The Five Waves In ‘The 5th Wave’ Make The Hunger Games Look Like A Picnic

The next crop of sci-fi, dystopian YA thrillers is soon arriving in theaters, with The 5th Wave leading the charge. And despite the trauma fans have already witnessed in franchises like The Hunger Games and Divergent, The 5th Wave promises to be the most devastating apocalyptic setting by far, since the film's destruction was caused by a malevolent alien race rather than pedestrian fellow humans. Most of the movie takes place during what's referred to as the fifth wave of the alien invasion (hence the title), but that means there were four other waves that happened already. So what are the five waves in The 5th Wave ?

Let me first say this: These aliens in The 5th Wave aren't messing around. Whereas extraterrestrials in other movies like Independence Day and War of the Worlds pretty much just set out to destroy humanity by blowing things up, the "Others" in The 5th Wave are thorough. Seriously, they thought of everything. They take away what makes us a civilization, turn our own planet against us, use biological warfare, and even have humans do their fighting for them. Sounds just a little more menacing (and believable) than spaceships shooting lasers at the White House, doesn't it? So here's what humanity has to fear in The 5th Wave .

The First Wave: Darkness

The first wave of attack unleashed by the Others is in the form of a massive electromagnetic pulse, which knocks out electrical power worldwide and effectively sends mankind back to the stone age.

The Second Wave: Destruction

Next, the Others trigger a massive earthquake in the world's oceans, causing city-high tsunamis that wipe out coastal population centers. So long, New York and Los Angeles.

The Third Wave: Infection

The Others release a deadly airborne virus, wiping out most of what remains of humanity with the worst plague the world has ever seen.

The Fourth Wave: Invasion

With some people surviving the plague, the Others then infiltrate humanity. They essentially body snatch people, and use this disguise to kill surviving humans.

The Fifth Wave: Child Education

With some stubborn humans learning to recognize who the aliens are, the Others are forced to use real, non-possessed humans to do their dirty work. They accomplish this by kidnapping children and training them to be elite soldiers, under the guise that they'll be fighting against the Others. The plan is to then send the children out to kill the "Others", when in actuality they'll be slaughtering their fellow humans without even knowing it.

The aliens in The 5th Wave are some of the most frightening that fans of the genre will have ever seen because they've literally thought of everything. I'm just glad there's no sixth wave, because I would definitely not want to see what the Others could come up with that would be worse than using child soldiers.

Images: Columbia Pictures; giphy