Sep 15, 2009


Posted by Noam Ash

Set in the present, The Last Musketeer stars the by-now centuries old (for no explained reason...and it doesn't matter) musketeer Athos, who has been reduced to a suavely dressed but useless near-panhandler trading on his now almost extinct fame. (Aramis has forsaken his musketeering ways, and Porthos...well, Porthos isn't around any more. Don't ask.) All this changes when one day the Martians attack Earth. Suddenly there is a need for swashes to be buckled, and Athos leaps back into the fray with a vengeance. Robots, evil alien emperors, beautiful alien princesses, rayguns vs. swords, treachery, secret corridors, cool-looking robots...The Last Musketeer is vintage sci-fi adventure with a unique twist from an internationally acclaimed cartoonist.

For those unfamiliar with his work, the Norweigan artist known as Jason primarily toils in the realm of genre mash-ups. What keeps these books from being mere sheer exercises in style, however, is Jason’s strong, memorable characters, his sharp sense of humor and his deep sense of empathy. He consistently draws in a flat (though colorful and well-detailed) style and rarely if ever allows his anthropomorphic characters to show even the barest hint of emotion. Yet its through clever and subtle use of these tools that Jason is able to wring an impressive amount of pathos from his cast. A slight hand movement here, a silent panel there, quick cuts between scenes or periods of time make all the difference. He has the best sense of timing of any cartoonist working today.

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