Follow TV Tropes

Following

Context Main / StarfishAliens

Go To

1[[quoteright:310:https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/dashow_sockpuppet.png]]≤[[caption-width-right:310:[-[[http://michaeldashow.com/sockpuppet_large/ Possibly the friendliest way these guys can go.]]-] ]]≤≤->''"Within range of our sensors, there is no life [...]. At least, no life as we know it."''≤-->-- '''Spock''', ''Series/StarTrekTheOriginalSeries'', "[[Recap/StarTrekS1E25TheDevilInTheDark The Devil in the Dark]]"≤≤These '''Starfish Aliens''' are ''really'' alien aliens. They may have:≤* Non-vertebrate or at least radically [[BizarreAlienBiology non-humanlike biology]].≤* Nonhuman psychology, as opposed to PlanetOfHats.≤* Either unable to survive in Earth-like conditions, or able to survive nearly anywhere.≤* Vastly different [[BizarreAlienLocomotion motor]], [[BizarreAlienSenses sensory]], or [[StarfishLanguage communication]] abilities.≤* [[BizarreAlienReproduction Completely nonhuman reproduction]], such as budding, virtual immortality, unfertilized reproduction, [[BizarreAlienSexes three or more sexes]], or a [[BeePeople specialized queen]].≤≤If the aliens in question have two or more of the above traits, you're usually dealing with a Starfish Alien. However they are still "people" in the sense of having:≤* Some kind of language, not necessarily verbal, we can learn to interpret (or [[StarfishLanguage maybe not]], but we can at least recognize it as a language). In other words, they have some way of exchanging information with one another or with other beings.≤* Culture -- they have a common set of practices, goals and technologies.≤* Their own belief systems, [[BlueAndOrangeMorality however unusual]].≤* A mind-set that admits to things like logic and intuition; not necessarily those things by our definitions, but things ''like'' them.≤* At least some resemblance to living things with which we are familiar. They eat, sleep, reproduce, etc.; they are clearly organic beings, or else MechanicalLifeforms.≤≤Sometimes, however, they are ''too'' alien and their language, mind-set and culture remain incomprehensible to humans. Often (particularly if the beings can't communicate easily with humans) they will be presumed to be evil by the [[HumansAreBastards human protagonists]] [[WhatMeasureIsANonHuman without any actual proof]]. But in accordance with WeComeInPeaceShootToKill, starfish aliens who run across innocent, open-minded humans are themselves known to do beyond-horrible things to them, then excuse themselves later with an explanation that they were only trying to communicate with or greet us in the way they know how. Usually, their language and communication are so different from ours that if there is to be any communication between our species and theirs, it must be done by [[TranslatorMicrobes technological means of translation]] or them taking on [[AFormYouAreComfortableWith a form humans can interact with]]. In an extreme case of ''[[Literature/EndersGame varelse]]''-class incompatibilities, there may exist no possible means of communication other than mutual destruction.≤≤Given the long, strange history of life on Earth (a given house includes such a bewildering variety of life as humans, houseplants, pets, spiders, molds, bacteria, etc.), it's likely if we ever actually encounter alien life it might fit in this category. Species that evolve naturally would have adapted to solve similar basic problems: obtaining food/necessities, negotiating natural disaster, adapting to new circumstances, avoiding contamination by pathogens and parasites, competing with other species, competing with themselves, and so forth. So we would expect to find at least a few familiar aspects to their psychology as opposed to sheer indecipherable mystery... if they evolved in similar conditions as us.≤≤These are much more common in animation, video games, and literature than they are in live-action media, due to the likelihood of SpecialEffectsFailure. They are typically located towards the "hard" end of the [[MohsScaleOfScienceFictionHardness Sci-Fi Hardness Scale]], though when their biology becomes sufficiently improbable, they may soften it instead. When a story is told from the point of view of Starfish Aliens, and other decidedly non human creatures, it's {{Xenofiction}}.≤≤Ironically, actual starfish belong to the phylum of echinoderms (along with urchins and sea cucumbers) and despite their utterly alien anatomy, are among the ''closest'' relatives to vertebrates in the animal kingdom. Arthropods, molluscs, earthworms, jellyfish, and sponges are all more distantly related by comparison.≤≤SuperTrope to OctopoidAliens. The inverse of HumanAliens or RubberForeheadAliens. Aliens that don't look like humans, but still have basically the same body type are HumanoidAliens, or {{Intelligent Gerbil}}s, if they're obviously [[BeastMan based off a particular Earth animal]]. InsectoidAliens effectively split the difference.≤≤Prone to enter GrotesqueGallery. May speak a StarfishLanguage. See also BizarreAlienBiology, StarfishRobots, and OurMonstersAreWeird. Compare EldritchAbomination (both tropes have some overlap). The {{Trope Namer|s}} is Creator/HPLovecraft's ''Literature/AtTheMountainsOfMadness'', written in 1931, where the Elder Things are described as having starfish-like appendages.≤≤----≤!!Examples:≤[[index]]≤* StarfishAliens/{{Film}}≤* StarfishAliens/{{Literature}}≤* StarfishAliens/LiveActionTV≤* StarfishAliens/VideoGames≤[[/index]]≤≤[[foldercontrol]]≤≤[[folder:Anime and Manga]]≤* The original series ''Anime/AstroBoy'' episode "Mission to Mars" features starfish-like aliens with four extremities. ≤* The eponymous creatures of ''Franchise/{{Digimon}}'', being data-based lifeforms from a [[AnotherDimension parallel universe]], having so many different forms (ranging from angelic to animals to humanoid or even a mixture), [[EvolutionaryLevels and each individual having multiple (and radically) different forms throughout their life cycle]].≤* The [[spoiler:Scub Coral and Coralians]] of ''Anime/EurekaSeven'', which as the name implies, are [[spoiler:''sentient alien land corals''.]]≤* The ELS (Extraterrestrial Liquid-metal Shapeshifters) in ''Anime/Gundam00AWakeningOfTheTrailblazer''. Their name alone should give you an indication of how bizarre they are. For one thing, they appear to live in gas giants, they are basically massive hunks of metal that can take on any shape they wish, they can assimilate other forms of life and technology into themselves, and they have no concept of communication beyond their own HiveMind; when they encounter something unknown, their first instinct is assimilation to understand it. That includes everything from [[ApocalypseHow planets]] to [[YouWillBeAssimilated complex machinery]] to [[BodyHorror human flesh]].≤* The aliens in ''Anime/{{Gunbuster}}'' are Gigerian ''things'' the size of houses. Their ships are ''bigger'' aliens the little ones ride on/in.≤* The Mercurians in ''Manga/{{Gunnm}}''. While Venusians and Jovians might look alien, they are simply modified humans. Mercurians, on the other hand, are the descendants of the [[TheVirus runaway nanoweapon]] who are so disconnected from our mode of thinking and [[BlueAndOrangeMorality understanding of good and bad]], that their [[StarfishLanguage attempt at contact]] is a mindless monster that attacks everything with its huge maw and GagPenis.≤* ''LightNovel/HaruhiSuzumiya'':≤** The [[SufficientlyAdvancedAlien Data Overmind]] is some kind of non-corporeal, out-of-phase "data-lifeform." [[note]] It's a concept based on an old theory that states that in its most basic form, the entire Universe is merely quantifiable information that can be [[RealityWarper manipulated]]; the Overmind is supposed to be a gestalt consciousness born of that information.