Mooncop, Tom Gauld
96 pgs, Drawn and Quarterly, drawnandquarterly.com, $22.95
In his newest graphic novel, Tom Gauld explores loneliness and technologically mediated isolation through the eponymous character of Mooncop. Stationed on a dwindling moon colony without “any real crime to deal with,” Mooncop — referred to throughout only as “Officer” —meanders through his lonely existence by doing favours for the few colonists left to serve, buying coffee and donuts from a malfunctioning food dispensary, and watching the last of the population shuttle back to Earth.
The drawings are simply drawn and coloured, but hide a much deeper meaning and depth behind the minimalist appearance and storyline. Artfully blending humour, melancholia, and the looming emptiness of space, Gauld captures the inherent yet somehow intangible loneliness that comes with modern modes of connection, mediated by technology. Unlike many modern dystopian science fictions such as Black Mirror, Mooncop does not stridently force an anti-technological message. Instead, the tale muses on how tender moments will endure as technological dependency and reliance bears out, and wears out, and as progress moves us forward through the modern age. (Nicole Partyka)