Galactic Goofs: The 10 Stupidest Crew Mistakes in ‘Prometheus’


It was perhaps the most anticipated movie of the year after The Dark Knight Rises, but Ridley Scott’s return to the Alien world in Prometheus has been anything but universally embraced. While many enjoyed the film, an equal (at least) amount disliked it. Regardless of what camp you fall into, I think we can all agree that the crew of Prometheus the ship and Prometheus the movie were pretty stupid, for being future geniuses and all. Here, we count down the ten stupidest decisions and actions made by the crew in Ridley Scott’s Prometheus. Of course, there are tons of spoilers inside.

Assuming Cave Paintings Are an Invitation

There are plenty of logical gaps and leaps in the film, which wastes no time in making a big one – assuming cave paintings are some sort of an invitation. None of the paintings are accompanied by any sort of text, all they are is one tall being pointing towards some balls in space that represent a particular grouping of planets and moons. Nothing about that says “Welcome.” It could just as easily be a memo to “Stay the Hell Away” or “Come Here to Die” or “Hey Check It Out – Space Balls!”

Rushing Into Absolutely Everything

This is a catch-all that catches a whole lot of stuff because just about every decision is rushed. Arrived at an alien planet? Cool, let’s immediately enter the atmosphere without doing any sort of testing or recon! See something that appears to be unnatural? Awesome, let’s park right in front of it, rather than surveying the area or even making a pass to see how much land this covers. Oh, we just traveled years and years across the vastness of space and it’s going to be dark soon on this alien environment? And we have years and years of supplies and are in no rush to head home? Well let’s quickly run out into this massive cavern! No, we’ll map it as we go, no reason to send in the automated mapping drones AHEAD of us. Silly. None of this can wait until tomorrow, after all, we’ve already waited a couple of years!

Getting Lost Despite Being the Map Making Geologist Who Just Made a Map

To be honest, Fifield (Sean Harris) doesn’t have the look of a trustworthy geologist and it turns out he was a terrible hire. First, he decides to bail on the mission immediately and then he gets lost, despite being the guy in charge of making the map and the one in charge of the floating map-making balls. How a mapmaker can fail to use his own map and get lost when the other, non-map making members of the team walk out just fine is incredibly stupid.

Trying to Touch an Alien Vagina Cobra

Fifield’s apparent stupidity is probably what made him and Millburn (Rafe Spall) put aside their differences and become lost buddies. Millburn, the biologist, is another terrible hire who, instead of being excited about the prospect of a giant, sentient alien, freaks out and wants to go home. Instead, he gets lost (with the mapmaker) and eventually comes face to face with an alien vagina cobra. Here, with something quite alive and quite nasty looking, gone is his trepidation and instead of treating this strange SPACE SNAKE with respect and deference, he basically turns to the camera and says “I got this” and then tries to Steve Irwin this snake by touching it. BY TOUCHING THE EVIL ALIEN SPACE SNAKE. What are the requirements for a PhD in the future? Watching The Discovery Channel?

Removing Your Helmet

I’m pretty sure this is Space Exploration 101 – you never remove your helmet. You never remove your protective gear. That’s great that you have a little machine that can tell you the air quality, but can it tell you about, say, space diseases? Bacteria? Fungi? Viruses? Bugs? Alien Snakes that want to eat your face? No. It can’t. Hell, you are on an ALIEN PLANET. Your little air tester is measuring quantities of known elements – there could be some sort of unknown poison in the air that your machine just doesn’t know exists and thus can not detect it.

Opening the Door to a Random Chamber

Okay, so David is up to his own little game and maybe this isn’t stupidity, but he falls right in line with everyone else. See a strange liquid? TOUCH IT. See a strange door? OPEN IT. See a panel of buttons? PRESS THEM. I mean, for all anyone knows that could have been a giant septic tank full of giant Space Jockey doo-doo.

Opening the Door for a Dead Zombie Team Member

Remember that part when everyone found Fifield and he was dead? Totally dead? And remember how you left his body where it lay? Apparently not, because when Fifield ends up rolled up in a little ball outside the ship, their first reaction isn’t “How?” it’s “Open the door!” Seriously, you don’t stop and ask a question? How did a dead body get over here? Either he’s not dead or something drug him over. Either way, your best bet is not opening a gigantic cargo door and inviting in chaos and death.

Trying to Outrun a Falling Object Rather Than Avoiding It

By now, we’ve all made fun of this scene. Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and Vickers (Charlize Theron) are both running away from a falling Space Jockey vessel. Both of them are presumably very smart, but both attempt to outrun a falling object that seems to be about one mile long. Shaw gets lucky when she falls, suddenly realizing that, Hey, this thing is only a couple dozen feet wide, I can just side step it! Vickers never has this realization and continues to run forward, remaining directly in the path of the falling object. When she falls, she doesn’t realize she can just roll out to the side, but rather just decides it’s time to pancake dance.

Electrocuting the Most Important Scientific Discovery of All Time Until It Explodes

This must be what they teach graduate level candidates – when you find something important, stick an electrode into it and microwave it until it blows up. I mean, what was Shaw even trying to accomplish here? She has the most important find in the galaxy, which she throws into a zip lock baggie and treats it like it’s a dead raccoon on the side of the street. After taking almost no precautions, they notice some strange cellular growth on it (mind you, this is an alien head and there is something even stranger growing on it) and decide to try to jump start it. This. Is. Idiotic.

Science Can’t Protect You the Way Guns Can

“This is a scientific mission.” Oh. Okay, I’ll not bring any guns or any security team members. It’s not like you’re on a strange alien planet looking for aliens. That could be hostile. And you probably won’t find alien animals. Because it’s safe to assume that if an alien invited you to a far off planet to meet up, it would be barren and not have, like, lions, tigers, and bears.

Seriously, people. Do you think Darwin traveled around with a pen and paper? Yes, he had those, but he also had guys with guns nearby. When Weyland Industries went to the Arctic in Alien vs Predator, they thought enough to bring guns. To the Arctic. For science. I mean, really, NASA put a mini-gun on a drilling vessel headed to an asteroid in Armageddon and these space explorers on the hunt for alien life bring some flame throwers and a couple of pop guns they don’t bother bringing with them? SMART.

While I mostly enjoyed Prometheus, there is no doubt in my mind that these were some stupid decisions. What stupidity did you notice from the crew of the Prometheus?