[[/note]] What exactly it/they is/are, or how it/they think/thinks is never really explained, instead we get a lot of TechnoBabble. Important to know is that its/their mind vastly differs from that of humans and that it/they does/do not communicate through language and therefore created the [[ArtificialHuman Interfaces]] (Yuki, [[spoiler:Asakura]], [[spoiler:Kimidori]]) as its/their mediums. It appears that the entity/entities has/have different "voices" in itself with different opinions. Oh, and they can [[RealityWarper hack reality]]. Playing up on their godlike nature, in one short story Kyon is contacted by an old school acquaintance who had fallen in love with Yuki at first sight and now worships the ground she stands on. It turns out that [[spoiler:he had the minor power to see her connection to the IDE which consequently overloaded his brain, [[TheseAreThingsManWasNotMeantToKnow as no mere mortal could possibly comprehend its true form]].]]≤** Later, another entity similar to the Data Overmind is introduced, the Sky Canopy Domain/Macrospatial Quantum Cosmic Existence. While having a similar non-corporeal, [[RealityWarper reality warping]] nature as the Data Overmind, its mindsets and motivations are so different they are alien ''even to the Overmind itself''. They are so alien to each other that despite knowing of each other for millennia they are totally unable to communicate, and the little contact the two entities have had is through a coincidental meeting of Yuki and [[HumanoidAbomination Kuyou Suou]] on Earth, the latter being the Domain's human interface, and one much worse at fitting in than any of the Overmind's.≤* The Gauna from ''Manga/KnightsOfSidonia'' are masses of regenerating/shapeshifting flesh surrounding an indestructible True Body. They live comfortably in space either as individuals or as huge aggregates called Mass Union Ships, and are capable of assuming any shape, even replicating inorganic technology. They [[ItCanThink demonstrate intelligence]] beyond simple animal instincts, but humanity has been unable to communicate with them in any way beyond violence. In turn, it's been suggested that the reason they try to devour humans indiscriminately is because ''they're'' trying to communicate and don't understand how humans work either. ≤* While most of the aliens from the ''Anime/{{Macross}}'' franchise are a mix of HumanAliens and RubberForeheadAliens (though this is [[JustifiedTrope justified]], as they were all [[TransplantedHumans seeded]] that way by the [[{{Precursors}} Protoculture]]), the Vajra are completely alien (though [[BigCreepyCrawlies vaguely insectoid]]). It's here where the unspoken conflict of ''Anime/MacrossFrontier'' lies; whereas peace and understanding was reached with previous alien enemies since the heroes were able to communicate with them, there is initially no way of communicating with the Vajra until the [[spoiler:it is discovered that the songstresses are able to tap into the Vajra fold communication network via [[AppliedPhlebotinum fold quartz crystals]] and/or the Vajra's [[BodyHorror fold communication capable bacteria]].]]≤* All of the Mushi in ''Manga/{{Mushishi}}'' are pretty much these.≤* The [[MonsterOfTheWeek Angels]] of ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' appear to be these, or at least the ones that don't cross into EldritchAbomination territory. While Adam, Lilith and Sachiel are humanoids, the others have some bizarre appearances: Armisael is a double helix-shaped loop that forms into a tentacle; Ramiel is a regular octahedron who does some [[AlienGeometries impossibly]] cool shapeshifting; Iruel and Bardiel are sentient nanoviruses; Leliel is two-dimensional with a four-dimensional shadow made of antimatter that can ''bleed'', etc.≤* [[spoiler:[[CuteIsEvil Kyubey]]]] in ''Anime/PuellaMagiMadokaMagica''. The [[spoiler:RidiculouslyCuteCritter]] appearance hides a possibly [[HiveMind hive-minded]] being capable of creating a new body out of thin air if one is killed. It's also completely incapable of emotion and has no understanding of human [[LackOfEmpathy empathy]] or [[BlueAndOrangeMorality morality]]. The moment where this is most apparent is when it can't understand why [[spoiler: the girls would get upset that making a deal with it tears out your soul and eventually turns you into an EldritchAbomination, [[WellIntentionedExtremist because what is one human life compared to the universe?]] ]]≤* In ''Anime/SpaceDandy'', most of the main and supporting cast are humans (or possibly Human Aliens), Humanoid Aliens, or Rubber-Forehead Aliens, but most of the rest of the aliens come in an amazing variety of shapes and colors, from plants and marine life to giant crystals and floating worms.≤* The Neuroi in ''Anime/StrikeWitches''. They're basically [[NinjaPirateZombieRobot soil-eating eusocial biotechnological assimilating planes]].≤* Violen Jiger, the massive insectoid mass of Decepticon sparks in ''Manga/TransformersZone'', as well as Dark Nova, the... thing from ''Transformers Return of Convoy''. Alpha Q from ''Anime/TransformersEnergon'', an {{Expy}} of the Quintessons from Generation One.≤* The aliens in ''Anime/{{Tsuritama}}'' are literally fish aliens. They have human and fish forms, require water to live and can communicate through it. Whenever they try it with humans, though, it ends up as MindControl. ≤* ''Anime/VoicesOfADistantStar'' - the Tarsians possess a starfish-like structure. In addition, miscommunications between them and humanity is implied to be one of the reasons why humans are fighting a war with them.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Card Games]]≤* Top Trumps: the ''Planets and Aliens'' set has a glorious selection of complete freakazoids, with the exclusion of a couple of living teddy bears and Bob [=McTerrifyingly-Normal=] from Earth.≤* The actual Alien archtype in ''TabletopGame/YuGiOh'' is pretty easy to understand, as most of them range from TheGreys to ''Franchise/{{Alien}}''-style creatures that are still relatively humanoid. The Worm archtype on the other hand are truly strange, as they have wildly different physical appearances with only a few of them being even vaguely humanoid. The boss monster, Worm Zero, crosses over into EldritchAbomination territory, as it appears as a building-sized moonlike sphere of flesh that is formed by absorbing the bodies of other Worms and seems to be able to affect reality.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Comic Books]]≤* Franchise/{{DCU}}:≤** The original foe of the ''Franchise/JusticeLeagueOfAmerica'', Starro the Star Conqueror, is -- surprise, surprise! -- a literal Starfish Alien whose spawn [[FaceFullOfAlienWingwong latch onto humans' faces]] so he can [[MindControl control their minds]].≤** The Franchise/GreenLantern Corps has Bzzd (an insectoid), Medphyll (a plant being), Chaselon (an intelligent crystal), Dkrtzy RRR (an intelligent ''equation''), Leezle Pon (a superintelligent smallpox virus), Mogo (a [[GeniusLoci sentient planet]]), Rot Lop Fan (who, being from a sector of space where no light exists, is under the impression that he is a member of the F-Sharp Bell Corps), a race of hivemind spores, and [[spoiler:the Mother Mercy, a HiveMind plant/fungus thing and planet parasite that can alter gravity and progenitor of the [[LotusEaterMachine Black Mercy]] plant species.]]≤** ''Comicbook/{{Supergirl}}'': The ''Comicbook/RedDaughterOfKrypton'' arc has B'ox - literally a living, sentient polyhedron - and one of the soldiers of [[Franchise/GreenLantern Atrocitus]], which resembles a giant, orange, fish-headed cricket.≤** ''ComicBook/{{Supergirl}}: ComicBook/{{Bizarrogirl}}'' has the Ash'ka'phageous, a race of moon-sized planet-eaters. As travelling through space they take a chrysalis-like shape, but when they descend upon a planet they look like a kind of bipedal monstruos insect.≤** Martians in the DCU are quite monstrous to human eyes in their natural form and are telekinetic, telepathic shapeshifters. ≤** ''ComicBook/{{Legion of Super-Heroes}}'' has had a few members. