With its fourth volume, entitled The last ballseries UCC Dolores by Didier and Lyse Tarquin offers a new beginning for its heroine, former sister Mony, who trades her former naivety and her religious faith for two guns and a baby.
Consists of three volumes (The trail of the new pioneers, The orphans of Fort Messaoud and red crystal), the first cycle in the series UCC Dolores introduced Mony, an orphan who, at the age of 18, when she left the convent where she had spent her whole life and set out to discover the vast world, was given the keys to a warship belonging to the infamous Colonel Mac Monroe, a man who was in all probability his father. After hiring Kash, an alcoholic tough guy, as a pilot, the duo find themselves in the middle of a conspiracy that spans decades. With enemies convinced that a fabled treasure, the Glaive of Tassili, was on board, the ship was hunted by both Confederate veterans and members of the Church of the New Pioneers. Along its perilous path, Mony learned a little more about its design and its fate.
At the end of the previous volume, the writers struck a blow and, in the style of George RR Martin, killed one of the two main characters, Kash, who died from an electric bite. When does it start The last ball, the fourth album in the series, Mony features a new crew consisting of Tuco, a Lemur war mechanic, and Shaël, one of the most formidable Rasseth warriors. UCC Dolores goes to The Eye of the Cyclops, a place beyond the boundaries of the known universe and from which no one has ever returned. We discover from the first pages that after her one night of love spent with Kash, Mony is pregnant. She gives birth on an icy planet where her ship crashed. Looters then grab the robot in which she has hidden her daughter. Armed with only four guns, about thirty bullets and two grenades, she then sets out to find him.
After explaining the origin of Mony, who turns out to be a clone designed by Colonel Mac Monroe’s henchmen, the scriptwriters can finally look to the future with this fourth volume. The last ball features a linear narrative and much less dense than previous albums, with a story limited to laying the foundation for a new narrative arc. The series has always mixed sci-fi and western, and this spatial Far West side is even more present now that UCC Dolores ventures beyond the known boundaries of the galaxy into a region of the cosmos without law or order. . It is especially the development of Mony that catches the attention. After training in the use of weapons, the formerly devoted maiden has become a formidable warrior over time, transforming straight into a wolf when it comes to rescuing her daughter from the clutches of marauders.
Known for his work on the series of fantasy French Lanfeust of Troycartoonist Didier Tarquin demonstrates a natural talent for science fiction with UCC Dolores. With nervous and dynamic strokes, he sketches grand cosmic landscapes, often spanning an entire page or two, and planets as strange as they are exotic, populated by warriors riding giant crows, marauders resembling space trolls, and alien wolves with glowing eyes. This fourth book changes the tone a bit from the rest of the series, taking place on a frozen, snow-covered planet that, save for some sort of medieval village perched atop a mountain peak, seems deserted. Even the coloring is different, leaving the bright colors for shades of beige, aqua green and white, drawing heavily from the atmosphere of the previous three volumes.
Although not the best book in the series, The last ball however, offers a fresh start for UCC Doloresand it will be interesting to see how Mony fulfills her role as intergalactic adventurer and single mother in future albums.
UCC Dolores – Volume 4: The Last Bullet, by Didier and Lyse Tarquin. Published by Glénat editions, 48 pages.