As a lover, and indeed purveyor, of weird sci-fi, the trailer for Valérian and the City of a Thousand Planets leaves me cold – and it’s not just the utter lack of chemistry between the two leads. It ostensibly should be a great high-concept premise, but it’s one that only sounds good; just try and explain the actual premise to someone, without simply saying the title. There’s nothing there beyond an interesting arrangement of words. I actually read some of the comics – in the original French, nonetheless! – back in high school, and I enjoyed them for what they were. I can understand why they were so influential on the sci-fi that was then to come. They were no Métal Hurlant, but they were good.
The final panel is also a reference to the running gag of children outdoing Robert in various fields – I can’t find the strips to link to them here, because I can’t remember what they were called. But Robert has been previously frustrated by Irish teenagers inventing… something I don’t remember, and also by a five-year-old passing a Microsoft Certified Professional test.
It’s true; you can look it up if you want, but she espouses all the standard racist nonsense you’d expect. Basically, she doesn’t want any Muslims or brown people, only the original Australians. Wait, no, not those. The white ones who arrived here comparatively recently. You know, the ones who look like her.