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tellus_%28comics%29 Tellus]] is the best example from the original continuity. [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gates_%28comics%29 Gates]] from the rebooted continuity. The Gil'dishpan race vaguely resemble psychic purple tubeworms with club-tails floating in water-filled orbs. The Durlans were initally shown as orange humanoids with antennae, but since they're {{Voluntary Shapeshifter}}s it was very easy for later writers to declare this was AFormYouAreComfortableWith and their ShapeshifterDefaultForm was actually a mass of tentacles in a robe.≤** During Creator/AlanMoore's legendary run on ''Comicbook/SwampThing'', the eponymous hero encountered a sentient biomechanical planetoid, which proceeded to rape him.≤** Shaar Q is from a race of OctopoidAliens with a somewhat serpentine body and the ability to plane-shift.≤** One of the regulars at Event Horizon in ''ComicBook/SuperboyAndTheRavers'' is some kind of EnergyBeing who can hold onto and wear shirts despite their lack of physical form.≤* Franchise/MarvelUniverse:≤** Fomalhauti are telepathic tentacled blobs. There are also a SpaceWhale species and another HiveMind LivingShip species.≤** The ComicBook/UltimateMarvel version of Galactus is a 100,000 mile-long HiveMind of insectlike MechanicalLifeforms. ≤** The Brood, a blatant ''Franchise/{{Alien}}'' ripoff ... er, nonhumanoid insectoid race that implant their young in unwilling humanoids.≤** The Symbiotes, or Klyntar, are a species of amorphous, shapeshifting parasitic entities -- of which the most famous members are ComicBook/{{Venom}} and ComicBook/{{Carnage}} -- that bond to a host and grant them superhuman abilities with a distinctly Lovecraftian flavor. ≤** The Technarchy, a race of "[[MechanicalLifeforms techno-organic]]" creatures that think and speak more like machines than organic creatures, change shape and look like random masses of circuitry in their natural forms, and eat by infecting other creatures with a virus that makes them techno-organic also and then draining the life energy out of them. They have a HiveMind offshoot called the Phalanx.≤** Mojo of the ''ComicBook/XMen'' books is the most visible representative of a race of pseudo-anthropomorphic slugs who use exoskeletons and motorized platforms to get around.≤** Martians in the Marvel-verse are cephalopod-like creatures with shapeshifting abilities.≤** ''ComicBook/PlanetHulk'' introduced the spikes, a race at least superficially similar to the above-mentioned symbiotes, appearing as masses of slime. In their natural state, they're peaceful creatures that float through the vacuum of space feeding off cosmic radiation. When confined to a terrestrial environment, however, the atmosphere starves them to the point of madness, and they're forced to latch on to native life forms and infect them like parasites, causing spiked protrusions (hence their name) to jut out from the victim's flesh, essentially turning them into {{Parasite Zombie}}s.≤** [[{{ComicBook/Sleepwalker}} Sleepwalkers]] are tall, thin humanoid creatures with olive-green skin, and buglike red compound eyes that dress in blue costumes with purple cowls and bandage-like arm and leg wrappings. They have the ability to emit bizarre EyeBeams that can physically reshape matter and alter its physical characteristics to a limited extent. They dwell in [[DreamLand the Mindscape]], an alternate dimension that links all of the minds of every living being in the physical world, including Earth. Despite their bizarre appearance, they are actually benign, and the whole reason they exist is to function as a collective GuardianEntity for humans and other sentient beings of our universe, protecting us from being {{Mind Rape}}d by the demons and horrors that also live in the Mindscape.≤** In the prime universe the Kree are just HumanAliens, but in the ComicBook/UltimateMarvel universe, they have a complete bizarre and alien look, and speak with a StarfishLanguage. Mahr Vehl had extensive cirugy to look like a human being and infiltrate SHIELD. ≤* Matt Howarth did an entire series about Konny and Kzu, neither of whom looks remotely human-like -- in fact, there are ''no'' humanoid aliens in the strip and books. The [[ShowWithinAShow Comic Within A Comic]] ''The Mighty Virus'' has a superheroic virus colony, complete with a [[TheCape cape]] hanging off of its flying environment globe.≤* ''ComicBook/{{Valerian}}'' has alien species ranging from simple RubberForeheadAliens to things that definitely belong in this category. Giant, telepathic worm-things? Gelatinous [[VoluntaryShapeshifting shape-shifting]] prostitutes? Jellyfish-like mammalian math geniuses? And that's just the species that are categorized as ''people''; the "animals" are even weirder. No wonder the creators have published a whole book dedicated just to their aliens.≤* ''ComicBook/TopTen's'' Vigilante from Venus is a giant worm/insect/jellyfish nightmare in her true form. No wonder she poses as a GreenSkinnedSpaceBabe to make adult films -- although some of her porn work involved her ''natural'' form.≤* ''ComicBook/{{Empowered}}'' has (at least) one race of them. They're huge (their liver weighs 700 kilograms alone!), have three eyes, and their veins seem to be on the outside of their bodies.≤* The Mellenares from DynamoJoe. Microscopic unicellular organisms that form colonies of variable but typically huge size. Those colonies can take shapes taken from the nightmares of the races they fight, have a metallic look and resemble more HumongousMecha and spaceships than living beings, are able to live and travel under their own power in interstellar space and can generate huge amounts of energy by unknown means to power their space travel and WaveMotionGun.≤* ''ComicBook/StarTrekEarlyVoyages'': ≤** The Lirin have a very finite population and everyone in their society fulfills a specific role. When the Federation made FirstContact with Liria, Nano was generated in order to serve as their emissary. This means that Nano can't return home or he would upset his planet's delicate balance. In "Flesh of My Flesh", Captain Pike describes Liria as the closest thing to a perfect society that he has ever seen. In "One of a Kind", Number One tells Yeoman Colt that when a Lirin dies, typically of old age, another is generated in advance so that the balance can be maintained. ≤** In "Flesh of My Flesh", the Ngultor are significantly larger than the average humanoid. They are bipedal but have [[BizarreAlienLimbs four arms linked by tendrils]] and a powerful exoskeleton with numerous spikes to protect them from harm or attack. In terms of their psychology, the Ngultor [[TheRightOfASuperiorSpecies regard other races as raw material]] to supplement and repair their OrganicTechnology, which seems to be the basis of their religious beliefs, if not their entire society. They are completely unable to comprehend why the ''Enterprise'' crew resists the rapture of the flesh and the sacred harmony of blood, bone and gristle.≤* ''ComicBook/StarTrekUntoldVoyages'': In "Silent Cries", the Crier is a seemingly non-sentient lifeform which resembles a glowing blue blob with tendrils. It is capable of absorbing electromagnetic impulses such as subspace transmissions and transmitting them at almost the speed of thought. The Crier resides in a crystalline cavern which seems to be a part of it. It reacts furiously to the Orion pirate Raydeen breaking off a piece of the crystal, killing him and his henchmen. The Crier then transforms itself into pure energy and leaves Duran 12 for parts unknown at an incredible speed. Sulu determines that it was sentient all along and that it did not like what it saw of supposed civilization.≤* The [=VXX199=] of ''ComicBook/StrikeforceMorituri''. Unlike the Horde PlanetLooters who preceded them, the VXX199 are composed of millions of completely alien lifeforms of varying intelligence, in a ship that's a giant conglomeration of living tissue, all driven by the ship's own biological AI. It's like if Terry Gilliam directed a cyberpunk thriller with H.R. Giger as the art designer.