Sky Doll

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Series 1 cover.

Sky Doll is an Italian comic book series first published in 2000, by Alessandro Barbucci and Barbara Canepa, who also collaborated on W.I.T.C.H. and Monster Allergy. Sky Doll distinguishes itself from these two works by its more "adult" content and a departure from pure fantasy to a more science-fiction aesthetic. Religion and science fiction, as well as the power of the mass media, are important themes of the story. So far there are three volumes with a fourth in development, as well as a sketchbook published by Carlsen Comics. The first three volumes have also been released in an English-language version by Marvel Comics in collaboration with Soleil Productions.[1]

Story[edit]

The action is set in a fictitious parallel universe, in which the papacies of Agape (representing spiritual love) and Lodovica (Ludovica, or Ludowika, depending on the language, and representing sexual love) fall into a conflict, resulting in the banishment of Agape and the creation of a dystopia in which both spiritual and sexual freedoms have been perverted. With Agape's followers labeled as heretics, Lodovica rules the galaxy through extensive control of the mass media, using "miracles" to impress the fanatical populace. The main character is Noa, a so-called Sky Doll: a lifelike android without rights, resembling a young female, who exists only to serve the state's desires. Noa meets two "missionaries", and with their help escapes from its tyrannical master. Unknown to Lodovica, it accompanies the thoughtful, naive Roy and distrustful Jahu on their interstellar mission to uproot the growing "heretic" religion on the planet Aqua, which soon develops into something much more. Eventually, mysterious powers seem to suggest Noa is more than just an ordinary robot.

Characters[edit]

Protagonists[edit]

Religious Figures[edit]

Others[edit]

Spaceship Collection[edit]

A collection of six short stories that serve as a prequel to the main story and giving Noa a slightly expanded backstory. The collection, each story featuring a different artist, explore some of the many jobs that Noa had before the events of the Skydoll miniseries, including a cow farmer, a taxi driver, and a dominatrix. Released by Marvel in two parts as part of their Soleil series. Each of the stories seem to be named after songs.

Volume One[edit]

While inside the Doll Factory, Noa tries futily to save another doll who is scheduled for destruction.

Noa's misadventures working as a cow farmer. Possibly named after the song Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)

While working at a bordello/bar, Noa gets involved with a doll's secret plan to use voodoo rites to become human. Probably named after the Jimi Hendrix song Voodoo Child (Slight Return).

Volume Two[edit]

Noa works as a taxi driver and has a misadventure involving a holy artifact stolen by a dog. Perhaps named for the Prince song "Lady Cab Driver."

Noa is worshiped from afar by a young man as she works as a dominatrix, servicing a group of Bishops dressed as Papess Lodovica. Most likely named after the Madonna hit Like a Virgin (song).

Serving as a direct prequel to the Sky Doll miniseries, Noa is forced to endure a surreal cartoonish dimension while on a mission to retrieve her boss God's crown. Most likely named after the Deep Purple rock song Smoke on the Water.

Themes[edit]

The depiction of the interaction between religion and power is described quite cynically. The miracles which are achieved by the Pope Lodovica are in reality produced by illusion or during television transmission, and do not depict the power-hungry leader as she really is. The aquatic religion is in reality an esoteric New Age chain store/spa, which is out to sell their products under the guise of bringing welfare through its profits.

The sexuality of the comic is another recurring motif. The erotic nature of the character designs and depiction of female bodies are generously represented; this is expressed conversely in details such as the Sacred Fish character in volume two. However at the same time themes of sexual repression are strongly prevalent, Noa herself a product of a sexually predatory society, and the comedic elements of the story are often harshly juxtaposed with the sexually abusive landscape.

Art styles[edit]

The look of the comic is influenced by various art and architectural styles. For example, the buildings and clothing on the Lodovica's world resemble the Baroque period, while the ornamentation on planet Aqua is reminiscent of 60's and 70's psychedelia.

Volumes[edit]

Publishers[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ Jahu: The nightmare is over! We're the new masters of our own life! And we're free … to live a new love! Aquarian: … And to suffer too! I remind you that Miss Cleopatra is still a minor, she's totally under my responsibility!

Text in this article is supplemented by the German and Italian Wikipedia articles on the same subject.

External links[edit]