Having flown with a small team from the settlers’ base on Antares 5 to Antares 4 in search of an answer to the gruesome disappearances of some of the settlers, as well as her daughter Lyn, Kim Keller and the shuttle crew including the religious zealot Jedidiah Thornton discover a mysterious small sphere that appears to have a life of its own. A second identical shuttle appears beside their own which they believe to be the work of the possibly sentient sphere and having prevented Jedidiah from entering it, Kim and Alexa enter it themselves just before it pops out of existence.
The shuttle transports them to an unknown reality where they find Lyn unharmed and the group manages to return to Antares 4 in time for Sven, Kim’s extra-terrestrial lover and Lyn’s father, to reveal himself to the human group. In a space pod orbiting Antares 5 the humans soon discover that Sven’s race, previously known only to Kim, want to make full contact with the human race – but only under very strict conditions.
It feels like a long time since I last visited Antares, the third of Leo’s current timeline Worlds of Aldebaran series, as opposed to the prequel series The Survivors. Indeed my review of Episode 5 was almost two years ago. With all his other completed Aldebaran series, as well the two co-created Kenya series, taking five episodes, Antares takes a step into the unknown from a publishing perspective as well as a fictional perspective with this sixth episode – but what an episode.
Beginning with a four page textual recap of the fifteen Aldebaran, Betelgeuse and Antares episodes to date, Leo launches the reader into a busy book of explanations for what has gone before as well as setting the scene for what may come in a future fourth series. So, return Lyn safely to her mother? Tick. Explain the mysterious disappearances from Antares 5? Tick. Give the obnoxious Jedidiah his comeuppance? Tick, although maybe even he didn’t quite deserve what happens to him. Reintroduce Sven from the end of the initial Aldebaran series and introduce him to his daughter? Tick. Reveal Sven’s race to humanity? Tick. Even after all that Leo still has time to effectively reboot the ongoing series through the discussions that happen in that space pod seen on the book’s cover.
Antares Episode 6 brings the third Aldebaran series to a satisfying conclusion as well as surprising the reader, as well as the characters, with a new future route for the wider Worlds Of Aldebaran series to take.
• There are more details of the Worlds Of Aldebaran series, Aldebaran, Betelgeuse and Antares on the Cinebook website
• There are more details of all Leo’s books on The Worlds Of Aldebaran website (in French)
• The downthetubes review of Antares Episode 1 is here
• The downthetubes review of Antares Episode 2 is here
• The downthetubes review of Antares Episode 3 is here
• The downthetubes review of Antares Episode 4 is here
• The downthetubes review of Antares Episode 5 is here
News, reviews, interviews and features for print and on-line: Spaceship Away (since October 2005), Bear Alley (since February 2007), downthetubes (since June 2007), and Eagle Times (since October 2008). Plus DC Thomson’s The Art Of Ian Kennedy, Titan’s Dan Dare and Johnny Red reprints, Ilex’s War Comics: A Graphic History and 500 Essential Graphic Novels, and Print Media’s The Iron Moon and Strip magazine.