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Comic Strips]]≤* Aliens in ''ComicStrip/TheFarSide'' are usually depicted as semi-humanoid blobby creatures with numerous tentacles with eyes on the ends growing out of their bodies. They're almost invariably huge, capture humans like bugs (to which they are the size of), and speak random gibberish (unless understanding what they say is necessary for the joke).≤* Many of the aliens Spaceman Spiff encounters over the course of ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes''.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Fanfiction]]≤* ''Roleplay/AsukaQuest'' has the Angels nicknamed Giant Alien Starfish because they're actually this trope rather than anything actually religious in nature, so the original name came off as pretentious.≤* ''FanFic/{{Eugenesis}}'' goes into some detail about the Quintesson (See Western Animation below), and their origins. Since they're neither fully organic or fully mechanical, they aren't born in the traditional sense, and tend to be born via budding. Mention is made of some of the original Quintessons being rolled like dough from [[PlanetEater Unicron's]] surface.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Pinball]]≤* Creator/WilliamsElectronics' quasi-pinball ShootEmUp ''Pinball/{{Hyperball}}'' has the player defending himself from moving lights which evolve into lightning bolts.≤* Featured among the various aliens in ''Pinball/BigBangBar''.≤* Also featured in ''Pinball/AsteroidAnnieAndTheAliens''.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Tabletop Games]]≤* The Hivers of ''TabletopGame/{{Traveller}}'' are vaguely starfish-like aliens with nonhuman physiologies, biologies, psychologies, society, and which reproduce by budding. Considered a challenge to role-play. Despite the name, they are not a HiveMind, nor are they BeePeople. The tag "hivers" was hung on them by a human who thought their buildings looked like beehives.≤* ''TabletopGame/StarFrontiers'':≤** The worm/salamander-like Syllix, the insectoid centaur Vrusk, and various other species, as well as the Kliks and ke'kekt from their other sci-fi property ''TabletopGame/StarDrive''.≤** Yazirians are arguably {{Beast M|an}}en, but the Sathar and Dralasites might fit. Sathar are sentient, humanoid invertebrates who seem to be a human -- sized cross between an earthworm and a squid, and due to their nonhuman psychology are an NPC-only race. Dralasites have surprisingly humanlike personalities but are physically the strangest of all, being fully sapient amoeba-like multicellular organisms, and reproducing by budding.≤* ''TabletopGame/Warhammer40000'':≤** Medusae, an HQ choice for the Dark Eldar, are parasitic creatures that resemble a "collection of brains and spinal cords that are stacked on one another" and use emotional trauma as a weapon.≤** The background material lists several not seen in any armies, such as the Thyrrus, which resemble more pulsating bags of meat and tentacles than anything else, and the Umbra, which are essentially black orbs filled with goo, and are suggested to be simply "parts" of a larger interdimensional creature.≤** The Hrud, who are apparently evolved from a worm-like creatures, resemble a set of interconnected spines in a vaguely humanoid shape. They can "walk" more or less vertically on two of these spines, use the other two as arms, are relatively pacifistic until disturbed (they usually infest lower levels of the imperial hive cities) and have a very advanced and enlightened religion that worship a deity, parts of which might be the aforementioned Umbra. That's not even touching on the entropic fields they generate, which rapidly age everything around them.≤* The only humanoid aliens from the boardgame/rpg ''Battlestations'' are the humans.≤* ''TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons'':≤** The 3.5 Edition supplement "Lords of Madness" describes aliens of forms various and sundry. These include: the Aboleth, hermaphrodite catfish/eel/squid spawn of the Far Realm with GeneticMemory; Illithidae, a genus of creatures related to the iconic mind flayers, a group that includes gigantic, pulsing, psionic brains and the deceptively innocuous mind flayer larvae; Tsochari, a parasitic lifeform from a cold and distant planet who enter and control the bodies and minds of spellcasters for some sinister purpose; the Silthilar, an ancient race of wizard-scientists who have transformed themselves into hive-minded swarms in response to a particularly virulent magical plague; and the Beholderkin, insane levitating spheres with [[EyesDoNotBelongThere many eyes in disturbing places]].≤*** It also includes the "Fleshwarper", a prestige class which allows one to [[PowerCopying acquire traits]] from such creatures, eventually undergoing a transformation into a minor EldritchAbomination.≤** Other D&D examples include many, if not most, extraplanar creatures. Most elemental entities (with the possible exception of genies) would qualify, as do most Outer Planes denizens.≤** Most of the Alluria Publications "Remarkable Races" series for 4th Edition are humanly comprehensible and fairly easy to play, but the Squole and Relluk ... sentient oozes who only have personalities because they're imitating the fact that humans do and reproduction-obsessed ancient robots ... yeah.≤* The [[Creator/HPLovecraft Migou]] from ''TabletopGame/CthulhuTech''. Semi-fungoid, hyperintelligent insects who don't feel human emotions...except, of course, for the "fear-born genocidal hatred of anything that looks like it could be half as advanced as they are" part. Actually, scratch that. It's an insult to [[HumansAreBastards human assholes]] everywhere.≤* ''TabletopGame/{{GURPS}}: Space'' spends quite some time on how to design really weird aliens. The starfishiest designs are the various "exotica" such as living nebulae or sentient magnetic fields.≤* ''TabletopGame/EclipsePhase'' features the Factors, sentient creatures that evolved from something resembling slime mold. It also features the Exhumans, humans who have effectively turned ''themselves'' into Starfish Aliens through radical modifications. ''EP'' specifically advises that if you're creating a new alien race, you should keep them ''alien'', rather than just RubberForeheadAliens. There are enough rubber foreheads among the ''transhuman'' population as it is.≤* ''TabletopGame/TeenagersFromOuterSpace'' divides aliens into three types: [[RubberForeheadAliens Near Humans]], Not Very Near Humans, and Real Weirdies, which usually fall under this trope.≤* Flumphs in ''TabletopGame/{{Pathfinder}}'' are silly-looking intelligent floating jellyfish monsters from the Dark Tapestry (outer space, with CosmicHorrorStory influences). Unlike many Dark Tapestry creatures, flumphs are friendly to terrestrial life. Brethedans are large, intelligent floating creatures that resemble a cross between a blimp and a jellyfish, native to gas giant worlds. They don't favor technology, but can reshape their physiology to meet the demands of different situations.≤* The ''TabletopGame/{{Exalted}}'' shard Heaven's Reach has the Kranix, who are described as a hard-shelled octopus. In classical Exalted, the demons known as agatae are enormous, incredibly beautiful rainbow wasps with inhuman mentalities.≤* ''TabletopGame/StarfleetBattles'' features (in addition to all the starfish aliens that could be found in ''TOS'' and ''TAS'' -- but ''not'' the movies or later series) the Hydrans as a major race. They are a three-armed, three-legged, three-gendered methane breathers -- though they are surprisingly human-like in thought and society despite that (and in ''Starfleet Command'' the universal translator outputs their speech with a plummy British accent).