Warning: the following article contains spoilers for Alien: Covenant! Read ahead at your own risk!
Ridley Scott's Alien: Covenant is a bizarre film that honors the bizarre mythology of the series. A deep dive into the origins of the mysterious (and very deadly) Xenomorph, the story ultimately reveals that Michael Fassbender's David has been the real architect of the horrors of the Alien universe all along. That said, there's one particular scene that has captured audience imaginations, and it has nothing to do with extraterrestrial beasts: the kiss between David and Walter. As it turns out, even Fassbender was surprised by the overwhelming audience response to the moment. The actor opened up while talking about his new film, The Snowman, and explained:
I guess I was surprised by it because I didn't think much of it when I was doing it. But of course, it is something that people are going to ask about. So, fine. That's just the way it is and it doesn't bother me in the slightest. I don't even take it that seriously. I take it seriously in terms of, I come to work well-prepared and I want to do my best and I definitely put my heart and soul into my work. But I don't think it's something that needs to be respected and revered and taken seriously. It's fun -- and if people are getting pleasure out of it, then cool.
So Michael Fassbender wasn't necessarily expecting audiences to respond quite so wildly to the Fassbender on Fassbender kiss that takes place when David reveals himself to be evil in Alien: Covenant. In that regard, he was taken off-guard in the face of how audiences felt surprised by the (incredibly technically intricate) moment -- primarily because he didn't think much of it while he was working on it. The kiss has earned a wide range of responses from viewers, ranging from laughter, to confusion, to even receiving a ban in China; amid all of these reactions, Fassbender seems content to let us accept it in any way that we wish.
Building off of that idea, Michael Fassbender continued his explanation of the kiss to Vulture and admitted that he doesn't feel a sense of ownership over any of his movies once one has debuted.
Once you do something, I always feel like it doesn't belong to me. Once I make the film and we send it out there, it's out in the public domain -- it's there for people to take whatever they will from it.
So it's our movie now, and we're allowed to interpret that kiss in any way that we see fit. Fassbender executed the vision of Ridley Scott to the best of his ability, and now he seems content to let it go and become a pop culture moment that isn't necessarily his to claim for himself.
Of course, no discussion about the Alien: Covenant kiss would be complete without actually showing you that scene. Check it out below.
Ridley Scott has made it abundantly clear that he wants to continue exploring the burgeoning independence (and possible malice) of artificial intelligence as the Alien franchise moves forward, so we will have to wait and see if Michael Fassbender gets to lock lips with any other androids in the near future. Until then, you can catch Fassbender in The Snowman, which opens in theaters this weekend on October 20.