Predators have become prey – and they do not even realize it

Among science fiction’s leading killing machines, Predators have stood firm for 35 years. The Predator has been a staple of futuristic horror since its first appearance on the small screen, whether it is under the stars or on almost every surface on Earth. Over the years, fans have witnessed these high-tech hunters take down a variety of unwitting opponents. Throughout their history, the Predators have rarely been truly outmatched. Marvel recently unveiled the latest addition to an exceptionally short list of warriors who have turned the Predator into prey.

The first issue of Predator (by Ed Brisson, Kev Walker, Frank D’Armata, and VC’s Clayton Cowles) takes readers to the devastating future of 2056, long after humanity first encountered the Predator or the Yautja. It was over a decade ago that Theta spent her days exploring the world of Damara. It was the bane of her parents’ existence, as they had no way of knowing what dangers this world might present outside the walls of their ship. They ended up being killed by one of the Yautja’s most powerful warriors. Only Theta survived the attack, and she vowed to dedicate the rest of her life to defeating the monsters who killed her family.

In 1987, Arnold Schwarzenegger starred in Predator which introduced the eponymous aliens as one of the most brutally effective hunters in the universe. As a result of their multiple trips to Earth and the countless other worlds they have turned into hunting grounds, it is exceedingly rare that any of their prey are able to defend themselves. In spite of their technological and innate advantages over other races, the Yautja are prone to falling victim to their own weapons and tactics, and this is how Theta has managed to remain one step ahead.

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It was through subsequent conflicts that Theta accumulated an unprecedented source of knowledge about her enemies as a result of her first encounter with the Yautja. In addition to incorporating the Predators’ weapons, technology, and armor into her repertoire, she has spent the better part of her life studying what she can learn from the battles that she has won. Thus, she has gained an understanding of how the Predators operate, as well as where and when they operate. In addition, her consistent ambushes on their hunting routes have forced the Yautja to alter their course, seemingly as a precaution.

In spite of the numerous times individual Predators have been disarmed or dismembered by less powerful opponents, no one has ever forced their entire society to change the way they hunt. This change in the Yautjas’ attitude may have been caused by another external influence, but it does not appear likely. Their normal stomping grounds appear to have become more treacherous than usual. As true as this may be, not realizing why could very well lead to their deaths.

It is not meant to imply that the Yautja are less capable than their relentless human opponents, rather that being unaware of what has been hunting them is their greatest weakness. They would face much more than individual hunters out on routine missions if they had any idea what they were up against. In contrast, the pressure would be applied in the opposite direction, and Theta would be responsible for implementing the changes. There is no doubt that the Yautja will discover the truth in due course. Hopefully, Theta will have found her vengeance and moved on to a better part of the cosmos long before that occurs.

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