≤* The Metisians of ''TabletopGame/RocketAge'' are six tentacled, 'brain in a jar' style aliens who reproduce entirely by cloning.≤* All of the aliens of ''TabletopGame/TwentyThreeHundredAD'' have strange biology that explains why they act as they do, from the adrenaline-junky ProudWarriorRace to the bizzarre PlantAliens.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Theatre]]≤* The 2008 European live tour of ''[[Film/TheRockyHorrorPictureShow The Rocky Horror Show]]''- ie, a fully staged live performance, not just the movie and AudienceParticipation- had this as a twist ending. Riff Raff and Magenta reappear toward the end as twelve-foot-tall monstrosities with human upper bodies mounted on long robes concealing God-only-knew what, thus making their (and Frank's) human appearances throughout the rest of the show nothing more than AFormYouAreComfortableWith. This opens up all kinds of new implications about Frank's addiction to human sex, his ''building'' a human, the declaration that "[his] lifestyle's too extreme", and Riff and Magenta's eagerness to return to their home planet.≤* ''Theatre/LittleShopOfHorrors'' gives us the unforgettable [[ManEatingPlant "Audrey II"]] as the BigBad. Audrey II is a talking, singing {{Plant Alien|s}} resembling a Venus flytrap on steroids. It reproduces and spreads by producing pods to colonize planets, and it can see and hear perfectly fine despite having no visible eyes or ears. Oh, and it needs blood to survive. ''Lots'' of blood. Because of this, Audrey II is entirely inimical toward humanity, yet it also displays strong interpersonal skills, manipulating its human pawns through its sassy, smooth-talking charm.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Webcomics]]≤* The tentacled creatures of ''Webcomic/GhastlysGhastlyComic''.≤* Under his MobileSuitHuman(oid) exterior, Sam Starfall of ''Webcomic/{{Freefall}}'' is [[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff1600/fc01551.htm a tentacular alien]] described as vaguely like an octopus, a lungfish, and a lamprey. The sight of his body tends to cause [[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff100/fv00083.htm vomiting]], [[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff2800/fc02757.htm blank incomprehension]], or [[http://freefall.purrsia.com/ff1300/fc01274.htm delirious]] BrainBleach mode, though [[UnrevealAngle readers are spared the experience]].≤--> '''Sam''': Don't let the chromatophores fool you. I exist in only three dimensions and I have a certificate saying so.≤* While the Webcomic/WalkyVerse's native Purple Aliens and [[CanonImmigrant permanently imported]] Melotians and Zinoboppians are classic diminutive humanoids (even though the Aliens are quite monstruous under their armor), the Martians are enormous tentacled monstrosities best described as a cross between a mantis and an octopus.≤* ''Webcomic/UnicornJelly'':≤** The universe itself. It has no atoms, but a set number of "tratons", that are "polihedral forms made of dimensional energy", as opposed to our spheres of mass surrounded by energy. The tratons cannot be transformed into one another, and there is a set number of each, from the start to the end of the times. When the humans arrived, in an event that may or may not have destroyed our universe, their matter was "translated" into the closest possible alternative, but since it wasn't exactly equal, they need constant doses of a plant/animal, quite strange on itself, called [[http://unicornjelly.com/alt113.html Vlax]]. '''Also''', the gravity equivalent pulls from space, rather than from matter, so there's an absolute up and down (walk to the other side of the world and you fall into space, etc). An object sufficiently large stops being affected by it, so they have "worldplates" that are large, plain, ''triangular'' worlds, arranged in triangular patterns that make them look like a recursive [[Franchise/TheLegendOfZelda Triforce]], but it gets weird when you look at the 3-D model. It also has the "finite yet unbound" thing our universe has (we think), that if you walk too far in one direction you end up coming back home from the other side. Including falling so far down that you pop up from above. [[spoiler:And therefore, when the [[HumansAreBastards humans destroyed one of the worlds]], the pieces stopped being immune to gravity, fell, and destroyed further worlds, creating an ever-growing pillar of debris that is eventually going to engulf the entire universe. It will eventually settle and reform in the triangular worldplates again, as shown by an aeons-old relic from an obviously non-human nor local civilization.]]≤** ''Humans themselves are starfish aliens''. When the smartest girl ever born there finds some ancient astronomical charts from our world, she finds out that they had come from a universe "dominated by the geometry of the sphere", and deduces that ''"The society must have been terribly hierarchical, with the rich and powerful dominating the top of the world-domes, and the poor dammed to live in the slippery end, where the lose of life to the curvature of the world must have been a constant dread. This world must have been like a paradise to them, with endless extensions of safe, plain land."''≤** The Crystal Dodo and the Dodofruit Domes. Each worldplate has exactly 303 Crystal Dodos, each living in a patch with 303 Dodofruit Domes each. Unless humans arrive and kill some of course. Both are immortal, incapable of reproduction, and the Dodo goes around its patch, eating only the topmost fruit of each one and leaving. By the time it goes back, the fruit has grown back. Sounds nice? [[spoiler:The Dodo is a mindless pair of legs with a mouth between them. It moves the exact number of steps between each Dome, eats the fruit, and starts walking again, forever. No two Dodos overlap each other's path, and all the native creatures instinctively avoid these areas, even the sentient Jellys, though the Dodo has no mind, no sensorial organs at all, and no possible means of defending itself. It's a fruit eating automathon]]. As of the Domes, [[spoiler:they are highly intelligent and sentient beings, though incapable of reacting to its various and delicate sensorial inputs. And the fruits are actually [[EyeScream highly sensitive eyes]].]]≤** The crystal basilisks don't have musculature, they walk by growing new legs in front, moving them down their bodies, and then breaking them off at the back. As awkward as it sounds, they're a fast, dangerous apex predator, and very dangerous to humans. They reproduce by injecting their prey with self-assembling crystals, which eat them from the inside out.≤* ''Webcomic/SchlockMercenary'' has a fair few, although also plenty of RubberForeheadAliens and everything in between. The titular Schlock is perhaps the best example, being an '[[BlobMonster amorph]]' that is frequent described as looking like (and being mistaken for) a pile of crap. He's even stranger when explained, as he basically evolved from faulty memory storage/brain replacement systems and is best described as a carbon nanotube-weaven jumble of brain matter that doubles as GreyGoo and has a chemical compound for every meal (and there are a ''lot'' of meals, the only thing Schlock has ever spit out was a glob of weapons-grade nanites that tried to hijack him and would've succeeded if he was anything else).≤* Aliens in ''ComicBook/BuckGodotZapGunForHire'' range from fairly humanoid to extradimensional beings who can't even be percieved by, let alone communicate with, humans. A special place is reserved for the Uligb, who exist in 13½ dimensions and love popsicles. Which they stuff and mount. They also look a little like the bastard son of a jellyfish and a Klein bottle, with clusters of eyes added to the mix. Another particularly weird one is the Teleporter, who more or less looks like a whole bunch of free-floating hexagonal windows, with pale hands coming out of almost all of them, and a dopey, buggy-eyed head coming out of the last one, and believes a species hasn't achieved true intelligence until it can teleport whole planets around. A sidebar about how every alien species has ninjas included a line about how the ninjas of one species kept wiping out visitors to the alien home world before anyone realized that they weren't just an ordinary mountain range.