Valerian v10: Brooklyn Line Terminus Cosmos cover detail

Valerian and Laureline v10: “Brooklyn Line Terminus Cosmos”

Previous, in my review of “Valerian and Laureline” v9:

“Now, the second part might be such a blockbuster that I’ll forgive this book that.  Maybe.  I haven’t read it yet. I’ve had that happen with other series, notably “Largo Winch.”  So I haven’t given up on it.”

Yeah, maybe I should have given up on it.

Pretty JC Mezieres space and spaceship art

I love this panel. For whatever else I think of this story, the art is still amazing.

The story is just too complicated, with too many actors in it, too many planets, and too many twists.  That’s why it had to expand out to a second volume, but I don’t think it was entertaining enough to warrant that.

I think this two-parter might be my least favorite “Valerian and Laureline” story so far. There are nice story bits in it and Jean-Claude Mezieres gets to do a few of his special panel layouts that always make pages interesting to look at. The problem is, I never got into this story.  I never cared.  Ultimately, it’s a story about some arms dealers trying to make a big score on earth.  Problem is, everything is kept from the reader for the first three-quarters of the story before Laureline does one big exposition dump to explain it all and bring the story to a close.

I hate to say it, but it felt like a cheat.

It’s a shame because Laureline has her Bad Ass moment in that part of the story, too.  She lays out all the problems she’s uncovered, named the bad guys behind it all, takes care of them with relative ease, and then gives Valerian a stern talking to all at the same time.  It’s a great moment for her, but it’s too little, too late.

Valerian gets caught up in his case, sleeps with another woman, and Laureline isn't pleased.

Valerian comes off as a jerk. Yes, that’s his general rakish Han Solo-ish vibe, but that’s two stories in a row he’s managed to pull off the same trick of sleeping with another woman in the course of a mission.  And unlike the last time (in “Heroes of the Equinox”), this one isn’t due to a mission-specific purpose.  There’s not much in the way of excuses for his behavior in this one, and Laureline’s anger with him is not misplaced.  There’s cute give-and-take between a couple that has its explosive dramatic moments, and then there’s this.

Of course, this might be a cultural difference thing.  France did once have the funeral of its president attended by both his wife and his mistress.  So maybe this kind of behavior just isn’t as frowned upon there as here?

Not a Total Waste

Pierre Christin was already planning a few volumes out when he wrote this one.

Take this vision Valerian has of his future.

Volume 10 flashes forward to volume 12 and Hypsis

That’s lifted straight out of volume 12, “The Wrath of Hypsis.”

Plans were clearly afoot…

 

Recommended?

Unfortunately, no.

If you’re a completist, then read it by all means. If you’re looking to start somewhere, go with a different story.

There’s a strain in the relationship between the two main characters introduced in this book, but I’m also sure it’ll be dropped immediately as we roll into volume 11, titled “The Ghosts of Inverloch,” where the setting moves to Scotland.

Valerian v10: Brooklyn Line Terminus Cosmos cover

(This is Pipeline BD 100 review #51.)

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