Predator: Earth is “Hunting for Dummies”

I love Predator movies, but the more I see them, the more I become convinced of my fan theory that Earth is their planet for “remedial hunters”. It’s where they take the Predators that are “a little slow”. The ones who need more training. Of course, the stupidest Predator is still more than a match for any human, but that’s also why they keep getting killed by us. Sure, it makes for good cinema, but it doesn’t make sense in-universe.

1. Humans are easy to kill. We have no defensive mechanisms–no armor, no plates on our backs, no spiked tails, no blood shooting from our eyes, no acid blasting out of our ass. No offensive capabilities either–no claws, no muscular necks or strong jaws or spiked teeth. We’ve got nothing. We’re sacks of pudgy meat. Our bodies even have a higher fat-to-muscle ratio than most other mammals. The strength of our ape ancestors has atrophied, lost to time.

You know why humans became apex predators? We could outlast. That’s why jogging and triathlons and dance marathons continue to be popular. Animals like cheetahs and antelopes have incredible energy and speed, but only for short bursts. We don’t have that. What we do have is patience. Like the hare and the tortoise, slow and steady wins the race. They can run away, but we can track and pursue and wait until they can’t run anymore. Then we strike.

That doesn’t work against a Predator. For one thing, the Predator is hunting you–all you can do is react. Only two things humans can do play to our advantage–running away or running toward. Running away from the Predator doesn’t work, because it can run faster. And it can track and pursue you. It won’t get bored and give up. Running toward doesn’t work because we can’t take on a predator toe-to-toe. Or at least we shouldn’t be able to. Which brings me to my next point.

2. These Predators keep getting killed in stupid ways. They’re clever to us, but for Predators, this is the kind of stuff that shows up on their FailArmy. Two of them have chopped off their own arms trying to kill us. Two have died because of their own weapons. They keep falling into obvious traps. For all their advanced technology they do not seem to know what an explosive is. They keep relying on tech that only detects heat. We know from Predator 2 that they can see in more than just the infrared spectrum.

They’re built like humanoid gorillas and have technology vastly superior to ours. Huge bodies, huge muscles, able to take massive amounts of punishment and still walk around, carrying nuclear weapons on their wrists. Yet one was killed by grizzled cop Danny Glover and another was killed by Adrien Brody, the guy from The Piano. How do we keep killing them?

The only way I could believe this is if either A) they’re “capping” their advantage (but this seems unlikely, as they still use shoulder-mounted laser cannons, homing spears, and camouflage) or B) the ones being sent to kill humans are just dumb. They’re not “thinkers”, they go on primal instinct, letting anger control them instead of good hunting skills. We keep seeing Predators failing to strike the killing blow, as if they’re not sure what to do. Or they’re conceited and reveling in their victory like those smarmy kids at the back of the class. We’ve seen others of their race act rationally–they don’t pick a fight with Danny Glover at the end of Predator 2. They form alliances with humans in Aliens vs. Predator.

3. Isn’t there anything better to hunt out there? The Predators live in a world with xenomorphs and predator hounds and prometheuses and giant rancor mammoths. A human skull looks pitiful compared to them.

Why do people collect hunting trophies? For pride. And the bigger the better. The best ones are always a rearing polar bear with teeth gnashed and claws bared. Or a deer with gigantic pointy antlers. No one is collecting wolf skulls or snake spines, like the Predator in Prey does. In a world where hunting is no longer necessary to eat, people hunt because they want to prove they can beat nature. That they’re stronger and stealthier than anything nature can throw at them. What about elephants or sharks or lions? When will we see a Predator go to Australia?

Dinosaurs would make so much more awesome prey. I hope they kidnapped and bred a few before they went extinct. A Predator versus a T-Rex? Or a Stegosaurus? Yes, please. I’m here for that.

The only reason I can think that they’re being sent to Earth, where the top of the food chain is a gangly meat bag with no natural armor or weapons, is that we are “practice”. That we’re supposed to be the easy worksheets for the Predators having trouble graduating from Hunting School. We don’t have the technology they have. We don’t even know/believe there are other sentient lifeforms out there. The Predators that we do kill keep dying in ways that a five-year-old could avoid. The first one essentially got crushed by a piano.

Eric Juneau is a software engineer and novelist on his lunch breaks. In 2016, his first novel, Merm-8, was published by eTreasures. He lives in, was born in, and refuses to leave, Minnesota. You can find him talking about movies, video games, and Disney princesses at where he details his journey to become a capital A Author.

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