≤* Except for a one-strip crossover with ''[[http://zeera.comicgenesis.com/ Zeera the Space Pirate]]'', all of the aliens in ''Webcomic/TheInexplicableAdventuresOfBob'' have been shown to be nonhumanoid, at least in their true forms. These include the [[SpacePirates Pirates of Ipecac,]] who resemble three-eyed lobsters; the Fleenians, who are [[RubberHoseLimbs rubber-limbed]] [[OurCentaursAreDifferent centaurs]] with [[FacelessEye giant eyeballs for heads;]] and Ahem, who resembles a [[TripodTerror three-legged jellyfish.]] The [[InsectoidAliens butterfly-like Nemesites]] such as Princess Voluptua and Fructose Riboflavin frequently use [[VoluntaryShapeshifting shapeshifting technology]] to appear human, however.≤* Aylee (short for "alien", natch) from ''Webcomic/SluggyFreelance'' started as an obvious ''Franchise/{{Alien}}'' homage, but periodically mutates in an ongoing attempt to adapt to the alien (for her) terrestrial environment. Each form is radically different, and some are dramatically non-human.≤* ''Literature/TheActionHerosHandbook'': the chapter on communicating with extra terrestrials assumes that any aliens you're lucky (or unlucky) enough to encounter would be these, but holds out the hope that they would still be able to recognize concepts like numbers and shapes. (The book reasons that any life form capable of the level of technology necessary for interstellar travel would at least have the alien equivalent of astrophysics.)≤* The original Lovecraftian Starfish aliens [[http://owmysanity.comicgenesis.com/d/20100805.html make an appearance]] in ''Webcomic/OwMySanity''.≤* In ''Webcomic/{{Spacetrawler}}'', most of the aliens are humanoid or based off some Earth animal, but there are a few more unusual specimens: Krep is a quadruped and has six tentacles on his face for manipulating objects. Luunock resembles a cross between a caterpillar and a venus fly trap. And [[http://spacetrawler.com/2011/02/13/spacetrawler-119/ a bartender who shows up for only one page]] has arms growing out of his mouth.≤* The aliens from ''Webcomic/AnnaGalactic'', also by Creator/ChristopherBaldwin, are even weirder. There's a lot of wild speculation from the human protagonists about whether their attempts to communicate are having any effect at all.≤* The Main Cast of ''Webcomic/DeepRise'' are this.≤* in ''Webcomic/CaptainUfo'' most aliens are humanoid in one way or another, however among the background characters you can spot some of these; among others, a guy who looks like a Hutt with dreadlocks, a green blob with tentacles and eight eyes, a worm-like alien with four arms (he's one of the judge in the trial scene at the beginning of season two) and the Orokanais, who look like vending machines.≤* ''Webcomic/LeavingTheCradle'' is full of starfish aliens, from three meters tall terrestrial squids to energy-based beings dwelling in the interstellar void and requiring special suits to interact with anything physical. The only aliens that ''somewhat'' resemble humans are raharrs, and resemblance pretty much ends at bipedal upright posture.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Web Original]]≤* The story ''Literature/ThreeWorldsCollide'' features two alien species designed to be radically different from humans. One of them is sentient silicon-based, and has evolved a reproductive mechanism involving spawning billions of extra young and eating most of them (whilst semi-sentient) - as such their concept of 'good' literally translated as '[[EatsBabies eating babies]]'. The second are powerfully hedonistic tentacles for whom pretty much everything evolutionarily advantageous is extremely pleasurable. They introduce themselves with a video they created featuring themselves in a childbirth-related porn film, repeatedly putting a baby ''back in'' to a woman; The story deals with the ethics of interaction with these two alien species.≤* All ''WebOriginal/OrionsArm'' aliens, as a rule. The To'ul'h look like headless bats but are anatomically closer to starfish, perceive the world through echolocation, and are native to a Venus-like world with very high temperatures and atmospheric pressures. They're considered very close to humanity for xenospohonts by virtue of being carbon-based beings with two sexes from a rocky world close to its sun. The truly alien aliens include the Muuh, extremely ancient, vaguely arthropodal aliens from very cold worlds whose bodies would largely melt in terrestrial environments; the Meistersingers, intelligent trees who use symbiotic animal-like beings as manipulator organs and live in massive space fleets migrating away from the galactic core; and what are essentially living "knots" in the surfaces of neutron stars that exist on extremely fast timescales, have a society completely incomprehensible to terragens, and see the rest of the universe as just a set of interesting mathematical equations. ≤* [[https://canopy.uc.edu/bbcswebdav/users/gibsonic/Snaiad/snduterus.html Snaiad]] is an ongoing xenobiology project by [[http://nemo-ramjet.deviantart.com Nemo Ramjet]] which covers the biosphere of a fictional extrasolar planet as catalogued by human colonists. A short list of the differences between Snaiadi and Terran vertebrates: Their skeletons are carbon-based rather than calcium based (making fossils rather hard to find, and bones an excellent source of fuel); a portion of their musculature structures are hydraulic instead of contractile, i.e. they push instead of pull; they have two heads, one for eating and one for reproduction; and a number of aquatic species move by way of biological jet engines, a quality they share with Earth octopuses, though still unique as far as vertebrates go. Front legs are optional.≤%%* ''Literature/SpotsTheSpaceMarine'': The Fiddlers.≤* ''Literature/ThePentagonWar'': Alpha Centaurians are shaped like a cross between xorns from TabletopGame/DungeonsAndDragons and R2-D2 from ''Franchise/StarWars''. They have muscle-powered wheels in their feet, a 360 degree eye stalk, and four mouths spaced evenly below and between their four shoulders.≤* In ''Literature/PayMeBug'', Ktk is described as a 2.5 meter hermaphroditic centipede, with three prehensile tails that are ''each'' strong enough to [[GrievousHarmWithABody wield a person like a club]].≤* Wiki/SCPFoundation:≤** Based on data retrieved from [[http://scp-wiki.net/scp-328 an alien CD]], the designers are fundamentally different to humans (for example, taste is their primary sense, and electromagnetism is lethal to them). Also, ''we'' are starfish aliens to ''them''.≤** [[http://www.scp-wiki.net/scp-163 SCP-163]], which is cylindrical, has 8 legs, 4 pairs of arms with different functions and a single compound eye with 360 degree field of vision that sees mainly in ultraviolet. It's also one of the more harmless [=SCPs=] and clearly homesick.≤** [[http://www.scp-wiki.net/scp-1701 SCP-1701]], a race of sentient naturally-occurring ''nuclear reactors'' with a [[FirstContactMath mathematic language]] whose society primarily consisted of philosophical debates. Somewhat subverted as said reactors evolved and went extinct [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_nuclear_fission_reactor here on earth]] many millenia ago.≤** [[http://www.scp-wiki.net/scp-1171 SCP-1171]] is a very racist StarfishAlien who canít go a sentence without using racial slurs against humans, and at one point [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything goes off on a rant against them for stealing jobs from hard workers like himself.]]