30 years ago today, Ripley returned, as badass as ever.

On July 18, 1986, Aliens hit theaters, giving audiences a movie that kept the blossoming franchise fresh as it transitioned from sci-fi horror to sci-fi action.

This time around, Ripley had a surrogate daughter to protect and a new alien queen to battle, while Sigourney Weaver had a producing credit and a bigger voice in the development of the James Cameron-directed sequel to the 1979 Ridley Scott movie.

Ripley paved the way for future action heroines, including Furiosa of last year’s Mad Max: Fury Road. For a HitFix debate of which of the two is a better hero, check out this video.

Aliens will get a 30th anniversary celebration at San Diego Comic-Con with a reunion of Cameron, Weaver, and more cast members. Also, announced today, the Comic-Con panel will be live-streamed and available to watch on YouTube inside our outside the convention center this Saturday.

Other notable July 18 happenings in pop culture history:

• 1965: Great Moments with Mr. Lincoln opened in Disneyland.

• 1988: The Beach Boys single “Kokomo” was released in the U.S. It became the band’s first no. 1 hit on since “Good Vibrations” in 1966, making it the longest time span between two singles from one band topping the U.S. singles chart.

• 1990: Frank Marshall-Kathleen Kennedy movie Arachnophobia opened in theaters.

• 1998: The soundtrack for Armageddon hit the top of the U.S. album chart. The soundtrack for Titanic had dominated the chart for 16 weeks earlier that year.

• 2001: Jurassic Park III opened in theaters.

• 2006: Justin Timberlake’s “SexyBack” single was released. It went on to be JT’s first single to reach no. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100, holding the top spot for seven weeks.

An enthusiast of time travel stories, film scores, avocados and Charades, Emily Rome is an alumna of Loyola Marymount University and a native of beautiful Washington State. Emily’s writing has also appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Entertainment Weekly and The Hollywood Reporter. Follow her on Twitter @EmilyNRome.