L’ostie d’chat, tome 3

Summary: Our two buddies with the wobbly friendship continue to struggle through everyday life. Jean-Seb still considers Natacha the love of his life, but another encounter proves revelatory to him. Meanwhile, Jasmin has a difficult time managing his love life and music career – which is very reminiscent of Jean-Seb. Could a role-reversal be in the offing for this last opus?

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L’ostie d’chat, tome 3, by by Iris and Zviane 7.75

In this third and final volume of Iris and Zviane’s extremely popular Québécois webcomic, compiled here in print, we delve even more into Jasmin and Jean-Sebastien’s interpersonal and internal lives than before, tying up loose ends and giving them an appropriate send-off.

We learn about JS’ ill-fated attempt at college, going to Jonquière in 2005, starting on a high and gradually tumbling as his poor life choices (ex: not paying attention in class, lying on his resume, rescuing his brother Fabio by giving him money) come back to haunt him.

So Jas helps him, buys J-S a bus ticket, and offers him a place to live.

Aaaaaw… that’s what friends are for, right?

Too bad that Jean-Sebastien returns the favour by sleeping with Jasmin’s g-f!

Sigh… it figures.

We also discover that Jasmin’s sister has been repeatedly assaulted by her boyfriend, François, a cop – so she can’t call the police on him. Jasmin tries to help her out, but eventually loses it and bashes François on the head. He runs, convinced that he’s killed François.

And he turns to Maude, as he often does, causing problem with Julie, his girlfriend.

Meanwhile, Jean-Sebastien deals with his sister Sofia’s mental illness, leading him to meet Amiya, a girl he crosses paths with regularly at the mental facility. And she’s nice; she’s actually not a trouble case for once (unlike Natacha, whom he finally manages to bed).

Too bad Amiya’s dating his brother, Francesco.

Or is she?

And what about that goddamned cat, Legolas, whom they share? Well, it doesn’t play much of a part, of course, but it does bring the two losers together a coupla times as they try to deal with its inexplicable behaviour – behaviour that is no less exasperating than theirs.

Ha!

Seriously, I don’t know if it’s because I’ve read the previous two volumes, which means that the characters are more fleshed out now, but I enjoyed this one even more than the others. It’s still rudimentary and mundane, I guess, but the characters feel more real than ever.

I also quite like that both of them finally seem to land in a good place in their lives, but that it’s not altogether perfect anyway. That seems so in keeping with the characters, who are erratic and unreliable – a perfect Hollywood ending wouldn’t be suitable at all.

As with the other volumes, Iris and Zviane both share artistic duties, and I appreciate that the art alternates regularly, even though their styles are different; I adore this collaborative approach. Plus which it’s not too dissimilar and it freshens things up.

Ultimately, the book leaves us with a bit of a question mark, as Jasmin and Jean-Sebastien’s fates seem slightly open-ended. That wasn’t entirely satisfying to me; it felt as though there should be a fourth volume, even though there isn’t and the webcomic is done.

But there was a fourth book, filled with bonus material. Sadly, this collection is long out of print and is hard to find, so I have no idea what it contains. But I can promise you that, if I can get my hands on it one day, I will snatch it up and revisit the series post-haste.

I can’t seem to get enough Jasmin and Jean-Sebastien.

And that goddamned cat.

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