≤* [[Website/{{STRANGERS}} S T R A N G E R S]] is a sort of catalog of starfish critters: the eponymous strangers have no bones, brains or other internal organs, yet behave like living things. When dissected, they're revealed to be either hollow or stuffed with random objects and substances, such as calligraphy ink and various trash. [[http://strangers.atrocityland.com/ The information page]] openly states that no one understands exactly how these creatures work or ''why'' they exist in the first place.≤* In ''Literature/AfterlifeLabirynth'', other races and even humans in many worlds have for example three hands, three legs and three tentacles in place of ears.≤* ''WebVideo/AlienBiospheres'' is a youtube series dedicated to the speculative evolution of a planet of these, using the principles of actual real world evolution. One family of creatures breathes through two holes ''on either side of it's head'' that '''''used to be tentacles'''''.≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Western Animation]]≤* Some of the aliens encountered in ''WesternAnimation/ThreeTwoOnePenguins'' include sapient vacuum cleaners, pumpkin-headed children, light bulbs with arms and legs who communicate with clicking and beeping sounds, darts who constantly lie, spring necked lawn flamingos, and ear lobes with arms and legs whose vocabulary consists of one word.≤* In ''WesternAnimation/AlienatorsEvolutionContinues'', the AnimatedAdaptation sequel to the movie ''Film/{{Evolution}}'', the Genus aliens become literal starfish-like creatures when hit by a devolution ray.≤* The twist of the two-episode ''WesternAnimation/BatmanBeyond'' story "The Call" is that a (literal) starfish alien [[spoiler: is controlling Superman. In fact, the entire plot came about because the alien just wanted to go home and it couldn't communicate with Superman to explain where that was or even that it was a sentient being. So it took matters into its own...arms...]]≤* ''WesternAnimation/Ben10'':≤** TheOriginalSeries has Wildmutt, Stinkfly, Upgrade, Ghostfreak, and the later Cannonbolt, Upchuck and Wildvine.≤** ''WesternAnimation/Ben10AlienForce''. While most aliens that Ben can transform into are HumanoidAliens, there are a few that fit this trope, such as Goop, Jetray and Brainstorm. The [[ScaryDogmaticAliens Highbreed]] look roughly humanoid, but their inner biology seems ''very'' bizarre.≤** ''WesternAnimation/Ben10UltimateAlien'', while rather light on the Starfish Aliens, gives us a fine example in [=ChamAlien=].≤** ''WesternAnimation/Ben10Omniverse'' has Bloxx, who is '''a gorilla [[BuiltWithLego made of LEGO bricks]]'''.≤* ''WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}}'':≤** Dr. Zoidberg may look humanoid ''now'', but while going through his developmental stages, he resembled various deep-sea creatures. Likewise, the humanoid Kif Kroker started life as a tadpole, and will eventually age into a swarm of flying hookworms. And both species reproduce rather differently than humans.≤** The [[BlobMonster Horrible Gelatinous Blob]] is probably the most frequently appearing example in the show, outside of Zoidberg and Kif, as described above.≤** Fry once got infected with civilized gut-worms, who were rather friendly and improved his body and mind drastically.≤** The Spherons, a species of ball-shaped aliens from "War is the H-Word". They move around by bouncing, and despite lacking mouths (or any visible facial features), they can talk to humans.≤** One episode involved the Trisolians, a race of ''liquid'' aliens that look like anthropomorphic blobs made of water. Fry accidentally consumed their emperor by drinking him from a cup.≤** The anime segment of the "Reincarnation" episode had a race of mouthless aliens that could only communicate with body language.≤* While plenty of aliens in ''WesternAnimation/InvaderZim'' are humanoid, including the title character, there are also plenty that fit this trope, ranging from EnergyBeings that resemble amoeba to a floating purple cone with a face.≤* Though packed with humanoids, ''WesternAnimation/JusticeLeague'' and ''Justice League Unlimited'' also showed a few non-humanoid aliens, mainly as background characters.≤* The ''WesternAnimation/MenInBlack'' cartoon series kept up the traditions of the film.≤* Some of the ghosts in ''WesternAnimation/TheRealGhostbusters'' are not spirits of dead humans but interdimensional creatures from other dimensions, thus qualifying as aliens. And most of such are really really ''really'' weird. ≤* The animated miniseries ''Red Planet'', a [[InspiredBy reworking]] of the Creator/RobertAHeinlein novel, had "bouncers", sentients the size of soccer balls, and the "locals" of New Aries. [[spoiler:They are actually the same race. The bouncers are the juveniles and the locals are the adults.]]≤* ''WesternAnimation/TheSecretShow'' has the Impostors, which look like fly maggots with a red cycloptic eye, speak a StarfishLanguage, ''and'' have a specialized queen. Somehow, they're pretty advanced in technology too. ≤* ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'' has Kang and Kodos, beings of the planet Rigel VII ([[NegativeContinuity or Rigel IV]]), are giant, green, fang-bearing, one-eyed octopuses who wear large glass helmets. Their few humanizing aspects include speaking a language that [[AliensSpeakingEnglish coincidentally sounds just like English]].≤* The titular creatures from ''WesternAnimation/{{Skywhales}}''. Ironically they resemble rays much more than they do actual whales.≤* ''WesternAnimation/StarTrekTheAnimatedSeries'' took advantage of being animated by introducing several non-humanoid aliens: Arex, the [[MultiArmedAndDangerous three-armed]] Edosian navigator; the Vendorians, shapeshifting giant squid things that took both the form and personalities of people they shifted into; the Phylosians, PlantAliens; the snail-like Lacterns. And several minor ones, like the pillbug-like Em/3/Green, known as a Nasat in the Expanded Universe. In a strange inversion of live-action, the {{Creator/Filmation}}'s animators found starfish aliens (especially those with no pesky arms or legs) to be much easier and less tribble - er, trouble to animate than human beings.≤* ''WesternAnimation/StevenUniverse'':≤** Gems are [[ZigZaggingTrope a complicated]] mix of Starfish and RubberForeheadAliens. They're a race of mineral life who're "born" humanoid, but their bodies are just [[HardLight projections]] from their [[HeartDrive Gems]]. Thanks to this, they can temporarily shapeshift; though it always shares their natural color scheme. They are TheAgeless and only "die" when their gems are shattered. They don't reproduce naturally; rather, gems are artificially created underground and molded to have certain characteristics, like a larger mass for their light-body (but remaining too long in incubation can reverse this and cause their own form of dwarfism). In addition, Gems are able to fuse together and the more gems that are fused, the less humanoid their projections appear. ≤** The aliens in "Jungle Moon" are straighter examples, including a [[BigCreepyCrawlies dog-sized beetle]], a hoofed, humped dinosaur, and a beanbag with a beak and talons on the end of tentacles.≤* ''WesternAnimation/TheTransformers'':≤** The energy-based Tornedron, the living planet of Torkulon and its motley inmates, and in the sequel series ''WesternAnimation/BeastWars'' we got the extradimensional Vok.