae the black goo created using old-fashioned selection process because he's nuts.

    RAMPRAGE! 5 months ago

    can you readress this video now that covenant has been out, since now there is more relative information

  • CC MG
    CC MG 5 months ago

    "Vagina snake"

  • The Wrench
    The Wrench 5 months ago

    xenomorphs don’t mate the queen lays all the eggs

  • ChimpGuy
    ChimpGuy 6 months ago

    You're so cute when you say zhagoo... xD

  • alphadad1966
    alphadad1966 6 months ago

    What about the Predator Xenomorp, that busts out of the chest of the Predator that hunted the Aliens in temple in Antarctica (in Alien vs Predator)? That had the 4 mandibles (2 bifurcated?) like a Predator. That would imply that the lineage of prior hosts don't really matter, and that it's more like "Alien DNA" + Host is what drives the resulting lifeform