≤** The Quintessons have diverse body types by caste. Judges have five faces, but no actual 'head', just a balloon-shaped body. They have no arms or legs, and instead get around via hovering on an beam of "energy" at the bottom of their body. If they do need to carry something, they use the thin tentacles that surround the beam of energy Prosecutors and Scientists have similar features but have thicker green tentacles, additionally having only one head on a humanoid torso. Instead of arms, they have at least three thick green tentacles on each "shoulder". Others have more humanoid bodies, but are the exceptions to the rule. In their initial appearance, in ''WesternAnimation/TransformersTheMovie'', they drag any robotic beings they find (with the exception of Spike Witwicky who was captured for being an Autobot ally) into a courtroom setting and invariably feed them to the Sharkticons, but they never explain ''why'' they're putting up with these trials. Later appearances explain that they're just jerks who are still angry that the "theft" of the planet Cybertron during a revolt by the ancestors of the Transformers, whom they built as slaves. They do this by persecuting all robotic beings regardless of whether they originated on Cybertron (e.g.The Transformers) or not (e.g. Kranix, the last survivor of Lithone which was eaten by Unicron at the beginning of the movie).≤** The Transformers themselves are perhaps the limit of how humanoid mainstream aliens can be - MechanicalLifeforms about ten times our size who can reconfigure their bodies at will to mimic machinery. Most of them happen to have two arms, two legs, and a head, but they sure as heck don't ''look'' human. And "most" doesn't mean "all"; there are some Transformers that lack humanoid robot modes, e.g. Decepticon cassette tapes Ravage and [=LaserBeak=] and Autobot Sky Lynx who is a space shuttle that turns into a dragon (the "Sky" part) and a giant cat (the "Lynx" part), both bodies being equally 'him' whether working together or in two entirely different places. G1 Reflector was three largely identical beings in one alt mode (a camera). It's unclear how separate their personalities are.≤* The Series/WaltDisneyPresents special "Mars & Beyond" has all sorts of bizarre takes on the possibility of alien life, [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3HIWq-DN-MU some silly]] and [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQ-T5VEueW0 others less so]].≤* Played with in ''WesternAnimation/WanderOverYonder''. All alien races have unique looks, but most have a similar biology to Earthlings: they have flesh and organ bodies and human senses and needs (physical and psychological), they communicate mainly in verbal languages with body language to express emotions, and most are designed off of earth creatures/things/attributes. All shown speak English and have a human-based culture (usually western). The biology gets wonky when there are ''balloon animal'' aliens and eyeball-for-a-head aliens somehow eating and speaking. ≤* ''WesternAnimation/LoveDeathAndRobots'':≤** In the short "When the Yogurt Took Over", adapted from the John Scalzi story of the same name, scientists accidentally create sentience in [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin a pot of yogurt]], which proceeds to TakeOverTheWorld. It communicates both by speaking and spelling things out in granola.≤** In the short "Beyond the Aquila Rift", again an adaptation of a short story by Alastair Reynolds, the main character is trapped in the hive of a terrifying, oozing, multi-eyed GiantSpider-like alien that claims to be a NonMaliciousMonster subjecting him to comforting psychic illusions to stop him [[GoMadFromTheRevelation Going Mad From The Revelation]].≤* Most aliens in ''WesternAnimation/TrippingTheRift'', including the main protagonist Chod who is a purple monster with three eyes and tentacles. ≤[[/folder]]≤≤[[folder:Real Life]]≤%%Please don't add any more examples of RL creatures that do not relate to aliens. The trope is about ALIENS. Not just any weird or exotic animal.≤* In mental terms, [[http://www.rfreitas.com/Astro/Xenopsychology.htm this article]] reflects upon the profoundly alien possibilities extrapolated from our own minds, while breaking down each factor that could possibly make alien minds different from human minds.≤* Scientist speculate that life may exist on Jupiter's moon Europa where there may be a sea under the ice. If they do, they'll probably live very deep down, surviving off geothermal energy. Thus, they would possibly look similar to Earth's own [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KT1TSbarW1U deep sea creatures]], which evolves in one of the most extreme environments on Earth, with very little sunlight, nearly no photosynthesis and extremes in pressure and cold. This radical difference from any other environment on Earth creates very alien forms of life that simply cannot exist elsewhere.≤* Scientists constantly discuss the limits of where life could develop, but the reality is that those limits only apply to the kind of life we're used to. Technically, as long as there is enough chemical diversity as well as an energy gradient, there is the potential for what could be defined as life, regardless of temperature, specific chemical environment, or gravity. This could mean some really bizarre lifeforms are waiting out there.≤* Related to the former entry are those hypothetical lifeforms (or life that adapted itself to those conditions) that could exist in the ''[[TimeAbyss very far]]'' future, if the Universe kept expanding forever, or otherwise collapsed on a Big Crunch, though this scenario seems to be unlikely.≤** For the ever expanding Universe there will be a time in which there's little more than electrons, positrons, photons, and neutrinos. With just that, whatever could exist by then would very likely be something very large and diffuse, that would alternate short periods [[YearOutsideHourInside of very low]] activity with long ones in hibernation, even living forever[[note]]These ideas were proposed before it was known the Universe is accelerating its expansion, meaning not only those lifeforms would be out of communication one from each other but also would suffer a severe dearth of resources having to [[AndIMustScream replay again and again its memories]]. Alas, quantum effects mean the ''clocks'' that would awake them would fail sooner or later, thus killing them.[[/note]]≤** Contrariwise in the Big Crunch scenario, something that was able to adapt to the extreme densities and temperatures existing just before the final collapse would have so much available energy that [[YearInsideHourOutside would operate so fast that ''very'' small fractions of second in the outside Universe would mean for it almost an eternity]] and would have an [[YouCannotGraspTheTrueForm intellect far beyond anything we can imagine]]. However, sooner or later it would be prey of both quantum effects and being unable to get rid of waste heat and would die. ≤* Some of the smartest animals on our own world are pretty different from humans: great apes are still sort of similar, but dolphins and whales, elephants, crows, parrots and octopi are outside of the rubber forehead range. Counting smart behavior arising from swarms of ants and bees might give us some food for thought.≤* What about a starfish ''civilization?'' A species with a far greater understanding of physics that could use that knowledge for literally everything. Not just for things like faster than light travel, but for things like energy usage so efficient that none of it is lost as waste heat. This is one theory for why we have yet to find evidence for advanced aliens: that our ideas about technology and society are ''so primitive'' in comparison that we simply have no idea what to look for.≤* Radiotrophic fungi have been found living inside the destroyed reactor #4 at Chernobyl. Also, scientists at Savannah River found a species of extremophile bacteria living *inside a nuclear waste tank*[[note]]Other examples are [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deinococcus_radiodurans Deinococcus radiodurans]] and [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermococcus_gammatolerans Thermococcus gammatolerans]], the radiation tolerance of either can be reasonably given in kilogray![[/note]]. The evolutionary adaptations that allow these organisms to survive extreme levels of hard radiation are the same adaptations that allow them to survive dessication.≤[[/folder]]≤----

Top

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:

/

Media sources:

/

Report